Child Wellness Begins At Pregnancy
The Doula Program serves as a highly effective program in the deterrence of child abuse and neglect. Through positive, persistent, outreach services and in-home visits, vulnerable parents learn about pregnancy, labor and delivery, and postpartum care.
The Doula Program reaches out to young, mothers and fathers who would like support services. The Public Health Department, doctors, schools and other community agencies refer parents to the Doula Program during pregnancy.
Once referred to the program, eligibility requirements are assessed. Doulas screen parents for maternal depression, domestic violence, and parental stress. The program seeks to improve family health through prenatal visits, support during labor and delivery, and postnatal support. These visits include encouraging parent/child interactions, brain development, nutrition, and labor and delivery. The doula helps parents with stress management, breastfeeding, problem solving skills and safety education. The cumulative effect of these efforts strengthens families and reduces the risk of child abuse and neglect. The family remains in the program until the child is 6-8 weeks old and then is referred to long-term home visiting services. Families may enroll in the Doula Program during their third trimester.
The Doula Program offers a Parents Care & Share Prenatal Group. Prenatal group is eight weekly sessions which discuss prenatal care, stress, nutrition, labor and delivery.
Children’s Home & Aid’s Doula Program is fully accredited by COA. The doulas obtain certification through Doulas of North America. The Doula Program has staff that are certified lactation counselors.