About

There is a wisdom in the stories that our grandmothers tell us. It’s the medicine of generations.  The stories of our collective pasts, and the hope for our future. The world of birth is not new and neither is the work of the birthkeeper.

When you decide to become an Abuela doula, you will be encouraged to reach back into your cultural heritage to bring forward the traditions of your mothers and your mothers’ mothers. The role of a doula is to support and to be with women as they travel through pregnancy, birth and those early postnatal days. To sit in and share the wisdom of the Abuelas, the grandmothers.

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.  Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.  It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. – Marianne Williamson

Doula Preparation Course

Knowing what a doula is, and knowing what it is to be a doula, recognising that the preparation course is precisely that. Preparation. An Abuela doula should seek to learn more, network and engage with other birth and postnatal professionals and hold herself to a good personal code.

This is a four day, interactive course. An application form will be sent and the course explained to enquirers – this includes structure and fees. The pre-course module will be sent with the application form and is expected to be completed before starting. The post course module should be completed within 9 months. COST: £500

CLICK TO LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR COURSES

 

Philosophy

We believe that there should be a doula for all women. Each woman should be able to look within her own community and culture, as well as beyond, to find her doula. It is a very special and intimate time, so becoming a woman’s doula is a privilege.  Abuela doulas bring a sense of home.

Being a doula does not start and end with birth. It’s about supporting each family for as much of the journey as they wish. On completion of this course, Abuela doulas should be able to:

• work with a base set of values and principles
• network and build links within the local birth community
• build a greater knowledge of birth support and what it means to be a doula
• develop insight into personal motivations with a sense of not imparting these onto others
• encourage the practice of taking personal responsibility and informed consent
• list the benefits of antenatal, birth and postnatal support
• set up, network, market their doula business

Mentoring

Working as a doula leaves a lot of space for self-reflection. Just as you journey alongside your clients, a mentor will walk alongside you. A mentor gives you space to debrief and process.

It is wonderful to sit at the feet of any wiser, older, sister. There you will find accountability, empathy, honesty, reliability, a critical friend who will challenge you, give you faith, push you along and help you with your boundaries.

Mars Lord

Abuela courses are facilitated by award winning doula Mars Lord. She has been a birth keeper for over a decade. After attending the Paramana Doula course with Michel Odent and Lilliana Lammers, a spark was lit within her and the passion that she discovered for birth and supporting women has fired her soul ever since. She has had the privilege of working with hundreds of women.

As a founding member of Birth In The City alongside Maisie Hill and Nicola Mahdiyyah Goodall, she delights in working with other doulas and sharing our collective stories and skills.

Her work with pregnant women and their families has led her to speak at conferences and to lead workshops, namely Loving The Multiple Mamas. She has had the privilege of speaking at Mumsnet’s Bumpfest, twice, the Doula UK Conference (2016) and Feminism In London, twice. She also ran the inaugural Reproductive Justice Retreat (Nov 2018).

Watch Mars speaking at the Doula UK Conference, 2016

Reclaiming Your Ancestral Birth Retreat

Black women are 5 times more likely to die within childbirth than white women. Studies talk about the need to develop and evaluate services to mitigate the risk of dying that are associated with being of black Caribbean or African ethnicity.

You are going to change that. Join us for a weekend retreat of CPD, workshops, discussions, ceremonies & rituals as well as activism.

Reproductive Justice Retreat

In 2018 we hosted our first Abuela Retreat. A weekend retreat of CPD, workshops, discussions, ceremonies & rituals as well as activism for black birth keepers, doulas, midwives, natural health advocates and women’s wellness practitioners who know our clients deserve excellence.

 

DATES

Abuela Retreat 

8th-11th October 2020

Doula Preparation Courses: 

2020 Dates
Friday 24th January – Monday 27th January 2020. London
Friday 31st January – Monday 3rd February 2020. Birmingham
Friday 8th May – Monday 11th May 2020. Leeds
Friday 12th June – Monday 15th June 2020. London
Friday 11th September – Monday 14th September 2020. London
Friday 18th September – Monday 21st September 2020. Birmingham

Postnatal Sankofa

Monday 20th – Wednesday 22nd April 2020. London
Friday 22nd –  Sunday 24th May 2020. Birmingham
Friday 21st – Sunday 23rd August 2020. Birmingham

Abuela Blog

The Voices Are Rising

The Voices Are Rising Mars Lord 2nd March 2020 For the past few years, the volume has been rising on the conversation about Black maternal mortality. This is a good thing.  Of course, what comes with the rising of the voices is the arrival of new voices that feel that...

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MBRRACE 2019

MBRRACE 2019 Mars Lord 17th December 2019 So, the MBRRACE report was finally released after being put in ‘purdah’ (a problematic phrase - think appropriation) and having an embargo on the results. What we’ve learned is that things are not improving for Black women and...

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For more information about Abuela Doulas or our courses please contact us using the following form:

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