About Janelle Da Silva
Janelle Da Silva is a decolonising birth worker, TEDx Speaker, philanthropist and multi-hyphenated artist humbly living on Wadawurrung Country. Specialising in social justice education and racial literacy, Janelle is committed to promoting allyship with Australia’s First Nations people through providing robust educational spaces for anyone willing to decolonise their behaviour. Janelle is a proud multi-racial, intersectional mother of five and an advocate for social change through the arts.
About Sushen Naidoo
A progressive and open minded specialist looking after Pregnancy, Birth and Women’s Health from one generation to the next. With a warm and caring collaborative approach, Dr.Sush lives and breathes his passion for looking after families, parents and their new born baby.
Dr.Sush uses an agile learning mindset to innovate in delivering babies and works with his patient's choices in personalising their birthing experience.
I believe it is a privilege to help bring the next generation of your family safely into this world. The time spent with my patients and their kids is highly valued.
My vision is to foster lasting relationships and be involved in the care of families long after delivering their babies. My consultations are meaningful, supportive, open minded and above all about my patients. I have a passion for holistic and individualised care. Every parent’s journey is different, hence my goal is to create connections that can speak to every generation.
Obstetrics for me is about JOY. The Joy of seeing that first scan, hearing that first heart beat, meeting this new person that has been growing inside you, and the joy of realising that this moment is only the beginning. This is why I am an Obstetrician.
About Julia Jones
Julia Jones is a postnatal doula leading a worldwide renaissance in the way we care for Newborn Mothers. She has created a new paradigm for postpartum care by merging traditional medicine and culture with cutting-edge research on hormones and neurology.
Julia is the author of both Nourishing Newborn Mothers - Ayurvedic Recipes to Heal your Mind, Body and Soul after Childbirth and Newborn Mothers - When a Baby is Born So is a Mother (www.newbornmothers.com/books/). Julia is also the creator of the worldwide leading education resource for postpartum professionals: Newborn Mothers Collective (www.newbornmothers.com/training) and Newborn Mothers Breastfeeding an evidence-based training course for professionals who work with mothers.
Julia is a doula, author, entrepreneur and philanthropist. She lives between the river and the ocean in her home town of North Fremantle, with her husband, three children and pet rabbit. She loves gardening and drinking copious cups of tea.
About Antonia Anderson
Antonia Anderson is a postnatal doula and mentor for creative, courageous mothers who want gentle guidance and non-judgmental support. She was drawn to work with mothers because of her own intensely challenging, heart-opening experience of being a mother. Her previous background is in teaching, writing and visual arts.
Antonia co-created Newborn Mothers Breastfeeding, an evidence-based training course for professionals who work with mothers. She has also facilitated professional development workshops for doulas, social workers and mental healthcare providers. She has a Certificate IV in Breastfeeding Education and completed a post-graduate degree at the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics.
After many years travelling all over the world, Antonia now lives in Canberra with her partner and two sons. She loves bushwalking and reading genre fiction, and hopes to travel again one day.
About Ashleigh Dodd
Ashleigh began her career volunteering in the USA, working with people who required support from all walks of life including disabilities, mental health, youth, AOD dependencies, criminal justice, aged care, child protection and women in crisis. Ashleigh has been working in the Community Services Sector since 2005, supporting people through life’s transitions.
Beginning her career in a number of support worker roles through to management of state wide organisations always striving to empower and support individuals on their journey. Throughout this work Ashleigh has complemented her experience by obtaining degrees in Community Services, Management, Welfare, Business and is a qualified Trainer and Assessor. Ashleigh’s passion really begun to focus on women and babies whilst working in Child Protection and as she embraced her own journey to start her family, facing hurdles she never knew existed!
Ashleigh’s true devotion continues to be empowering families to have the best birthing experience possible. Ashleigh has furthered her Doula qualification by undertaking the Cert IV in Doula Support Services , Child Birth Educators training and End of Life. Ashleigh firmly believes families have the right to be informed, educated, validated and supported to pave the way of their own journey. Ashleigh is dedicated to supporting people to strive for what is most important to them in all aspects of life from first breath to last breath.
Ashleigh is based in Victoria keeping busy raising her young babes, working and juggling doula life, loving and appreciating every second.
