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Baby Nurses (Postpartum Doula)

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2010 - 2013 Recommendations


Seeking nighttime postpartum doula and cooking

Nov 2013

We are looking for a nighttime postpartum doula for 2 nights/week starting in January. In addition to nighttime support such as picking up the baby for nursing, putting the baby back to sleep, developing good baby sleep habits in the early months, etc., we would especially like someone who can cook some healthy (vegetarian) meals for us while they are here at night. If you, or someone you can recommend, might be a good fit, please respond to this post. Thanks! Anonymous


I cannot recommend Sabine Henrie-Nafaa more highly. I had the great luck to have her as a Bradley teacher and still get to see her 5 years later, although now it's as friends. She is very experienced, knowledgeable about almost everything baby and post-partum mama. She is also very respectful of different parenting styles, and especially of new parents finding their way, and a joy to be around. Babies love her. I have seen her work her magic on many an infant. She is a wonderful baker. She would have fresh, home-made, healthy, yummy, muffins for us at class. So lovely for us pregnant moms as we showed up for class! And a lovely cook to boot! You can contact her at sabineh@aol.com Naomi

Need a night nurse in Lafayette

Oct 2013

I'm due at the beginning of the year and we have the need for a night nurse or postpartum doula 3-5 nights a week for 3+ months. I'm looking for someone who is obviously not just great with newborns but who will be proactive while baby sleeps: cleaning pump parts, occasional laundry, maybe even cooking. I'd also like someone who will help teach good sleep habits when age appropriate. needing a good night's sleep


There placement agency in town that places Postpartum Doulas and night nurses . They are called University Sitters (they place every kind of household position). The Bay Area director is actually a former Postpartum Doula so I think she is a great resource as she knows the ins and outs of the job. The Bay Area director is based in the East Bay and she is a pleasure to work with. Her name is Lindsey O'Connell Her email: lindsey@universitysitters.com Best of luck!

Referral Needed for Postpartum Doula

Oct 2013

I am interested in a postpartum doula, any recommendation will be highly appreciated. Lauren


I would like to share out experience with a fantastic NIGHT DOULA/BABY NURSE Karina who was our lifesaver! She has much experience with babies from her background as a nurse in Poland as well as through many other caregiver jobs, and it really shows through her work. She has a very calming and nurturing demeanor, and my daughter just loved her from the beginning! We were initially planning on hiring Karina only as a night nanny but were very impressed and wished to keep her on even after my daughter was sleeping through the night as day help during the week. She helped look after my older son as well who was 2 and 3 years old during this time.

Karina gives just the right balance of both advice and respect I feel especially for new mothers. She is detail-oriented and will listen to you and do what you prefer but will also give helpful suggestions from her many years of experience with babies. She knows how tired new mothers are trying to fulfill breastfeeding duties and will really try to make your life run more smoothly. She cleaned bottles for us, did laundry, helped feed the kids meals, and even would pick up a few groceries when we were low. I would never have made it through the difficult first year of having a baby without Karina! I am sure she will do a fantastic job with anyone's family. Please contact her at minekp@gmail.com Michele


Please go to www.MtDiabloDoulaCommunity.org and check out our wonderful Birth and PostPartum Doula Members. I am sure you can find someone that will fit your needs, but if not, please feel free to contact me directly and I can help you further. Good luck in your search, Deanna Dawson-Jesus
Judy Lieblein jlieblein@earthlink.net Judy is truly amazing. An herbalist, incredible listener and just a general get-shit-done kind of woman. She can get all of the odds and ends that may be stressing you out in order. She even got on the phone to advocate for me with my doctor's office (among many, many above and beyond things she did). Truly awesome.

Rachel Monas r.monas@gmail.com Rachel is a baby whisperer. Walks in your door and immediately starts picking up the pieces. Whatever they may be. She is a sweet person worthy of being around your sweet baby.

Sylvia Mumwai silmum@sbcglobal.net Another baby whisperer. So experienced with babies and has raised two of her own too. Funny and thoughtful. She even brought me a baby bathtub and sent me virtual flowers on mothers day. She will get your baby to sleep! Will work nights.

Annike Glaub annikaglaub@gmail.com Infant sleep expert/consultant + postpartum doula in one. Will work nights, too. Excellent cleanliness standards. Super confident with babies. I learned a lot a lot a lot from her. New mama in Oakland


Looking for a Trustworthy Night Nurse/Nanny

March 2013

My husband and I are adopting a baby out of state and will be most likely bringing the baby home to California during the third week in March. Would you please let us know the names and numbers of very reliable, experienced and trustworthy night nurses/nannies/doulas? Thanks for the recommendations. Cynthia


We just had a wonderful experience with our night nurse nanny Karina. She helped us with our son from the day he arrived home from the hospital till he was 5 months. She has a very calm presence about her and is a pediatric nurse. It was nice to know that our son was in good hands during the night. Karina worked for us 6 nights a week and was always punctual and reliable. We were very fortunate and blessed to have her! Her e-mail address: minekp@gmail.com elise

Night Nurse Services

Oct 2012

I am looking for night nurse recommendations to help with our newborn due in February. I've seen a lot of postpartum doula recommendations, and I don't know if they offer the same services. We had a traditional night nurse for our first child when we lived on the East Coast. I'm looking for someone to help me take care of the baby overnight (wake me up for feedings, soothe to sleep, change diapers, etc.). Any recommendations or advice is much appreciated. Thank you! zmt


Hello, yes, you can use a Night Nurse or Night Doula services. They will take care of your newborn the same way, and the hourly fee in SF bay area is $20-30. minekp

Looking for a supportive postpartum doula

July 2012

I'm looking for a post-partum doula with lots of experience; we are expecting our first child in early January and I expect we will need help a minimum of 2-3 days a week and possibly fulltime at our home in Berkeley. I'd like someone who has a sense of humor, is calm, nurturing and not too ''mother-earthy'' or understands a not-too-mother-earthy new mother and father. Thank you for any recommendations for great post-partum doulas! Christine


Hi. I'm writing to recommend our wonderful night doula, Ezdora Marando. Ezdora was with us for 12 weeks (5 nights a week!) after our twin girls were born last August. She was an absolute life saver and we could not have done it without her. She was a great calming influence on us and on the girls, always on time, and always respectful of our tiny little SF condo. We trusted her completely to care for our girls and she gave us the opportunity the get some much needed rest. Our tiny little girls began sleeping through the night at 6 months, and were happy, well rested kiddos during the day. We truly believe that Ezdora helped set us on the right track. Please feel free to contact me by email with any questions. I'm happy to give you many many more details. You can see more at her website below: www.doulasbythebay.com 415-955-7612. Aaron
Hiring a night doula was the best thing that happened to our family after our twins were born!!! Shakila is absolutely amazing. She is an extremely positive, nurturing, and competent night doula and an all around wonderful person. She has great judgment and expertise, and will always honor what you want for your family. I completely trusted Shakila with our twins from the first night we brought them home. Our twins slept through the night at 4 months old and have continued to have great sleep habits since our time with Shakila. Besides relieving us of sleepless nights, making sure that I was taking care of myself, and helping to sleep train our kids, Shakila was a great resource for us as new parents...she helped us develop a schedule and systems that worked for our twins and us. I highly, highly recommend Shakila and her mother ( she filled in a few times) for anyone looking for some support in those first months after giving birth. I included her contact information below... www.doulasbythebay.com 415-955-7612 yelp.com Melissa
Alison Dexter is a breath of fresh air - a postpartum Doula who has raised 4 children of her own. Alison has a low-key, warm personality, and she is hard-working and easy-going at the same time. Most importantly, she's easy to have around (helpful for someone who will be spending a lot of time in close proximity). Really, a lovely person, with a beautiful English accent - my babies are grown up, or I'd hire her myself! I know her because our children used to go to school together. Her email is alisondxtr@gmail.com Another Mama
I HIGHLY recommend Michelle Macarai from Juno Wellness http://www.junowellness.com/about-us as a post-partum doula. When she came over I felt like the whole world was lifted off my shoulders. She's so good at adapting to different parenting styles. I was worried someone might be judgemental coming into my house at such a vulnerable time, but she was perfect. She's helpful physically, mentally, with baby, and around the house. Call her NOW! brooke
I cannot recommend Lindsay Corwin enough. I've been working with her for 2 months as I brought home my new baby boy. Recently I raised her hours because of how valuable her help has been. My older daughter is crazy about her as well. Lindsay does a fantastic job working with our family. She balances providing great information with being flexible and working to understand our needs and values as well. I feel totally safe having her in our house and really enjoy having her around. She's completely reliable and trustworthy as well as knowledgable and truly loves her role. She's helped us get much needed sleep, helped us through very difficult weeks of colic, and has been very supportive as I've had to go back to work. Her contact info is 925-212-9160, and website is : www.doulalindsay.com If you have questions, feel free to contact me directly. joanna

Post Partum Doula / Mother's Helper for 2nd baby

July 2012

Hi BPN! I am expecting a second child within a few weeks. Our original plans for help fell through, so I am looking for recommendations on post partum doula or mother's helpers who can focus on with cooking, laundry, light housecleaning (e.g. dishes). Any recommendations in the Berkeley area? Thank you, Christine


I HIGHLY recommend Michelle Macarai from Juno Wellness http://www.junowellness.com/about-us as a post-partum doula. When she came I felt like the whole world was lifted off my shoulders every time she came over. She's so good at adapting to different parenting styles and is SO helpful physically, mentally, with baby, and around the house. Call her NOW!

San Francisco Doulas (incl. post-partum)

March 2012

Hi, I'm expecting in August and am looking for recommendations for a San Francisco-based doula - hopefully one who could work with me before, during, and also after I give birth. I'd prefer someone with experience. I am planning on a hospital birth; it's important my doula will be able to support me whatever my choices might be re: traditional and nontraditional care (I suspect I will rely on a combination of both, and want a doula who will be fully on board with this). I did check existing postings on this topic - but all the recent recommendations are for east-bay-based and/or new/student practitioners. Thanks for any help!


We had a great experience with Renata Provost. She is very open minded and respectful of your choices. I am quite sure that she goes all over the bay. Her website is www.thebayareadoula.com. Anon

Post-partum doula who is also a cook

Aug 2011

I'm looking for a post-partum doula with lots of experience who is also a delicious cook. We are expecting our second in mid-February and will be looking for help about 2-3 part time days a week. Someone who is calm, nurturing, easy with babies and also enjoys cooking fresh omnivore meals is just the person we are looking for. She need also be game to run errands and other basic mommy helper stuff which means having a car is a must.


