If you want to be part of a big, well-known childbirth education organization with a fine reputation and a lot of resources, I can recommend several (see the big list below). I’m certified by a couple of them myself, and they have superb trainings, conferences, newsletters, and networking. “Certification” varies from one organization to the next, with no universal standard, but reputation, resources, and name recognition might be important to you, your clients, or your employer.
On the other hand, if you just want to get a wonderful foundation for teaching independent prenatal classes in your neighborhood, village, hospital, birth center, jail, outback, Peace Corps destination, or community center, and you don’t want to spend a lot of time or money, then you might enjoy the very accessible “Childbirth Education Essentials” certification program. You can always decide to join a larger organization later, and you will be encouraged to do so.
The Childbirth Education Essentials certification program consists of:
A fascinating and unique one-day workshop ($150)
A reading list of 5 required books, 5 elective books, and 2 websites
Agreeing to ethical and professional guidelines
Auditing a childbirth class in its entirety
Teaching a class and submitting your clients’ evaluations
Attending 3 births (past experience and personal experience count)
Choosing a “study buddy” with whom to share ideas and support (optional)
A set of learning assignments that can be submitted online or by mail ($100)
That’s a total of $250 plus books. By the time you finish the assignments, you’ll be ready to start teaching! You can teach however and wherever you like, within ethical and professional guidelines, and charge whatever you like. Contact Us!
It’s in your best interest to check out all your options BEFORE you sign up for certification with Childbirth Education Essentials. Compare childbirth educator certification programs carefully. You might start with the links below. For each organization you’re considering, find out…
Do they match your personal and professional values?
Do they focus on coping with labor, or do they also include information about complications, postpartum, baby care, breastfeeding?
Do they include all the topics you care about? (tailoring classes for special populations, evidence-based care, cultural competency…)
Does the training fit your budget, your time, and your geographical location? Are there scholarships, online options, or traveling trainers?
Does their certification qualify you for the job you are seeking? For example, hospitals may prefer Lamaze, CAPPA, or ICEA.
Does their infrastructure (web presence, CEU’s, conferences, newsletter, networking) match your needs?
CHILDBIRTH EDUCATOR CERTIFICATION ORGANIZATIONS
In no particular order, here are some that might be well worth your consideration:
www.seattlemidwifery.org (Penny Simkin is my heroine!)
www.passionforbirth.com (an exciting Lamaze program — Deb is the “Orgasmic Birth” filmmaker)
www.icea.org (excellent 50-year-old organization)
www.lamaze.org (also an excellent 50-year-old organization)
www.cappa.net (a new but very fast-growing, multifaceted organization)
www.alace.org (this has now morphed into International Birth and Wellness Project)