The Emerging End-of-Life Doula Role
I have been so blessed to be getting to know other end of life doula leaders and trainers. One of them is Merilynne Rush. I'm enjoying getting to know Patty Brennan as well, both from Lifespan Doula Association. We noodled with this chart for awhile and hope you agree that we have captured the essence and all the ways end of life doulas may serve.
In Other News
A group of end of life doula trainers have recently joined to create a collective of trainers and practitioners that truly represents all doulas. We will be the first organization to do so as there is no organization now that does. We each only represent our own program. Every single training organization, regardless of their name, is representing their own training program, not industry standards. Since end of life doulas have no credentialing board, no single company/organization can claim that it does represent all doulas and be credible.
For this reason, we have chosen to band together to create a voice that is representative of all of us, regardless of our training. We are calling this initiative the National End of Life Doula Alliance (NEDA). Our intention is to establish a unified definition of the role, standards of practice, values and a code of ethics for the newly forming profession of the end of life doula.
The art of the practice may be learned by anyone who has the calling. The business of the practice, that of serving the community, requires a bit more.
The founding member organizations/members of NEDA are: Lifespan Doula Association, Conscious Dying Institute, Doulagivers, Teaching Transitions/Doing Death Differently, Quality of Life Care and Lee Webster (former ED of the National Home Funeral Alliance).
NEDA's definition of the end of life doula is: "End-of-life doulas provide non-medical, holistic support and comfort to the dying person and their family, which may include education and guidance as well as emotional, spiritual or practical care.
Stay tuned for more about NEDA and other national initiatives.