Jewish woman breastfeeds Palestinian baby after mother injured in accident

Nurse took over after baby’s mother sustained head injury in road accident.


A Palestinian baby whose father was killed and mother seriously injured in a car crash has been nursed back to health by a Jewish hospital worker.

The nine-month-old boy refused to feed from a bottle after the tragic incident which left him lightly hurt and his mother with serious head injuries.

The family from Hebron had been involved in a head-on collision with an armoured bus on Route 60 and the baby’s father was declared dead at the scene. His mother, who was apparently not wearing a seatbelt at the time, remains in a serious condition.

The baby, known only as Yaman, ate nothing and cried incessantly for seven hours after arriving at Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in Jerusalem last Friday. Desperate, the child’s aunts who were in hospital with him asked if anything could be done.

When a Jewish paediatric nurse called Ula Ostrowski-Zak clocked on for her shift in the children’s emergency room, she decided to step in.

"They asked me if I could help them find someone who would breastfeed the baby,” she told Yediot Ahronot.

“As a nursing mother, I didn't hesitate and suggested that I do it myself.

"His aunts were surprised that a Jew agreed to breastfeed him, but I told them that every mother would do it.”

During the course of her shift Ms Ostrowski-Zak nursed the baby five times. She later posted on the Facebook group La Leche League to find a replacement and was overwhelmed by the response.

“Within two hours I received more than 1,000 likes and responses from women who volunteered to help, women who were willing to travel even from Haifa to breastfeed him,” she said.

“In between, I continued to try to expose the child to the bottle but without success.”

Once discharged, the baby will be cared for at his grandparents’ home, also in Hebron.

Ms Ostrowski-Zak said. "His aunts embraced me and thanked me. They were really surprised and told me that no Jewish women would agree to nurse a Palestinian baby they did not know."

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