Postnatal (Recognised since July 2014)
Birth (Recognised since November 2009)
Lives in: Reading RG30
Local info and availability:
I tend to work around the Reading area, however I do travel to Newbury, Swindon, Oxford, High Wycombe, Slough, Maidenhead, Aldershot, Basingstoke and Winchester - pretty much within an hours drive of Reading.
Please have a look at my website www.confidentbirthing.co.uk. I have experience in supporting women/couples with both first and subsequent pregnancies. Also, waterbirths, VBACs, homebirth, birth after trauma, twin birth, gentle cesarean, vulnerable women, teen mums, same sex couples, single women, IVF pregnancies, overseas clients and clients whose first language is not English. I don't speak Greek fluently, but I lived there for 4 years and I am learning Spanish now.
Hi, my name is Lisa. I started doula-ing in 2008 because I wanted women and their birth partners to have positive birth experiences. I also wanted women and their partners to start parenthood feeling good and being supported to enjoy the early days and weeks of life with a new baby.
Like all doulas I offer individualised support to women and their partners before, during and after birth. This includes supporting you to prepare well for birth, being with you during birth and then supporting you as you ease into life with your new baby. I believe the calm presence of a doula enables women to feel safe to birth in their own way and at their own pace, whether at home or in hospital and enables partners to feel fully involved in the birth experience.
I also facilitate private Lamaze Active Birth Antenatal Classes. ‘Lamaze’ is about having access to evidence-based information to enable you to make your own choices about your place of birth and care during pregnancy and birth. ‘Active Birth’ is being physically, mentally and emotionally active whilst preparing for birth and during birth.
My philosophy is that whether you have had a birth experience already or not, birth can be something you can look forward to, with confidence. You can feel prepared for birth by choosing to gain knowledge beforehand. You can feel relaxed, calm and in control during birth by creating a supportive team around you. And finally you can be well cared for after birth so that you start parenthood feeling confident that you can meet all your new baby’s needs.
Whether you are looking for a birth doula, a postnatal doula or both, finding a woman with whom you can relate, with whom you feel some sort of connection and whom you like is really important. That is why I make myself available in person, or by phone/email, so you can find out more about me and if I am the right doula for you. We would all say it’s worth meeting a few doulas, so you find the best fit for you.
My training has included:
Active Birth Teacher training with Janet Balaskas (founder of the Active Birth Movement) and Michel Odent (French Obstetrician and childbirth specialist)
Birth & Postnatal Doula Training with Kicki Hansard who at the time was teaching for Nurturing Birth and who won the Pregnancy & Birth magazine Doula of the Year 2009
Natural birth workshop with Ina May Gaskin, infamous midwife and author from The Farm, USA
Breastfeeding workshop with Dr Jack Newman, founder of Breastfeeding Inc
Aromatherapy Massage training at Neal’s Yard Remedies for whom I am also a Neal’s Yard consultant
Most recently, I have co-hosted a workshop with midwife Mark Harris of Birthing4Blokes, author of the popular, new book for birth partners Being Present
I have also attended workshops in Homeopathy, Natal Hypnotherapy, Breastfeeding, Tongue Tie, Acupressure, Abdominal Massage, Laid Back Breastfeeding, When Survivors Give Birth: Effects of Early Trauma on Birth, Supporting Every Birth including miscarriage and stillbirth and Closing the Bones postnatal massage.
Other areas of my work include:
~ I am a Doula UK mentor and a Nurturing Birth (international) meaning I mentor new doulas as they begin their doulaing journeys
~ I am a member of Berkshire Doulas, we offer each other peer support and work to promote doulas locally across Berkshire
~ I am the Chair of the Reading, Wokingham & West Berks Maternity Forum (MSLC)
I have an Enhanced CRB check and full Public Liability Insurance.
I have experience of supporting a variety of women during pregnancy and birth, including those for whom English is not their first language, women without a birth partner and teen mums. I have experience of both homebirths and hospital births and have doula-ed at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading, Basingstoke & North Hants, Frimley Park, East Surrey, St Peters, Stoke Mandeville, Great Western in Swindon, Winchester and the John Radcliffe in Oxford.
Here are some testimonials from a few of my previous clients (I can provide references and contact details of past clients upon request):
Having a doula was fantastic. Lisa was very friendly and approachable and suggested methods to help our baby appear. It was wonderful – we may well have given up long before. Of all the expenses of having a baby, hiring a doula was the greatest value for money by far. Peter & Constantina
Lisa was with us throughout our labour and birth experience. Words cannot express how grateful we are to Lisa for her support and we wouldn’t hesitate to contact Lisa again. Michelle & Quinten
Having a doula reassured us and increased our confidence that homebirth was right for us. Jo & Tony
Having a doula during labour meant I felt reassured that I was capable of birthing my baby. Lisa made me feel more empowered and confident and supported my partner throughout. I would definitely have a doula next time and think all women should have one. New parents
I would not have had the birth experience I had without my doula Lisa. She helped calm my husband, made sure everything was in my hospital bag and massaged my back throughout each contraction. Lisa was so encouraging with her words and actions __ I felt empowered and much more relaxed than I would have been had she not been there. Lisa gave us so much strength and courage to have a natural birth that it made the whole experience a true celebration. Jacqui & Steve