More and more women are hiring a birth doula to accompany them on the journey through pregnancy, childbirth and into parenthood. Many are also turning to postnatal doulas to help them adjust in the early days of parenthood – a period which should feel like a blissful “babymoon” but often feels like a wild rollercoaster of emotion, tiredness and overwhelm.
A doula does not have medical training but she should have training in basic knowledge of pregnancy, childbirth and early parenthood. I have not only had basic training – but I keep myself continually updated. I am also a gentle sleep consultant for babies and young children.
Doula UK is a non-profit network run by doulas and providing a free Find a Doula service for parents-to-be. It is not an agency.
A recognised DUK doula has:
- Undertaken a recognised preparation course. In my case I studied with the legendary natural birth guru Michel Odent and Nurturing Birth, a leading doula training company.
- Gone through a period of mentorship with a more experienced doula. This entailed providing detailed briefings on my first four doula placements, including feedback from my clients.
- Committed to ongoing professional development.
I have supported almost fifty women on their birth journeys as a birth doula and more as a postnatal doula. I took a break from birth doula work for a few years because of family commitments but now I am back full of enthusiasm!