In the original Greek, to be a doula means to serve. To serve as a doula is to nurture, support, and care for women as they become mothers. Throughout the history of childbirth, the birthing time has been depicted as just this; women supporting and serving women giving birth. As industrialized societies began to move birth into a hospitalized setting, doulas began to disappear. Even just a few years ago when I would tell people I was a doula, they would respond with “a do what?” Now, doulas are becoming more and more popular and valued in the birth world, both in and out of hospitals.
Back to the question of “a do what?” doulas are defined by DONA International as physical, emotional, and partner support, as well as a source of evidence-based information and advocacy. Doulas get to know their families and the goals that their mamas have for birth. They share both sides of topics to help their mamas make informed and confident decisions about the birth process. They educate women and families on the birth process and help them prepare for bringing their baby into the world in the most empowering way possible. With these roles of a doula, women are less likely to need labor induction, less likely to have a cesarean birth, less likely to use pain medication, and more likely to rate their birth story as positive and empowering (Simkin, 2012). Those all sound like winning benefits to me!
If this sounds like something that your heart is calling to pursue in this new year the you’re in luck! DONA’s Birth Doula Training Course is coming up this month!
Spring 2017 DONA International Birth Doula Training
February 24-26, 2017 in Bozeman, MT
March 10-12, 2017 in Missoula, MT
Friday 1-5 pm, Saturday 8 am – 5:15 pm, Sunday 8 am – 5:30 pm
Limited to 12, first-come, first-serve
$450 if pre-paid in full by Feb. 10th, 2017 for the Bozeman Workshop
$450 if pre-paid in full by Feb. 24th, 2017 for the Missoula Workshop
$500 for late or walk-in registrations
HOW TO SIGN UP:
Please submit your full contact information, including street address and phone number(s) by email. Registration will be complete and active once payment is received.
(1) By check or money order
(2) By credit card using PayPal
Now accepting Credit Card payments!
Walk-in registrations are welcome IF space is available. Payment of $500 at the door, cash, check or card payments accepted.
Basic knowledge of physiology and anatomy of the birth process. This can be either via personal experience or involvement, or via reading either Pregnancy, Childbirth and the Newborn:
The Complete Guide by Simkin, Whalley, Keppler, Durham, Bolding (2010), or The Birth Partner by Penny Simkin (2013). Other than this, there are no formal educational requirements. This workshop is explicitly open to anyone with the desire to provide labor support.