The sixth annual Doula UK conference will take place on Saturday 24th March 2018 at etc.venues St Paul’s, 200 Aldersgate, EC1A 4HD. The conference will explore how doulas and other birth and postnatal workers can support survivors of trauma and abuse, and each other.
Confirmed speakers so far…
- Kicki Hansard – When Survivors Give Birth Educator, doula, author, doula trainer
- Olivia Seck – Holistic educator and hypnotherapist
- Adjoa Kufuor – Regional Adviser on Gender and Women’s Rights, UNHCR
- Bridget Supple – Antenatal educator and facilitator
- Hilary Lewin – Doula UK founding member and Arvigo trainer
- Rebecca Schiller – Doula, writer, CEO Birthrights
- Riga Forbes – Doula, facilitator, therapist and author
- Maddie McMahon – Doula, author, doula trainer
(please scroll down for speaker bios)
The event is open to doulas, midwives, breastfeeding supporters, antenatal teachers, health visitors, OBGYNs, other birthworkers, and anyone else who has an interest in birth work! Babes in arms (roughly 0-6 months) are always welcome.
General release tickets (for non Members or Friends of Doula UK) are available here for £135
Members and Friends, please log in to My Account and follow the instructions to buy a discounted ticket.
If you become a Friend of Doula UK, not only will you be supporting our work and specifically the Access Fund, but you’ll also receive our quarterly magazine, The Doula and get access to discounted conference tickets!
Kicki Hansard is an award-winning doula and author with experience in all aspects of pregnancy, childbirth and parenting. Since 2002, she has been preparing couples for the arrival of their baby and supported many of them through the birth and postnatal period. Kicki has been working as an international doula course facilitator since 2006, and is the founder of the BirthBliss Aspiring Doula Foundation course. Kicki is currently piloting her new on-line antenatal programme for pregnant women, called Your Birth – Your Way, which is launching in the UK in October 2017. Kicki has trained with the grandmothers of doulas Penny Simkin and Phyllis Klaus in San Diego as a When Survivors Give Birth Educator and produces Kicki Hansard’s Path to Birth , an educational tool for birth preparation. Kicki is also a chapter contributor to the book The Roar Behind the Silence. Born in Swedish Lapland, the magical land of the midnight sun and northern lights, Kicki moved to the UK in 1990 and has two teenage daughters.
Riga Forbes is a doula, facilitator, therapist, creator of ‘Birth Vision’ courses and author of “Mindful Pregnancy & Birth”. She has a passion for well-being and healing in the field of motherhood and perinatal care, and has channelled her creativity into numerous forms to be able to address issues and work with people in this field. Riga has also studied and deepened her practice of meditation and movement using several techniques for more than 20 years, and is mother of two children born at home. Having trained initially in Fine Art at the London Institute and then as a teacher, in both the Arts and in Steiner education, Riga went on to qualify as a complementary therapist and later as a doula. After her first pregnancy in 2006, she developed her own programme of birth preparation, ‘Birth Vision’, which incorporates mindfulness, dance, visualisation and birth-art. Her commitment has always been to offer nurturing, creative spaces for pregnant women to deeply connect with themselves, with their pregnant bodies and babies in utero, and for mothers to find ‘community’. Alongside writing, she facilitates courses, workshops and groups for women, both during pregnancy and postnatally and also holds ‘Self-Nurture Retreats for Doulas’.
Bridget Supple has been teaching parents about birth, brain development and, more recently, the microbiome, for 15 years at Birmingham Women’s Hospital and for the charities NCT and TAMBA (Twins and Multiple Birth Association). Having trained with the NCT in 2002 she has taught thousands of parents in NHS, NCT, and TAMBA classes since then. In 2012 Bridget was approached by the National Literacy Trust to design and run a ‘Talk to your Baby‘ project within an antenatal class and delivered this as part of the Women’s Hospital classes. This was hugely successful and has now been rolled out to all the hospital Parent Education teachers. As a result of her work at the Women’s Hospital Bridget was invited to speak at the National Literacy Trust conference and subsequently runs workshops for Antenatal teachers, Health Professionals, Birth Workers and Children’s Centre Staff on optimising the start for babies as well as giving regular conference talks across the country. Bridget has also taught in Children’s Centres as part of an Outreach program targeting groups less likely to attend standard classes and developed and delivered a course for BME women in Telford in 2012. More recently she has been running sessions specifically designed for Children’s Centre staff on the microbiome and baby brain development. Bridget also runs the Facebook page “Seeding Baby’s Microbiome” a source for health professionals and parents alike to keep up to date with the latest science and understanding of giving baby the best microbial start.
