July 5, 2016


Explore available options, and discern which program offering may be best for youMother gives solace to teen daughter

OPTIONS, Options, Options! We’ve got options for you.

This is a virtual interview, to help you discern which of our offerings makes the most sense for you at this time. 

Make sure you also check out our podcasts, “Understanding The Six Certifications” and “Is this Path, and Training, For me?” as well. 

NOW…Let’s get started with the FAQ Interview:

What’s your goal in pursuing training?

Do you want to earn regular income while doing the meaningful work of facilitating conscious, informed death and mourning?

Are you looking to enhance existing skills, to do your current work better (we have quite a number of hospice workers, nurses, social workers, clergy members, etc, train with us for just this reason)?

Do you offer existing support, and want to add death and mourning support to your current offerings (we get a number of birth doulas, massage therapists, reiki practitioners, etc, too)?

Are you simply looking to enhance your personal skills so you can better support loved ones, helping them create more meaningful deaths and funerals, and to ideally save money in the process? (Note: The majority of our graduates find they offset the cost of their training through savings in just one or two funerals, depending on the options they choose; many students find they earn back their tuition working with a very small number of clients. Some of this is impacted by your geographic location; other elements depend on your marketing and promotion skills, and your skill in asking for business)

  • If you answered that you are looking to work full time in this field:While you can begin your new career in under a year, it takes time to build a practice that can become sustainable; it often includes educating your area market about your services, and why they would want them. It also includes wearing the hat of the self-employed, which means learning to market and promote your business, building business-to-business relationships, shaping your reputation, and becoming comfortable with asking for people’s business, not to mention any number of other administrative details involved in running a business. SO: If you are looking to make this your career, you’ve got a number of considerations such as: How will you support yourself as you transition into this work, and build it into something sustainable? Can you continue to work full or part time? Have other means of sustaining yourself? Additional considerations: If you want to transition to this as your full time work, you will find you have the most flexibility and support with the Complete 6-in-1 Death Doula Training Class. Why? Because it allows you to create the most diverse set of service offerings, allowing you to balance offerings that require you to be on-call, with ones that you can easily schedule and control. This can allow you to use your time to maximum benefit; it also allows you to offer clients the largest service menu. Additionally, the Special Edition Class comes with live phone coaching sessions, which you can use once you’re certified and working with clients. This provides support as you begin getting out there and working in the field.
  • If you answered that you only want to supplement your career, add to existing modalities, or simply provide support to loved ones: Then you will find that the Modified 5-in-1 may well be enough for you. Part of the consideration is how much support you want to provide post-funeral. Do you want to be able to provide support when someone is dealing with the physical artifacts left after the major estate questions are settled? There’s an awful lot of folks who have to deal with estates and personal effects long distance these days, and we’re seeing great interest in this service. Additionally, it’s the kind of work you can schedule, earning additional income around the on-call work.

How Important Are Home Funerals to you?

  • If you want to be an advocate and active facilitator of home funerals, then providing Home Funeral Doula Support is of high priority to you. For this, you will likely want either our Modified 5-in-1 Training Program, or the Complete 6-in-1 Death Doula Training Program, or the Special Edition Version of the Complete 6-in-1 Death Doula Training Program (the only version of the class currently offered).

What Kind of Support Do You Appreciate When Learning Something New?

Our trainings are online, but we provide varying methods of support:

  • The Complete 6-in-1 Death Doula Training, as well as the Special Edition Version of that class, offer a highly intensive learning experience. Each week, in addition to your learning materials, you have assignments in a number of forums. You engage not just with other students, but receive personal one-on-one feedback from Laura, the founder of our program. When I say feedback, on a number of our forums she may provide up to 1-2 pages of feedback. The Special Edition of the class also includes 4 group Zoom sessions during the training period, and provides a live, one-on-one phone based coaching session following certification, so you have feedback when you begin to implement these skills in the real world. This is Laura’s favorite way to teach this online program, however, it is also highly involved, and she is currently limiting enrollment in this class to only 25 students per year – as I’m sure you can understand why.
  • The Modified 5-in-1 Death Doula Training is a lot like the Complete 6-in-1 Death Doula Training, however, there are some crucial differences beyond the fact that it includes one less certification area. In the Modified 5-in-1 Training Program, there are still forums for assignments and discussion with peers, however, rather than the intensive one-on-one feedback Laura provides in the Complete 6-in-1 Death Doula Training/Special Edition classes, in the Modified 5-in-1 Death Doula Training there is only Group Feedback. Essentially, once all students have posted their comments and discussions, Laura reads them all, then drafts one general feedback post for the entire group. It is still a highly effective method of learning, and if you’re a self-starter who can work largely on their own but appreciate some feedback and the instructor’s perspective while training, this may be the right program for you. Keep in mind that the Modified 5-in-1 Death Doula Training doesn’t include the “What’s Next?” Post Loss Coaching Certification, and is only 16 weeks long, as opposed to 20 weeks.

