What is a Doula?

Doulas in training practice the breathing and massage exerciseThe word doula comes from a Greek word meaning “woman helper.”  Today, a doula is a supportive companion, trained to give support during labor. 

All of our doulas are professionally trained; many through the international organization DONA International - Doulas of North America International, to Labor (formerly ALACE), or CAPPA - Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Assosication. Whether a pregnant woman arrives at the hospital alone or with family and friends, the doula can help her to have a more comfortable birthing experience. As a thanks to our UNC patients, we conveniently offer our Birth Partner doula services free of charge.

Please contact us at: doula@unch.unc.edu.

Take a look at our Doula Handout!

How do I get a doula?

Birth Partner UNC volunteer doulas are available to anyone who would like to have one at their birth. Although we cannot guarantee that a volunteer Doula will always be available, we make every effort to provide you with this service.

The services of a Doula can be requested upon arrival to UNC Women's Hospital, make sure to tell the nurses taking care of you that would like to have a UNC Volunteer Doula (specify if you need her to be bilingual in Spanish) and they will call the Doula on-call for you. If you would like more information about our program or would like to request a doula prior to your delivery day, we will make every possible effort to match you with a trained UNC Volunteer Doula a couple of weeks or more prior to your due date.

Please contact us at: doula@unch.unc.edu.

For more general information about Doulas you may visit: www.dona.org

Our Mission

The doulas of the Birth Partner UNC Volunteer Doula Service Program are committed to helping every laboring woman have a satisfying birth experience at N.C. Women's Hospital.  We believe that a doula's caring support helps a woman have a more positive birth experience, regardless of the type of labor and birth she has.  In addition, it is our goal to foster partner participation (when applicable) and to help establish breastfeeding for those women who choose to breastfeed.  We are particularly proud to be able to offer these services to women who would otherwise be unable to afford doula care.  We believe that a positive birth combined with partner participation and breastfeeding creates a strong foundation for greater confidence in parenting, and a good start for any new family.

Birth Partner UNC Volunteer Doulas


Interested in becoming a Birth Partner UNC Volunteer Doula?

Are you a trained doula? Thank you for considering serving as a volunteer doula. We would love to hear from you.  You may read over our program requirements and fill out our doula application. (also available at Women's Health Information Center):
Community Member UNC Healthcare Doula Volunteer Application Form 

You can drop off your application at the Women's Health Information Center on the ground floor of the Women's hospital sometime during business hours (9am-5pm M-F). Or you can email the form as an attachment to doula@unch.unc.edu.


Are you considering doula training? We hope to offer our next doula training in January 2015. You will find information about the role and work of a doula at dona.org. In addition, there are local doula trainers who offer workshops throughout the year. Check out NCdoula.com and barbarahotelling.com for more information about their courses. Keep checking to see when our training dates are posted. Feel free to be in touch with questions.

 UNC Health Care

Women's Health Info Center
NC Women's Hospital

(919) 843-8463

© 2002-2012 by Women's Health Information Center Privacy Statement Terms Of Use Register Web Site Design and SEO by Proclaim Medical