Who are we?
A European doula network was initially discussed at conferences in Graz (2005/2006) and again at Bad Wildbad (2006) and Paris (2007) amongst attendees keen to establish quality standards for Doula formation and practice. US DONA-Doula Trainer Debra Pascali-Bonaro offered much encouragement and know-how. Yet at that time it proved too difficult to establish sufficient common ground and the idea faded from view. However this was only temporary.
Soon after 2006, Doulas de France set up a Yahoo site with the idea of generating a focal point where doulas could network. The French Association also created a European doulas page on their website, publishing a brochure which included portraits of a number of European doula organisations. This perhaps gave doulas from other countries their first insight into the real scale and breadth of the movement.
In 2008 at the conference in Bad Wildbad a group of German-speaking doula-trainers took the first step in creating a framework for unity and equal standards among German-speaking Doula organizations and formations. Over the next two years the expanding group added a Swiss representative and eventually agreed on a new document proposing an open European network to all doula associations willing to develop and grow in quality.
In 2010 the European Doula Network was officially launched. Since then the network has added members from Spain, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Italy, Hungary, Austria, the Netherlands, UK, Slovenia, Poland, Greece and Finland. Discussions with representatives from several other countries are also underway.
The European Doula Network’s aim is to organise one official meeting a year. The meetings were held 2011 in Paris, 2012 in Gouda/NL, 2013 in Zurich/Switzerland and in Portugal in 2014.