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Payment Plan Problems

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Frequently Asked Questions

Payment plan problems

I am on an installment plan. Will my payments be charged automatically?

Your installments are charged once a month for five months. They will automatically be deducted on the same day that you started. For example, if you started on January 12th, the payments will be deducted on February 12th, March 12th, April 12th and May 12th.

I cannot log in to the student website anymore.

If you are on an installment plan, it is possible that your monthly payment has failed. This will automatically prevent you from being able to log in. Contact us to see if this is the problem and we can help you reestablish your payment plan and access your course materials again.

What happens if I cannot make my monthly payment?

If your monthly payment fails you will be automatically suspended from the student website and an administration fee of $50 will be added to your account. You can contact us to arrange for the payment to be reestablished and gain access to the student website again. If you anticipate you will have a problem with making a payment and contact us, and this is the first time this has happened, the $50 fee will be waived.

Can I change the date of my payment plan?

Sometimes you know that you are going to be short of funds on the day that your next payment is due. If this is the case, contact us and ask us to change the payment due date. This MUST be done at least 72 hours (3 days) BEFORE your payment is due. Once we change the date it will change the date for all subsequent payments as well.

How can I pay the balance and get my manuals?

Contact us to find out the balance of your account. You can go to the shopping cart and choose Administration Fees – Pay Your Balance. Once we receive the balance we can order and send your printed manuals. You can go to the Administration Fees page here.

My credit card has expired/been stolen or lost. How can I change my account to my new credit card number?

You can do this on our website.

  1. Go to your account page here and log in.
  2. Click on Subscriptions in the left-hand menu.
  3. Click View beside the subscription that relates to your payment plan.
  4. Click on Change Payment.

Your new card details can then be entered and saved and will be used for your next payment.

How do I check if a payment went through?

You can do this on our website.

  1. Go to your account page here and log in.
  2. Click on Subscriptions in the left-hand menu.
  3. Click View beside the subscription that relates to your payment plan.

You will see the details of your payment plan. This shows you the last payment that went through, and the next payment due date.

Please note: The end date will always be one month after your plan has completed. We do not charge an installment that last month (we only charge 5 installments in total) but this is the date that Stripe or Paypal will close your installment plan.

My payment defaulted but I have money in my account.

If your payment was declined this is something that was done by your bank or credit card provider. We are unable to see why it was declined as this is an automatic system that we do not have any control over. Please contact your bank or credit card provider to discuss with them.

My payment was deducted for more than what I had agreed to.

We only ever charge the agreed amount when you set up your plan. Some banks and credit card companies charge a fee that we have no control over. If you have been charged more, please contact them directly to discuss. It is possible that they have charged an “overseas transaction fee” as our registered address is in Singapore. However, your payment plan is charged in US dollars and they should not be charging you fees since both Paypal and Stripe are US based companies. In previous instances of this happening, the credit card companies have refunded the fees so it is worth contacting them to ask for this to be done.

I have decided not to pursue my course and would like a refund or to transfer my course to someone else. How do I do this?

Our refund policy is to provide a full refund (less a $50 administration fee) within two days (48 hours) of registering for your course. We do not offer refunds outside this time period. You cannot transfer your course to another person.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Frequently Asked Questions

How Are We Different?

What makes CBI different from all the other training organizations?
Read More

Starting Out

What do the different types of birth professionals do and how much do they earn?
Read More

About the Courses

How do you support me while training, how do I start and how long does it take to complete?
Read More

About Payments

What does training and certification cost, how can I pay and what if I want a refund?
Read More

About Our Trainers

How much support will you get from your trainer? Who are your trainers?
Read More

Course Delivery

How do you access your course, what do you receive and how do you submit work?
Read More

Certification Requirements

What do I need to do to become certified in each course? Are there any prerequisites or limits?
Read More

Legal and Insurance

What legal and insurance requirements affect birth professionals?
Read More

Payment Plan Problems

Problems with your existing payment plan?
Read More

About CBI Trainers

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Frequently Asked Questions

About CBI trainers

What qualifications do your trainers have?

CBI trainers come from all walks of life. They have a wealth of training and experience in birth and breastfeeding work. All CBI trainers have completed the Childbirth International courses themselves and understand the challenges of studying by distance learning. They’ve also worked as birth professionals, some for more than 30 years, and run successful businesses. They’re leaders and activists in their own communities, striving to improve the health and well-being of mothers and babies across the world. You can read more about each trainer in the team biographies below.

Where will my trainer be based?

Your trainer will be working from home, just like you. She may be living nearby, or she may be living in a different country from you. She’ll understand the challenges of communication across different time zones. She’ll be offering you her unique perspectives based on the work she has done within her own community.

How did they become a trainer?

