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“Alison you have been wonderful.  You have helped me to feel a lot calmer and more relaxed than I would have felt without you in those first few challenging weeks.

Great support with the little one, but also around the house, giving me this all-important time to breathe.

You were especially good at spotting what I needed: it was difficult for me to articulate in the beginning what I actually needed help with, so your guidance, support help and open ears were a big source of strength for me.  Your visits were very precious ‘time-out’ for me; I felt that I could totally relax.

Thank you so much!”

 

Katharina, mother of Theodor, born March, 2018

“Hi Alison, I just wanted to say hello and send you a picture of Bronte and Alban who are now six months old! And still breastfed!!! A lot of that is thanks to your expertise and support, so thank you from the three of us! It was a huge challenge to begin with, but completely worth it. Much love Jacinda.”

Alison Grunwald

 

My background

After eight truly wonderful years working as a birth and postnatal doula in and around NW London, I am now focusing exclusively on antenatal birth preparation and education, postnatal support and infant feeding – the latter being a special passion.

Married since 1976, I am a mother of four, and grandmother of eight; I was my daughter’s doula when she gave birth to her third baby in January 2018, a deeply moving experience I will always treasure.

My own first pregnancy resulted in a last-minute Caesarean section when my twins decided to come six weeks early and chin-locked (one up, one down and chins hooked on each other.) My next two births were VBACs – vaginal deliveries, and very straightforward.  I breastfed all my babies and learned the skill of feeding my twins simultaneously, something I have taught successfully over many years.

 

Training

I trained as a doula with Nurturing Birth in 2009 and later gained recognition from Doula UK for both births and postnatal work. I have worked steadily since 2010, counting it a privilege to get to know new families and ease them through those first precious but exhausting weeks. One of the priorities is getting babies to feed effectively and I have loved this part of my work.

I am a peer breastfeeding volunteer at the Royal Free Hospital (where all my babies were born) and I update my skills on regular in-house infant feeding training days. 

I am also a graduate of the Breastfeeding London Course, a 90-hour lactation-specific training for midwives, health visitors, doulas and others.  I teach responsive bottle feeding too, as breastfeeding is not every mother’s choice and no-one need feed guilty about how they feed their baby.

I am a doula Mentor with Nurturing Birth where I now support other women on their doula journey, a chance to give back and nurture new doulas.

I am also an energy healer, trained and recognised by The Healing Trust, and have worked over the years as a teaching assistant in primary schools, a newspaper and radio journalist and a Fertility and Relate counsellor. 

Antenatal Birth Preparation

As soon as you discover you are expecting a baby your ‘to-do’ and ‘to-learn’ lists may seem overwhelming! So it’s good to know that help is available for those questions that crop up outside of midwife appointments.  I will help you to write a strong birth-plan that reflects your wishes; understand the different choices available and the different stages of labour.  What pain-relieving options are available if you want to have a natural birth; what is a gentle Caesarean section? Can you have a gentle Caesarean birth-plan? (Yes you can.)

What to buy and what not to waste money on!  How to prepare yourself physically and mentally for birth; what your partner can do to help you; how and when to feed your baby……..the list goes on. 

I offer Birth Preparation sessions which last up to two hours and provide useful information and information sources (books, DVDs, websites etc).  I recommend other professional practitioners if needed, eg physios, osteopaths, homeopaths, yoga and hypnobirthing teachers, and birth doulas if you feel you would like to have support on the day.  I will not give medical advice but can help you process any developments  and assist you to make decisions without undue influence or judgement.  My sole aim is to inform you and support you. 

 

Postnatal Support Sessions

These are 4-hour visits, generally in the mornings, when I will support early breastfeeding or responsive bottle feeding, teach breastcare, pump-use, milk storage and all aspects of the different lactation phases and baby care.

I am happy to prepare food and drinks, take baby out while you catch up on sleep, do laundry and local shopping. I show parents how to bathe their babies, wind and settle them and answer all the many questions that crop up in the early days and weeks.  I like to keep kitchens tidy and keep my rubber gloves handy! Perhaps most importantly, I treat what I am told as confidential and my clients with kindness, understanding and respect.

My Charges

Antenatal Birth Preparation sessions (up to 2 hours) £70

Breastfeeding pop-ins: £60

Postnatal 4-hour sessions £100

Full payment is required if less than 24hrs provided for cancellation.

Car parking fees to be met by client please.

My Contact Details

You are invited to get in touch via:

 

Mobile:  07831 468634

Landline:   0208 4525236

www.alisongrunwald.co.uk

https://doula.org.uk/doula/alison-grunwald/

https://nurturingbirthdirectory.com