Your Questions about End of Life Doulas

Why would I want a Doula?

You or a person important to you may have been diagnosed with a life limiting illness; or be elderly; or be in the last part of their life.  You may be thinking about having someone alongside who can be entirely focused on the support needed now and in the future.  We will do our very best to make sure that life is lived with wishes and choices respected until the very end; to walk alongside the individual so they are cared for in the way they prefer and in the place of their choice.

may be looking for guidance through all the decisions and choices facing you or want someone to be with you to navigate through this part of your life to reach peace and have confidence in your future.

We work in an open-hearted way to create an atmosphere of loving support, kindness, respect and dignity for all concerned.

What does a Doula do?

You can find out more about what doulas do here.  We are very happy to explain this in more detail either by telephone or face to face, if you would like a conversation, please complete the contact form.

How much time do you spend with a person?

We will do what is needed. Initially it may be that we are on the end of a telephone or are with you say once a week or less. In other circumstances a more continuous presence is needed for example sleep overs. We will work as part of a small team if that is what is needed to give reassurance and provide cover.

Do you support the people close to the individual with a life limiting illness too?

We do. We work in a holistic way to include both the person at the centre and those important to them. We are available after the person has died, both practically and emotionally.

Is the service free?

When the first approach is made we will spend time with the person and/or those important to them to gain an insight into how we can best provide support. This confidential and heart to heart conversation is not charged for.

Some of us work on a voluntary basis; some of us charge a fee and as we are self employed working under the End of Life Doula UK banner this will be a matter for you and the Doula you are working with to agree. In some circumstances, subsidised support can be made available. We will be transparent about the scale of our fees and this discussion can take place in the initial conversation which is at no cost.

When should Doula support start?

We may begin the relationship at the time of diagnosis or in the later stages. Sometimes we are with a person for days and weeks; sometimes for months or more than a year. We are there when requested and stay for as long as is needed.

What happens when I say that I may want support?

We will do our utmost to identify the right person to work with you. Initially we will talk to you to understand what is required and then try to identify a Doula who is available.

How do I know that the Doula has been checked out as a person who is ‘qualified’ to support me or the person I love?

Our Doulas have trained with  LWDW and their training is externally quality assured. On occasions Doulas who are part way though there training may be very suitable to provide support.  In all cases we are mentored by an experienced person.  Additionally, we are insured, and DBS checked.

Can you help me with my Living Will/Advance Plan for End of Life?

We can.  If this is something you are interested in, please complete our Contact Form and we will be in touch with you.

What else can you help with?

In our network we can draw on the know-how of other Doulas who work as Funeral Celebrants, Funeral Directors, Therapists, Healers, Grief Counsellors.

I don’t want anyone who has strong spiritual and religious beliefs/ I want someone who will respect my spiritual and religious beliefs

We truly respect, acknowledge and are alongside the individual’s values and beliefs.

How do you work with others involved in my care?

We collaborate with and work alongside other health and social care professionals and informal Carers. We work in a person’s home, hospitals, hospices and care homes. Often, we are called upon to co-ordinate arrangements and to fill in the gaps.

Do you support people who are not at home – for example in a Hospice or a Hospital or a Care Home?

We do

I want someone who will speak up for me/speak on my behalf

We will advocate to support people.

What do I do if I am dissatisfied with the support I receive?

We welcome feedback and treat all expressions of dissatisfaction seriously. We have a process in place which allows us to hear and handle complaints in a timely manner and to help identify areas for improvement in our services – please see our Complaints Procedure.

Occasionally we may receive complaints which are vexatious in nature, we therefore also have a Vexatious Complaints Procedure in place.