Birth & Postpartum Doula Training

Birth and Postpartum Doula Training with Tanya Cawthorne (Australia) and Jenn Fontaine (Canada)

We are thrilled to announce that in 2024 we will be launching a brand new birth doula and postpartum doula training! Training programs will be offered in Melbourne and will combine in-person and self-paced online learning, as well as live online modules presented by Tanya and Jenn.

Choosing the “right” doula training is no easy task! Today, there are myriad options and it can be challenging to decide which course is the best fit for you. Between us, Jenn and I bring over 30 years’ experience as doulas, childbirth educators and trainers, and we can’t wait to share our knowledge and experience with you!

Jenn and I sat down and asked ourselves, “If we were just starting out and looking to train as a birth or postpartum doula, what would we want from a training program?” We brainstormed and mapped out a program that was both flexible, but didn’t take shortcuts on content. As working doulas ourselves, we pride ourselves on our professionalism and high ethical standards. We know first-hand the incredible impact that doulas can make to birthing people and their families when they are supported through the transformational experience of pregnancy, birth and postpartum. We are passionate about diversity, equity and inclusion, and making sure that the doulas we train uphold those same values is central to our mission and goal to train outstanding doulas.

We set out to create the most comprehensive, evidence-based doula training program in Australia and we can’t wait to share it with you!

Training Pathways

We recognise that not everyone is looking to complete a doula certification, as some people are just looking to build on their existing skillset, or because they are wanting to gain the skills necessary to support a friend or family member through their birth or early postpartum.

For that reason, we are offering two distinct pathways for our course.

Professional Development Pathway

This is the pathway for students who have already completed their doula training with another program, and wish to build on their existing skills and knowledge. It is also appropriate for students wishing to learn the essential skills of a birth or postpartum doula in order to support a friend or a family member.

Students who complete the Professional Development Pathway will receive a certificate of completion at the end of the course (in-person only), but will not receive certification.

Total number of training hours: 21 hours (the Birth and Postpartum doula trainings are each 3 x full days / 21 hours in duration).

Certification Pathway

This is the pathway for students who are new to birth and postpartum doula training, or for those who wish to complete their certification. Students who opt for the Certification Pathway must complete the in-person component of the training, plus the self-paced learning modules and attend the live webinars. They will also need to provide documentation to demonstrate they have supported 3 x birth doula clients and/or 3 x postpartum doula clients. Detailed information on the certification requirements are included in our training brochure which can be downloaded here.

Students can opt to complete certification as a birth doula OR postpartum doula ONLY, or they can combine both courses and certify as both birth AND postpartum doulas.

Total number of training hours: 80+ hours (minimum). This comprises 21 hours of in-person training (or 42 hours if you opt to complete both the Birth doula and Postpartum doula training) PLUS 60+ hours of self-paced online learning, assessments, required reading and live webinars. In addition, you will have to provide documentation for the births or postpartum visits you provided to three (3) clients.

2024 Training Dates

Birth Doula Training: Friday March 1st to Sunday March 3rd, 9am to 6pm each day
Postpartum Doula Training: Friday March 8th to Sunday March 10th, 9am to 6pm each day
Venue: Caulfield South, VIC 3162 (exact address to be provided upon registration)


Professional Development Pathway
Birth Doula training only $950 incl. GST
Postpartum Doula training only $950 incl. GST
Birth Doula AND Postpartum Doula training $1700 incl. GST

Certification Pathway
Birth Doula training $2150 incl. GST
Postpartum Doula training $2150 incl. GST
Birth Doula AND Postpartum Doula training $3,100 incl. GST

Download our Course Guide!

Please ensure you carefully read the course guide before commencing your registration online.

Meet your Trainers

Jenn Fontaine

Jenn has been supporting families as a birth and postpartum doula (attending several hundred births) and childbirth educator (preparing over a thousand new families) since 2002. Over the years, while supporting families, Jenn has made education a priority. She trained with Penny Simkin personally to become a birth doula trainer as well as a When Survivors Give Birth Instructor. Jenn is also a certified Lamaze Educator and accredited Lamaze Program Trainer.

In 2016 Jenn was given the honour of being inducted as an FACCE (Fellow of the Academy of Certified Childbirth Educators), a fitting recognition of her significant contribution to childbirth education and her effort to promote safe and healthy birth through evidence-based practice.

Jenn is passionate about passing along her knowledge to families and other doulas. Jenn is a sought after instructor and she has travelled all over the world to teach and help new doulas find their own path. She supports those in need as a crisis phone councillor prioritising mental health wellbeing and trauma informed care. She currently lives in Manitoba, Canada with her wonderful husband, her four amazing kids and a drooling bulldog.

Tanya Cawthorne

Tanya is a Melbourne-based Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator (LCCE), Lamaze program director, doula and a Fellow of the Academy of Certified Childbirth Educators (FACCE). Tanya is also the co-founder of Lamaze Australia and has previously served as the President of Lamaze International.

She is a passionate advocate for evidence-based, woman-centered maternity care and is a prolific writer on all things related to birth and early parenting. Her articles have appeared in The Journal of Perinatal Education, Australian Midwifery News, Connecting the Dots (blog of Lamaze International), Interaction – the journal of the Childbirth and Parenting Educators Association of Australia (CAPEA), International Doula, Empowering Birth Magazine and Rockstar Birth Magazine. Tanya is currently completing her Masters degree in Women’s & Children’s Health at the University of Technology Sydney.

Last, but definitely not least, Tanya is also the mum of two beautiful children, her son Liev and daughter Amalia.