Walking with a family whose baby’s life is expected to be brief, entering into the sacred place where heaven meets earth as they say hello and goodbye to their child, it is a gift most meaningful, and we take this privilege very seriously at Sufficient Grace Ministries. Because every life matters, we want each family to know, they are not walking this path alone. We strive to provide 24 hour availability of quality support from well-trained professionals. Our SGM Comfort Team Volunteers commit to 12 hour on call shifts where they may or may not receive a call. All active volunteers must sign up to serve at minimum one day a month. The most important quality we are looking for in our comfort team volunteers is a heart of compassion and understanding for those who are grieving the loss of a child. Our volunteers are not there to try to fix or try to find the right answer…we are simply there to come alongside as companions walking this path together.
Comfort Doulas, Remembrance Photographers, and all perinatal hospice support staff will be expected to:
- Come alongside grieving parents in various settings: in person, on the telephone, online, at a hospital, birthing center, in a doctor’s office, and at the SGM office.
- Understand and adhere to the philosophy of care as outlined by SGM and perinatal hospice
- Help families who receive a fatal diagnosis in pregnancy form a birth plan, help communicate their birth plan to others involved in their care, and help implement the plan according to the family’s wishes
- Offer encouragement, support, and a listening ear
- Foster a gentle, non-judgmental environment that helps parents experience their story, their way, creating the most optimal
experience possible under the circumstances
- Support the idea that each family has been given a gift of time with their child and have the opportunity to embrace his/her life for as long as they are given.
- Compile and offer bereavement support services and memory-making items (SGM offers an array of suitable items for this purpose. A wealth of resources are available for the doula/support staff through SGM at www.sufficientgraceministries.org)
- Comfort Doulas/Companions must be approachable and gentle, not imparting their own ideas, but guiding families and suggesting options when
- Learn and implement SGM Remembrance Photography services for perinatal hospice maternity sessions and birth/memory-making sessions as well as funerals and other remembrance photography requests.
To become an SGM Comfort Team Volunteer, you must
- Submit the application below.
- Submit at least two references from non-family members in the form of a letter of recommendation on professional letterhead, if applicable, attesting to your character and ability to perform the duties of an SGM Doula to sufficientgraceministries at gmail dot com. Begin the process by filling out the online application/interview below.
- Once you receive board approval, you will register and begin your SGM Introductory Training Process. Training must be completed within two weeks of registration.
- Final Interview – After introductory training, you will complete an interview with your Regional Coordinator and/or the Director of SGM Perinatal Hospice and Bereavement Support Services.
- Mentoring – You will accompany an experienced, approved and certified SGM Comfort Team Volunteer until there is agreement that you are ready to serve without mentorship.
- Additional Training – In addition to the introductory training, you will be required to attend the annual April Training and complete the Independent study to become fully certified.
Sufficient Grace Ministries will consider individuals who have a heart to serve bereaved parents as potential volunteer candidates. Perinatal hospice and bereavement service volunteers must be at least 18 years old, and have some experience with loss and/or a compassionate heart, and willing to attend training in comfort companioning and remembrance photography. Training and in service will be required of all volunteers wishing to meet directly with families. There may be additional interviews, background checks, and regular evaluations performed by your Regional Coordinator, the President, or Vice President of SGM. We are looking for those with a heart of compassion and a proper level of professionalism to serve families in such tender moments. We expect those representing the ministry to have an understanding of our statement of beliefs. All prospective volunteers will have to be reviewed and approved by Sufficient Grace Ministries board members. Those volunteers who are approved and signed the agreement will be expected to comply with all policies of the ministry. Upon approval from SGM, you will be able to sign up for the required SGM Comfort Team Training. As part of your training, you will begin the mentoring process as soon as you complete the Introductory training and final interview.