Rebekah Preston Hawkins, SBD

Certified Birth & Bereavement Doula® serving Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

SBD Doulas® are accessible to you through our open group or through our CONNECT app.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Stacey McInnes, SBD

Certified Birth & Bereavement Doula® serving central Florida

SBD Doulas® are accessible to you through our open group or through our CONNECT app.

 

 

 

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Michelle J. Young, SBD

Certified Birth & Bereavement Doula® serving Perth Australia

SBD Doulas® are accessible to you through our open group or through our CONNECT app.

 

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Share Your Vision & Win

With your vote, stillbirthday won $1,000 from Sam’s Club and SCORE, American Small Business Championship.

Now, we want to share it with you!

Enter a chance to win $500, by sharing how it could help you, help others.

 

Stillbirthday is founded on freely giving to families

Stillbirthday meets families right where they are, with free, printable birth plans and support for birth in any trimester.  The website is an enormous, free database, network and, community.  The free access to validation and support is a founding principle of stillbirthday.

The online doula training we provide allows for individuals to gain an even stronger skill set to provide an advanced level of care to meet the needs of their community, families facing the impossible chasm of pregnancy and infant loss.

As students, our doulas explore their options and determine what structure will work best for them in this mighty humanitarian pursuit: as volunteers, as small business owners, or even a fresh combination of the two.  Because the heart of such service is deeply embedded in compassion, integrity and care, we are mindful to pursue conversations of financials with the utmost respect, sobriety and practicality of all involved – the majority of our doulas integrate traditional birth doula contractual relationships and pursue creative fundraising endeavors to offset the cost of serving families for free in the midst of pregnancy and infant loss.

Because each of our nearly 800 credentialed doulas globally then mirror in some strategy a small business, we bring into our training the amazing talents of Bloom Business Professionals and now, insight from SCORE Mentoring.  It will be such a joy to watch how stillbirthday was the small business that entered into this experience with SCORE, and how it might be the avenue through which many of our doulas can pursue their incredible, free resources.  I imagine the 2018 SCORE Small Business Championship contest will have quite a number of SBD Doulas®, indeed.

 

What stillbirthday did with the $1,000 gift
About The M0M Center | stillbirthday headquarters

photo taken with Sam’s Club camera!

With the $1,000 we received from SCORE and Sam’s Club, my vision at first was quite humble.  Because stillbirthday is global, it has been important to have a headquarters, and so The M0M Center was born, just north of Kansas City Missouri.  The M0M Center not only serves as headquarters to stillbirthday, but is a community center for healing, providing birthing classes, maidenhood education, M0M coaching, group support and more.  At The M0M Center, I receive bridal gowns from incredibly generous people and our seamstress team turns these gowns into infant burial gowns.  We call them Legacy Swaddle gowns.  We have a deep freezer to store breastmilk that moms may donate for our local Milk Bank here in Kansas City.  I am called by area hospitals and local families, to enter into birth spaces throughout the greater Kansas City area to serve families during labor, during birth, in which the baby may not be born alive.

A cool compress on a mother’s brow.  A firm press upon her lower back as she endures the throws of labor.  A whisper of acknowledgement as she moans through a deep contraction.  A look of friendship as she wails, wails at the agony of it all, the knowing, at the end of the work, her baby will not be alive, the unknowing, of what that even means, her mind only beginning to comprehend what will be a lifetime of making sense of it all.

In these most primal, private, holiest of moments, we doulas serve.  And we bring every single thing we can to that mother, and to that family.

When stillbirthday received our $1,000 to spend at Sam’s Club, my vision began to expand and while I at first thought I’d use the funds to provide the warm meals postpartum we present to families, I realized that I didn’t want to use the generous gift in small portions.  I wanted something definitive, something substantial.  The meals will always be given.  What could Sam’s Club and the SCORE Small Business Championship gift bring that was new?

The purchase of Sam’s Club finest camera allows us the doulas at The M0M Center to serve a family, capture professional-quality photos and then, deliver those photos directly to the parents’ cell phones from right within the birth space.

The importance of this gift

This profound opportunity serves to meet the needs of the family by having quality photos discreetly and immediately available to them that they can be proud to display at their beloved baby’s funeral or announcements.

The symbolism of this gift is not lost on me: all those who stand behind this grant and this gift stand to say that this free camera provides photos, those photos that mean so much to the families we serve, capturing the personhood and value and worth and life of this baby and the love of this family.

Speak of symbolism, one can capture photos of just anything that may speak to your healing heart:

It would seem as though my beloved little boy is still overturning rocks…

 

And now, we want to share the prize with you!

There’s More This Summer
I’m packing the camera!

