©Lisa Gendron | Agroterra Birth

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 DOULA PROGRAM

Open Circle is currently developing a group doula program which will be available to support expecting families in 2020. If you are looking for doula support before our group program is available, we encourage you to contact any of our team individually (contact information can be found below within individual bios).  Additionally, you can learn more about independent doulas who practice in Rhode Island by visiting the professional association, Doulas of Rhode Island, or the Umoja Nia Collective for Doulas of Color.

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.

O + T, Providence

 

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. Our doulas have different cultural backgrounds, professional expertise and specialties. 

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

PRICING

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 $15-$35 per hour for postpartum support.

Birth Packages include:

  • Up to 2 monthly group meetings at Open Circle throughout pregnancy (families may attend as many as they like, with a minimum of 2). Group meetings provide time for education, questions, getting to know the doulas, and peer-support.
  • One private prenatal meeting between week 36 and 37
  • Unlimited daytime phone and email support
  • 24-hour on-call support from weeks 38-42
  • Continuous labor + birth support
  • Three in-home (or hospital) postpartum visits
  • One group postpartum meeting at Open Circle
  • Community Gatherings and Workshops with Other Doula Families

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*. 

*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!

I.H. Providence

Lisa Gendron
Birth and Postpartum Doula

Lisa Gendron has been a doula since 2007 and has worked extensively with families in pregnancy, birth, and the postpartum. She is a certified Birth Doula (Childbirth International) and Birthing From Within ® Mentor. In her years of work with families she has developed a whole-hearted understanding of the complex process that accompanies the transformations of pregnancy, birth, and new parenthood. She works in a holistic process, focused on building individualized support for every member of the expectant family. In this practice she seeks to center and uphold the value systems that define each family culture, with mindfulness and compassion. Lisa is the mother of three children, an artist, passionate community advocate and lover of all things green. She is currently a midwifery student with the National College of Midwifery. 

Felicia Love
Birth Doula

Felicia trained as a birth doula with Birth Arts International, and is the incoming co-president of Doulas of Rhode Island, RI’s professional doula association. Felicia had her first child at seventeen, doing her best to navigate her pregnancy and birth, but often felt overwhelmed and unsupported. This experience, and the powerfully positive birth of her second child with the support of a doula, set her on a path to supporting birthing families. Felicia is committed to the spiritual and sacred nature of pregnancy and birth, and to supporting a birthing woman/person’s sense of her own inner power. She believes that evert birthing person deserves to determine their own birth preferences and approach, and offers nonjudgemental, respectful support.

Isabel Mattia
Birth Doula

Isabel is a DONA certified birth doula and an artist living on a small farm in rural Rhode Island. Isabel approaches birth support with a goal to keep calm energy and strength in the room. She practices a supportive, attentive, and nonjudgemental approach, focusing on the values and preferences of the birthing parent. She has worked in childcare, education, and the arts. Isabel values supporting all families and has an LGBTQ+ inclusive practice. She believes doulas can be advocates for better access to care, and that our support continues beyond the birth room and into the political landscape. She graduated from Brown University in 2011 and is currently pursuing a Masters in Sculpture from RISD.

Sianna Plavin
Birth Doula

Sianna Plavin (pronouns she/ her) is a DONA trained doula and midwifery student based in Providence, RI. She provides birthing people and families with thoughtful and compassionate doula care, honoring and holding space for each person, on their terms. Currently in her 4th semester of midwifery school, she brings her deepening clinical knowledge to her doula work, offering support rooted in the physiology and psychology of pregnancy, birth, and the postpartum period. Sianna is committed to expanding doula access with income-based fees, creative approaches to care, and informed advocacy. Sianna is also a musician and farmer with a background in international peace studies and community health.

Gina Rodriguez-Drix
Birth and Postpartum Doula

Gina Rodriguez-Drix is a birth and postpartum doula based in Providence’s Washington Park neighborhood. Trained by ToLabor (2010) and the International Center for Traditional Childbearing (2014) Gina has supported families in home and hospital births for the last eight years. Gina is the co-founder of the Rhode Island Doula Collective, RI’s first no-fee, bilingual social justice doula organization that primarily served pregnant and parenting teens through a partnership with the Nowel Academy (2014-16). Gina is also an artist, mother, and organizer rooted in values of love, solidarity, and reproductive justice. As such, Gina views her doula work as a practice of building sisterhood and by extension, a healthy resilient community. Gina supports families to make empowered and informed decisions during their pregnancies and birth through a practice of deep listening, respect, and intention. 

Kaeli Sutton
Birth and Postartum Doula, Certified Lactation Counselor

Kaeli trained as a Birth Doula with ToLabor (2009) and as a Birth and Postpartum Doula with The International Center of Traditional Childbearing (2016). She is a Certified Lactation Counselor (2016), pregnancy and postnatal yoga teacher (2005), childbirth educated (2007), and massage therapist (2001) specializing in pregnancy and mother massage. Kaeli recognizes pregnancy, birth, and the first few years of a child’s life as profoundly formative for each individual family member, and for the family as a whole — a rite of passage filled with potential for deep growth and real change. She believes that each family’s health can be supported through unwavering respect and care as it moves through this major life transformation. Kaeli is committed to supporting access to skilled, culturally competent, and compassionate care for all families in our community, and to acknowledging and addressing the structural systems that lead to injustice and inexcusable health disparities in our state and country.