Doulas are professionals trained to care for families during pregnancy, birth and the early months of a baby’s life. They offer physical, emotional, and informational support to help your family work toward the healthiest and most empowered experience of the childbearing year.
Open Circle works with a group of independent doulas who share a commitment to respectful, compassionate, family-centered care. Our sister-doulas have a combined experience of attending over 600 births. Many of our doulas bring additional skills and expertise to their work, including: massage therapy, nutritional consults, placental encapsulation, breastfeeding support, etc.
To keep our care coordinated and of the highest caliber, Open Circle requires all sister-doulas to attend workshops and supervision sessions throughout the year and to commit to our mission of supporting all families of all means.
Thank you for your amazing support in bringing [our baby girl] into the world. Your strength, guidance, knowledge and loving kindness made all the difference. We are so grateful for your support in realizing our dream of a VBAC for our second baby. You will always hold an important place in our story – and in hers.
WHY USE A DOULA
- Increased sense of satisfaction with birth experience*
- Increased breastfeeding success*
- 28% fewer cesarean sections*
- 34% fewer negative birth experience*
- 9% drop in use of pain medication*
- 31% less use of Pitocin*
- 40 minute shorter labors*
- Physically and Emotionally Healthier transition into Parenthood/Postpartum
- Improved Bonding and Parenting Skills
*from Childbirth Connection, National Partnership for Women + Families and Choices in Childbirth 2016 brief on insurance coverage of Doula Care.
WHAT IS A BIRTH DOULA?
Birth doulas provide your family with physical and emotional support during pregnancy and birth, help you understand your choices, and help you learn how to advocate for yourself/selves and your baby.
Open Circle doulas support families in all types of births: medicated/epidural, un-medicated, cesarean and adoptive. We also support all types of families: heterosexual and same sex couples, teen mothers and single mothers by circumstance or choice, adoptive parents, families of color from within and without the US, and families of all traditions.
Birth doulas respect your family’s individual beliefs and needs. They work to understand and support your family’s particular vision of an empowered and healthy birth. This including helping you find information, practitioners and birth locations that are a good fit for your family.
Birth doulas provide referrals to other practitioners and specialists in the community to support any additional needs of your family during pregnancy, birth and the newborn stage.
WHAT IS A POSTPARTUM DOULA?
Postpartum doulas work in your home to help your family adjust and thrive after your baby is born. They provide education to help families develop strategies and rhythms that support whole family health and mental-emotional wellbeing. Doulas may work daytime or nighttime hours, always with the goal of helping you develop skills and confidence in your ability to parent and care for your baby. A doula is different from a baby nanny or babysitter (which can also be helpful during the postpartum time): a nanny or babysitter’s focus may be entirely on infant care to allow the parents to focus on other things (sleep, work, etc.). The doula’s focus is on providing the resources and education to help parents feel confident in their abilities to care for their babies, themselves and their family as a whole — gradually supporting a family’s independence from her help. The types of support offered depend on your family’s specific needs, and may include any of the areas listed below.
- Infant Soothing, Feeding & Sleep Support
- Organizational Support for a Newborn Household
- Physical & Nutritional Support for New Parents
- Emotional, Psychological & Social Support for All Family Members
- Referrals to Community Professionals + Groups
- Light household duties
We believe that receiving comprehensive support is the right of all families, and is core to supporting a healthy transition from birth into parenting and family life. Open Circle Birth and Postpartum Doula fees are income-based and range from $150-$1200 for a birth package, and $10-$35 per hour for postpartum support.
Birth Packages include:
- Three prenatal meetings
- Unlimited daytime phone and email support
- 24-hour on-call support from weeks 38-42
- Continuous labor + birth support
- Two postpartum meetings
- Discounts on classes, workshops and health services at Open Circle
Postpartum Doula Care is structured on an hourly or overnight basis (9-10 hours), with a minimum number of 4 hours per visit, and no more than 24 consecutive hours*. With 12 or more hours booked, 10% discounts are provided on classes, workshops and health services at Open Circle.
*unless special arrangements have been made with a team of doulas
Thank you for everything you have done for us. Your presence at [our baby’s] birth made everything go more smoothly. As you know, I was somewhat terrified of having a c-section. You created the space and time that both I and my family needed to feel more comfortable with the situation. We were all so glad to have you there, and I cannot overstate how incredibly much your massages helped me through labor!