How much of a time investment can you make right now? 

  • The Complete 6-in-1 Death Doula Training/Special Edition classes involve a longer commitment, it’s twenty weeks, plus the six week Business Quick Start Training, plus you receive access to several other classes, such as an intense version of Life Review, Self-Care for Care-Providers, and Creating Amazing Info Sessions. Depending on the pace at which you complete those extras, you could spend nearly a year on the training. You are also more likely trying to create this as a primary or at least major revenue for yourself, which also requires time and effort. The class itself typically takes about 6 to 10 hours per week, depending on how much time you spend engaging with the instructor and other students, and whether you provide shorter or lengthier commentary in the forums. Some students find they dive very deeply into the material, some spending up to 15 hours per week (not required; it depends on how deeply you want to delve into certain areas of the work).
  • The Modified 5-in-1 Death Doula Training is 16 weeks long, plus the six week Business Quick Start Training,and you receive access to one of the other extras. Again, depending on how fast you complete the extras, you could spend a little over half a year working your way through the materials. If you are simply looking to enhance your existing career or add these skills to other service modalities, you can likely begin to see some fruit from your labors pretty quickly. The same is true if you are looking to merely support loved ones, or members of your inner community (religious community, social community, etc). This training also takes a bit less time on the week-to-week basis, clocking in at about 4 to 6 hours per week, most weeks, as there is less back and forth with the instructor. Again, some of this time is defined by how much or little you write in response to forum queries, assignments, etc.
    Do you care about Certification?
  • If you care about certification, and the benefits that accompany it, you will want either our Complete 6-in-1 Death Doula Training/Special Edition or the Modified 5-in-1 Death Doula Training.

What does Certification mean, who is certifying me and in what, and why does it matter?

  • At this writing there is no current industry requirement for certification, though some areas have some licensing requirements. We are certifying you in our Methodology of Service – our service method is built around a protected coaching model, which you can read more about here. Certification demonstrates that you have not only met robust requirements which demonstrate proficiency in our methodology and certification requirements, but also that you continue to maintain quality delivery of service. We have a Standard of Practice which our Certified Graduates are expected to maintain; we have a Grievance Procedure through which the public can file a complaint if they feel you have violated your commitment to your Standard of Practice. This helps create a level of trust the public can come to rely upon.
  • Additionally, because there is currently no industry requirement, people are calling themselves doulas without any specific standard of practice. Some guarantee a soul will get to heaven; some promote a spa-like death experience. You get the idea. What the Momdoulary Certification provides is a way for the public to be able to openly see the standard of training you went through, and be able to clarify the commitment you’ve made to a certain quality of service. They can see that you’ve met requirements that protect them, and you, such as completing our Blood-borne pathogen safety requirement, and our Food Handler Safety requirement (you may be warming food, you may be working in a client’s home where food is served to guests; safety comes up in a variety of ways). More importantly, we believe that Certification demonstrates QUALITY.
  • There are many instances in which certification may not matter to you: If you are only taking this for your own personal goals, to provide support to loved ones; if you are looking to simply enhance your existing career in the medical or care field, for instance. However, if you are looking to do this work as your primary business, or if you are adding it as a significant modality to your existing modalities, we do encourage you to explore the value of Certification.

Is Tuition A Concern?

  • You have to be practical in terms of tuition. There is a balance that should be sought, between what you are trying to create, and what you can afford. Explore what courses best fit your needs, and help you get to where you need to go, but also take tuition into consideration. The Special Edition Complete 6-in-1 Death Doula Training initially looks like it is double the tuition of the Modified 5-in-1 Training. However, it comes with a lot more in-depth support, including those crucial live zoom sessions, and the live phone coaching session after class has ended, when you are beginning to create your business. It also comes with a lot of bonus classes. AND – if you apply early, and can pay in full, completing the full enrollment process, you can receive significant discounts, some of which reduce tuition significantly. However, you could also save on the Modified 5-in-1 Training, by enrolling early, further reducing the tuition.
  • We do offer payment plans, however you can save more by paying in full, as we discount tuition when payment is made in full; we do take credit cards, and use Paypal for processing (some students tell us they applied for delayed or credit payments via Paypal and were approved by Paypal in that way, as well). How far in advance you begin your payment plan will impact how large or small your monthly payments are. Do subscribe to our newsletter and/or follow our facebook page, as we sometimes run discounts on tuition, but they are only announced via those avenues.

 Thank you for participating in our FAQ Self-Interview. Hopefully you found it useful in better understanding which of our offerings may be a good fit for you.

A geriatrician holds the hand of an elderly woman with arthritis.