Doulas are the hands and the heart of what we do. Open Arms works with over 100 doulas to provide support during the last months of pregnancy, birth and early weeks of life and during the time leading up to a child’s 2nd birthday.

Many doulas decide to work with Open Arms because they want to bring doula services to community members who need the most support. Our doulas represent many cultural communities, and many are drawn to Open Arms through their passion to serve families within their own communities.

“Being an Open Arms doula, I am able to develop trusting relationships with pregnant and birthing people in genuine, loving, and authentic ways. Through this connection, I can support them with accessing health care and having the birth experience they want to have in way they may not have otherwise.  I love that this relationship is so mutually rewarding: I love learning and growing with my client, and knowing, so fundamentally, that I was able to support them during a crucial and formative experience.”

Independent Doulas

Independent Doulas contract with Open Arms to provide support during the third trimester of pregnancy, during labor and birth, and up to three months postpartum.

Community-Based Outreach Doulas (CBOD)

Our Community-Based Outreach Doulas are members of our staff and provide support up to a child’s second birthday.

Benefits of working with Open Arms

Open Arms provides new and prospective doulas with the opportunity to gain valuable experience while giving back. While we offer services to families free of charge, Open Arms compensates certified and other highly experienced doulas for the services they provide. We are deeply committed to nurturing the potential of all doulas, especially those within communities that are most impacted by racial inequity and health disparities. We help connect prospective doulas from underrepresented communities to scholarships and other opportunities. We are proud that many of our doulas go on to become breastfeeding peer counselors, social workers, lactation consultants, and midwives after finding their calling through Open Arms.

Want to become an Open Arms Birth Doula? Once you’ve completed a Birth Doula Training at the Simkin Center for Allied Birth Vocations, the International Center for Traditional Childbearing, or other training programs, you can attend an Open Arms orientation.

To register for an orientation or for more information, contact Program Manager Kate Silvett at or 206.723.6868 extension 105.