Talk about sharing the vision!  Feel invited to join our stillbirthday Slumber Party over the last weekend of July.  Stillbirthday holds an annual celebration in recognition of our doulas and beautiful community, marking the August 01, 2011 birth of stillbirthday.  This year we’ll be in Savannah Georgia, and, I’m bringing the camera!  We’ll be recording small interviews of doulas, so they can share their small business, their vision and their inspiration for embarking on this journey with stillbirthday!  These small commercials will be aired on our facebook page so that our global community will be able to see the beautiful tapestry that is our incredible doula community.  Stillbirthday has certified nearly 800 Birth & Bereavement Doulas® from every US state and internationally!

 

 

10 Million Families and Growing
announcing SBD Adoption Doulas | {I DO}ULA Missions for Uganda

Stillbirthday has reached more than 10 million families internationally since its inception on August 01, 2011, with the simple premise of just serving the very next mother and message that a pregnancy loss is still a birthday.  In this lifetime we cannot prevent the impossible devastation of grief.  And because I can’t, I long desperately to reach that next mother, to tell her plainly that she is not alone.  As someone who was raised through childhood in orphanages and who has held my own deceased child, I know the agony and torment of grief and believe that my tears are worth something.  If I can provide an option, if I can offer a support, if I can acknowledge and validate, then that person in the darkness with me might dare to hope.  And that is what I hope for.

Just in the past few weeks, we’ve announced our free add-on program for our doulas to explore ways of serving families in the transition of fostering or adoption.  As we develop the curriculum we believe that the content will be relevant and rewarding to our doulas, and to those we serve.

We’ve also announced recently our heart to reach the people of Uganda.  Nearly every two hours a mother dies in childbirth in Uganda, and 76 babies per 1,000 do not reach age one – the majority of these fatal statistics being totally preventable – which means, we can try.  And when a person does slip into the chasm of grief – we can meet them there.

So, I’ve enrolled in National College of Midwifery to learn everything I can, to bring everything I can possibly muster, about being a provider, about ushering in life and about preventing death, about serving to the very best of my ability.  Stillbirthday will support Hearts 4 Africa through I DOULA Missions by coming alongside their vision and offering doula trainings to locals, and doula missions trips for stillbirthday doulas who align with this vision and want to be part.  Here’s a photo of my dear friend Kristin wearing our new fundraising/awareness raising tee shirt to show her support of this mission.

 

And so, I want to invite you, to answer the question, of serving in the very best of your ability.

 

We’re giving $500 to a stillbirthday doula

Stillbirthday will always have a heart to reach the very next family.  But the stillbirthday doulas are a community, of friendship, kindness and beautiful love.  We, all nearly 800 of us, are each on the front lines serving, enduring, being Love Bringers and witnesses and supporters in the most precious and profound of ways.  SBD Doulas, you matter.  You are exceptional, exquisite and historically monumental.  And so it is my hope that this contest brings that message afresh to our community while even inviting newcomers to join us.

 

From May 31 to June 10, you can join the event page, and share your vision.

To Enter:

 

 

You must be a stillbirthday doula or a registered SBD student to enter.  If you haven’t yet enrolled into our doula program, our SBD credential certifies you as a birth doula, a bereavement doula (a term we created!), and now with a free add-on course, an adoption doula.  You can secure your spot in any upcoming session now when you view what our incredible online doula program is all about.  Bonus hint: we even have a great savings when you register from our facebook page.  Winner will receive $500 as a finacial and/or material gift from stillbirthday toward goal.  Compelling nature of goal/entry may be additionally supported by “likes” or encouraging comments made by others supporting the submission.  Stay tuned here for clarification of any rules which may change at any time; submission into the event page is acknowledgement of this and all contest rules.  Stillbirthday and its founder reserve the right to make a determination of the winner at sole discretion.  Giveaways are something familiar to stillbirthday, as we long to support you in whatever your dreams are.  Please follow our facebook page for more opportunities to be involved, get supported or to be a support to others. 

 

Results

Watching this contest unfold has been such a humbling and profound experience.  It’s amazing how asking this question has opened the conversation and allowed us all to brainstorm and the result isn’t an excitement at what any one person can gain — but unanimously, it’s been about how we can serve more.  Because of that, I’ve been working behind the scenes to see how many of these incredible visions we can start to make happen.

As a first prize, Nested Bean agreed to send 25 of their amazing swaddles, to be received by Charmaine Hinds, SBD and her prison doula mission.

We’ve also been able to create an Ayurveda postpartum and bereavement support sample kit for Jess D’Fox, SBD student.

Several stillbirthday doulas stated they’d use the gift to sponsor more students into our doula program, so we’re making that happen as well.

And we’re working on more!

 

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Amber Cates, SBD

Certified Birth & Bereavement Doula® serving Vallejo, California

SBD Doulas® are accessible to you through our open group or through our CONNECT app.

 

Discover what the SBD credentialed doula has achieved.

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Teresa Youngblood, SBD

Certified Birth & Bereavement Doula® serving Kalamazoo, Michigan

SBD Doulas® are accessible to you through our open group or through our CONNECT app.

