I have gone from being a nursing major, to an english major. Now I am finally going to graduate in May with my communication degree. I never really known what I wanted to become as an adult. My future career goals include helping people, and with my Communication Degree I want to get into nonprofit work. Today I read an interesting article on NPQ, nonprofit quarterly, about black women doulas. A doula is known for being a birth companion. They are birth coaches, or post birth supporters. Continue reading if you’re interested in learning all about how to become a doula!
New Jersey Doula
Ruth Mccambridge wrote an article about the doulas leader for the Southern New Jersey Perinatal Cooperative. There is a high mortality rate among women, and infants in the African American Community. The numbers are much higher than the mortality rates of women and infants in the white communities. Sixty percent of the women who die because of complications during childbirth are women of color. A black baby in New Jersey is three times more likely to die in their first year.
Linda Villarosa wrote an Article for the New York Times. The number of women, and infant deaths are much higher in African American Communities has a lot to do with their environment. The environment of societal, and systemic racism creates psychological stress that results in hypertension, preeclampsia. Also, the health care for African American women is biased toward African American women compared to white women. Many times black women’s concerns are dismissed even if they are legitimate. What this specific program does is train black women to become doulas in order to help other black women in their communities. There are other ways to become a doula.
How to Become a CLD
To become a CLD ( Certified Labor Doula) you must be 18 years or older, enroll in a Labor Doula Traditional course, attend a minimum of three labors/ births with a doula, and get an 85% or higher on all examinations. These women are able to give information, services, and attention to other women in need, and there services are free. They are able to work around the needs of the mother.
The article gave an example of a mother who realized that her baby wasn’t moving, so she have a call to her doula, who advised her to lie the baby on her right side, and have her drink water. When she did that the baby started moving again. The Doula touched base with the mother the next day to make sure that the baby was okay.
Keep reading to continue learning all about how to become a doula…
Is Becoming a Doula a Good Idea?
I believe that this program is a good idea. One, I believe that women of color will feel more comfortable getting help, and receiving advice from someone who resembles them. There have been so many social injustices toward the African American community, and because of this I believe having someone giving you advice that you know has struggled, or has faced similar adversities in your corner would be extremely helpful, but you don’t need to be a women of color to become a doula, and you also don’t need to do it probono.
A doula isn’t there to replace the doctor, or midwife. They are unable to deliver the babies. They are there to comfort the mom by relaxing her, reassuring her, and guiding her. Professional Doulas can charge anywhere between $800- $1200 per birth. I don’t think that becoming a Doula will become a career for me, but I do think it something that anyone can do to help their community, and make some extra cash.
Thanks for learning all about how to become a doula!
McCambridge, R. (2019, March 18). Black Women as Doulas in the Midst of Maternal Stress. Retrieved from https://nonprofitquarterly.org/2019/03/18/black-women-as-doulas-in-the-midst-of-maternal-stress/