Adwoa Kufuor has extensive human rights experience on gender and women’s rights as well as broader human rights and humanitarian issues, and has worked with the United Nations in various positions at headquarters and in the field. Adwoa is currently working with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights regional office in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Adwoa has served as an Adviser on human rights of women, focusing specifically on violence against women, conflict related sexual violence, harmful gender stereotyping, harmful practices including female genital mutilation, child and forced marriage, violence against girls in schools, and violence against women in detention. Prior to joining OHCHR, Adwoa served in Afghanistan where she worked on strengthening the capacity of the Afghan Bar Association and on women and peace building. She previously worked as a child protection Adviser, an Analyst and Researcher with UNAMID, the African Union and the ground breaking NGO, Sudan Organisation against Torture. Adwoa has also worked in Nigeria to support research, policy work, partnerships and advocacy in integrating human rights within the work of the UN country team. Adwoa has advocacy skills and in-depth knowledge of international human rights law particularly on women and girls and related jurisprudence.
Rebecca Schiller is the chief executive of human rights in childbirth charity, Birthrights, and a reproductive rights campaigner. She entered the birth world as a mother and then a doula in 2010. She’s now a Doula UK member and Doula Mentor, and very occasionally still offers doula support to families in Kent and London. She also writes freelance about birth, parenting and women’s rights for The Pool, The Guardian and other publications. Her book, Why Human Rights in Childbirth Matter, was published by Pinter and Martin in 2016. Her new book will be published by Penguin in April 2018.
Hilary Lewin As a 53 year old woman I am now able to spend us much time looking back over my life as I do looking forward and it feels good. Amongst the many things I have been involved in Doula UK certainly stands out as a highlight. Little did I know as I organised that first meeting what a powerful impact it would have on my life. Not only did I meet many amazing and inspirational woman I also learnt fast and on my feet many useful skills which have rippled through my life to this day. Not the least of them being how to send e mails and use a computer! Yes, it was that long ago we birthed this baby! Now, as an Arvigo® Abdominal Therapist I have the pleasure of working with women of all ages including from the point of recognising the dream for a baby, to conception which is all too often a slow story, through pregnancy, birth and the early postpartum months. I also teach this work internationally and have developed a workshop which addresses a new and personal passion of mine around Menopause. Teaching and treating I am never far from the womb and still do the occasional doula job. My most recent birth was a ‘second generation’ baby – I was at the father’s birth 26 years ago and the magic of being with him as he witnessed his child entering the world was beyond words. To find out more about me take a look at www.hilarylewin.com
Olivia Seck is a mother, holistic childbirth educator, birth companion, trainer, hypnotherapist and HypnoBirthing teacher. She has been teaching and supporting birthing women and couples for over 2 decades now. She has 4 children including a wonderful 16 year old who, like his siblings, is her mischievous teacher on the path of Motherhood. On her quest for a holistic lifestyle and profession at the beginning of the 80’s, Olivia studied various aspects of holistic health : humanistic psychology and education (dipHe), counselling, voice dialogue, movement and dance, healing and infant massage. After training with the Holistic Birth Foundation, she founded the Kin & Kin Pregnancy practice in Devon and created The Birthing Wisdom (Demestia) Birth companion/doula training, a distillation of her two decades of studies, her professional experience supporting women through life transitions and her 32 years as a mother and partner. After training with Marie Mongan, the founder of HypnoBirthing in the USA, Olivia added another dimension to her holistic approach and she created BirthCreation, a holistic childbirth education programme, which includes valuable hypnobirthing techniques. This hypnosis approach to birth has been integrated in the Birthing Wisdom curriculum. Olivia is also the founder of Radiant Mama (formely the Totnes Holistic Birth Hub) a Devon project that offer info, emotional and practical support, classes, holistic therapies and a nourishing lunch within a community of like minded parents – all on a donation basis. Olivia lives with her family in Devon where she has a pregnancy practice and most of the Birthing Wisdom trainings take place. Her book ‘Birth Beyond Fear’ will be published at the end of 2017.
Maddie has been a doula since 2003. She is a Doula UK Mentor and runs Developing Doulas, a Doula UK Approved Preparation Course. She is a founder and trustee of Cambridge Breastfeeding Alliance and also a Breastfeeding Counsellor with the ABM. She has recently retired from her local MSLC after being Chair and then User Rep for twelve years. She recently achieved her childhood dream of becoming a published author with the publication of Why Doulas Matter in 2015. Why Mothering Matters, her next book, is out soon.
Her proudest achievement is being mum to boy and girl teens and stepmum to one all-grow-up boy. She lives and works in Cambridge with her long suffering husband, her kids and a small black and white cat.
By choosing to support our event, you will be contributing to the delivery of a full day of meaningful, impactful, personal and professional development, for a delegation of around 250 doulas, midwives, breastfeeding supporters, antenatal teachers, health visitors, OBGYNs and other perinatal workers and thought leaders.
Sponsorship packages start at £500, and we are very happy to consider proposals and new partnership ideas. Please email email@example.com for more information.