Oh Pintrest. Taker of so many hours and giver of so many ideas..how I love you! Probably too much really. It’s unhealthy. I need to see someone about it I think. Yes.
I came cross a board listing things that you “need” to have for your pregnancy and new baby and was super stoked to see that a doula was pinned! I’m not gonna lie – we are a pretty fantastic bunch of ladies – but many, if not most women have no idea that we are out there!
Not you of course. You, lucky reader, know what a doula is because you’re reading a doulas’ blog right now! (If you don’t, skip back just two posts to review here – What’s a doula? ).
Maybe a doula was always a part of your birth plan, maybe you’ve only just started thinking about it. But how do you bridge the gap between thinking about finding a doula and actually hiring one? Where do you even start?
Not to worry! I’m going to walk you through this in two parts – how to FIND A doula and how to HIRE a doula.
Part 1, How to Hire a Doula
The first thing you’ll need to do is find out where the doulas are in your area (in my case, Calgary). Be sure to check tea shops, crystal stores and natural food markets for clusters of doulas, or, “doulagaggles”. Hahaha no. Bad joke and doula stereotypes sorry. I make terrible jokes and laugh my face off at them 😉
For real though, here’s my list of ideas!
1) Start with Google! Some of the key words you might want to try are “doulas in Calgary”, “Doula Association Calgary”, even “doula training Calgary” to get an idea of how many doulas are available, what their common service packages are and what fee ranges you’re looking at. You might also have success with searching “birth support”, “labour coach”, or “birth coach”. Be sure to check page 2 and 3 of your google search as many quality doulas may not be listed on page 1 !
2) If you have an association or agency in your city give them a call! They are often a great resource when you’re looking to hire a doula, but also for connecting with pregnancy and birth resources in your area in general. In Calgary contact The Calgary Doula Association ( 70 doulas strong as of April, 2014!)
3) DoulaMatch is an excellent site that allows you to narrow down your search by area and fee as well as special interests like VBAC or teen pregnancy.
4) In your googlemania journey you might come across other birth related websites that have a resources index. You might be able to hire a doula and find birth supplies at websites like at Mama Goddess Birth Shop and All About Birth !
5) Ask your friends! Even the ones who haven’t had babies yet. Doulas are all related to someone after all. Some of us even have friends that would be happy to pass our names along. Heck, a lot of us work day jobs. The woman in the cubicle beside you might just be a doula!!
6) Ask a doctor, nurse, midwife, lactation consultant, chiropractor, massage therapist, holistic practitioner, hospital or birth centre! Many of them will be able to recommend a resource for those looking to hire a doula or may even have a couple that they recommend specifically.
7) If you are planning to attend childbirth education classes, check the websites. Lamaze, Bradley and Hypnobabies have listings for doulas trained and certified in those specific methods.
8) Go to baby and tot shows, parenting expos and women’s shows. These can be an excellent resource for all things birth and parenting in your area. If you meet someone you connect with, you can arrange to hire a doula you right at the expo!
Once you’ve gathered a few names and numbers or email addresses, read part two: The Interview for 7 great interviewing questions and how to use them to dig deeper in the interview to really get to know the person across from you.
List of names in hand? Onward to part two !!!
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