All CBI trainers have previously completed and graduated from the Childbirth International course for which they provide training! Graduates who show exceptional reflection and communication skills, together with a high level of competency in their work and extensive experience in their community, are invited to apply for a trainer position. We don’t accept requests from students to become trainers – they’re always invited because of the skills they demonstrated while training.

CBI trainers go through a stringent interview process. As a group, we review each candidate to determine their potential fit with the team and their abilities in working with clients, community and future students.

When a potential trainer is offered a position they commit to a six-week-long training program. This introduces them to the assignments they’ll be required to review and assess. They learn how to provide effective feedback to students, how to resolve problems, and how to guide and motivate students through flexible learning. 

Once they become a trainer, they are part of a strong team and have extensive peer group support. After their training, every new trainer is mentored by a more experienced team member for up to six months. This provides them with the opportunity to develop their skills in giving feedback to students and continually reflect on the work they are doing. 

Once a month the whole training team participates in continuing education. Covering diverse topics on pregnancy, birth and parenting, as well as exploring adult education and distance learning techniques. CBI trainers always striving to improve skills and knowledge through continuing education.

How much support will I get?

The way CBI trainers support and guide you is one of the things that truly sets us apart. Usually, a trainer runs a workshop for a couple of days, and then you are on your own to complete all the certification requirements with minimal support. This is NOT the case with CBI!

Your trainer is with you on your journey from beginning to end. She’ll contact you within the first few days of you starting and introduce herself. She’ll see every assignment that you submit, and will give you guidance on each one. She’ll continue to support you for as long as it takes for you to complete your course and will still be there for any questions you have or for guidance after you graduate.

We believe the assignments you submit are crucial to your growth and development. They’re not simply a checklist that will be marked of by a nameless person in our admin team. Your trainer will give you suggestions and feedback on how you are progressing. She’s invested in your learning and truly cares about your success.

My CBI training changed my life and my whole way of thinking. The skills I learned impact all facets of my life. This is the best job I have ever had!

How We Are Different

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Frequently Asked Questions

How we are different?

Why don't you have workshops?

Because we believe there is a better way! As birth professionals you’ll need a lot of in-depth knowledge, the chance to build skills and opportunities to practice these. All the best research tells us that real learning takes place over time, in a supportive environment, with ongoing guidance from mentors.

With Childbirth International you’ll receive course materials that look at communication skills, comprehensive information on physiology, establishing and growing a business, as well as the physical support aspects. In total, 150 contact hours just in the course manuals and activities alone for the doula courses, and more than 600 contact hours for the childbirth educator and breastfeeding counselor courses. Added to this will be the practical experience you’ll gain as you work through your certification requirements.

Being able to complete your course online means you have no additional costs, no need to travel, no limitations on when or where you can study, no time limits and the time to be able to really absorb what you are learning.

Other organizations have required reading. Why does CBI have such a broad reading list?

CBI course materials cover everything you need to be a birth professional. The reading list is to provide different perspectives… of which there are many… hence the broad list. We want you to be able to read on topics that you have an interest in and are relevant to you and your clients. We provide 150 books to choose from and it is up to you which books you read from this list.

I heard that CBI is based in the USA and not very relevant to where I live. Is this true?

We are truly an international organization. Our registered office is in Singapore. Our administrative team is in Canada. Our trainers live all over the world. Our students and graduates come from 112 different countries. The course materials you will study look at birth, parenting and breastfeeding from an international perspective. We explore culture and how it affects the way we work and the experiences of our clients. We share ideas in our active discussion groups that enable all students to learn about different beliefs, values and practices. We present research and readings that come from a wide variety of countries.

What support and guidance will I get while I am training?

Although our courses are delivered through distance learning, our students feel more supported and connected than they do in face-to-face workshops! A big part of this is the relationship you build with your trainer. Rather than just teaching you over a couple of days, she will be the one reviewing and assessing every piece of work you submit – from your first assignment to your last evaluation. She’ll give you guidance throughout your course, no matter how long it takes. Our Facebook and discussion groups provide a bridge for you to connect and network with other birth professionals. You’ll be exposed to birth and postpartum doulas, childbirth educators and breastfeeding counselors, meaning your peer learning is broad and extensive. The discussions on these groups reflect the essence of who we are as an organization – they are always respectful, kind and supportive.

How much help will you give me in setting up my business?

We were the first organization to specifically focus on business issues relevant to birth professionals – our courses have always included an introduction to business. In 2009 we launched a Business of Birth course that provided more depth and helped students to get a more solid understanding of marketing and finances.

