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Salma Hayek opens up about time she breastfed stranger’s baby

Salma Hayek opens up about time she breastfed stranger’s baby

The House of Gucci star was filmed breastfeeding a malnourished baby in Sierra Leone.

Hollywood star and humanitarian Salma Hayek once helped a mother in need by breastfeeding her malnourished baby. Watch the video below:

Back in September 2008, Salma arrived in Sierra Leone to take part in a charity mission. She visited a hospital where she met a mother with a one-week-old son.

Salma, whose daughter was one, took the hungry child into her arms to feed him, despite the camera crew following her on the goodwill trip.

Sierra Leone had the highest infant mortality rate in the world at the time, which was fuelled by malnutrition.

According to Unicef, the mortality rates of babies and children under five in Sierra Leone is still among the highest globally.

Salma was informed by doctors that many mothers stop breastfeeding their infants within a few months after birth because of pressure from their husbands.

In some areas, it is considered unacceptable to have sex with a woman who is still breastfeeding.

Salma Hayek breastfeeding a stranger's baby.

The House of Gucci star told ABC’s Nightline at the time that her decision to breastfeed the child was an attempt to diminish the stigma placed on breastfeeding mums, ABC reported.

Salma, who was working as a producer on the hit series Ugly Betty when she visited the West African country, was still breastfeeding her one-year-old daughter, Valentina Paloma Pinault, now 15, at the time.

She also admitted she thought about whether she was being ‘disloyal’ to her own child by giving away her milk, but she concluded her own youngster would be ‘proud’ to share.

“Am I being disloyal to my child by giving her milk away?” Salma said during the news broadcast. “I actually think my baby would be very proud to share her milk. And when she grows up I’m going to make sure she continues to be a generous, caring person.

“And I think that’s the best thing I can give her as a mother.”

She reflected on a story about her great-grandmother who helped the starving baby of a stranger by breastfeeding them. The little boy also happened to have the same birthday as Salma’s own daughter.

Salma Hayek at the 7th Biennial UNICEF Ball in April 2018.
AFF / Alamy Stock Photo

As she breastfed the baby, Salma said: “It’s amazing because he’s really looking at me and he’s very little.”

Salma, 56, has long been involved in philanthropic efforts around the world on behalf of women and children. She donated $100,000 to help UNICEF help earthquake victims in Mexico in 2017. Salma also visited Syrian refugees in Lebanon in 2015.

The Oscar winner was honoured for her humanitarian work at the 7th Biennial UNICEF Ball at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in April 2018.

After being honoured in 2018, Salma reflected on the breast feeding experience and said some people were ‘upset’ with her actions.

She told CBS News that the baby’s 15-year-old mum approached Salma and said: “‘And I have no milk, I have no money, I have no food to give him. I have nothing.' And she was sobbing."

Salma recounted: “And I said, 'I've got milk,' 'cause I had milked my child for the first time, and I was weaning her from breastfeeding. And I had milk.

“And there was a lot of people that were upset I did that.”

CBS journalist John Blackstone said: “But there were many as well who said you may have saved a life, right?"

To which Salma replies: "Thank God!”

Featured Image Credit: Pictorial Press Ltd / The Photo Access / Alamy Stock Photo

Topics: Parenting, Celebrity