I know you care.
I know “you” – maybe not yet personally, but I know who you are at heart. You’re a
- family physician,
- or other professional providing health care or social services to women…
…and you provide that care with dedication and compassion.
You really want to give the best care possible. But your training hasn’t prepared you for the kind of support you’re sometimes called upon to give. Support for people who cringe at being touched, engage in self-harming, or show up to your practice with bruises and high anxiety. People who are or have been abused in their intimate partnerships or families. So you’re wondering:
“How do I
caringly and effectively
support a Survivor of Abuse
through their pregnancy, childbirth,
and the transition to parenting?”
The answer is in the training I provide. It’s called A Safe Passage.
Before I tell you about the training, let me tell you a little about myself:
I’ve been there.
I’m Jodi Hall. My background is in both the birthing community as a full spectrum doula and childbirth educator, and in the violence-against-women sector as a counsellor for abused women. I’m also a survivor of abuse myself, and a mother of 3 wonderful children. So I know first hand about both sides of the dynamic between a woman survivor and her care provider.
In the course of my work with women, I’ve developed an effective and sensitive approach to supporting those whose childbearing experience is impacted by past or ongoing abuse or trauma. Everything involved in this approach helps to provide survivors with a Safer Passage through the triggers that they can encounter in the childbearing year.
Here’s just one example of the responses that have confirmed that it really does make a difference in these women’s lives:
“I’m not quite sure how to put in words the support and care Jodi offered me when I experienced the worst several months of my life. She offered me the space to genuinely feel and process my very raw emotions of sorrow, grief, anger, unconditional love, and joy. No where else in my life did I feel such nonjudgmental support. […] She is forever part of my journey – in rebuilding myself, and in embracing the trauma while simultaneously moving beyond it. I am and will be forever grateful for Jodi.”
Isn’t it heartening to know that there is such a powerful way to enhance the kind of support you give to the survivors in your care?
I’m here to help YOU hold space for survivors too.
I developed A Safe Passage practitioner training in response to the needs of people like you – care providers who felt at a loss as to what to do, what not to do, what to say, and how to say it, when caring for people whose pregnancies, childbirth, and transition to motherhood/parenting, are being impacted by past or current experiences of abuse or trauma.
A Safe Passage training is evidence-based and trauma-informed, and will equip you to make a difference in your own clients’ lives, just as I’ve made a difference in the lives of mine.
It will give you the knowledge, tools, and resources you need, so as to know how to interact with your patients or clients in a way that is knowledgeable, aware, sensitive and helpful:
- How to create safer spaces to elicit disclosures of abuse: what to say and how to say it.
- How to respond to a disclosure of abuse, past or present.
- How to recognize and anticipate potential triggers.
- How to help a survivor navigate through triggers.
- How to help them know they’re not alone.
- How to identify community supports and make a referral.
- How to help survivors know how to increase their level of safety.
And along with the above:
- How to keep yourself safe as their care provider.
- How to take care of your own emotions as you experience the impact of working with survivors of abuse, including feelings that may arise if you are yourself a survivor.
You need this because they need this.
A Safe Passage is referred to as an advanced practitioner training because it’s given as a supplement to the training you’ve already received in your profession.
But what it teaches is essential knowledge and know-how.
It really should be included in the curriculum of every foundational program that prepares practitioners to provide care for women in the childbearing year, and in fact for women in general.
Because abuse, unfortunately, is not a rare occurrence. Statistics indicate that as many as 1 in 4 North American women will be sexually assaulted during their lifetime.
“The epidemiology of rape, physical and sexual assaults in marital cohabiting and dating relationships and long-term effects of childhood sexual abuse reveals women’s vulnerability to abuse across the lifespan”
(Flitcraft, 1992, p.3194)
While estimates vary, approximately 10 – 20% of women will experience abuse during pregnancy. In fact, pregnancy is often a catalyst for physical abuse to begin, or abuse occurring previous to the pregnancy to escalate.
So chances are, you’ve already provided care for more than one survivor of abuse during your time as a practitioner so far, even if you never saw the signs or knew what impact you were having.
