In-Person Doula Training: June 15- 18, 2023

SMC In-Person Full Circle Doula Birth Companion Training in Richmond, VA from June 15-18, 2023. A four 4-day (32 hours) training for dual certification as a labor and postpartum doula. SMC Full Circle Doula Birth Companion Training was created in 2002 to train doulas in the legacy of the 20th Century African American midwife who demonstrated traditional and spiritual perinatal care. The training is designed to build capacity in the Black community, increase the number of doulas of color, and learn the midwifery model of care.

Train With Us in Richmond, VA

This is a 4-day (32 hours) in-person doula training for dual certification as a labor and postpartum doula. This training is the first step, and required, to become a certified SMC Full Circle Doula Companion. This is culturally competent training that honors the legacy of the 20th Century African American midwife to improve birth outcomes, increase breastfeeding, and build leadership.

Training Schedule

DAY 1 – Thursday, 10 AM – 6:30 PM: Orientation, SMC Full Circle Doula Philosophy, African American Midwives, U.S. Doula History.

DAY 2 – Friday, 9 AM – 6:30 PM: Prenatal Care, Nutrition, Herbs, Infant Mortality Prevention. 

DAY 3 – Saturday, 9 AM – 6:30 PM: Labor and Delivery, Comfort Measures

DAY 4 – Sunday, 9 AM – 6:30 PM: Postpartum and Infant Care, Breastfeeding, Creating a  Doula Business.

What You Will Learn

The 4-Day training is packed full of learning, sharing, receiving, and creating friendships. Honoring the legacy of the African American midwife we demonstrated how pregnancy support reduces premature births and how postpartum care prevents maternal exhaustion in the postpartum experience, by using resources, hands-on and culturally competent care.

Unique Topics include and extend beyond

Practice from Cultural Knowledge

Having a dual certification as a labor and postpartum doula is crucial to provide comprehensive care to help a pregnant person throughout the reproductive cycle. And learning labor and postpartum skills simultaneously makes it applicable to real-life experiences when working as a provisional doula.

Training Site:
Virginia Crossings Hotel

An elegant Colonial escape near Richmond, VA. The resort rests on 20 acres of open green space, with a campus featuring English gardens and Colonial architecture.


Our training draws on the centuries-old traditions of African and African American midwives and healers, that kept us connected to physiological birth and the joys of service to birthing women and their families. The training is based on the legacy of the 20th century African American midwife, public health information, and research-based practices.

The training incorporates lectures, instructional materials, learner interactions, and hands-on learning opportunities to provide a truly holistic training experience. 

Instructors are SMC Certified Trainers who are veteran doulas and midwives. You can learn more here.

Unique Topics Covered Include:

  • African American birth traditions and postpartum rituals
  • Public health in maternal and infant health
  • Improving birth outcomes
  • Reducing maternal morbidity
  • Learning the causes of maternal mortality
  • Honoring the legacy of the 20th century African American midwife
  • Supporting fatherhood/partners and family
  • Belly binding
  • Postpartum baths
  • Herbs and nutrition
  • Medical terminology
  • SMC Doula Scope of Care
  • Advocacy and empowerment
  • Systemic Racism in Birth
  • Professionalism and leadership
  • Midwifery model of Care
  • SMC Full Circle Doula Philosophy, an abstract by Shafia Monroe Download PDF — 10-pages
  • The Doula Guide to Birth, by Ananda Lowe and Rachel Zimmerman
  • Listen to Me Good, Life Story of an Alabama Midwife, by Margaret Charles Smith and Linda Janet Holmes

These materials are available on Amazon or possibly through your local library.

All the above books and materials should be read before the first day of class. 

For 2023, we have in-person trainings scheduled in the following cities:

June 15-18, 2023 – Richmond, VA (Glen Allen)

December 7-10, 2023 – Portland, OR

The fee for SMC’s Full Circle Doula Companion online training course is currently $ 1,468.

Online Training:

  1. Single Payment of $1468
  2. Two Weekly Installments of $734 per week
  3. Three Weekly Installments of $489.33 per week
  4. Four Weekly Installments of $367 per week

We currently do not offer financial aid or scholarships, however, for our online training, we do offer payment plans that can help you spread out the course fees over 2, 3, or 4 weeks.

Not Enrolled

Training Includes

  • 1 Lesson
  • 1 Topic
  • Training Certificate