About Vicki Hobbs
Vicki Hobbs is a multi-award-winning Hypnobirthing Australia™ practitioner, birth & postpartum doula, remedial massage therapist specialising in pregnancy massage along with many other services to focus on women’s mental, physical and emotional wellbeing. She is also the founder and one of the trainers at the Doula Training Academy based in Perth, Western Australia. Since starting her business in 2004, she has had a thirst to know more and be better and embraces the collective knowledge gained from training, tradition and experience that is passed down from generation to generation. She is dedicated to training and encouraging women who want to become a part of the growing doula industry and providing them an ongoing learning hub and village of support.
About Tanya Cawthorne, LCCE FACCE
Tanya is the co-founder of Lamaze Australia, a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator (LCCE), doula, doula trainer and a Fellow of the Association of Certified Childbirth Educators (FACCE). Tanya is currently serving as the President Elect of Lamaze International and the first non-North American to serve on the Board of Directors in Lamaze’s 60-year history. Tanya also oversees Lamaze childbirth educator training in Australia, having trained almost 100 people to date.
She is a passionate advocate for evidence-based, woman-centred maternity care and is a prolific writer on all things related to birth and early parenting. Her articles have appeared in The Journal of Perinatal Education, Australian Midwifery News, Connecting the Dots (blog of Lamaze International), Interaction – the journal of the Childbirth and Parenting Educators Association of Australia (CAPEA), International Doula (magazine of DONA International) and Rockstar Birth Magazine.
Connect with Tanya
About Sunderai Felich
Sunderai’s love of supporting women and their families during pregnancy, birth and the postnatal time started forty years ago when she attended a friend’s home birth. Since then she has attended many births both in the home and hospital setting. Drawing from her experience as a Pre-school Mothercraft Nurse, Childbirth Educator, Doula and Mother Sunderai established Dial a Doula and has since trained hundreds of women to follow their passion as a Birth Worker.
Presently she is writing her memoir. She has many stories to tell. In mid 2021 Sunderai will retire and devote more time to writing, spending time with her beautiful grandchildren and travelling Australia.
About Richmond Heath
Richmond Heath is a Physiotherapist & the National Coordinator of TRE. Over the last 10 years he has taught TRE to more than 2500 people including trauma recovery workshops for survivors of Black Saturday & the Christchurch Earthquake. With a history of innovation in mental health, suicide prevention, trauma recovery & resilience training, he is a global thought leader in the use of TRE & neurogenic tremors to support natural birth & post-birth recovery. He has recently launched a self-guided learning course to empower people to learn TRE for free online.
About Rhea Dempsey
Rhea is a mother of three daughters and four delicious grandchildren, counsellor and child birth educator with over forty years experience. Rhea has extensive experience working with women and families before, during and after birth. Her special interest is in exploring the psychological aspects of birth and the pyscho-social factors which can affect birth outcomes. Rhea is a highly respected and sought after presenter at conferences, seminars and workshops on birth and counselling issues. Rhea also works in private practice running an extensive schedule of classes for couples and groups as well as education and development for midwives and birth attendants.
About Nicole Moore
Nicole is a homebirth Mama of two - facilitator, filmmaker, writer, performing artist, public speaker... She has been an oxytocin enthusiast and natural birth passionista since her own life changing birth experiences in 2002.
Nicole facilitates groups, couples and individuals (in person or online) to creatively & gently release the trauma of a less than blissful entry to life for oneself, or previous difficult deliveries of babies, creating freedom from painful, inhibiting or subconscious core beliefs.
About Maha Al Musa
Maha Al Musa is of Palestinian/Lebanese origin raised in Australia. She is a Wise Birth Oracle, an award-winning International Birth Mentor, Author and Speaker as well as the founder and creator of EmbodyBirth™ School™ - Conscious Childbirth Education including EmbodyBirth™ and BellydanceBirth® since1997.
Maha gave birth to her 3rd child at home, a full water lotus birth when she was 46 years of age and has been featured in several worldwide media outlets such as Discovery Channel, CNN International, and many more for her strong stance on natural term breastfeeding.
Maha’s award winning book Dance of the Womb - The Essential Guide to Belly Dance for Pregnancy and Birth is the world’s first book to explore the enormous physical, emotional, and spiritual benefits of belly dance as a prenatal exercise and process during labour. The book has been endorsed by renowned birth luminaries such as Dr. Michel Odent, the late Sheila Kitzinger, Dr. Sarah Buckley and Dr. Christiane Northrup.
Maha offers her many years of profound knowledge and understandings, from sharing EmbodyBirth™ teachings on a global platform. She has taught in 6 countries including, Japan, USA and her program has had great success in China. Her work is underpinned by her lived experiences that has emerged from her 4 pregnancies and her 3 as nature intended births. She has spoken at many birth conferences including Birth Keepers Summit USA, Shandong Annual Midwifery Conference China and Human Rights In Childbirth Conference India.
