How much to pay a doula in training? - Mothering Forums
New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania > How much to pay a doula in training?
blueyes178's Avatar blueyes178 04:14 PM 09-10-2008
Hi- Does anyone know what to expect to pay a doula to work with you that is not licensed yet, or if to pay them at all? They would be using me as a birth to get their license.

any feedback, especially from doulas would be GREAT!

dynamicdoula's Avatar dynamicdoula 04:28 PM 09-10-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by blueyes178 View Post
Hi- Does anyone know what to expect to pay a doula to work with you that is not licensed yet, or if to pay them at all? They would be using me as a birth to get their license.

any feedback, especially from doulas would be GREAT!
Pay her fairly. She isn't asking because she thinks that because she doesn't have a lot of 'experience' that she's not worth a fair wage. I find that to be very sad, and lends to strange power dynamics within the client/doula relationship. Ask her what other doulas charge in your area and make your decision based on that. If she gives you great care, show her she's worth a fair wage by paying her one.
orangecanoe's Avatar orangecanoe 04:58 PM 09-10-2008
I wouldn't pay any less than 2/3 of the going rate and would be inclined to pay a tad more than that as she is giving you the same time and dedication.
dewi's Avatar dewi 04:59 PM 09-10-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by blueyes178 View Post
Hi- Does anyone know what to expect to pay a doula to work with you that is not licensed yet, or if to pay them at all? They would be using me as a birth to get their license.
any feedback, especially from doulas would be GREAT!

Doulas in the process of getting certified (it is not licensing) are not necessarily inexperienced, but need some simple paper work filled out by you and your care provider.

Unless you are on Medicaid or in truly dire financial situation a doula expects to be paid for their work.

In NYC doulas using your birth for certification charge apx $200-$400. Some more.
I was already working for 16 years as a doula before I became certified, I charged my regular rate and the client was happy to tick off some boxes on the form for me.

If the doula is choosing not to charge, you pay her at least $100. (or more) for her incidentals to be at your birth.
BrooklynDoula's Avatar BrooklynDoula 05:58 PM 09-10-2008
ITA with Dewi. No less than $100 but more like $400-$500.

Have a great birth.
LilMama23's Avatar LilMama23 06:02 PM 09-12-2008
I'm a doula-in-training and I have completed all of my paperwork but need to attend two births for my certification. I would expect payment for the births because I am devoting the same time and energy, but certainly not what a certified doula would charge. I'd be happy with the $200-300 range.
dynamicdoula's Avatar dynamicdoula 11:04 PM 09-12-2008
I am unclear why a certified doula would have any right to charge more than an uncertified doula.... just a thought to throw out there. We set our own rates based on our local market, not based on whether we're certified or not. I wouldn't reduce my rates because I'm not certified; in fact, I charge more than the local certified doulas do!
dewi's Avatar dewi 04:49 PM 09-13-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by dynamicdoula View Post
I am unclear why a certified doula would have any right to charge more than an uncertified doula.... just a thought to throw out there. We set our own rates based on our local market, not based on whether we're certified or not. I wouldn't reduce my rates because I'm not certified; in fact, I charge more than the local certified doulas do!
I agree with you.
I hope my previous answer was not confusing. I do not think a seasoned doula certifying as a formality for herself should charge less then her regular fee.

IN NYC doulas who are low cost because they lack experience and typically need births for certification and /or experience.

I hope that clarifies my position since I was anti-certification for 16 years! Now I'm just annoying stickler about everyone getting certification or what you know if you want bookings from my service!
kimilia's Avatar kimilia 06:23 PM 09-13-2008
I paid my uncertified doula $200 (5 years ago) and gave her a pair of handbeaded earrings. She was magnificent.
ChrUnschoolingmama's Avatar ChrUnschoolingmama 11:13 PM 09-13-2008
Great thread! I'm still meeting people who think that doula's in training are free unfortunately. I have yet to meet one that is free- and don't think they should be.

My training is with an amazing local program in which I don't have to do any kind of paperwork for my first births. My trainer (and midwife) have both assured me that (training aside), there are many facets of my life that will make me a wonderful doula. The fact that I've given birth in all 3 places (hospital, birthcenter and home) gives me a world of experience and knowledge and although I'm not certified yet, I should be paid for my time- the same time a certified doula would dedicate. The fact that I'm not certified says nothing of my experience or ability to do an exceptional job.

Also, because there is no governing body over all doulas, some choose not to ever become certified- again certification is not synonymous with experience.
TzippityDoulah's Avatar TzippityDoulah 05:15 AM 09-14-2008
being certified means little except that it sounds "fancy shamancy". infact many certified doulas are less experiences than uncertified ones. you just never know.

(I'm uncertified and I've had 40+ clients, but I know doulas who are certified with 3 or 4 clients in their background)

it's always good to ask those questions. but i do think it should always be paid for. maybe not fullprice, but atleast 1/2. it's hard work. and I don't think I would do someone's yardwork free for the first time lol.
ChrUnschoolingmama's Avatar ChrUnschoolingmama 03:40 PM 09-15-2008
Quote:
I don't think I would do someone's yardwork free for the first time lol.
I agree. It seems kind of incredulous to think it should be done for free when I think about the fact that while attending a birth last week in which I shadowed a friend who's a doula, I worked as hard as she did. I was surprised at how comfortable I was and how I really did know what to do. It'd be pretty demeaning to go on to do it for free just because I'm not certified. If I did do it free of charge, considering I have no magic number of births to attend before becoming certified, when would I suddenly be worthy of being paid for my time?
dewi's Avatar dewi 04:19 PM 09-15-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrUnschoolingmama View Post
I agree. It seems kind of incredulous to think it should be done for free when I think about the fact that while attending a birth last week in which I shadowed a friend who's a doula, I worked as hard as she did. I was surprised at how comfortable I was and how I really did know what to do. It'd be pretty demeaning to go on to do it for free just because I'm not certified. If I did do it free of charge, considering I have no magic number of births to attend before becoming certified, when would I suddenly be worthy of being paid for my time?


You create your own value. If your skills are valuable to a client and you have something to offer You should get paid.

One of the postpartum doulas who works for my service is in the process of DONA Labor doula certification, she started going to births before, (independent from my service) she charged $300. for her first birth. $400. the second birth. I think she wants to charge around $500-$600. for the next births. That is only four births she has attended! And plans on increasing it pretty quickly to a $1,000.

SHe is getting the certification from DONA because when you go on interviews it immediately stops that long awkward conversation with clients about "why you're not certified".
Clients like when you have completed some type of formal course.
TzippityDoulah's Avatar TzippityDoulah 04:14 AM 09-18-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by dewi View Post
Clients like when you have completed some type of formal course.
well some clients anyhow. I'd personally prefer someone who isn't certified under anyone.

it really is a matter of preference. I'm more concerned about experience, method, ideas, spirituality ect than I am a degree/cert/liscense. I think those give a false sense of security.
BrooklynDoula's Avatar BrooklynDoula 09:20 AM 09-18-2008
I honestly think only one client (who actually hired someone else in the end) has ever asked me if I am certified or about my certification. I have a PhD, so I understand a rigorous training process and doula certification is not at all rigorous. Knowing what I know, I would put no faith in someone being certified and lots of faith in how confident, knowledgable, and personable the woman seemed. I always encourage people to hire someone they feel a real connection to, even if that person is not me.
TzippityDoulah's Avatar TzippityDoulah 05:57 PM 09-18-2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrooklynDoula View Post
I honestly think only one client (who actually hired someone else in the end) has ever asked me if I am certified or about my certification. I have a PhD, so I understand a rigorous training process and doula certification is not at all rigorous. Knowing what I know, I would put no faith in someone being certified and lots of faith in how confident, knowledgable, and personable the woman seemed. I always encourage people to hire someone they feel a real connection to, even if that person is not me.

very well put!
obsydianfae's Avatar obsydianfae 04:57 PM 09-20-2008
I am a doula in training. I tend to work with low income families. And I work for the birth experience, so I don't ask for anything. However, technically there is no such thing as a doul-in-training. Doulas do not have to be certified to practice. They do not even have to have any training. So I would say pay her fairly.
ChrUnschoolingmama's Avatar ChrUnschoolingmama 09:53 PM 09-20-2008
You have a point there. One is either certified or not and certification doesn't mean one is experienced.
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