Doulas for Aboriginal Families

Doulas for Aboriginal Families Grant Program

The Doulas for Aboriginal Families grant program is offered by the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres and First Nations Health Authority. The goal of the program is to increase healthy birth outcomes for Indigenous families by removing the cost barrier to accessing doula services.

The grant program provides Indigenous families living in BC up to $1,000.00 (maximum) of coverage for doula services with each pregnancy.

Applications – please review application requirements below

Family Registration Application Form | Doula Registration Application Form | Doula Invoice for Services

The assistance of a doula can help women find their strength and place of power in giving birth. 
A doula is a non-medical professional who provides supportive care to women and their families through pregnancy, labour, and afterbirth experiences. Doulas help women and their families communicate their expectations, hopes, and concerns about childbirth so that they feel supported and comfortable with their decisions. Doulas may connect women and their families to additional supports when and if possible. This support helps ensure positive birth and bonding experiences that are connected to the health and happiness of each family.

To qualify for the grant*, applicants must:

1. Be of Indigenous descent (First Nations, Metis, and/or Inuit). Either the pregnant woman or her partner (if applicable)
2. Reside in BC (both on or off reserve).

*This program is based on a first come, first served policy until funds become fully allocated.

Each family is encouraged to look for a doula that best fits their unique needs, this may involve contacting multiple doulas before making a decision. The BCAAFC does not assign doulas for this reason.

Doulas must be pre-approved before the grant application is completed.
(Please refer to the Doula Pre-Approval Guidelines and/ or contact the doula program coordinator before applying.)

See Family Resources for help finding the right doula for your family.

With your pre-approved doula, fill out the Family Registration Application Form

A breakdown of the estimated total budget for doula services is required. If more than one doula’s services are being used, each doula should submit an estimated total budget for their services.

The maximum coverage of $1,000.00/ pregnancy still applies if more than one doula’s services are used.

Submit the completed application forms to the doula program coordinator: email or postal mail.

Doula Program Coordinator
Phone: 250-388-5522 ext. 201
BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres
551 Chatham Street, Victoria, BC V8T 1E1

Following all doula services, the pre-approved doula will submit the grant programs invoice for payment. No doula care should be provided until an application has been submitted and approved by the BCAAFC.

Doulas are reimbursed directly by the BCAAFC. Unless a family has requested doula services exceeding the $1,000.00 maximum, the family should not be required to make any financial payments for the approved doula services.

Only one invoice should be submitted for ALL doula services. If more than one doula’s services are used, each doula should submit one invoice for all of their services (together, both invoices must not exceed $1,000.00).

Your feedback is valuable—thank you. The survey forms* included in the grant application process are used by the BCAAFC and FNHA to learn from the experiences of women, families and doulas. This feedback helps to: evaluate the success of the Doula Support Program; support the need for pregnancy and childbirth services; and identify areas for improvement in the program. *Survey form feedback is kept anonymous.

We’re here to help— check-out the FAQ section below if you’re unclear about the application process.

families funded
doulas employed
Words from a doula..

It was so amazing to see Lucy* surrounded by all of her children as a proud mother who has overcome a lot to be where she is today.” 

*Name has been changed

Doula Pre-Approval Guidelines

Doulas must:
1. Be pre-approved by the Doula Program Coordinator to qualify for compensation through the Doula Support Program.
2. Be pre-approved within the Family Registration Application Form before providing service.
3. Submit one invoice per client within two weeks of completing service.

Doula Application (REQUIRED) 
– Copy of Birth doula training certificate and/or Copy of Post-partum doula training certificate
– Copy of DSA Web Referral List membership and/or Copy of DONA International Certification

Doula Application (ADDITIONAL)
– Copy of “other” certificates (breast feeding training, infant CPR, etc.) (please specify)

Q: I have submitted my application. When will I know if my application has been accepted?

A: This time varies depending on several factors, including the expected due date. The contact provided on your application form will be notified whether your application is accepted or not accepted. If you have not heard from the program coordinator, your application is still being processed.

Q: Can I submit an application before finding a doula?

A: No. Families must fill out the application form with their pre-approved doula.

Q: Can I apply for only a post-partum doula?

A: Yes, a family can apply for only a post-partum doula within 6 weeks following birth. The doula is required to be pre-approved for post-partum service.

Q: I have submitted my doula registration application form. When will I know if I have been pre-approved?

A: Doula registration application forms are typically processed within five business days upon being received. This time is variable, however, you will be notified whether your application is accepted or not accepted as soon as your application is processed. If you have not heard from the program coordinator, your application is still being processed.

Q: I have been pre-approved. Do I need to submit a doula registration application form again? 

A: No, your pre-approval will not expire. Pre-approved doulas are responsible for ensuring their certifications and contact information is up-to-date. Please provide the Doula Program Coordinator with renewed copies of your certificates and updated contact information when applicable.

Q: When will I be reimbursed?

A: You will receive email confirmation when the BCAAFC receives your invoice. It can take up to three weeks after the invoice has been received before a cheque is issued. Doulas are reimbursed once for all services provided throughout the duration of care for each family. Please include a note on your invoice if the cheque should be addressed to your organization of work.

Q: Do I have to use the invoice template provided or can I use my own?

A: The BCAAFC invoice template provided is the preferred format. This helps us review and process invoices as efficiently as possible. Thank you for your support.

Q: The care I have provided exceeds the $1,000.00 grant amount. Do I include the total amount in my final invoice?

 A: No. The final invoice submitted to the BCAAFC should not exceed $1,000.00. Any service costs that exceed the amount submitted in the compensation pre-approval form should be discussed with the family before care is provided. These costs should be invoiced to the family separately from the $1,000.00 grant amount.