She offers an inspirational online pregnancy and birth preparation program, EmbodyBirth™ - Unlock and Awaken Your Ancestral Womb Wisdom for doulas, birth keepers and mothers.
This program is for all mothers-to-be who innately know that giving birth is meant to be a sacred, instinctual, and embodied experience. For those seeking an immersive and expansive experience as they flow and grow through their 9-month journey. This program is also for all birth keepers wanting to reframe birth's purpose, work with their clients using the program as a powerful tool so that they can be inspired by a view of birth that will raise human consciousness, work through fears, excavate into one’s inner truths, connect to innate body wisdom through the BellydanceBirth® award winning dances and understand the journey from a sacred, wise lens.
Learn more and join the program here: https://sales.mahaalmusa.com/embodybirth
Linkedin: Maha Al Musa
About Kate Levett
Kate Levett is a researcher, educator and acupuncturist. She is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Notre Dame Australia, Sydney School of Medicine, an adjunct Fellow at the NICM Health Research Institute at Western Sydney University, and on the editorial board of Women and Birth (WOMBI) Journal. She has recently received an NHMRC Early Career Fellowship, leading a collaboration of investigators in a large prospective meta-analysis of independent childbirth education and its effect on maternal and neonatal outcomes.
About Joan Garvan, PhD (ANU)
In December 2010 I was awarded a doctorate from the Australian National University, my
thesis is titled: Maternal Ambivalence in contemporary Australia: navigating equity and care.
Since completing my studies I set-up a homepage offered online professional development
courses, and a series of webinars. I continue to work as an advocate for improved early years
health and welfare services and am a Board member for Maternal Health Matters (formerly
Safe Motherhood for All).
I am a founding member Maternal Scholars Australia (formerly Australian Motherhood
Initiative for Research and Community Involvement (AMIRCI)) and have presented papers at
all of the nine conferences held in Australia, with others in Toronto, New York, and Florence,
for our sister organisation (MIRCI) all papers have been on varied aspects of the experience
of women as mothers. email@example.com
About Jenny Blyth
Jenny is an independent birthworker, birth educator, bodyworker and now Spinning Babies® Approved Trainer. She has been supporting women and families through natural birth at home since 1980. Her birthwork focuses on cultivating body awareness, self-help skills and self-responsibility - to realise potential in birth and reduce trauma for mothers, parents, the baby and care providers. Her bodywork practice specialises in pelvic bodywork for wellbeing, balance, comfort and healing. Jenny has been teaching body-oriented Birthwork workshops to professionals, bodyworkers and parents for over 15 years, both in Australia and overseas, often co-teaching with Fiona Hallinan for the ‘Creative Ways of Making Space for Babies’ Workshop Series. Jenny is also project co-ordinator for Lao Birthwork, teaching hands-on and emergency skills to health staff in remote areas of Northern Laos.
She lives in the Australian bush with her partner. They are parents of 3 grown adults and have 3 grandchildren.
Jenny is also an author - Birthwork and The Down to Earth Birth Book, and filmmaker - A World of Birthworkers, The Big Stretch and The Big Stretch Sequel.
You can contact Jenny through http://www.birthwork.com
About Dr Danielle Arabena
Dr Danielle Arabena is a medical doctor, specialist and educator, and has reclaimed herself as a healer. Through her own transformations, formal higher education studies, trials and shamanic journeying, she has arrived into her true authentic Self as an Alchemic practitioner and a modern day medicine woman who has been taught healing by Spirit. Danielle, a GP of Torres Strait Islander descent, holds workshops, healing sessions and consultations with a special interest in holistic women’s health, menstrual wellness and childbirth. She stands as a bridge between the two worlds…where magic operates within the scientific realm.
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About Anna Watts
Founder of the Celebration of Birth Doula Academy, Anna Watts, is affectionately known as the ‘Wise Woman of Doulas’ or ‘Mama Doula’, she has been guiding women and their partners through the journey of pregnancy and birth for over 30 years.
Anna believes in honouring and celebrating birth as a ‘rite of passage’ for the family, supporting empowered birthing choices and strengthening the spiritual connection in pregnancy, birth and postpartum.
Anna’s wide experience as a Childbirth Educator, Doula Trainer, Pre-natal Yoga Teacher, Counsellor, Spiritual Healer, and mother of two beautiful daughters both born at home – one a water birth – brings a deeply grounded approach to her teaching.