I would like to recommend Shakila Marando (email doulasbythebay@gmail.com) as a postpartum doula. Firstly, we interviewed several doulas and as soon as we interviewed Shakila we knew she was the one we wanted to work with. We have since worked with a few other doulas on the side (because we wanted to go to 7 nights of coverage) and can say hands down that Shakila is the best. Shakila is a wonderfully positive person who is a pleasure to interact with. She is extremely competent with infants. She can soothe and settle a baby better than anyone I know. She has great advice and also works with our needs and follows our directions. For example, I was having trouble with breastfeeding because our son preferred the bottle. She volunteered to go to a super slow premie flow nipple at night (making her job harder) so that he would breastfeed better in the morning. Shakila has worked with us for 5 months now and has been a true partner in getting our son to sleep through the night. She has worked with us to drop the night feedings, to get him to self soothe, and to get him out of the swaddle, none of which came very easily. Because of Shakila our son has developed good sleep habits without anything like cry-it-out. Shakila is also very helpful when Zack is sleeping. She tidies the kitchen and folds the clothes etc. We love Shakila and I'm pretty sure that she loves our son. Caroline
May 2011

We are looking for a night nurse or a night doula to come and help us at night with our newborn. I have been struggling with some issues and the nurse told me I need more sleep. I looked at the archives and found some references, but I wonder if I can get some more recent recommendations? Also has anyone used the organization 'San Francisco Night Doulas' and if so, do you recommend them? We live on the East Bay. Thanks! --desperately needing sleep


After my daughter was born my husband had to travel quite a bit for work. We hired Ann Regan to come over for the evenings so that I could take a break and get to bed early - it made a huge difference. She was very caring, knowledgeable, and punctual. She was great with our baby - attentive and tuned in to her needs. Ann can be reached by phone at 510.847.9743 or email anndoula@yahoo.com. She does nights as well as days/evenings. She is a certified doula with DONA and Trustline certified. Stephanie
Oct 2010

I am seeking an experienced postpartum doula in the East Bay or San francisco area.I need a doula who can also educate me with baby soothing techniques, breastfeeding issues, sleeping issues etc... I would appreciate any recommendations from mothers who have had good experience with their doulas.Thanks East Bay mom


I've had two wonderful experiences (8/04 & 8/09) with Anne Delp. She draws from a wealth of knowledge and made us all feel very well supported. Call her 510-557-8029. Check her out here: http://www.birthchoicedoulacollective.com/doulas.html#delp doula lover
I highly recommend Carol Shattuck-Rice. She helped us after the birth of our son. She was wonderful with us as new mother and father, as well as with our son. She saved the day in helping me with figuring out how to nurse son (good position and latch etc.), was very knowledgable and helpful re: newborn care (taught us to swaddle, helped me bathe him, trim his nails, etc.), and loaned good books (baby as well as fun reads) etc. Good luck! Laura
I would like to wholeheartedly recommend Stacia Biltekoff as a postpartum doula. We were so thrilled with her support during our daughter's birth that we continued to work with her postpartum. Stacia was a tremendous help during the early days, when my husband went back to work and I was home alone with the baby. She held and soothed my daughter so I could shower and nap, helped out around the house, and was a great source of information and encouragement. Stacia is on the board of Birthways, and knows an incredible amount about pregnancy, birth, and postpartum concerns. Plus, she's a mom too, so she "gets it" on an intuitive, emotional level. I think arranging for the support of a postpartum doula is great gift to yourself, and I encourage you to get in touch with Stacia - she's utterly fabulous. Congratulations, and good luck! 510) 543-8411 http://www.familydoulaservices.com
When I found myself unexpectedly pregnant last febuary I turned to a neighbor(Francine Madrid) of mine who worked as a doula and Mom of two for some advice. She encouraged me through my pregnancy, and made me more confident through her ''Birthing from within'' class she does with her partner Sadie Cooper. My partner and I both felt more confident, and as ready as one can be for such a major life change. Sadie and Francine are both very down to earth, giving, nurturing, and fun. Plus, they loved to feed us a wholesome brunch at every class! I would highly recommend Francine Madrid of mariposamassageanddoula.com for her doula services, massage, and child birth classes. We now have a healthy little baby boy, and if he could he'd thank her too. gina
An excellent postpartum doula in Berkeley is Sabine Henrie, 510-843-2091. Gentle, compassionate and wonderfully knowledgeable doula with lots of experience. Happy Mom
March 2010

My sister-in-law needs to have a c-section for the birth of her twins, and they are in a bit of a panic right now. I would love to recommend a postpartum doula or baby nurse for them. I would appreciate any recent recommendations! However, they don't really understand what a postpartum doula or baby nurse does, if you could explain how you were helped and why you were glad to have one, that would be helpful, too. They live in Berkeley. Thank you! - new Auntie


Jennifer Starling was wonderful to everyone in our family including our dogs after the birth of our younger son. She is a clear communicator and extremely grounded. She also used to be a preschool teacher so she's great with older siblings as well as newborns. Her number is 510-827-5781. Best wishes with your upcoming adventure! Lisa
Feb 2010

I am expecting our second child in late April and am looking for recommendations for a night nurse. For our daughter, who's almost 3, we had a wonderful woman who came to thouse between 10pm and 6am 3 nights a week until my little girl was about 7 weeks old. She woke me to feed my daughter, but took care of changing her, soothing her and I think went miles towards establishing amazing sleep habits early on. She also eventually took one of the feedings so I could get more than 3 hours of sleep at a stretch! Do you have any recommendations on a wonderfully caring person who provides similar services? Ideally, the cost of those services also wouldn't bankrupt us ($20/hr)! Stacy


We found a great night nurse, Shakila Marando, for our baby girl's first three months. She came to our house around 11pm (she's flexible) and stayed until 6 am. During that time she slept in the baby's room to feed her, change her, and generally comfort her. It was bliss, and her rates are reasonable. You can reach Shakila at marandoshakila@hotmail.com. anon
Feb 2010

