Mar 10, 2024

Our newest CHAMPion of the Week is dedicated to improving the health of Alabama’s women and mothers. Kristina Habchi, CLC, Bsc, is the Executive Director of Mothers’ Milk Bank of Alabama (MMBAL), Alabama Breastfeeding Committee Board Chair, and Human Milk Banking Association of North America (HMBANA) DEI Committee Co-Chair.

As a first-generation American born and raised in the Black Belt, Kristina has a deep-rooted passion for equity work in the Southeast. After studying nutrition and hunger studies at Auburn University, her background in food justice and food banking led her to milk. In 2017, Kristina became the Executive Director of MMBAL, an HMBANA-designated human milk bank helping to provide mothers’ milk to sick or premature infants and babies in need. Over the past seven years, she has helped to shepherd MMBAL’s more than 200% growth in staff and operations!

“I love working in collaboration with women, mothers, and families to improve the health of Alabama’s women and mothers,” shares Kristina. “Getting to work with donor moms who provide their breast milk out of the goodness in their hearts and the knowledge of its impacts on others is so uplifting and powerful.”

Kristina is also a board member of the Alabama Environmental Council and Breastfeeding Education Support Team, where she uses her unique background to add perspective and push for the equitable distribution of resources and programming. Additionally, Kristina is a certified lactation consultant and earned a Nonprofit Management Certificate from Harvard Extension School.

Kristina tells us: “Creating a breastfeeding-friendly community is a collaborative effort that requires the participation of all sectors – governmental, nonprofit, medical, and business. For breastfeeding support to be available, an equitable approach is needed so that access to resources and education is available to those who need it the most.”

Kristina’s commitment to food justice and breastfeeding equity is inspiring. CHEER is thrilled to celebrate her as our CHAMPion of the Week!