All about Elle

Why am I a doula?Photo of doula Elle James

When I was growing I told myself not to pursue a career until I found my lifework. I was patient, and when I was 29 and pregnant with my second child I finally discovered my passion and purpose.

It’s a job that doesn’t feel like one. On paper it can look like a particularly tough profession to be in, with its potential for long and unpredictable hours with few or no breaks, unknown periods of time away from family, lack of flexibility, and a general inability to be reliable to anyone besides your client. And it is tough sometimes, but I couldn’t go back to do anything else now. I love it so much that I can’t even imagine retiring.

Things that matter

I have attended magical hospital births and wonderful home births. I attended an incredible birth at the entrance to a hospital. It’s not the where but the how that makes a birth positive. It matters to me that your decisions are exactly that: yours. What’s important to me is that you know your options, make informed choices, and that you’re listened to and respected throughout your pregnancy, labour, birth, and beyond.

How might I support you?

However you’re feeling and whatever birth you’re planning, I will listen without any judgement, and without an agenda. I will support you in your own way. I want to hear what having a doula means to you. My role is defined by you, and shaped by your individual needs and wishes.

I did my initial doula preparation course with Dr Michel Odent, so my work is based on his practices. I am inspired by Sheila Kitzinger, and every birthing mother I encounter.

My other hats!

When I am not working with expectant families I have a few other hats, although they are all worn under the same umbrella!

I am working toward becoming end of life doulas. With this in mind, I trained to become humanist chaplains. Technically I offer ‘non religious pastoral support in a healthcare setting’, which is extremely similar to doula work, but available to a wider demographic. I volunteer in Wythenshawe hospital in this capacity.

I am a breastfeeding peer supporter.

I crochet for the home and family, specialising in maternity accessories and babywear. I make affordable cotton cord ties, as a soft and colourful alternative to bulky plastic cord clamps.

I encapsulate and otherwise prepare placentas.

I have recently completed my training as a Stillbirthday Doula, enabling me to support birth in any trimester, and families in any outcome. It is imperative for me to be able to offer the same level of care and attention when parents are facing loss as in happy births.

Lauren and I facilitate Positive Birth Movement Manchester meetings, on the last Friday of the month, in Burnage.

Follow me

Elle the Doula Facebook


Cord ties

Women Reclaiming Birth Circle

If you would like to work with Elle and Greater Manchester Doulas CIC, please get in touch.