Waterbirth International’s dedicated team envisions the day when waterbirth is a common practice in all parts of the world. We recognize and continue to push for changes in the treatment of laboring women and how we welcome babies into the world. Parents, midwives, doctors, nurses, doulas and childbirth educators come to us for information and reassurance on natural waterbirth. Countless others have read our articles, books and watched our DVDs, sharing them with family and friends. All this has changed and shaped the consciousness of birth and parenting.
Human birth is miraculous and transformational. When women use water to assist with the process of labor or choose to give birth in water, they reclaim control over their bodies and their birth experiences. This type of undisturbed, supported and empowering birth unites entire families for a welcoming and gentle birth.
Waterbirth International respects and values a woman’s heightened awareness of herself and the life she is about to bring into the world. We believe waterbirth offers a healthy, normal, and sacred beginning to new life and is one of the most intimate, simple, and globally-healing efforts. Water has been used for millennia to ease labor and protect normal physiology. By integrating this natural process into modern hospitals, waterbirth offers an alternative to the very medical approach that has taken over in maternity care and returns woman-centered care to the forefront.
As the first organization to design and sell specially designed birthing pools, we now lend our decades of experience and expertise to hospitals and birthing centers on the most efficient designs for their birth rooms. We also provide the best up to date, evidenced based education for providers and staff in all birth settings.
For nearly four decades, Waterbirth International has accomplished its mission through programs designed to educate parents and professionals about the gentle birth model of maternity care. This standard of care includes using warm water immersion for labor and birth to improve birth outcomes and substantially reduce healthcare costs. Providers become birth guardians of normal physiology and practice the art of masterly observation and quiet support.
We provide waterbirth resources, consultations, in-service education, and workshops for birth practitioners and parents. Waterbirth International is the only organization providing waterbirth certification courses to practitioners and community education to doulas and parents. More than 15,000 birth professionals worldwide have taken our Waterbirth Certification and Education workshops. Through testing and evaluation, providers may obtain a Certification in waterbirth, while nurses, doulas, and educators, may receive a certification as a Community Waterbirth Educator.
Waterbirth International launched in 1988 as a nonprofit organization. Founded by Barbara Harper and a concerned group of parents and medical professionals, our organization is committed to making waterbirth available to all families. What humbly began in Barbara’s living room has become a global movement for natural waterbirth and waterbirth solutions. As we continue to grow and expand, we remain committed to serving as a leading voice in seeking gentler, kinder, and easier ways to welcome babies into the world.
We have shifted from a nonprofit to a community-based corporation focused on consulting, education, mentoring, and training others in waterbirth as a gentle and normal physiologic birthing method. Under the continued guidance of its founder, our goals remain the same. We will continue to direct and lead educational workshops and provide guidance to birthing centers, hospitals, and home birth providers to ensure waterbirth is a viable option for all families.
Renowned Gentle Birth Choices author Barbara Harper is available for conferences and other speaking engagements. She shares her extensive knowledge and passion for water birth and other gentle birth alternatives with midwives and other medical professionals interested in using her methods to promote a more relaxing birth experience for mother and baby. Contact us today to schedule Barbara for your next event.