Technical Vs non-technical skills
Emphasis in our current culture is often placed on training and qualifications gained, and in recognition of this we stipulate a minimum training requirement or experience level for our recognised doula members as outlined above. It is important to remember however, that there are many other skills (other than the technical knowledge gained through training courses) which are required in order to become a successful doula. Good communication skills, empathy, high self awareness, an ability to make women and their families at ease in your company, an enthusiastic curiosity about childbirth, high levels of emotional intelligence and good teamwork skills are also critical parts of the whole doula package.
Joining the Doula Association of Ireland
All membership applications will be reviewed by DAI Committee. Once accepted, the relevant membership fee can be paid. When payment is complete the new member will receive a receipt, membership card and an emailed DAI paperwork pack which includes sample client booking form, evaluation forms for clients and HCPs, and details for completing our Data Collection forms.
In joining the Doula Association of Ireland prospective members also agree to abide by our code of ethics. Please ensure that you have read these terms and are happy to incorporate them in your work before sending in your application form.
What training do doulas undertake?
As an Association we ask that prospective members complete an approved training course. For Birth Doulas the emphasis in this training is on understanding the normal physiological birth process and how it can best be supported, common interventions and concerns of the pregnant woman and how to provide the best evidence based information when so requested. In addition to a minimum three day course, some doula training facilities also require self study projects, attendance at a course of antenatal classes, a required reading list and written dissertations to be completed. All newly qualified doulas are required to undergo a period of evaluation post training and the submission of written evaluation forms to the Association prior to full accreditation.
There are several different types of doula courses on offer, from distance learning to workshops. The Doula Association of Ireland recommends active learning, with lots of physical practice, ideally suited to the workshop courses. Current insurers will not accept distance learning doula courses.
Doulas should never regard themselves as being trained!
Every birth brings with it a new opportunity to learn and develop your doula skills. We celebrate the individuality of the women who have allowed us to participate and support them in their birthing processes. Something new is learned from each and every birth and contributes to our ongoing learning process. A high degree of self awareness and an ability to reflect are therefore very important. As an Association we also realise the importance of continued professional development and encourage our members to keep up to date with best evidence based care practice. We run workshops in order to facilitate this continued learning process.