I would like a recommendation for a warm and nurturing postpartum doula.I need someone who can help a mother with basic needs such as changing,washing baby clothes,bringing baby to nurse at night, sterilize bottles....doing whatever is needed to give a mother rest and piece of mind.I would also appreciate if she can assist with breast feeding and sleeping issues.Thanks richmond mom


I enthusiastically suggest you use Mary Ellen Escalanate as your postpartum doula. She is a mother of 7, a very experienced labor doula, and a postpartum doula for 3-4 years. Mary Ellen was my postpartum doula in 2006 for an extended period, due to health problems I had at the time. She offered a wealth of parenting and child care information, loaned me books, kept my house neat, provided me with emotional support and encouragement and was a calm, oraganized, pleasant presence in my home. I can't imagine how I would have managed without her. Contact her at (707) 246-5720 or escalante7@prodigy.net. Mary Ellen lives in Benicia, but travels all over the Bay area. Very grateful mom
i want to recommend shakila marando as a postpartum doula. marandoshakila@hotmail.com, her cell # 510-672-6406

i didn't use an overnight person with my first child, but when i was planning for the second i decided that i wanted to get a few good nights' rest guaranteed each week so that i could have the energy to handle my toddler as well as an infant!

i am so so glad i found shakila. i trusted her immediately with our son. she is calm and caring, super sweet and totally competent. she is a lovely tanzanian woman, she has two young children of her own. she takes great care of our son who loves her (i didn't think i would have her for longer than 2-3 months, but we got addicted, and therefore our son is old enough now to know and love her).

she feeds, changes, bathes, burps, soothes and puts the baby to sleep. she even cleans our kitchen while we all sleep! now he sleeps on his own but shakila occasionally babysits and he gets so happy when she walks in the door. julie


While you have already gotten some names, I wanted to add another because I think so very highly of her. Carol Shattuck-Rice is just amazing. She is so knowledgeable and kind and calm. She came to take care of me and my third child in 2005. I felt that I would need an extra set of hands... she was SO much more. She taught me new things and integrated beautifully into our family set- up. I was so excited to get to hire her again when my sweet surprise came along in 2009. And I learned new things from her again! I even have family close by, but having Carol is the best! Her contact number is 527-7210. She is also a trainer of doulas. Marjorie
We just had a great experience with postpartum doula Catherine Lamm. She was extremely gentle and patient with my fussy baby girl, and had some very good insight into her behavior. Catherine helped us in the daytime and to our delight, our 4-year-old daughter took to her right away. Catherine also assisted with light housekeeping, cooking, etc. She's available for overnights as well. Catherine is very experienced as a postpartum doula, a foster parent to medically fragile infants, and a mother. She can be contacted at catherinelamm@yahoo.com or 510-755-3020. realized I need a postpartum doula for the next 18 years!

2007 - 2009 Recommendations


Dec 2008

I am looking for someone to help me with my 6 week old baby. Right now my baby eats for a short time then falls asleep on the breast. When I try to put him down, he cries, and then I feed him again. I want to be able to read his cues and cries better, and want some assistance on some gentle ways to put him down for a nap. I don't need advice on the importance of slings and carrying him all day...I am looking for someone who leans more towards attachment parenting, but who understands the importance of a mom needing some time to do things, and not being a ''binky with legs'', and the importance of a baby not getting too in the habit of falling asleep at the breast. I definitely will not let him cry it out. So any recommendations for someone who might be able to help me and who shares my philosophy (mostly attachment, but wanting baby to sleep on his own for naps) and someone who can help me figure out how to get him to feed for longer, and how to interpret his cries and cues ! more effectively. I've read so many books (Baby Whisperer, Happiest Baby on the Block, No Cry Sleep Solution) and feel overwhelmed by the many different suggestions...Thanks! Oakland Mom


I can relate to being a human pacifier. I have a 5 year old daughter who was the same exact way. I also have a 17 month old daughter, who thankfully things are going better with. I too practice along the lines of attachment parenting, so we co-sleep and I also practice child-led weaning. When I made this decision with my 5 year old, I had no idea it would mean we'd be a nursing team for 5 years! I too read book after book trying to find solutions for my daughter who would prefer I take a nap with her and allow her to be latched on using me as a pacifier for her entire nap and through most of the night! The one thing I can tell you is every child is different, what works for one may not work for the next.

Knowing first hand, that some children are not ''text-book friendly'' and you can try everything under the sun with much disappointment, I have at least one suggestion that is directly tailored to your childs needs. I suggest you keep a diary/log of your babies daily activities: the time he wakes up; nurses; voids; naps; bathes; goes to bed, etc. This is actually easier than it sounds, especially once you get into a habit. It doesn't have to be detailed just simple entries. On days that he sleeps better, try to include notes/entries of what you've eaten as well. This practice can be helpful in so many ways as your child grows, it can help you recognize symptoms to illness, some people include entries of milestones as well, so you can also look at it as a type of journal. Once you have a pattern of your babies sleep patterns, you can start nursing your baby at least 1 hour before he typically falls asleep, this should help you read his cues too. It might be that he is falling asleep at the breast because he is more interested in sleeping at that time. If you try nursing him during the hour prior to his usual nap time, he may stay awake long enough to get a full nursing and fall asleep with a fuller tummy, and hopefully sleep longer. I have some other suggestions that I can share as well, but I think the above is probably one of the most helpful things you can do. I hope it helps! Sarah


August 2008

I am looking for a postpartum doula to help me out during September, primarily the first 2 weeks in September. I am 39 years old and my baby is due at the end of August. I live near the Mormon Temple in Oakland, near Lincoln Avenue. I need to find a doula who is sensitive to allergy/asthma issues since I've been having lots of asthma issues due to the pregnancy. Thanks much for any recommendations. Danielle


