Postnatal (Recognised since April 2011)
Birth (Recognised since November 2004)
Lives in: London W12
Local info and availability:
Holistic Sleep Consultant Certified Hypnobirthing Practitioner with the Wise Hippo Wise Hippo Birthing Programme Practitioner National Childbirth Trust antenatal teacher Body Ready Method trained
One of my clients described my support at her birth as “like having my mum there – but without the emotional strings attached!” If that’s the sort of doula you want and you’re in the London area, then give me a call.
My approach as a birth doula is very thorough. As well as supporting the mum emotionally I am passionate about awareness of the biomechanics of labour and birth. Having attended Spinning Babies and Blossoming Bellies workshops I am deepening my skills constantly, currently with the US-based Body Ready Method training.
I’m also aware that doula support is expensive and so I offer Doula in Your Pocket and Doula to the Door options which allow the client to benefit from extensive prenatal preparation and postnatal support. I work closely with a trusted colleague so with me you get two doulas for the price of one!
All birth packages include FOUR relaxed meet-ups at your home antenatally; on-call from week 39 of your pregnancy until the birth; two postnatal visits.
During the pandemic there were heavy restrictions on doulas. So we devised birth support packages which enabled clients to benefit from doula support as much as possible. Please see my website for details of these packages.
In another life I was – still am, sometimes – a writer and journalist but over the years my passion for supporting women and couples through the birth and parenting journey just grew and grew. I’m forever updating my knowledge, taking courses and adding qualifications. In fact I’m a bit of a birth/parenting/child development science geek, constantly mugging up on articles and research.
My philosophy is to bring a positive attitude to the whole birth and parenting experience and to support the mother in making informed choices for herself; to listen to her wishes and do my utmost to see them carried out.
I look forward to hearing from new clients all the time – with my broad skill set there is usually some way in which I can help you:
- One of the most established Hypnobirthing teachers in London. A film of one of my clients achieving a calm and peaceful home water birth after sessions with me is now shown all over the world. I recommend the wonderful Wise Hippo Birthing Programme which is comprehensive, robustly designed and fits with UK birthing settings.
- One half of The Baby Experience, a perinatal care consultancy focussed on ethical, evidence-based strategies for the new family.
- National Childbirth Trust antenatal teacher.
My aim as a postnatal doula is to support the mum in her first weeks of motherhood and enable her to grow in confidence. As well as helping with cooking and light housework duties I’m happy to talk through and signpost her to evidenced based information on issues such as sleep, feeding, bonding, baby cues, and coping with the stresses of the early days. I have a current DBS certificate.
My postnatal doula service begins before baby arrives – I sit down with the mother to be and talk through her postnatal recovery plan in detail. How does she feel about visitors? What are her expectations regarding sleep, rest, feeding? What food would she like me to prepare? What is her wider support network?
After the birth I’ll come to the home for several sessions a week to make mother comfortable, support her in whatever she needs, cook food, and to enable her to rest. My aim is to help her to recover from the profound experience she’s just been through – and to get to know her baby in a relaxed, peaceful way.
AND SOMETHING SPECIAL FOR GRANDPARENTS
At my Grantenatal Workshops I empower grandparents-to-be to refresh their wisdom and become the best possible grandparent, discovering how science and research have subtly changed the way we care for pregnant and new mums and their babies.
I strongly recommend that women who desire a straightforward vaginal birth should consider doing the Spinning Babies exercises regularly from as soon after 20 weeks as possible and I will support mums in this.
I’ve supported women birthing in the following hospitals: Chelsea and Westminster, West Middlesex, Queen Charlotte’s, St Mary’s Paddington, Kingston, Portland, University College Hospital and I have worked with all kinds of birth choices – waterbirth, home birth, inductions, medicalised and non medicalised options, caesarean birth.
February 2023 BODY READY METHOD pro training
Summer 2019 HOLISTIC SLEEP COACHING certification Level 6
May 2018 MILLPOND SLEEP CLINIC certification course completed
May 2014 BABYCALM certification course completed
January 2013 Relax, Stretch and Breathe certification with NATIONAL CHILDBIRTH TRUST
April 2012: Qualified Signature Antenatal Teacher with NATIONAL CHILDBIRTH TRUST
February 2012: SPINNING BABIES WORKSHOP led by Gail Tully, London
May 2009: Postnatal doula training with NURTURING BIRTH
2007: Certificate of Hypno-Psychotherapy, National College of Hypno-Psychotherapy
December 2004: Mongan Method HypnoBirthing certification
I continue to attend a wide range of study days every year and over the years I’ve learned from names such as Dr Michel Odent, Ina May Gaskin, Kathleen Kendall-Tackett, Dr Amy Brown.
Since 2004 I have supported over 100 women in childbirth and/or early parenting as a doula, and hundreds more as a hypnobirthing teacher and NCT antenatal teacher.
I cover the Greater London area for both birth and postnatal doula clients; I’m based in West London.
What my clients say:
We were so glad Sarah could be with us, despite baby F arriving 3 and a half weeks early. It made a huge difference – I’m sure I would have found the pain much harder to manage if she hadn’t been there. – HM
Her calm attitude was always a plus to help me feel relaxed, and well looked after – LD
At the moment that my partner and I were on the edge of panic, Sarah arrived, defused the situation and calmed me during birth – amazing support. Many thanks for being a wonderful doula – LB
We had detailed discussions about expectation during labour, pain relief methods, exercises and even packing the hospital bags. She provided comfort and guidance on breathing; she also massaged me and reassured my husband. She helped with the first breastfeed, assisted me when I bathed and fetched food (it was the middle of the night). She provided additional help with breastfeeding position and latching and went on a few errands! I am extremely happy that I decided to engage a birth doula. She provided invaluable support before and during labour and helped to turn my anxiety about birth into a memorable experience. I am very fortunate to have had someone with her experience by my side during labour and the birth of my baby. – NP, who asked me back for the birth of her second baby.
Having Sarah’s support before, during and after the birth of A was incredibly valuable. I felt confident that my wishes were being translated to the medical staff at the hospital and had a friendly, knowledgeable person to direct numerous questions to at all times. Thank you so much, Sarah. – KG, another repeat client!
Sarah convinced me I could do it without pain relief, which is what I wanted! Excellent…ensured a safe delivery of my child – priceless! – SD
Sarah provided reassurance and comfort when I was alarmed by the sound of another labouring mother’s distress. [She] acted as go-between with midwife, reporting on labour’s progress, constant monitoring at waterside during time in birthing pool – hugging, hand-holding, massage, verbal reassurance, encouragement and managing gas and air…I would highly recommend Sarah as a doula – her calm, confident, reassuring manner was a huge help. She took endless trouble to send information in the preparation for the birth – nothing was too much trouble, even lending us a kneeling chair so the baby would be in the optimum position. We will always be grateful and pleased we chose her – HB