I’m hopeful we can remedy the situation – both in terms of eliminating Intimate Partner Violence and, in the meantime, in terms of including this kind of training in the basic curriculum of programs for all care-providers.
But meanwhile, this essential training is something you haven’t yet been given in the normal course of your own professional education.
So now is the time to remedy that.
Join our community of caregivers who make a difference!
Over the last 13 years, the value of A Safe Passage training has been recognized by a number of individuals, groups, and organizations. Here are some of those who have hosted the workshops:
- Canadian Prenatal Nutrition Program
- The Inuulitsivik Health Center, Nunavik, QC
- Best Start – Nexus Ontario
- Elgin – St.Thomas Health Unit
- Middlesex-London Health Unit
- Women’s Care Program – London Health Sciences Centre
- Jewish Women’s Hospital, Montreal
- The Montreal Birth Companions
- The Birth Companions, Seattle Washington
- Ryerson Midwifery Students Association
- Laurentian Association of Midwifery Students
- McMaster Midwifery Students
- Vesta, St. Thomas
- Babeeze In Arms Doula Centre
- Birthing in Awareness, Johannesburg South Africa
Through these venues, the response to A Safe Passage training has been as positive as the response to the work itself. Here’s just a sampling of what trainees have said about it:
“Life changing presentation”
“Just wanted to thank you for this afternoon Jodi… sometimes I struggle to articulate my thoughts and feelings on things and you have this way of helping unearth and unpack things that I can’t always express. I’m more settled with the work that I’m doing than I’ve ever been.”
Sarah Baughman – CD(DONA), CPD(CAPPA) at Expectations
“I loved the workshop and believe it should be mandatory in being a doula/midwife/health care provider and all other professions that work with women in any capacity!”
“Jodi has a unique way of combining a wealth of knowledge and experience with a warm, considerate and respectful disposition. She creates a safe space where care providers can explore all that they are feeling – without judgement or inducing guilt – as they venture on their path towards promoting health and healing. She’s an invaluable resource, and I highly recommend her!”
Adriana Lozada – doula, author, consultant, educator at Birthful.com
“Jodi Hall’s Safe Passage should be something all doulas are required to learn. I have had to use her training twice and I have only been a doula for a year.”
“This is an amazingly informative workshop that educates on important topics for making your practices within birthwork stronger, safer, and more supportive!”
Christy Hall – Full Spectrum Doula, Portland, OR
“Thank you, Jodi, for this wonderful new set of skills I proudly own!”
Tiffany – CD (DONA)
“Those of us lucky enough to have attended one of Jodi’s workshops know that she brings a calm and grounded presence. Her heartfelt and genuine way of sharing her wealth of knowledge about caring for people who have experienced trauma engages everyone in a thought-provoking way. Jodi’s work changes you, personally and professionally, at a deep level, provoking a new way of thinking when interacting with all clients. As a Public Health Nurse with a reproductive health focus, attending Jodi’s workshops has fundamentally challenged how I think about and interact with my clients, community partners and in my broader advocacy work. Her workshops would be valuable to anyone that works in public health. The capacity to supportively work with people who have experienced trauma is one of the most fundamental and important skills necessary for effectively caring for people who are undertaking ‘the unrelenting work of just trying to survive’.”
Deanna Stirling, B.Sc.N, R.N., PHN
Middlesex-London Health Unit
You can experience these same benefits.
You can make a difference too.
Woman abuse and childhood abuse are big problems in our world. They can have lasting impacts, including on a woman’s experience of her pregnancy and labour. You may have seen the signs of it in your practice and not known how to help.
But now you’ve discovered that there is a time-tested way to help women survivors navigate a Safer Passage through the potential challenges of their childbearing experience.
It’s time to learn how to give the full support and care you’ve always wanted to give but didn’t know how.
It’s time to take A Safe Passage practitioner training and make a difference in the lives of the women in your care who are survivors of abuse or trauma.
“Yes, I’m interested!”
“Please add me to your mailing list”
Thank you for caring!