In 2016 we took Business of Birth and gave it a facelift. Providing 34 hours of business specific topics, Business of Birth is now included in every training program. You’ll work through a simple step-by-step process to examine your own goals and objectives, develop a strong brand and a marketing approach, analyze your customers and competitors, understand the products and services you want to offer, and get on top of your finances and legal issues. Rather than being daunted by the business side of your work, Business of Birth will help you to easily produce a plan and a clear path for starting and growing your business. This is an optional module – meaning you’ll receive it but it is up to you how much you focus on it. You could just choose the topic areas you’re interested in or use it as a reference document for when business issues arise in the future. You also have the option of completing assignments and having your trainer review your business plan and website, providing suggestions on how to improve them both.

Why don't you require recertification every three years?

We provide training – and we’re really good at it! Similar to a university program, you deserve to have your hard work acknowledged for life! We’re not going to charge you every three years to prove that you still have the knowledge and skills that you built.

If you need to show recertification in order to belong to a local organization (e.g. DASC) can do so – you can submit the required documents for proof, we will review them and reissue your certification – showing it is a recertification. And we’ll do this for a minimum fee that just covers our costs.

I have to be recertified to be able to join my local doula group. How can I do this?

While we don’t require recertification, we also recognize that some of you may want to join local organizations that require recertification as part of their membership. To address this, we have optional recertification available if you would like it. You can submit evidence of ongoing learning and experience every three years, together with a fee to cover our costs, and we’ll review your documents. Once everything is validated we’ll then reissue your certificate, showing clearly that you are now recertified.

Do I have to show that I am doing continuing education?

There is no need for continuing education. And there never will be. We are a training organization and not a regulatory body. Other professions (accountants, doctors, lawyers etc.) require continuing education as part of their membership of a regulatory body. Their original training organization doesn’t require it. If you go to University you get a degree. You don’t have to go back every three years to show you’re still learning, or pay money in order to keep your degree. You have it for life. We are the same and make no apologies for that.

What is this 'reflective practice' I keep hearing about?

At the heart of every CBI training and certification program is reflective practice. But what exactly is “reflective practice”?

At its simplest, reflective practice is looking at what you have done, or didn’t do, and reflecting on it. In relation to CBI training, though, it is so much more. Reflective practice is about examining choices and decisions, considering them from different perspectives, thinking about alternatives, learning from them, and then applying that learning to your work. It’s a part of best practice in continuing education, increases confidence and professionalism. It’s an incredibly valuable skill that you can pass on to your clients and help them to assimilate their experiences.

All CBI training programs have an ongoing reflective practice focus. In every assignment you submit, this will be evaluated by your trainer. She’ll give you feedback on this aspect and help you to see your own growth in this area. You’ll be encouraged to reflect on the language you use, your participation in discussions and how you approach every aspect of your work.

In the Communication Skills section of your course you will learn how to use the CBI Reflective Practice model and will finish this module by writing an assignment using the model.

Legal and Insurance

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Frequently Asked Questions

Legal and insurance

Will I need insurance?

Many new birth professionals worry about their responsibilities and liability. Birth doulas, postpartum doulas, childbirth educators and breastfeeding counselors don’t carry out any clinical tasks (such as taking blood pressure, listening to the baby’s heartbeat, doing a vaginal examination, etc). These are solely the responsibility of the midwife or doctor chosen by the mother. Birth professionals also don’t give medical advice. Your role is to provide information to the mother if she wants it, and to support her in her choices. There should never be a situation in which the birth professional is seen as clinically liable or responsible for outcomes.
Medical indemnity or malpractice insurance is not available for birth professionals as they aren’t medical caregivers. Some insurance companies offer doula insurance but this is different from medical indemnity or malpractice insurance. During your training you will learn how to avoid situations that increase your liability.

Should I have a contract with my clients?

This is very much a personal choice. Some birth professionals feel more comfortable with a contract, while others are very happy working without one. A contract between a birth professional and a client generally covers your role and responsibilities, discusses backup in case you are unavailable, and goes through the payment agreement. It can be helpful for making sure that each of these issues are discussed with clients. It’s better to leave a contract with a client, or email a copy of it to them before you meet them, so they have an opportunity to read it thoroughly and ask any questions before signing it. We provide sample contracts that you’re free to use with your clients and edit accordingly. Many birth professionals work without contracts and have no problems with this. Whether you choose to have a contract or not, it’s important that the terms of payment and the responsibilities are clearly understood by the client in order to avoid any problems later on.

Can clients claim my fees on their insurance?

Many insurance companies are aware of the improved outcomes and subsequent cost savings that come from using a birth professional. Many of them are already providing coverage for doulas, childbirth classes or breastfeeding counselors. If a client’s insurance company doesn’t include birth professionals as one of the services they can claim for, the client can write to the insurance company, quoting the improved outcomes and cost savings. An insurance company will usually require an invoice issued by the birth professional to the clients. They might also require specific information to be included – the client can find out what’s necessary by contacting their insurance company directly. Some birth professionals bill insurance companies directly. If you’re living in the United States, and wish to do this, you may be required to comply with HIPAA guidelines. We provide information about this on our student website.