I highly recommend Sabine Henrie as a post-partum doula. She has amazing experience, is very conscientious and knowledgeable. You can contact her at SabineH@aol.com or by phone 510-843-2091. Happy with Doula
Nicky Tilsner of Cornerstone Academy of Doula Training & Childbirth Ed. can help you find a good postpartum doula. She can be reached at 510-689-8116 or online cornerstonedoulatrainings.com good luck D. Simone, Midwife
I can't speak to her availability, but Jen Spool offers wonderful postpartum doula services. She can be reached at 510-463-7266. anon
March 2008

I would like reccomendations for a mom/baby nurse that you used post c-section birth. (The family member that was going to help out cannot, so while my husband is taking care of our toddler, I want some extra help in the hosptial.) I had amazing nursing care at Alta Bates post my first c-section but also had my husband. This time I am seeking a ''night nurse'' type of person. Pleaes let me know of any good or bad experiences you had with either nurses/doulas etc, what worked, what did not work, if you would do things differently. I am primarily concerned about the nights in the hospital but may have the person continue when I return home. Any and all reccomendations welcome.


I absolutely loved Sabine Henri. She was a wonderful post-partum doula after my c-section in November. Her number is 510 843-2091. catherine
Nov 2007

Hi. We don't have much family help nearby, and we are expecting bundle of joy #2 in March. I'm wondering if anyone has a recommendation for a baby nurse that they could pass along? We are thinking of hiring someone for the first 6 to 8 weeks. How much does something like this cost? Thank you so much. Michelle


Tomi Knutson is an amazing post partum doula with a lot of experience. Her telephone # is 510-502-5799. Good luck with your second! anon
If by ''Baby Nurse'' you mean a postpartum doula, I have many recommendations! I am a birth doula & have facilitated groups for pregnant women & new moms & many of my clients/participants have had great experiences with them.
Tomi J. Knutson
Birth & Post-partum Doula and Body Worker
dancingdoulabirthservices@gmail.com
(510) 502-5799

Emily Ross
(510) 224-7255
emilybrookeross@hotmail.com

Linda Jones-Mixon
(510) 917-2783   
fst6wks@aol.com

Carol Shattuck-Rice
(510) 506-5383   
carolshattuck-rice@comcast.net

Jenny Goyne
(510) 685-4009   
jgoyne@sbcglobal.net

Peggy Hinkle
(510) 504-9413   
peggyhinkle@yahoo.com

Beth Hammond
(925) 330-4567   
jb-hammo@pacbell.com

Joan Taylor
(510) 482-8927        
jthealing@yahoo.com
Best of luck! I'd be happy to make more referrals for you. Virginia Duplessis, MSW, CD (DONA) vduplessis@erols.com
Nov 2007

I just had a baby last month, and I am looking for a postpartum doula. Ellen Levitt was recommended to me. Does anybody have any experience working with her? anon


Wow. I didn't realize Ellen was back in the area. She is amazing. She was my midwife for both of my home births (daughters are now 5 and 8), and I couldn't recommend a more warm, loving, caring, and very dependable person. She is incredibly knowledgeable - we had a few challenges and she made us feel very supported. She had good relationships with many medical professionals, and always came back to us with great advice. You can't go wrong. Feel free to contact me with any further questions. -Dara dara
Ellen Levitt did postpartum care for me and my two babies (one born at 36 weeks) and I recommend her highly. She is warm, compassionate, responsible, extremely well-informed (as a retired homebirth midwife), and totally gets the situation of new motherhood from personal and professional experience. She delights in babies and their parents, and helped me appreciate my new arrivals even more than I did on my own. I don't know what your doula arrangement would include, but Ellen is also a fabulous cook. Edith
Ellen Levitt was the midwife who helped welcome our first child into the world, and we adored her (7 years ago) and still do! Ellen is utterly competent, grounded, and warm, and her longtime experience with homebirth gives her a thorough understanding of what a postpartum mama needs, even if the mama isn't able to articulate it clearly herself. I'd say you'd be blessed to have Ellen's gentle spirit around during such an important transition. dleto

2004 - 2006 Recommendations


Dec 2006

i will need a post-partum doula in june. i want someone who is warm and nurturing and someone who doesn't have an agenda. i'm open to any ideas but i want it to be a dialogue. i hear that some post-partum doulas cook as well. that would be a bonus. any recommendations would be appreciated anon


Three years ago Amy Meyer, an RN, was just starting out as a doula and she was just what I needed. A mother of three, without an agenda, gentle, super smart and loving! She ''suggested'' I nap, emptied my dish washer, made me food, sorted through some boxes (for some reason this task seemed urgent to me at the time) and played with my 3 year old. Hopefully she is still at this email address: amymeyer[at]comcast.net LSG
We worked with Stacia Biltekoff, and I bet she is the doula for you! She is awesome with babies, and great to be around. Her contact info is staciadoula[at]yahoo.com Happy Stacia client
I just wrote an unsolicited reccomendation for my post-partum doula, Mandi Dean, last week. It was a long and glowing reccomendation and I think you should be able to find it in the recent BPN archives. Mandi is beyond wonderful. Her e-mail is: sweetpea02360[at]yahoo.com Marianna
Warm, nuruting post partum doula, no agenda: Jenny Goyne. I was looking for precisely same as you and found it in Jenny. I can't say enough good things. I didn't ask her to ''cook'' per se but she made sure I was always fed and hydrated and even shopped for what I wanted (she makes a mean turkey and avocado sandwich). Here is what I have for her: jgoyne[at]sbcglobal.net; emilyandbrian
There was a request for a post-partum doula, and perhaps for one who might know how to cook. I have a perfect idea for you, a friend of mine who is the most empathetic person I know, a chef, and a doula who enjoys post partum the most. Her name is Michele Bloom, and her number is 559 8989. She lives in Berkeley, and I would trust her with any concern! She was the first adult my kindergarten son ever agreed to be with , without me. frieda
Oct 2006

