Many women discover that best job in the world is to be a doula. Doulas assist other couples either in the birth of their babies or during the postpartum period. The good news is that it’s now possible to make a living being a doula. And it‘s pretty easy to become one whether or not you decide to go for your doula certification..
For an article about the questions to ask oneself before becoming a doula click here.
If you’re wondering how to become a doula you’ll want to learn everything you can about birth, breastfeeding and the postpartum time. Luckily, there are plenty of books and websites to help you out. Go to certifying websites like DONA, ICEA, CAPPA and others to see what books they require for their certifications. Here also is a list of recommended reading.
You should also join birthing professional forums or yahoo groups to learn from other birthing professionals. Click here for a list of forums and yahoo groups to get you started. Our Resource Page also has websites that may help you on your path.
Find other birthing professionals in your area either on forums, in yahoo groups or listed at certifying organizations. Find out if the there's a doula or birthing professional group in your area. Ask other doulas questions about their business. Ask how they got started, how they’re making their money, how they find their clients, how they became a doula and whether they enjoy their profession. Ask if you can shadow them so you can see what their job is really like. Pick their brains for tips to make your birthing business work.
There are two types of doulas, birth and postpartum. Birth doulas or labor assistants help laboring women during the birth process. They provide physical, emotional and informational support for women either wanting to go unmedicated or women who want a more medical birth. For more information about birth doulas, click here.
Postpartum doulas come after the baby is born to help with baby care, errand running, light housekeeping, breastfeeding assistance and informational support. These women are very helpful if a new set of parents don’t have a lot of support in the few weeks after a baby’s birth. Click here for more information about postpartum doulas.
Many women choose to become both birth and postpartum doulas to maximize their birth – based business and the amount of money they earn.
While there are pros and cons to getting a doula certification, it may help you become a doula if you start the certification process with a certifying organization. Each certifying organization has pros and cons from the certification requirements, to the ease of finding trainings to their birthing philosophies; please explore each certifying organization to find the one that’s right for you. Many women will go through the training, but opt against certification. It is easier to find clients and get hired if you become a certified doula, but you may not agree with the requirements or cost. Other women will opt to become certified with a number of organizations. For more information about the pros and cons of certification see this article.
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