Certification Requirements

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Frequently Asked Questions

Certification requirements

Are there any prerequisites?

None at all! Being a birth professional is about using your skills to help parents have the births they desire, be the parents they wish to be and communicate effectively with their caregivers. The skills required to enable you to do this are covered in your training. You don’t need to have experience as a nurse or midwife in order to be a great birth professional. Some students have had children themselves, others haven’t. There are no prerequisites for you to study with Childbirth International. It doesn’t matter how many children you have had (or maybe you have not had any), it doesn’t matter if you’ve never experienced a vaginal birth, or if you’ve never breastfed.

Are there any age limits?

Anybody can study with Childbirth International, whether they are aged 16 or 65 (or older!) We recognize that everyone has unique skills and experiences that can make them the perfect birth professional for a specific type of client. For example, in the Birth Doula field, as a younger doula you might be the perfect support for young women looking for peer support. As an older doula, you might be the perfect support for someone looking for life experience. Every birth professional has something different to offer.

Do you recognize previous experience?

Your previous experience can be enormously beneficial in your training as a birth professional. Perhaps you’ve completed other doula training programs, or have been working as a birth professional for some time. You might have experience as a nurse or a midwife. Whatever your experience or previous training, it can help you to understand some of the concepts covered in your birth professional training.

If you’ve certified with another organization, or have experience as a birth professional, we welcome you to CBI! We have many experienced professionals who join us – some of our graduates chose CBI even after they had 20-30 years experience! Our goal is to build on what you already know, and help you to become a more knowledgeable and effective professional.

Is Childbirth International training recognized in my local hospital?

We’re often asked whether the training that you complete will be recognized by hospitals. If you’re self employed, and have been hired directly by parents as an independent practitioner, this doesn’t appear to be a problem anywhere in the world. If you come across a hospital that requires a specific training organization, we can provide you with written details of the training you’ve undergone with Childbirth International, indicating the depth and quality of training. To date, no Childbirth International student or graduate has been denied the opportunity to work in a hospital because their training didn’t meet hospital requirements.

What assignments will I have to complete?

All students submit a communication assignment to demonstrate their proficiency in reflective practice. Your trainer will provide feedback and guidance on your draft assignment and then you’ll submit a final version.

Each course has a series of online physiology exams to demonstrate your knowledge of both normal and abnormal conditions. These are open book exams.

Once you’ve worked with women in your role, you’ll submit evaluations, completed by yourself, to outline your learning from the experience and how you will apply that to your future work. You don’t need to submit evaluations from clients or medical caregivers. We’re interested in the learning you took from the experience! Every student carries out a survey of resources in their local community.

Each course has a number of books that must be read and a book review completed. There are more than 150 books to choose from on the reading list. There are no compulsory texts that you have to read – you can choose the books from the list that appeal to you and are relevant to the women you will be working with. Books must be read after you start your training and must be new to you – you cannot write a review about a book you read previously, even if you re-read it. You can view the reading list here.

Finally, the Childbirth Educator and Breastfeeding Counselor courses have a number of smaller assignments for completing a teaching plan (Childbirth Educator) and case studies (Childbirth Educator and Breastfeeding Counselor).

Once I have certified, do I have to keep paying membership and recertification fees?

We don’t require you to pay membership and recertification fees in order to stay certified.

We provide training – and we’re really good at it! Similar to a university program, you deserve to have your hard work acknowledged for life! We’re not going to charge you every three years to prove that you still have the knowledge and skills that you built. We also will not charge you to continue to belong to CBI – your membership is lifelong.

If you need to show recertification in order to belong to a local organization (e.g. DASC) can do so – you can submit the required documents for proof, we will review them and reissue your certification – showing it is a recertification. And we’ll do this for a minimum fee that just covers our costs.

Course Delivery

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Frequently Asked Questions

Course delivery

How do I do the course without a workshop?

When you first register as a student you’ll have access to all your course materials online, meaning you can be up and running within a few minutes. All your training materials are provided to you online through our unique learning system. At the time of enrolling, you can decide whether you want to work online (Green option), or have printed manuals as well. If you choose the printed manuals they are sent once your payments are all completed and become part of your professional library for future reference. Each study workbook contains information on the topic, together with activities for you to work through to grasp a deeper understanding of the topic.

During your training you’ll work with women in order to gain experience. You’ll use these experiences to develop and practice hands-on skills that you learn about in your study workbooks. The peer group support that you receive, and the strong trainer and mentor support, will reinforce your learning. You’ll be directed to online readings that give you new ideas on ways that you can support women through pregnancy, birth and the postpartum period.

