It may only be January, but DONA International is already gearing up for the 2017 Annual Conference Cultivating Connections: It Starts With Us. This year’s evidence-based learning opportunity from the world’s largest and longest standing doula organization is online. Access incredible sessions created just for doulas from anywhere on your own schedule! We are now accepting proposals for speakers for the 2017 Virtual Conference. Be sure to review the full Call for Speaker Proposals document and application for additional details. Submissions are due by February 1, 2017.

We invite you – doulas, childbirth educators, lactation consultants, entrepreneurs, doctors, midwives, physical therapists, social workers, researchers, authors, administrators, policy makers, professors, coaches and birth advocates – to share your expertise at this year’s conference. A virtual conference presentation gives you the opportunity to reach a large doula audience, even more than at an in-person conference. Our virtual conferences offer attendees convenience and cost savings, and so we see strong attendance. Sessions can be viewed up to 90 days after the conference itself, which provides even more opportunity for your presentation to be seen. Sharing your insights and ideas with the our world-wide network of maternity professionals is a great way to increase your recognition has an expert in the field. Selected speakers will receive a $250 honorarium, one complimentary and non-transferable full conference registration, and one complimentary MP4 download of their recorded session.

  • As you consider your session topic, remember that our theme Cultivating Connection: It Starts With Us, provides the opportunity to:
  • Connect evidence with best practices to provide birth and postpartum support to families
  • Imagine innovative ways to connect with and educate members of all communities about the benefits of birth and postpartum doulas
  • Improve business skills and strategies to generate new clients and stay connected
  • Develop intra professional collaboration models to improve outcomes
  • Create meaningful ways to connect with other birth professionals all over the world
  • Evaluate the significance of the doula’s role and contribution to maternity care outcomes and the transition of the family in the last 25 years

Submission Overview

Proposals are sought for 60 minute concurrent sessions appropriate for doulas and other maternity professionals which adhere to the DONA International Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics. Sessions are to be remotely recorded and suitable for online viewing (i.e. voice over slides, webcam, computer demo or video). Only electronic submissions will be considered. Completed submission packets only, please. Send all materials to no later than February 1, 2017. Recorded sessions will be due by June 15, 2017.

Submission Details

Speaker proposals must include the following:

  1. Completed Speaker Biographical Form
  2. Curriculum vitae or resume
  3. Two written references who have heard you present and their contact information
  4. Recorded demo of highlights of your presentation (2-5 minutes) if you have not presented at a previous DONA International conference
  5. Cover Page Form which includes session title, speaker’s name and 75-100 word introduction, session description of 50-75 words and overview of teaching methods
  6. Concurrent Session Form with three learning objectives, detailed presentation outline, resources and/or bibliography, and three post test true/false questions

Selection Process

Only complete, electronically received submissions will be considered. After review for completeness, compliance with the DONA International Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics, and any Conflict of Interest will be evaluated. If the proposal passes these reviews, the speaker selection team will rank proposals on the following:

  • Birth Doula Interest
  • Postpartum Doula Interest
  • Business and Mentoring
  • Evidence Based Practices and Research
  • Relevance and Fresh Topics or Fresh Approach to Topics

Proposals with the highest ranking that fulfill our category needs will be selected.

Complete requirements and additional details are available on the Call for Speakers Proposal and Application.

We look forward to your submissions and to creating a great 2017 Annual Conference! Please share this information with anyone you feel has particular insight and experience to share with your fellow doulas.

— Adrianne Gordon, MBA, CD(DONA), Blog Manager