The First Circle doulas have been supporting Richmond families for between seven to seventeen years and have attended between 90 and 250 births.
Amy Lavelle, Ph.D., CPD
A toLabor certified birth doula, Amy has been supporting families in pregnancy, birth and postpartum since 2011. 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.
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. 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, 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. When not attending births or teaching, 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 has attended over 250 births during her seventeen-year career working as a birth doula. She supports women and birthing people in hospital, home and birth center settings. Sara is certified through toLabor to attend women in childbirth. Her additional trainings include toLabor (formerly ALACE), Penny Simkin, Ina May Gaskin, Spinning Babies and Acupressure with Keith Bell. Sara's passion is educating others about unmedicated childbirth and supporting those in the community who want VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean). She started the first ICAN of Richmond chapter in 2003, and worked for six years counseling hundreds of women on their VBAC journeys. In addition to her work as a doula, Sara received her B.A. in Women's Studies from Virginia Commonwealth University. She loves getting to know the families she works with, and building a great relationship that carries over to their birth; she also enjoys the hands on work during their birth and seeing people work together to become a family. The strength Sara sees is really amazing and she loves helping women feel supported and cared for during this transformative time. Sara is a mother to three amazing kids (two are VBACs!) and has been married to her husband for 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, knitting and making herbal medicine.
Click HERE for Sara's doulamatch profile, where you can find testimonials and info on availability.