Within a few days of registering as a student we’ll assign a trainer to you. Your trainer has direct experience with flexible learning and has developed many strategies for helping you learn the practical skills you need as a birth professional. She’ll be a certified and experienced birth professional herself, who has also studied our courses, and can guide you through your training. In addition to your student manuals, you’ll be given access to our student discussion forums, providing you with peer group support from other students around the world.

At the end of your training, on successful completion of all course requirements, you’ll be a certified birth professional and receive a certificate to recognize your hard work. There is no need to pay for membership or recertify with Childbirth International – your accreditation is for life!

We encourage you to continually learn new skills, develop your own understanding of issues related to pregnancy, birth and parenting, and to keep up-to-date with research.  You might choose to take advantage of our ongoing advanced training programs. Or, once you have established your business as a professional, you might like to expand your skills and services. For example, as a birth doula, you can train as a childbirth educator, a postpartum doula or a breastfeeding counselor. Our training is flexible enough to fit around your other commitments. All students and graduates receive a 15% discount on their future courses.

How do I submit my work?

All the assignments and evaluations that you need to submit for certification are uploaded through our student website. These are automatically passed to your trainer who provides feedback and assesses your work. You can follow your progress through your course and see how much you’ve got left to complete. Your trainer can help you with suggestions for study and organization skills if you’re new to distance learning or find it difficult to stay on top of your training. There are no time limits for completing your course. You’ll continue to have access to the student website for as long as you’re a student, and once you’ve certified you’ll still be able to access all the materials online.

Do I need special Internet skills?

Don’t worry about having to have in depth Internet knowledge or specialized computer skills in order to complete your course. Provided you’re able to send a basic email you’ll be fine. Our student website is very easy to use and you’re guided through the course every step of the way. If you choose the printed option when you enrol your student manuals will also be posted to you (once your final payment is made) so you don’t need to have access to the Internet all the time. The website has the additional materials like online readings, and with just a few clicks you can find everything you need.

Do I receive printed manuals?

You’ll always have online access to your course materials, but many students prefer working from a paper version of their course materials. Unless you choose the green option when you enrol, your course manuals will also be posted to you.

For the Birth Doula and Postpartum Doula courses there are four manuals – Communication Skills, Physiology, Birth/Postpartum Doula Skills, and the Business of Birth module, comprising more than 750 pages of information. For the Childbirth Educator and Breastfeeding Counselor courses there are four manuals – Communication Skills, Physiology, Counseling/Teaching Skills, and the Business of Birth module, comprising more than 1,000 pages of information.

When you first register for a course, we’ll ask for your delivery address and will calculate the shipping cost. If you choose to pay for your course in one payment, you’re manuals will be ordered once you register (allow about 1 week for delivery within the USA and Canada and 2-3 weeks for other countries). If you choose to pay by installments you’ll receive your manuals when the final installment is made. You can pay the balance of your account early if you’d like to receive your manuals sooner.

We also offer a “Green” option for students who prefer to work online and not have the additional costs of printing and shipping.

Can I do the course without a computer?

You could complete this course without having full time access to a computer and the Internet. One of our students completed her studies while traveling around the world on a yacht! You’ll need Internet access to submit course work and to view the online readings. If you’re paying by installments, you’ll need Internet access until your payments are completed and your printed course materials are sent to you. Some students use the local library for Internet access on an occasional basis whenever they need to submit work. Others go once a week and print off all the online readings for the section they’re covering that week. Some use a friend’s computer. You could also use a smartphone or tablet if it has word processing functionality, although it is more difficult to do a lot of reading from a smaller screen. You’ll need to have an email address in order to register and for us to generate a username and password to give you access to the student website.

If you choose the Green option when you enrol you will have to have a computer to access all your course materials. Please note, the online course manuals cannot be printed off.

About Payments

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Frequently Asked Questions

About payments

How much does training cost?

Calculating your training costs is easy. The cost includes all your training materials, trainer support, and access to the student website. Course costs are all inclusive. There are no hidden fees, no workshop fees, no examination or certification fees, and no membership or recertification fees. You don’t need to purchase additional videos or materials. You can pay with Visa, Mastercard, American Express or PayPal.

If you choose more than one of our training and certification programs when you register you’ll be given a discount.

  • Two courses: discount of 15%
  • Three courses: discount 20%
  • Four courses: discount 25%

Our Green options give you full access to your course materials through the student website and eliminate the printing and shipping costs of paper manuals. If you decide at a later date that you’d like the manuals, you can purchase them and have these shipped to you. The Green option is available as both one payment and as monthly installments, paid over five months.

