I am Connie Bach Jeckell, founder of BirthMatters, International. I have been a childbirth educator and birth doula for over thirty years. Since 2003, one of my greatest passions has been training childbirth educators and birth doulas for certification with the International Childbirth Education Association (icea.org
). I served on the ICEA Board of Directors from 2006-2013 and received the Doris Haire Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016. I have taught across the United States as well as internationally, primarily working in Guatemala and Romania.
In the beginning, after years of serving childbearing families, I realized I had found my “gifting” and enrolled in nursing school. I envisioned myself graduating and working in an alternative birth setting. However, upon graduation, I found myself working almost fifteen years at the regional teaching hospital as a labor and delivery nurse and as Coordinator of Childbirth Education and the Joyful Beginnings Doula Program. I now realize my journey had taken me where I was most needed. Joyful Beginnings was the first hospital-based doula program in the State of Tennessee … serving families long before doulas became widely recognized. My experience has enabled me to walk both sides of the fence…medical and non-medical…giving me an insight to better prepare doulas and childbirth educators.
I founded BirthMatters, International, in 2005 to provide quality, evidence-based education to professionals and parents. The mission is to equip educators with adult teaching strategies that enable parents to retain information, empowering them to make decisions regarding their own health care.
BirthMatters, International, is situated in a secluded, uniquely peaceful setting just minutes from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Private and group classes are tailored to meet specific needs. Private two-day professional workshops are offered as an all-inclusive, boutique experience. This is not professional education as usual. It is so much more.