Being Independent

When looking for a local doula, women are frequently directed towards Doula UK, a membership association of birth and postnatal doulas in the UK. You will notice none of the Greater Manchester Doulas are listed there, as we aren’t members of DUK. We are proud to be independent doulas!

Why are we independent?

Being independent is an important part of our ethos, and is very much reflected in the way we work. As independent doulas we value independence and autonomy for ourselves, and more importantly for you too.

When we chose to be fully independent, we chose:

  • a commitment to ensure that we are completely women-centred; offering non-judgemental support to women remains at the heart of what we do,
  • to work with doulas who shared the same philosophy of reproductive experiences and how this impacts the support we offer,
  • to work alongside like-minded women who will support and mentor each other with compassion and without judgement, helping each other to be the best doulas we can be.

What does this mean?

As independent doulas we have no agenda and no interest in serving any kind of authoritative body – we answer to nobody but you. Rather than trying to balance the way we work with being part of a body that we don’t fully align with, we are now able to support women in a way that is completely focused on their needs with no outside limitations.

There are many myths about independent doulas, and they are often criticised for various reasons – they do not follow a code of conduct, are not required to keep their knowledge and skills up to date, are not part of a mentoring program, do not work with insurance, are not part of a membership community where they continually learn and develop.

Whilst we cannot speak for all indie doulas, we can say that every Greater Manchester Doula:

  • has completed an initial preparation course and regularly seeks out CPD opportunities to learn and grow as a doula

We believe that as doulas we are so much more than the courses we have taken, but we are also passionate about birth and other life transitions, and for us the learning never stops. We are always reading new research and taking part in courses that support and expand our knowledge, and are more than happy to talk about this.

  • is not just part of a doula community but one that completely reflects her ethos

Part of the reason we chose to work together is because our philosophy of reproductive experiences and the way in which we support women is very much aligned. We know that when we reach out for support from each other, it will come from someone who really understands who we are as women and as doulas so we are supported to develop and grow in a way reflects our views and ethos.

  • ¬†values mentoring as a continuous practise

We see the value in mentoring, not just at the beginning of our doula journeys but throughout. We continually reflect with each other on the way in which we work and on specific experiences of working with women. We use our individual experience as doulas to support each other and take new learning from every woman that we work with. We also meet regularly with a senior mentor from Doulas Without Borders.

  • has appropriate insurance

We all have up to date insurance for our work, and use written contracts to ensure that everyone is in agreement about what is expected of them.

  • is committed to following Greater Manchester Doulas CIC’s Philosophy and Code of Conduct

An important part of being independent is being able to follow a philosophy and code of conduct that fully reflects who we are and what we believe in.

If you would like to talk more about our commitment to being independent, drop us a line.

Philosophy

Greater Manchester Doulas are a group of women who are passionate about reproductive experiences, individual choice, and autonomy.