Our Printed options give you full access to your course materials through the student website, and we also send you a printed version of your course materials. The Printed option is available as both one payment and as monthly installments, paid over five months. The cost of shipping is calculated when you enroll in your course and is dependent on where you live. If you choose installments, your printed manuals are sent to you when the final payment is completed. You can always choose to pay off the balance of your account and receive your printed manuals straight away.

Birth Doula
  • Printed One Payment: $630 (+ shipping)
  • Green One Payment: $600
  • Printed Five Installments: $136/month for 5 months (+ shipping)
  • Green Five Installments: $130/month for 5 months
Postpartum Doula
  • Printed One Payment: $630 (+ shipping)
  • Green One Payment: $600
  • Printed Five Installments: $136/month for 5 months (+ shipping)
  • Green Five Installments: $130/month for 5 months
Childbirth Educator
  • Printed One Payment: $915 (+ shipping)
  • Green One Payment: $885
  • Printed Five Installments: $193/month for 5 months (+ shipping)
  • Green Five Installments: $187/month for 5 months
Breastfeeding Counselor
  • Printed One Payment: $915 (+ shipping)
  • Green One Payment: $885
  • Printed Five Installments: $193/month for 5 months (+ shipping)
  • Green Five Installments: $187/month for 5 months

Do you have financial aid or scholarships?

We don’t offer financial aid or scholarships. If paying for your training is a financial struggle, there are several options open to you. First, we offer installment plans so you can pay over 5 months. You’ll have immediate access to all the course materials through the student website, and if you chose the printed option, your written training materials will be sent to you as soon as the final installment is made. If you decide to pay the balance early, you can do so at any time to receive your written materials straight away. If the installments are out of your reach financially, consider starting with two clients and using the income from that to finance your training.

If I am not happy can I get a refund?

It can be scary to commit to a full training and certification program online. To help you decide if this is the right training program for you, we offer a refund option. As soon as you register for a course you can view the course materials through the student website. If you decide the course isn’t what you’re looking for, contact us in writing within 48 hours of registering and we’ll issue a full refund (less a $50 administration fee).

Do you accept government, military or workplace grants?

We aren’t able to process a grant directly with the organization. We can accept payment through a credit card or a bank transfer via PayPal from the organization at the time you register. Alternatively, you can register using your own credit card and be reimbursed directly from the grant organization. You’ll have an invoice from CBI for this purpose.

There are three of us wanting to train together - can we get a discount?

For three or more people taking the same course we offer a 15% discount. If you work for an organization and have ten or more people who would like to register for the same course together, we offer a 20% discount.

If you would like to take advantage of bulk pricing, please contact us for a coupon code so your discount can be applied. Payment plans are not applicable and group enrolments must be paid in full upon registration.

My employer wants to pay for my training - can you bill them directly?

Provided your employer has a credit card or PayPal account, they can pay for your training. If that’s not possible, you can pay for your training and we can provide an invoice so your payment can be reimbursed by your employer.

Are your payment pages secure?

We use PayPal and Worldpay to process all our payments. Your payment information is encrypted on their secure website so your credit card details are safe. We don’t store your credit card information on our site at all, so no-one is able to access your account or take your credit card information from our records.

Do I have to have a credit card?

If you don’t have your own credit card someone else can pay for your course on your behalf. Alternatively, you can process a bank transfer through PayPal.

About the Courses

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Frequently Asked Questions

About the courses

Can I start any time?

Childbirth International is the only training organization for birth professionals where you have immediate access to all your training materials as soon as you register. Within a few minutes you can be logged on to the student website and starting your journey! Once you’ve chosen a course, and your payment has been processed, you’ll be sent a confirmation email. This will contain confirmation of your order, together with links for logging on to the student website. You’ll then be taken directly to the student website where you can log in and access the student materials.

If you choose to pay by one payment with printed course manuals, your student materials will be posted to you. Within the USA, they usually arrive within 5-7 days. Students living outside the USA usually receive their student materials within 2-3 weeks. If choose the Green option, you will immediate access to your course materials through the student website. Please note, online course manuals cannot be printed out. If you pay by installments, your written student manuals will be sent to you once the final installment is made. In the meantime you’ll have access to all the student materials online through the student website. You can choose to pay off the balance on your account at any time to receive your written manuals straight away.

Can I study multiple courses at the same time?

Yes. You can choose any combination of our courses and receive significant discounts of up to 25%. If you start with just one course you can add courses later and receive the student/graduate discount of 15%.

What support will you provide?

Supporting students is the most important thing we do! Once you’ve registered as a student you won’t be forgotten. Your trainer will be assigned to you once you start and she’ll contact you within a few days to introduce herself. Every time you submit a piece of work it will be your trainer who reviews it, provides feedback and guidance and assesses it. She’ll continue to review and assess every assignment you submit, no matter how long it takes you to complete your course.

