In September 2016, Fanshawe College will be the first college in Ontario to offer a program in doula studies. Doulas provide non-medical care and support to families during and after childbirth.
This one-year certificate program will provide students with a strong foundation of knowledge and practical skills. Students will receive valuable hands-on experience through two field placements. Graduates will be prepared to work in collaboration with the health care team to provide families with information and support across their reproductive journey. They will also be prepared to start their own doula practice as a full-spectrum doula, birth doula and postpartum doula.
“We took the changing dynamics and increased complexity of modern maternity care into consideration when we developed this program with a community-based doula organization,” says Jodi Hall, Fanshawe professor and London doula. “In addition to class instruction and practice through the use of simulation and labs, our students will benefit from 150 hours in community placements that will foster inter-professional team development. This makes the program unique.”
“Doulas play a unique role as a member of the maternity health team. The continuous assistance from a labour support person enhances maternal outcomes, reducing interventions and facilitating the well-being of new parents,” said Sandra DeLuca, chair, School of Nursing. “The Doula Studies program has been developed by the School of Nursing in partnership with a community-based Doula business.”
In September, Fanshawe will welcome 24 students to this exciting new program.