 

*35NCH

Discover what the SBD credentialed doula has achieved.

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Laura Murray, SBD

Certified Birth & Bereavement Doula® serving Oklahoma

SBD Doulas® are accessible to you through our open group or through our CONNECT app.

 

Discover what the SBD credentialed doula has achieved.

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2017 Hearts Release

Our annual Hearts Release will be held at Marco Island on October 21, 2017.

beautiful

Raya Viktoria Mirtchev’s mama drove all the way from Chicago
to our 2016 Hearts Release at the Gateway Arch in St. Louis Missouri.

 

Every year we do things just a little bit differently, but every year, your beloved babies’ names will again be manually transcribed from your submissions, then handwritten onto our tiny floral seeded hearts.

Our tiny hearts contain recycled, degradable paper and the seeds of Bird’s Eye, Clarkia, Black Eyed Susan, Catchfly, Snapdragon, English Daisy and Sweet Alyssum.

hearts

For newest updates:

Join Our Event Page & Follow Our Main Facebook Page

Please, visit our social media event page to add the names of the babies and children who have changed our lives.
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On October 21, 2017, we will be releasing our tiny, floral seeded hearts again.   Wherever you are in the world, you are warmly invited to be part of this event, by adding your babies names and following along the event page, or if you’re able, to be present in person at the event.

Visit Back for Tee Shirt Updates!

We’ll hold the link here soon as well as on our main facebook page as soon as the tee shirts are available for purchase from RestoreMyHeart on Etsy!  (They are really special on the back!)

 

 

2017 Hearts Release Details

In friendship with AVOW Hospice and Grieving Together, the 2017 stillbirthday Hearts Release will be in south Florida.  We’ve chosen the Marco Island area because it was recently hit by Hurricane Irma.   “Irma” means “Universal” and so is our message — that there is hope and healing even after impossible devastation.

Saturday October 21  |  1-4pm  |  Marco Island Cemetery

Date:  Saturday, October 21, 2017

Time:  1pm – 2pm lunch at Petit Soleil (you can arrive early)
Time:  2pm – 4pm Marco Island Cemetery | Angel of Hope | Historic Chapel

FREE!  You are invited to attend if you are able (2pm-4pm).

Angel of Hope
Marco Island Cemetary
489 Elkcam Circle
Marco Island Florida 34146

This is a FREE event, and is outdoors.  It is family friendly.  We’ll be here from approximately 2pm-4pm.

This portion of the event will be photographed by Vanessa Jean Arnold Photography, who is a mama driving in several hours to attend this event!

You can bring your own chairs or lawn blankets if you’d like.  You can also bring a photograph (a copy is best to be sure an original doesn’t get blown away!) or a letter to your beloved baby if you’d like to hold these on our banner.  You can also bring your camera to take photos.

To add your beloved babies’ names to be handwritten on a floral seeded heart, please visit our facebook page.

You can call Heidi Faith at any time regarding things like traffic and I will be as available as possible.  816.343.4615

There is a sweet little historic  church on the property that has air conditioning and will be available for us, though it has endured damage from Hurricane Irma.

Before or After the Event

If you’d like to, you are invited to join with others and eat together (we’ll buy our own meals).

Before the event, if you’d like to have lunch, Petit Soleil is where we’ll be meeting.

After the event, if you’d like to have dinner or just appetizers prepared by a French chef, and listen to a pianist or violinist, Bistro Soleil is a wonderful option (the two businesses are near the event and owned by the same couple).

You can use the event page to chat with others about making any group meal reservations!

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Time:  4pm – sunset

This portion of the event is not open to the public as it is a private, small boat.

Heidi Faith and photographer Caitlyn Eakins will board a private, guided boat tour in search of the most photographic spot to capture a gorgeous Hearts Release.  These photos will be released for all of us.

Jungle Jim’s Safari
Private Dolphin and Island Tour
as featured on the Travel Channel
(here’s his facebook page)
740 Palm Street Drive
Marco Island Florida

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{ be part of our event – click to the social media event page }

As always, this opportunity is totally free, for you to contribute names or for you to participate in person.  There are families who desire to give financial contributions because there can be something tangibly experienced in the giving and their hearts have led them in doing so, but truly, we simply want everyone to know that you are freely invited to come together in a meaningful way that honors the global community of which we are part.  Stillbirthday is not a non-profit; we are a support resource for families and healthcare professionals. If you would like to give financially, you can choose your giving amount with this link.

Please, join our facebook event page and be part of the global message.

beautifulness

 

5 (100%) 2 votes

Michelle Smith, SBD Chaplain

Professionally trained Midwife of Thanatology

Certified Birth & Bereavement Doula®

 

 

logo final doula and chaplain

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Discover what the SBD credentialed doula & chaplain has achieved.

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stillbirthday events

Have you heard about our wonderful events?  You’re Invited!

 

Special Events

 

Ongoing or Other Important Events

 

 

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