The Celebration of Birth Doula Academy offers professional training and mentoring for Sacred Birth and Post-natal Doulas with a focus on holistic support through the journey of transformation in birth and beyond. www.celebrationofbirth.com
About Aladdin Jones
Aladdin is a professional counsellor, facilitator, supervisor and adult educator with over 15 years experience in working with families and with men. He is a father of two teenage daughters and is an active co-parent. Aladdin worked for 7 years as a family therapist with children and parents particularly in the area of childhood trauma and family violence. He has worked as psychotherapist, counsellor and groupwork facilitator with men (ongoing), youth worker, men’s health, prevention of family violence and gender equality. He is a member of the Australian Fatherhood Research Consortium, Australian Counsellors Association (ACA) and Victorian Association Restorative Justice (VARJ). He is a teacher, nationally and internationally, training quality skilled therapists with the Hakomi Mindful Somatic Psychotherapy Institute. Aladdin holds a masters in education with a research focus on transformative education & ecopsychology. He currently has a private practice in Melbourne and the Yarra Valley. He has recently initiated an inter-generational group based in the Yarra Valley called: Sharing Worlds: Sharing stories of fatherhood – this provides celebration and support for new and expectant fathers, as well as supporting eldership for grandfathers and great-grandfathers.
About Erika Munton
Erika Munton is a birth and relationship coach, educator, doula and group facilitator. She supports, guides, educates and advocates for expectant parents across the pregnancy to parenting continuum. Her passion is to help people create positive change during times of transition in life both personally and professionally.
Erika is the owner and director of Birthready and it's support programs, She is the Melbourne facilitator of Beer and bubs - birth education for men at the pub, facilitated Baby makes 3 Erika is also a studying for a bachelor in counselling and psychotherapy. She has attended hundreds of births as a doula and supported hundreds more through the perinatal time. She runs workshops, is a presenter and speaker at events, facilitates groups to fulfil their purpose and helps people so they may help others. She is a volunteer at Birth for HumanKIND and works with people from a diverse range of cultures, lifestyles, family dynamics and values.
Erika has an advanced diploma in Group Facilitation, Certificate 4 in coaching and hypnotherapy and is a Lamaze birth educator LCCE and qualified doula. She is a member of CAPEA, IICT, MC, DNA and PANDA Every year Erika continues to up skill in mindfulness, embodiment practices, counselling, education in birth, parenting and relationships.
Her personal birth experiences and those of her clients help her to understand the intimacy of birth, specifically bridging the gap between natural birth, today’s medical model of care, and what women and their families want for their wellbeing.
About Skye Stewart - KEYNOTE
Skye is an Aboriginal speaker, midwife, doula, published author, manager, student hot air balloon pilot and a transpersonal art therapist. Jack of all trades really. She also has a whole bunch of children.
Her midwifery and her culture connect her to the whole experience of what it means to be human - from birth to death in all its perfectly imperfect forms. She has travelled in Cambodia, Ethiopia and Central Desert Australia with her work and sits with families through it all, whatever it looks like.
Skye's current role is the statewide co-ordinator of the Koori Maternity Services across Victoria and she sits on Indigenous Advisory Committees with the Stillbirth Centre of Research Excellence. Skye has been heavily involved with the oversight of 'Galinjera' - an all risk caseload model of care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families.
A fierce advocate of health equity and social justice, Skye understands the cultural determinants of health and believes that we can all come back ‘home’ to be a thriving community within a thriving ecosystem when kindness, connection and respectful disruption of systems are at the centre of everything we do.
About Hannah Dahlen AM - KEYNOTE
Hannah Dahlen is the Professor of Midwifery, Discipline Leader of Midwifery and Associate Dean (Research and Higher Degree Research) in the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Western Sydney University. She has been a midwife for 30 years.
Hannah has over 200 published journal articles and book chapters and has strong national and international research partnerships. She has received 20 grants since 2000, including being a CI on three NHMRC grants and an ARC Linkage grant. She has spoken at over 100 national and international conferences in the past 5 years and given invited keynote addresses at most of these.
In 2019 Hannah was awarded a Member (AM) of the Order of Australia (General Division) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for her significant services to midwifery, nursing and medical education and research. In November 2012 Hannah was named in the Sydney Morning Herald’s list of 100 “people who change our city for the better” and named as one of the leading “science and knowledge thinkers” for 2012