I'm looking for a current recommendation for a post-partum doula. I've checked the archives and the latest information is from 2004. I don't need a doula at the hospital since I am having a c-section (alta bates), but would like a doula after the baby is born. I have a 9 year old with special needs, so it's been a long time since I cared for a newborn. Thank you! a worried mom


For the doula requests--- I wanted to recommend Michele Bloom, a doula (both for birth and post-partum) and mom of 2 boys in elementary school with my kids. Michele is one of the very most empathetic people I have ever known in my life! She is knowledgeable and intuitive and just wonderful with kids,as well as with us parents. I just recommend her so much!! My phone is in case you have preliminary questions. Frieda
I also had a planned C Section and pre-arranged a doula to help me. I used Jenny Goyne who is based in Berkeley. She was terrific and I would gladly talk to you more about what I liked about her as well as my search (I talked to several before selecting her). At the time she was slightly more affordable than her peers which was great although I don't know whether that's still the case. Based on my experience, I think she would be great with your 9-year old. She's an incredibly gentle, warm and compassionate person. And she has a real knack for figuring out what help you need. Again, feel free to contact me if you like. It's a highly personal decision. Best to you. emilyandbrian
I'd call Stacia Biltekoff . She was my doula a year and a half ago for the birth of my daughter, and has since started doing post-partum doula work. In her post-partum visits with me (as part of her birth doula services) she was amazing and really helped me settle in to live with a newborn. Good luck! Sofia
June 2006

My husband and I are looking for someone to help us during the first week or two after we bring our baby home. We already have a toddler and really want to make this as smooth a transition as possible for everyone. I am not completely sure as to what kind of help we will need! Possibly someone to stay the first few nights? And then someone to come in during the day. Maybe do some cooking? Please weigh in with any advice or suggestions as to where, when and how much help we should really plan for! We have no family here to help out this time, so it will pretty much just be my husband and I trying to manage! And of course I am looking for names and numbers of doulas you recommend. Thanks. RK


We worked with Jennifer Starling (jenstarling@yahoo.com) and Treesa McLean (treesa.mclean[at]sbcglobal.net), and both were excellent. They truly saved our lives. Both do both day and nighttime work. How much help to plan for? As much as you can possbily afford! We found nighttime help to be especially useful for us, and having someone there the night we got home from the hospital was a huge relief. Good luck!
Carolynn Melchert is an angel of compassion and has decades of experience as a mother and doula. Ann
I used a Postpartum Doula when my 2nd was born. Her main job was to make sure that my needs were taken care of. She cleaned, she did laundry, she made sure I had eaten and had slept, she helped me with nursing, she was great! I felt pampered even in my state of total exhaustion. She wasn't a ''nanny,'' though, it wasn't her job to watch my kids, although she did carry the baby in the sling while I slept, and my husband took care of our older child. I used Paula Santi, she's at doulapaulasanti[at]yahoo.com and she's fabulous!!! Jill
Sept 2005

I'm a first time mom-to-be and am looking for a post partum doula to help me out in October. Has anyone recently worked with someone they like, and does anyone know what the range of possible prices and services generally is? I don't know what the baby will be like yet so I'm not sure what kind of support I'll need. thanks much in advance. cc


Hi! I would like to recommend our postpartum doula Ann Regan Haynes! She was wonderful!!! We were first time parents last October, 2004 and it was the best investment we made. She helped me in those early critcal days with breast feeding positions and information. And I know that with the inital difficulties I experienced latching our baby girl on correctly that without that personal help at our home I would have given up. I was having back and neck pains, as well as tenderness and soreness of the nipples. But having the right coaching made all the difference! I am still breastfeeding our almost one year old daughter today.

It was also important to have the extra help at nights those first weeks. I remember so clearly the fourth night home, the baby was crying all night and we just didn't know what to do. She had been so sweet and calm prior to that night. I was exhusted and my husband stayed up all night walking her--but we knew we could make it since Ann was coming in the next night.

The most amazing thing was when Ann came in the next night, not only could we rest but she understood what was agiating our baby and calmed her right away. We started calling her the ''Baby Whispher''. It was amazing to have our sweet baby girl back again. Ann helped to keep us on track and was a valuable resource for ideas and suggestions.

We were fortunate to have Ann with us for quite a lot of the first four months, as a gift from the grandparents. She taught us so much, especially how to listen and engage our baby, as well as baby massage which was great! The massages helped with everything from digestion, sleep, developing strength and coordination, to a generally happier baby. In our case, our baby started teething very early at three months and the massages helped a lot with the pain. We still give her massages, especially my husband and you can really see the enjoyment in our baby's face as well as in her body language.

email: anndoula at yahoo.com.

We had talked with other doulas at the time, but found Ann's experience, recommendations, and rates to be very reasonable for the berkeley bay area. We hope to have another baby in a few years and will definitely want Ann again! We were able to enjoy the newborn stage of our baby because we weren't super stressed out all the time. I would highly recommend having some help for at least a few nights, more if that is an option. Best of luck in your new baby! Lucie


My childbirth instructor Sabine Henrie is doing post-partum doula work. Though she was not my doula I would highly recommend her. She's patient, sensitive, caring, and very knowledgeable. sabineh at aol.com Sierra
Sept 2004

I am seeking some postpartum support for the end of August. Many of the postings for doula recommendations are outdated. If you have had a great experience with a postpartum doula, I would love any information. I am in the east bay. Thanks!


