Over the past year I have gained quite a following on TikTok! Over on TikTok I post a lot of Birth Doula related videos and content. In the year since I started posting I have received dozens upon dozens of Direct Messages and Emails from people inquiring about how to become a doula. So I thought I would make it easier for everyone and make a blog post everyone can refer to!
Where Do You Start?
Birth Doula’s aren’t a regulated profession in the United States. Doulas are NOT medical professionals. Doulas support families informationally, emotionally, and physically. Really… anyone can be a Doula… but should just anyone become a doula?
The recent COVID19 Pandemic has shown that there is a dire need for Doulas to be certified. Many hospitals are only allowing one support person plus a CERTIFIED Doula to accompany patients to Labor and Delivery. Why did hospitals start doing this?
Well… unfortunately since anyone can call themselves a Doula, people’s mothers, sisters, aunts, cousins, and best friends were trying to claim that they were Doulas just so they could be present for the birth. Due to these “Fake Doulas”, Hospitals closed their doors to ALL Doulas.
Fortunately, legitimate Doulas are being welcomed back into hospitals now, so long as they can show that they are Certified and operating a legitimate business.
So your first step would be to become certified.
How Do I Get A Certification?
By getting certified, you will be going through an in-depth training that will prepare you to help families and run your own business. There are dozens upon dozens of Certifying Organizations to choose from. You just have to select which Organization best fits your: 1. Personality. 2. Style and 3. How you intend to Doula.
The following organizations are whom I personally recommend you look into:
Personally, I took the training class through DONA and I am pursuing certification through Madriella. Why did I go this route? I chose this route because the training I received through DONA was very extensive and really prepared me on becoming a doula, however, maintaining a certification through DONA was not something that fit my business model. Instead, Madreilla’s certification better fit my business model.
Before choosing who to certify with, really read each organization’s code of conduct and ethics policy and ask yourself if those requirements fit your business model and how you see yourself Doula-ing. Also weigh the pros and cons of each organization. Some organizations, like Birth Bootcamp, will provide you with more business and marketing support to get your business off the ground!(TBH I hope to also certify with Birth Bootcamp one day.)
Once you have selected the organization that best fits you, sign up for their classes! Many are holding them online!!!
I hope this easy blog post helps you get started with your own Doula journey. I know many who will read this post are from far and wide. I wish I could help each and every one of you, but I cannot. The best thing for you to do is seek out a Doula in your own area who can help you best with what is going on in your own community!! You can find local doulas at http://www.doulamatch.net