How to Find a DONA Trained Doula

If you’re considering working with a doula during your childbirth experience, DONA International is a highly respected organization that provides some of the best training and certification programs for doulas. They have a directory of certified doulas throughout the world and offer a variety of educational opportunities for those interested in becoming a doula.

As an organization, DONA International is dedicated to promoting quality birth experiences by providing support and resources to those who are expecting. By working with a certified doula, you can be sure that they will provide the best care and support during your labor and delivery process. With their help, you can create a positive experience for both you and your baby.

finding a DONA trained doula

What is DONA International?

DONA International is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to the support, education, and advancement of doulas worldwide. Originally founded in 1992 as Doulas of North America, this organization has become a leading authority in doula education and advocacy and has over 10,000 members in more than 50 countries.

DONA International is recognized as the first and largest certifying organization for doulas.

What is a Doula?

A doula is a trained professional who provides emotional and informational support to women and families during pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period. Doulas help women and their partners prepare for childbirth, provide guidance and comfort during labor, and offer postpartum support as needed.

Doulas do not provide medical care but rather complement the care received from physicians, midwives, and nurses.

Find out more about the different kinds of doulas in this article.

Steps to Find a Doula Certified by DONA International

When looking for a doula, it’s important to find one who is certified and trained by a reliable organization like DONA International. To help you make the best decision for your family, here’s a comprehensive guide on how to find a DONA trained doula:

1. Visit the DONA International website: The DONA International website is a great resource for finding a trained doula in your area. Visit their website and click on “Find a Doula” on the top navigation bar.

2. Search for a doula in your area: On the “Find a Doula” page, enter your city or zip code in the search bar to find a list of trained doulas in your area.

3. Filter your search: You can filter your search by distance, certification status, and other preferences, such as price range. This can help you find a doula who meets your specific needs.

4. Review doula profiles: Once you’ve found a list of doulas in your area, take some time to review their profiles. These profiles usually include a photo, a short bio, and information on their experience, certifications, and areas of expertise.

5. Contact potential doulas: After reviewing several doula profiles, you can contact potential doulas to ask more questions or schedule a consultation. Some doulas offer a free consultation to get to know each other and determine if they’re a good fit.

6. Meet with your chosen doula: Once you’ve found a doula you’re interested in, meet with them to discuss your birth preferences and expectations. This is also a good opportunity to ask any additional questions you may have and to discuss fees and payment options.

Overall, finding a DONA International trained doula involves a simple search on their website, reviewing profiles, and reaching out to potential doulas to schedule consultations. It’s important to find a doula who shares your birth philosophy and who you feel comfortable working with throughout the childbirth journey.

Types of Training and Certification offered at DONA International

Here are some types of workshops, trainings, and certification offered by DONA International:

Birth Doula Workshop: This workshop is designed to provide aspiring doulas with the skills and knowledge necessary to support expectant parents before, during, and after childbirth. It covers a range of topics from anatomy and physiology of pregnancy, comfort measures, breastfeeding, and more. Completion of this workshop is required to move on to birth doula certification.

Postpartum Doula Workshop: This workshop is designed to provide aspiring postpartum doulas with the skills and knowledge necessary to support new parents in the postpartum period. It covers a range of topics from newborn care, breastfeeding support, postpartum mood disorders, and more. Completion of this workshop is required to move on to postpartum doula certification.

DONA International Birth and Postpartum Doula Certification: The certification process consists of completing the respective workshop, attending births or postpartum visits, completing required reading, and passing a written exam.

It ensures that the doula has a minimum level of knowledge and skills necessary to provide effective support to families during the childbirth process.

Professional Development Workshop: This workshop is designed for certified doulas who want to deepen and expand their knowledge and skills. Topics covered include updates on medical research, advanced comfort measures, cesarean and VBAC support, and more.

Business Development Workshop: This workshop assists doulas in building and growing a successful doula business. Topics include marketing your services, networking, pricing, contracts, and more.

Attaining certification from DONA International signifies that a doula has met a high standard of competency in providing birth or postpartum support to families. It provides credibility and assurance to potential clients that the doula is a professional and trustworthy source of support.

Moreover, the various workshops offered by DONA International allow doulas to continue to build upon their skills and knowledge and to connect with other professionals in the field.

Looking for a sample Birth Doula Contract? Visit this page

Unique Training and Certification with DONA

What sets DONA International apart from other doula training programs and certifications is its emphasis on evidence-based practice and standards of conduct. DONA certified doulas are required to uphold a Code of Conduct and commit to providing non-judgmental, confidential, and respectful support to their clients.

Also Read: How to Become a DONA Certified Doula 

Video: DONA International Inception

Penny Simkin is a Physical Therapist who co-founded DONA International in 1992. Her specialties include childbirth education, labor support, and birth counseling. In the video, she explains how the idea of a doula was developed by her and fellow medical professionals, and how they subsequently decided to offer training.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is DONA’s Code of Conduct?

DONA International’s Code of Conduct emphasizes the importance of non-judgmental care, confidentiality, respect for all clients and cultural sensitivity. It is designed to provide doulas with a professional set of standards to abide by while providing support to their clients. These standards also help ensure that doulas are providing safe, ethical care.

2. How does a DONA trained doula stay up-to-date to their skills?

DONA certified doulas are required to meet continuing education requirements in order to maintain their certification. These include completing online courses and attending conferences, workshops and seminars related to the field of perinatal care.

DONA International also offers an annual professional development course for its members.

3. What is the difference between a DONA trained Doula and a Childbirth Educator?

The primary difference between a DONA trained doula and a childbirth educator is the scope of their roles. A doula provides emotional, physical and educational support to the mother during pregnancy, labor and delivery as well as postpartum care.

A childbirth educator focuses more on providing information about pregnancy, labor and delivery as well as newborn care. While both roles may overlap at times, they are distinctly different in the support that they provide to expecting parents.

4. Is a DONA certified Doula covered by insurance?

Some health insurance policies do not cover doula services, but many doulas will work with clients on a sliding scale in order to make their services more accessible. Some doulas may also offer payment plans or discounts for those who cannot afford their full rate. It is important to discuss the specifics with your doula beforehand to ensure that you are able to receive the services that you need.

5. How do I find a DONA certified doula near me?

The best way to find a DONA certified doula near you is by using the online directory on the DONA International website. This directory allows you to search for doulas based on location, experience and other criteria.

Many hospitals also have their own list of approved childbirth educators and doulas that are available in the area. In both cases, it is important to research and interview several potential doulas before making a decision to ensure that you are getting the right person for your needs.

Have you heard about Night Doulas? They offer postpartum assistance to allow parents to get the necessary rest. To learn more about them, click here.

Final Thoughts

Choosing to work with a doula during your birthing experience can provide you with emotional, physical, and informational support that can make all the difference in your childbirth experience. DONA International provides some of the best training and certification programs for doulas, ensuring that they have the knowledge and skills necessary to provide the best possible care for their clients.

By following the steps outlined in this comprehensive guide, you can take the first step towards becoming a DONA certified doula and provide invaluable support to families during their childbirth journey.

Note: For more details about DONA International and its certifications, please visit their website directly at

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