PERINATAL BEREAVEMENT DIVISION
WHAT IS A BEREAVEMENT DOULA?
Bereavement doulas are specifically trained to help parents cope with the death of a child. Some offer services to parents whose children are born with conditions that are either unexpected or more severe than anticipated. I have vast experience as a seasoned Bereavement Doula in South Africa.
WHAT IS AN ADOPTION DOULA?
Doulas specializing in newborn adoption support seek to work in conjunction with every member of the adoption team, and lend their expertise to help ensure a smooth transition for the birth mother, the baby, and the adopting family, by applying their birth doula skills and through offering a number of specialized skills that no other adoption professional can offer.
WHY I HAVE DEVELOPED SA SPECIFIC BEREAVEMENT COURSES
FOR PERINATAL BEREAVEMENT BIRTH WORKERS IN SOUTH AFRICA:
The goal of this course is to familiarize and prepare South African birth workers, nurses, midwives, students, care professionals and those with an interest in perinatal bereavement for the experience and support of loss – whether it is infertility loss, miscarriage, stillbirth or NICU loss. This course focuses on multiple stages of loss in pregnancy and during infancy. It discusses how support persons impact the experience and the environment of loss, as well as place emphasis on communication and the expression of individual grief. It thoroughly explores grief, all it’s components, basic grief counselling and how to set up support groups and other practical contents. All this, whilst offering a unique South African specific perspective and a greater appreciation for the dynamics of grief and the experience of infant and pregnancy loss in our country.
Parents who hurt need to heal to be able to live life to the fullest after child loss. I believe this online course will equip parents to to better understand their loss, the grieving process and the healing process and equip them on a practical level to better cope with their loss. I am one of the most experienced bereavement doulas in South Africa and did my international bereavement training through Stillbirthday as well as a handful of other perinatal bereavement courses to enable me to serve bereaved parents.
Depending where you reside an independent Perinatal Bereavement Worker / Bereavement Doula will assist with miscarriage, stillbirth, early baby loss and NICU loss and for counseling only; any other child loss situation.
Having suffered her own pregnancy losses and through assisting many parents with miscarriage and child loss, Nicci has personal experience, knowledge and understanding about baby loss, grief and bereavement. She assists parents in Pretoria and surrounding areas. For other areas, please contact Nicci to be supplied with the name and number of an independent Perinatal Bereavement Worker in your vicinity to assist you.
A professional specifically trained to assist parents with miscarriage, stillbirth and infant loss, called a Perinatal Bereavement Worker (PBW), is there to walk alongside you and offer you continuous physical and emotional support before, during and after your birth. She can help you find resources to answer your questions, build your support network, be with you as you say hello to your child, assist you during the precious moments of creating memories with your baby and hold the space for you as you navigate saying goodbye to your baby. A PBW will assist you to make empowered decisions where your precious baby is concerned. In South Africa, before 26 weeks of gestation, a fetus that showed no signs of life after delivery are disposed of as medical waste. However, a Perinatal Bereavement Worker will ensure that you get the opportunity to have your baby cremated or buried.
A Perinatal Bereavement Worker will:
- Help you meet your baby with compassion
- Prepare you for what your beautiful baby may look like
- Encourage you to take your time with your little one
- Help you manage the arrival of family and friends in your time of loss and help them find ways to express their grief while being of support in yours
- Teach you how to keep your baby’s temperature just right so you and your family may spend more time with him or her
- Call family and friends if that is your wish
- Take infant portraits and family portraits
- Help you create a memory box for your baby — including a lock of hair, foot and hand prints, and more.
- Advocate for you at the hospital, to make sure you are in an area free from other baby or labour sounds that may be difficult
- Talk to you, listen to you, hold the birth space sacred
- If your hospital does not issue an birth certificate due to baby’s age, your bereavement birth worker will create one for you
- Assist you to make contact with baby-centred funeral services or any other funeral home of your choice, who will help you plan for a service, blessing, Christening, ceremony or other memorial or remembrance as you see fit
For information on other birth professionals, please click here:
To read about my OWN experiences with parents who have lost, please go to my blog: