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Baby's Hand
Supporting women to achieve empowered births through education and care. 
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Meet Evana Cooper Starling
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Meet Evana Cooper

Hello and a warm welcome to you!

I'm Evana, a proud mother of four amazing munchkins, each with their own unique personalities, ranging in age from 17 to 5 years old. Our happy home is nestled in the South Jersey area, where we enjoy the vibrant community around us.

Being actively involved in my local community brings me immense joy. Over the years, I have dedicated my time as a community leader, organizing youth groups, coordinating community events, and lending support to incoming refugee families. When my children were homeschooled, I co-founded the local home-school group 'South Jersey Muslim Homeschoolers' to provide a supportive environment for Muslim moms and their families. Presently, I contribute to multiple committees and organizations in Cherry Hill, working towards diversity, inclusion, and equality for families of color.

With a solid background spanning 15 years in the realm of birth and babies, I have had four unique and memorable birth experiences. These transformative moments inspired me to embark on a journey to support other expectant mothers on their own path to parenthood. Throughout my professional and personal teaching career, I have nurtured young minds and facilitated childbirth education. Teaching has taken me across five countries, enabling me to hold roles such as teaching assistant, head of English, and curriculum coordinator assistant. Additionally, I cherished the opportunity to run a summer camp for five years.

Having encountered children and parents from diverse cultures during my travels, I have gained a precious perspective that sets me apart as a doula. This invaluable insight allows me to connect with families from various backgrounds and circumstances, fostering a deep understanding and empathy.

As a certified assistant midwife, labor and postpartum doula, childbirth educator, experienced youth educator, and devoted advocate for empowering families, I am wholeheartedly committed to my community. Building upon my own experiences as a mother of four, I established 'Evana Births' in 2018, driven by the desire to support and empower mothers-to-be. Under my own brand and collaborating with other prominent organizations, I tirelessly devote myself to assisting and empowering women throughout the journey of labor and postpartum.

Certified in Newborn Resuscitation, Rebozo Practices, labor acupressure, and CPR, I strive to ensure that every mother experiences the utmost comfort during childbirth and postpartum. I am honored to be invited as a guest speaker at esteemed institutions like Rutgers University, where I share my expertise on topics such as doula work, motherhood, teenage development, and community outreach. I recently took on the role of a research collaborator, helping to shape the questions we ask community doulas in New Jersey. Together with IDEO.org and other collaborative groups in NJ, we worked to will patterns, themes, and key learnings from the research to create sustainable programs for families. 

Personally, I understand the significance of having a friend and partner during pregnancy and postpartum. I am here to be that person for you! With unwavering enthusiasm and deep compassion for maternal mental health, I aim to make the birthing process the most positive experience in a woman's life through education, support, and unwavering care.

My ultimate vision is to empower women by providing comprehensive education and nurturing care, ultimately enabling them to achieve empowered births. I hope to be the support system you need on your journey.

 

Feel free to reach out, and together, we can make your birthing experience extraordinary!

 

 

Why Hire a Doula?

Why Hire a Doula?

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What is a Doula?

A doula is a word derived from the Greek term "doula," signifying a "handmaiden" or a "woman who serves." And that's precisely what a doula does for a laboring woman: serve her and support her in achieving her desired birth outcome.

Research has shown that doulas, like myself, can have a significant impact on various aspects of the birthing process. We can help reduce the duration of labor, alleviate anxiety, decrease the likelihood of medical interventions such as C-sections, and enhance the bond between mother and baby after birth.

In simpler terms, while your doctor is busy monitoring your progress and contractions, and your partner may be feeling hungry and exhausted, I'll be right there by your side, ensuring you have everything you need for a positive birth experience.

Consider me your all-in-one support system. I can offer soothing massages, become a trusted friend, lend an empathetic ear as a therapist, play your favorite tunes as your personal DJ, or even bring some laughter as your court jester – whatever it takes to facilitate the birth YOU desire!

 

 

"Why should you consider hiring a doula if you already have the support of a doctor, husband, and mother?"

Unlike nurses, doctors, and family members who may have shifts and other obligations, doulas provide continuous support throughout the entirety of pregnancy, labor, and postpartum. As a doula, I will be dedicated to your care, ensuring constant support and guidance. Unlike medical professionals, my sole focus is on you, the birthing person, and your partner, ensuring a personalized experience.

As your doula, you can expect the following:

  • Continuous emotional and physical support throughout labor.

  • Provision of information and resources to help you make informed decisions about your birth choices before labor.

  • Utilization of comfort measures like massage, suggesting different positions, and guiding relaxation breathing.

  • Adaptation to your desired birth environment, whether it's creating a serene atmosphere with low lighting and soft music or accommodating any specific preferences you may have.

  • Encouragement for open communication with your doctor and informed decision-making regarding any procedures or interventions. 

  • Support for the father or birth partner, recognizing their critical role and offering suggestions on how they can best support and connect with the laboring mother throughout the process.

Now, let's address what a doula won't do:

I am not a medical professional, so I won't provide medical advice or perform tasks such as checking blood pressure, doing cervical exams, or monitoring the baby's heart rate. It is never the place of a doula to judge, condemn, or come between the mother, her birth partner, or the doctor.

"Can I still hire a doula if I plan to have an epidural or C-section?"

Absolutely! Even with an epidural or the need of a C-section, there is still a need for comfort and support. Before your arrival at the hospital, I will provide assistance to increase your comfort and confidence while you're laboring at home, following any instructions provided by your doctor or midwife. I can help with massage, counter pressure, or movement, and above all, I will be there to help you stay calm before, during, and after your delivery.

Throughout your labor, I will act as an interpreter between you and the nursing and medical staff, ensuring that your goals and desires are effectively communicated. I will also help you understand their discussions, recommendations, and how they may impact your labor. With my support, you can ask the necessary questions to make well-informed decisions for you and your baby.

Once your baby is born, I can assist in ensuring immediate skin-to-skin contact and readiness for breastfeeding. I can also help you manage the flow of friends and family, allowing you and your baby to have some peaceful bonding time.

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