I want to recommend Ann Haynes as an outstanding postpartum doula. An is warm, caring, knowledgable and experienced in all aspects of perinatal care. She helped me and my husband through 2 days of labor: then assisted me with breastfeeding, baby care and bathing, taught me to massage my beautiful little girl, and made delicious meals for us. She cared for me like my own mother who could not be with me at this important time. Ann helped me so much with my transition to motherhood! I highly recommend Ann and you can contact me if you have any questions. Senay
I have a great postpartum Doula - her name is Ann Haynes. She worked with me about 3 nights per week for the first 5 weeks of my son's life. He is now 4 months old. She was caring, knowledgeable and very easy to have around. Also, she is certified in infant massage which is a bonus! I have only good things to say about her - and I really don't think I would have survived those first weeks without her help. If you are interested, you can call her or e-mail her directly @: anndoula AT yahoo.com Hope this information helps. koebels
I would like to recommend Ann Haynes as a wonderful Doula (both birth and postpartum). She attended the birth of my daughter 3 months ago and helped make it a wonderful experience!! Ann is a very warm, loving person and has a very calm demeanor that is very comforting while in labor. My husband and I met with Ann several times before the birth so she really got to know us. During these meetings, we discussed my expectations for the type of birth I would like. We also discussed different birthing positions and what, in particular, I felt comfortable with. Ann stayed with me throughout the entire labor. My labor was about 14 hours long (5 of which was pushing)and she stayed with me, gave me massages, and encouraged me the whole way through. I cannot say enough good things about her. We have also had the luxury of seeing her in action taking care of the baby. She is even more warm and loving with children. She has a special type of interaction with children and I trust her full heartedly with my kids. If you would like to contact Ann Haynes directly her contact information is: anndoula at yahoo.com. Feel free to also email me if you would like more information. Anita
I had Ann Haynes as my Childbirth Doula and she also helped us out with post-partum baby care. She is fantastic. I selected her card from the corkboard in Waddle and Swaddle, completely randomly. I couldn't be happier. She is a very gentle soul and listened carefully to every concern. She is primarily responsible for me chosing to have a natural birth (what an experience). I couldn't recommend her more highly. She can be reached at: anndoula@yahoo.com Erin
July 2004

I'm looking for a post partum Doula in or willing to go to Contra Costa County to help me for a couple of weeks after the birth of my second child in early December. Thanks! Tracey


Hi...I would like to recommend Beth Hammond. I conduct workshops for new mothers of twins, and she has worked for many of my clients. Karen
Jan 2004

Hello everyone, We are looking for a doula (to help with delivery) and a ''postpartum doula'' or ''baby nurse'' for the first 2 weeks. I hear so many different terms! :) I have read all of the postings for recommendations, but am looking for more recent referrals for San Francisco. I would like someone who is of course incredibly competent and knowledgeable, but who is also very compassionate and nurturing. Any recommendations for doulas/baby nurses who work in San Francisco would be so greatly appreciated. Thank you so much- Cindy


I have posted this before: Joan Taylor was our doula for birth and post-partum. She was fantastic -- Joan has many years experience as a doula (she also has a yoga background, and has a grown son). To put it simply, she absolutely saved me in my labor. I went into labor at 33 weeks, and my husband and I had only met with Joan in our interview with her (and had taken no birthing classes yet). Because the Drs were attempting to stop my labor, I was directed to be on ''bed rest'' (e.g. I was not allowed to get up, or move, at all). Joan arrived at the hospital and helped me to go from 0 to 7 centimeters in about 4 hours, only being able to use my breath and my voice (as the Dr's were dealing with other emergencies, and no one was available to come by and check me -- Joan pushed to get the Dr's to come, and when they finally did my baby's foot was in the birth canal and I had an emergency C-section). I could not have survived that labor without her -- she was able to help me to use what I had available, to work with my body -- it was AMAZING. Additionally, she did postpartum work with us when my premature baby finally came home from the hospital a month later (and he came home small, and on a heart monitor). Our family was under an incredible amount of stress, and she helped support me through my own healing, helped me with breast feeding, helped us eat/organize/sleep, and helped us to find ways to maximize the contact and love we were able to give to our son. She also really loved our son and encouraged us to see how strong he was and how great he was developing (at 9 mos he is doing super now). She really was essential to our survival. She's a wonderful person to spend time with, is extremely compassionate, and also has excellent advice and counsel for a birthing mom, or a new mom. She actually lives in Oakland, but she has worked in San Francisco. I would call her! (510) 482 8927 or (510) 390 1737 vh
Look no further than Esther Gallagher. She rocks. She does both delivery and postpartum, and in fact prefers to do both for the continuity of care. She's completely about taking care of the mommy (and to some extent the daddy) so mommy can figure out about taking care of the baby. She saved me from having a C- section; she got my breast-feeding started smoothly; she whipped unhelpful visiting family members into shape (if you don't like them forthright, you won't like Esther); she helped me and my husband through the stress of sleepless new parenting. Her number is 415-821-4490. heidi

2003 & Earlier


April 2003

have looked at the website recommendations for postpartum doulas, and find that they generally describe people available to help with daytime care, including cooking, light cleaning, and some baby-holding. Has anyone hired a *night nurse* instead -- someone whose only job is to take care of the baby at night so you can rest, bringing the baby to you only for feedings? If so, I'd love to hear some recommendations (or anti-recommendations), and to know how this worked out for you. Thanks!