We also provide a number of discussion groups for you to participate in and connect with students, graduates and trainers from all over the world. These groups will encourage exploration of new ideas, respectful debate and support new birth professionals with suggestions.

Once you’ve completed your training, Childbirth International will still be there to support you. If you experience a tough birth, need help and guidance on some aspect of your business, or experience personal difficulties, you can contact your trainer or the Customer Support team anytime.

If you’d like more support, trainers are available for private mentoring. You choose how many hours of mentoring you’d like and a trainer will contact you via Skype. Mentoring can be helpful if you’re looking for more support in completing your course work, ideas for motivation or better organization, or guidance in issues related to your clients or business.

How long does it take to finish?

It depends on how much time you have available. If at any time you need to take a break, you can. There are no time limits imposed for you to complete your course by.

As an estimate, if you study for 10 hours each week, the birth doula and postpartum doula courses will take you 4-7 months to complete. This would include the time it takes for you to complete the study workbooks, and assumes that you complete the course requirements for supporting women in that time. This is similar to other programs once you take into account attending their workshops, supporting at your certifying births and completing their certification requirements.

As an estimate, if you study for 10 hours each week, the childbirth educator and breastfeeding counselor courses will take you 10-15 months to complete. This would include the time it takes for you to complete the study workbooks, and assumes that you meet the support and class requirements for these courses in that time.

Are you accredited?

There are no international bodies that recognize a standard of training for birth doulas, postpartum doulas, childbirth educators or breastfeeding counselors at this point in time. The only accreditation or recognition bodies that exist have all been established by training organizations and therefore cannot be seen as truly overseeing birth professionals in an independent way. However, we believe that our training program is of the highest standard and the most comprehensive available. With all our materials focusing on evidence-based care, you can be assured that the information you’re receiving in your training is accurate and up to date. We ensure that students learn not only the knowledge they’ll need in their chosen profession but also develop their communication skills and the information they need to establish a successful business. Our materials are regularly reviewed and updated as research provides new information.

We are beginning to see national government bodies show an interest in accreditation of doulas. To date, the standards they require can easily be met through our training programs. We’ll continue to monitor this and ensure that we exceed their standards.

Can I charge fees while I am training?

We don’t have a policy that places restrictions on how much you can charge or whether or not you have to charge. This is an individual choice. We encourage you to look at your costs and determine a fee that would be appropriate for you and your clients.

If you choose to offer “free” services, you’ll still have the costs associated with running your business (childcare, telephone etc.) and some clients might not value your service as much as they would if they were paying for it. Having said that, this is your business, and you can run it however your choose, whether that is a full fee, a reduced fee while training, barter or sliding scales. No boundaries!

Can I speak to someone?

You can contact us by phone or by completing the “Get in Touch” form below. We’ll get back to you, in most cases, within 1-2 business days. Our team are active birth professionals who may be out working with a client when you call. If we’re unavailable, leave a voicemail and we’ll call you back as soon as we are available.

Starting Out

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Frequently Asked Questions

Starting out

What is a Birth Doula?

A Birth Doula describes a person who provides information, emotional and physical support for a woman during pregnancy, labor and birth. At every birth you support, your role will be slightly different, depending on the needs of your client. For some women your role will be one of loving support and comfort. For another it will be assisting her to empower herself and advocate for her own choices. For another woman it will be to provide information. Most women you work with will want a combination of different things from their doula.

Generally, you’ll perform the following, depending on what your client’s looking for: massage, relaxation, and other comfort measures, information on options available, some childbirth education, a listening ear, reassurance and encouragement. You might also help a mother to develop skills that enable her to communicate more effectively with her caregivers, understand research related to different interventions, and build her decision-making skills.

What is Postpartum Doula?

A postpartum or postnatal doula helps the mother in caring for her baby and in running the household. You might be employed by families who have just welcomed their first baby or who are adding to their growing family. You might be employed to help with twins or even triplets. You might work with one family for several months or for just a few weeks to help ease their load. You might work overnight to enable the parents to get some much needed rest or you might work during the daytimes.

Depending on what the mother needs, you’ll support her in a number of ways. You can assist the new mother with breastfeeding, help care for and play with older children, help the mother find ways to organize her home so it better suits her needs, prepare healthy snacks and family meals, provide an extra set of hands for the new baby so the mother can rest and recover, help her with comforting or bathing the baby, or carrying out some household tasks like washing and light housekeeping. As you guide parents through those early days with their new baby, you’ll help them to find what works best for them and support them in finding their own parenting style.

What is a Childbirth Educator?

