Just when you think “Hey, I’m certified as a Doula, I don’t need to do any more” comes the harsh reality… if you are doing this as a profession, someone is going to have more certifications or training than you. No, I’m not saying run out and look for ‘all the CEU’s’ now but it’s not a bad idea to maintain your training and continue it. You will be the right Doula for the right woman, not necessarily every woman… have faith because there are ways here to make you more appealing to a broader audience.
I personally subscribe to the theory of “Continual” education – not Continuing.
So what other classes can you take…
First of all, if you are doing this as a professional, I would hope and maybe even pray you’ve taken your Red Cross CPR/AED for the Professional. This is a must have in my humble opinion.
Next – what happens if you go out to support a mom at her home and she has a precipitous birth, and the baby isn’t breathing – and we’re not talking in the first 30 seconds? We’re not putting our Doula’s in the role of Midwife –
that takes a lot more training, but I’d highly recommend a NRP course. The instructor of my choice is Karen Strange hands down. She travels across the world teaching her Newborn Transitions course and certifying Doulas and Midwives in NRP. It’s an incredible class. Infact if you are in Salt Lake City in March and taking it – you might just be there with me come renewal time…
Lactation Training – Get involved with your local LLL chapter. Leaders are needed all the time. This will give you a jumping off point for further Breastfeeding Support training. Your mothers will greatly appreciate you with this one.
Prenatal Massage – shortly after I certified with Madriella I took a class with Leslie Stager –
http://www.touchforbirth.com and truly enjoyed it. There are a lot of different resources on her site if you don’t already have a background in touch and labor… including some free videos. Speaking of videos, she has some DVD’s
that I’m looking at for my holiday wish list, as I know I’d make good use of them in my childbirth education classes.
Childbirth Education – take a class in this. Seriously. Your Madriella training is excellent – but getting into a class gives you a chance to see how someone else interacts with parents, and how they teach. As Doula’s you teach
yourself you know… every prenatal visit is an opportunity to educate your clients. (I might be biased because I’m teaching an online class soon, but it really is an important class to take, and if you audit one locally you get a chance to meet potential clients, call around and see if you can find a class to sit in on – you won’t regret it.)
Aromatherapy – an actual course in it please, not some workshop that a network sales company put together
that lasts 30 minutes long. Concentrated Essential Oils are nothing to mess with and you should know what you are getting into before you go waving the Clary Sage at a birth.
Herbalism – Truly helpful, and while you are not prescribing anything (same as Aromatherapy) you are educated this way in what your clients ask you about (efficacy of Red Raspberry Leaf vs Blue/Black Cohosh) and their reasons to not be used for home induction. It also will give you some great ideas for things you can safely gift your clients with postpartum. I myself love the peri rinse I make up and give to my clients. It really helps with their healing.
Belly-Binding and world culture
Anything cultural to the population you serve…
Take a look around you – I bet you’ll find lots of ways to “up your game”