It can be very difficult to uncover resources postpartum. On my site, I have a section called Community Resources and I try to keep it up to date for the East Bay. This is the link to a section on Postpartum Care, including night nurses. http://www.supportgroupformothers.com/communityresources2.htm

I can give you some feedback about some of these people but would prefer to do it privately. Sherry Reinhardt sherryr AT there.net
[editor note] website above updated March 2005


We have a night nurse, and I can't recommend it highly enough. Getting enough sleep is so important to me, and our nurses (we have two that trade off nights) are incredible. They settle the baby when she's fussy, feed her from a bottle if I've pumped, change her diapers/clothes when needed, and generally give her lots of love and attention. Mine have brought a huge library of parenting/baby books for me to look at, and have even suggested chapters/articles on subjects that I might be interested in. They keep a nighttime log of when she eats, when her diapers are changed, if/when she was fussy, so that I can keep tabs on everything. They are available to do laundry and cleaning when the baby is asleep, too. In general, very flexible regarding timing (coming early some nights so that my husband and I could go out) and duties. Best of all, they are incredibly caring people, who have been a real joy to know. Their names are Katy Remley and Christina Bernard, and they work through Bay Area Baby Nurses and Doulas. Good luck ellensfraser
December 2002

I am due with my first baby on January 8, 2003 and am looking for a post-partum doula to help out a couple of hours a day for a few weeks. I am hoping for help on a range of things, such as giving my baby his or her first bath, breastfeeding tips, and laundry. I have consulted the website, but there are only 2 recommendations and they are over 4 years old. Does anyone have any recommendations? Thanks for your help. Sharon


We had our first baby in June 2002 - Treesa McLean was both our labor doula and postpartum doula. She is incredible!!! Treesa has tons of experience - she has been a doula for many years. Among the many descriptives I would use for Treesa - she is extremely knowledgable, calm, kind, and caring. She has a great sense of humor and is as accomodating as possible within the constraints of her busy schedule. She is extremely responsive and can be paged. She assisted me when my milk came in (she's a wealth of knowledge in treating sore breasts and positioning the baby for maximum comfort and latching), taught me how to use the medela breast pump, taught us how to give the baby a bath, reassured us that ''everything was going OK'' (HUGE for new inexperienced parents!!)after we came home from the hospital, made sure we had fresh healthy hot meals, and answered questions too numerous to list. I recommend Treesa without hesitation. Ruth
I would highly recommend Lucia Maya as your post-partem doula. She came recommended to me by a trusted source and when I called her references, they were excellent. Lucia is an incredibly warm, caring, competant and intuitive woman. She's been raising children of her own and has a great deal of experience working with post-partem mothers (she also runs a new mothers' group). Lucia is the kind of person that you like immediately and who will come into your home and do exactly what you want her to do with few if any questions asked. If you're too busy to outline things for her, she'll look around and dive in (including making lunch for you when you are too busy to stop and eat). I found her to be an incredibly helpful, gentle and positive presence for both me and my new baby (my baby absolutely loves Lucia). Her contact information is below. Lucia Maya luciamaya24 at yahoo.com Rita
Birthways is a wonderful resourse for finding labor and postpartum doulas, as well as other birth services. You can check out their Web site at www.birthways.org; while you aren't getting a recommendation directly from a parent, you can call several of those listed and get a feeling for them over the phone, in addition to getting references. Congratulations and good luck! Laria Pippen, Postpartum Doula threepippens at earthlink.net
My friend Samantha does pre and post doula work. I'm not sure what her availability is, but if you can get her, you'll thank your lucky stars. She's the kind of gal who you want to say ''Oh my goodness, Stop! You're doing too much!'' to, but you won't because you're so pleased with all that's getting done. (She also does work as an organizer.) She's a great cook, a good listener, and a kind soul. Contact her at lezelda at att.net. Graham's mom
Oct 2001

I am expecting in December and want to hire a baby nurse for the first two weeks after the birth. This is something we did in New York with our twins and having our baby nurse at the house was a godsend. The basic duties were to take care of all of the baby's needs in terms of changing, washing blankets and clothes, bringing the baby to me to nurse at night (she sleeps in the room with the baby), and if not nursing, sterilize bottles and feed the baby. It is very common to have someone like this in New York, so much that there are agencies solely dedicated to providing baby nurses. I have not seen anything like that publicized in California but wonder if I am just not looking in the right place. Does anyone know of an agency that provides baby nurses or a baby nurse who works on her own in the Bay area? Shannon


... I know others who have hired Lucia Meager as a post partum doula (cooking, cleaning, holding baby, doing whatever is needed to give mother rest and peace of mind) and were grateful that they had Lucia in their lives after the baby was born....
March 2001

I highly recommend Jeanne Racik as a Labor Support/Postpartum Doula....


I would like to recommend Lisa Moon for a post partum doula. Lisa has worked with my son, a fussy premature newborn (now 9 weeks old) and has truly helped us understand his needs....
Oct 1998

After I had my baby I would have been lost without the woman I found through Alta Bates maternity ward nurse recommendations -- they all raved about Carol Egan and she proved to be everything they said she was. I was on bedrest because of a complicated C-section and she took care of my baby (who was preemie), the house, the meals, all errands, you name it and she did it. She was great. She is extremely reliable and has a 6 year old that she raised alone so she really knows about infants. I hope all goes well for you and your family. Linda


I used Linda Jones-Mixon. She is unbelievably wonderful. She is kind, gentle and has a great sense of humor. I recommend her without hesitation to all who ask and know 3 or 4 who have used and loved her as well. I will be using her for my second child due in April. Linda
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