Childbirth educators, or antenatal teachers, may run a variety of classes to suit the needs of your clients. You might offer childbirth classes for expecting parents, early pregnancy classes, pre-conception classes, classes specially designed for teens, siblings, fathers-to-be, single parents or mothers planning a VBAC, a cesarean, an epidural or who might be experiencing a high-risk pregnancy. You can also teach parenting classes or breastfeeding classes.

As a childbirth educator you can determine the format of the classes that work best for you and your clients while pursuing opportunities in your local area. Childbirth International will help you by providing sample curricula for teaching your classes while you also have the freedom to teach the content that best benefits your clients in the style and format that works for you. You’ll learn how to teach classes that are interactive and fun, focusing on adult teaching techniques throughout your training.

What is a Breastfeeding Counselor?

A breastfeeding or lactation counselor helps women who want to breastfeed. You may be working with a mother in late pregnancy to teach her the basics and identify potential problems. You may be working with mothers who are just getting started with their newborns and are experiencing difficulties or with mothers who have older babies or children.

As a breastfeeding counselor you are likely to encounter a range of challenges and difficulties that might include positioning problems, nipple or breast pain, thrush, engorgement, mastitis, or low supply or oversupply. You might be working with mothers who want help with weaning, who are returning to work, whose baby is hospitalized or who would like to continue breastfeeding through a pregnancy and after the new baby arrives.

How much can I earn?

There are large differences in how much birth professionals earn. It depends on where you live, the women you are supporting, and the package of support that you provide. The following amounts are based on a birth professional working in a city in a developed country. Birth professionals living in remote areas or developing countries may have very different payment schedules.

As a general guideline a birth doula who provides 2 prenatal visits, support during labor and birth, and 2 postpartum visits could expect to earn between US$600 and US$1,200. If the women you’re working with are of low income or experiencing financial difficulties, you might charge a lower rate or offer alternative forms of payment, such as reduced fees, sliding scale or barter of services.

Postpartum doulas generally charge an hourly rate of between $15-$45 an hour. If you’re working overnight with a family, or providing support for older siblings or twins, you might charge a higher fee.

Childbirth educators usually charge around $150-$750 for a full course. If you’re providing private classes, or specialist classes, you might be charging more.

A breastfeeding counselor will typically charge per consultation which may range from $50-$100 per hour. If you’re providing long term breastfeeding support for a mother you might offer a package fee for a fixed number of hours.

Where can I find clients?

When you first start you might be concerned about how you’re going to find your clients. Formulating a plan of how you’re going to advertise and promote your business starts you off on the right foot. The Business of Birth module, included in all our courses, provides a thorough understanding of establishing and building a business. If you live in an area where women haven’t heard of doulas or childbirth classes, your first step is going to be to publicize the role and importance of a doula or childbirth educator within your own community. Woman might like the idea of having someone else to assist them during labor, but have no idea about how to find that person. It’s hard to explain, but clients seem to find you when the time is right, or when you’re ready to start taking them on. This seems odd, but somehow, the clients appear when you feel prepared enough to begin working with them. This has been the case for all our students to date, whether they’re living in New York City, or an African town!

You are your own best advertisement. Tell everyone you meet what it is that you do. Remember that every person you meet could know someone who’s pregnant, or have a pregnant partner, daughter, sister or friend, or be planning a pregnancy themselves in the future. Focus on promoting the role of a doula, childbirth educator or breastfeeding counselor. Most people you meet will never have heard of a doula, or have thought about one for themselves. The first impression you make could be the difference between getting a client and not! In addition, your trainers are available on discussion forums for additional ideas that are unique to your situation.

Do I need to attend a workshop?

Not at all! You can complete all your training through Childbirth International with your trainer’s support, using your written student manuals, and the student website. We believe you need time to absorb the amount of information and develop the skills you need to be really great at what you do.

Our written study guides walk you through the techniques available to help the women you will work with. The discussion groups provide you with a peer support network to explore different issues related to your work, and provide you with support from other students, graduates and trainers.

Your trainer will provide feedback on all the work you submit, supporting you no matter how long it takes to complete your course. Most of the hands on skills that a birth professional learns are built over time and with experience. Every woman you work with will have different needs and preferences. As part of a worldwide network of birth and postpartum doulas, childbirth educators and breastfeeding counselors you’ll be able to access ideas, tips and strategies for helping you in your work and in building your business. In addition to the Childbirth International training, trainers in your area may offer study days. These are a complement to the training course and focus on some of the hands on skills and topics that can be beneficial to learn in a face to face environment.

If you’d like more direct support, our trainers are also available for private mentoring. You can choose the number of hours of mentoring that you’d like and your mentor will contact you via Skype to answer all your questions and guide you through any challenges you are experiencing.