The First Circle doulas have been supporting Richmond families for between eight to eighteen years and have attended between 110 and 275 births.
Amy Lavelle, Ph.D., CPD
A toLabor certified birth doula, Amy has been supporting families in pregnancy, birth and the postpartum period since 2011, and is co-founder and co-owner of MyBirth. She received her doctorate in Human and Molecular Genetics when she was 37 weeks pregnant with her daughter. From her own experiences as a mother and a scientist, Amy incorporates a balance of holistic practice and evidence based care to her doula work. She brings her background in research into her birth work and believes education is key to an empowered birth. When not working in the lab or attending births, Amy enjoys musicals (especially Hamilton), gardening, exploring herbal medicines and folklore, and travel.
Click HERE for Amy's doulamatch profile, where you can find testimonials and info on availability.
Emily Bruno, CPD
Emily is a ToLabor trained and certified professional birth doula, practicing since January, 2007, and is co-founder and co-owner of MyBirth. Emily draws on her knowledge and experience to provide physical, emotional, and informational support to women and partners. She has completed trainings and workshops for acupressure in pregnancy and childbirth, breastfeeding education, Perinatal Loss and Grief, and Spinning Babies Techniques. Emily's personal experience includes her own homebirth cesarean in 2008, her hospital VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean) in 2013, and her volunteer work as Chapter Leader for ICAN of Richmond. Emily believes that everyone deserves the opportunity to birth in a peaceful and supportive environment, and has a particular passion for the prevention of unnecessary cesareans and the access to and promotion of safe VBAC. When not attending births or teaching classes at Henrico Doctors’ Hospital, Emily can be found reading, traveling, or gardening.
Click HERE for Emily's doulamatch profile, where you can find testimonials and info on availability.
Sara Krivanec, CPD
Sara is a certified professional birth doula with toLabor and has been attending births since 2001. She came to this work after her own cesarean, wanting to support and educate others in understanding their options and facilitating a positive birth experience. She went on to give birth twice by VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean) and has attended over 270 births during the past eighteen years. Although her passion is educating others about low-intervention childbirth and VBAC, she supports people through any type of birth and can provide information for them to make informed decisions. Sara’s additional trainings include Penny Simkin, Ina May Gaskin, Spinning Babies, and Acupressure with Dr. Keith Bell. She also has had extensive training in breastfeeding, Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders and perinatal loss. Sara enjoys building a strong relationship with her clients and sees every day that birth can be healthy and normal. She believes firmly in providing evidence-based information and supporting her clients in their choices so that they can have their best birth. Preparing with an open heart and mind, Sara sees couples excited and ready to give birth. Sara is a mother to three amazing kids and has been married to her husband for more than 20 years! She is so proud to support her children in their love of visual arts, music, theater, and soccer, and her own hobbies include reading, attending musicals, knitting and making herbal medicine.
Click HERE for Sara's doulamatch profile, where you can find testimonials and info on availability.