Serving the City of St Albert in Alberta, Canada

Call or Text 780-910-3496

providing non-medical Senior care, respite care & end of life doula support

Frequently Asked Questions

Support from an End of Life Doula or Death Doula

WHAT IS AN END OF LIFE DOULA?

At Courageous Goodbyes® an End of Life Doula is a non-medical person who serves, guides, supports, reassures, nurtures and journeys alongside the dying and their loved ones through the physical, practical, emotional and spiritual challenges they face during the end of life transition. 


The Doula supports the dying person as they make decisions about their end of life care plan.  This plan communicates and details how they want their last months, days and hours to be lived to their loved ones.  If asked, the Doula will facilitate a meeting between the dying person, their family and other health care providers to insure their end of life care will be followed according to their wishes.


The Doula will remain present to the dying person and their loved ones throughout the final dying process. Continue to be their consistent, reassuring and supportive presence; offering emotional and spiritual support until the very end.


The Doula will continue to offer emotional and practical support to the family immediately after their loved one transitions and in the days that follow and beyond.

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would you support a person who has chosen medical assistance in dying (MAID)?

Absolutely! MAID is a legal choice in Canada for those who meet the eligibility criteria.


We would be honored to provide the non-medical practical, emotional and spiritual support to those who invite us to journey alongside them.  We respect the courage it takes to come to this decision and the resilience to work through the myriad of emotions endured to pursue the legal right to chose when, where and how the last breath will be taken. 

Spiritual support at the end of life

what is spiritual support?

The word spiritual is often confused with the word religion. For some people the two meanings overlap, while for others there is no connection at all.​​​​​​​​


​For Courageous Goodbyes®,​ it's being fully present to those we serve and their loved ones. It's about listening without judgement or simply being a comforting presence when they prefer to sit in silence.


For those facing end of life, it's helping them to finish the unfinished. It's supporting them as they reflect and reconcile the meaning of their life. It's encouraging them to recall and feel pride in their big and small achievements.


It's helping families to come to terms with preparing for the end of life transition.  It's supporting and empowering them as they face their fears, seek peace of mind and reconciliation for unresolved issues.


It's enabling them to have the courage to live their final months, weeks and days with the focus on living and experiencing the best day possible that includes joy and laughter, with the love and support of family, friends, their medical teams and End of Life Doula.

Frequently Asked Questions

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What is the National End-of-Life Doula Alliance and why are you a member?

The National End-of-Life Doula Alliance (NEDA) seeks to inspire positive, creative change in American death practices by offering the highest standards for ethical and practical guidelines, public education, and rich networking opportunities for all end-of-life (EOL) doulas who support the dying, their caregivers, and the agencies involved.​


We chose to become a member of the alliance because our vision for Canadians is in alignment with NEDA's for American's and the global community to create a cultural shift where trained EOL doulas are welcomed at the bedside of every death as part of the natural continuum of care for the dying.  To integrate EOL doula concepts into accepted mainstream practices.  To provide inclusive support of all EOL doulas and trainers who meet ethical and conduct standards.  To achieve status for EOL doulas as qualified practitioners who provide appropriate, integrative, and ethical care at end of life and to enjoy the same professional and economic standing as others offering end-of-life services.

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What is the NEDA proficiency badge?

End-of-life doulas come from all walks of life and have varying interests and skills. The National End-of-Life Doula Alliance (NEDA) has created a Scope of Practice, Code of Ethics, and Core Competencies to help guide end-of-life doula trainers, end-of-life doulas, and families alike.


A Proficiency Badge from NEDA signifies that these Core Competencies have been met. Families can know that an end-of-life doula who has earned a NEDA Proficiency Badge has met certain standards. Hospice and palliative care organizations can have the same confidence when hiring or making referrals to end-of-life doulas who have a NEDA Proficiency Badge. And end-of-life doulas who have a proficiency badge can themselves know that their knowledge compares to others working in the field.


There is no overseeing legal entity that regulates this profession. A proficiency badge is but one step that some will choose to take toward becoming a professional end-of-life doula.


A Proficiency Badge is the end result of awarding what is known as a micro credential to a student who endeavors to excel in a specific area of inquiry and wishes to demonstrate a mastery of the subject. This type of credentialing has become the gold standard in technology and education because it identifies measurable skills and accurate knowledge of specific areas of expertise based on standards, rather than simply attesting to whether someone has attended a course. It validates everyone who successfully passes the assessment based on comprehensive, and in-depth knowledge.


The NEDA core competencies were developed through an arduous process of discussion and research by experienced trainers in the field. These trainers met regularly and shared their wisdom and understanding of the common areas of necessity and expertise over the course of a year. 

Reiki

what is reiki?

Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction and relaxation that can promote healing.


The word Reiki is made of two Japanese words - Rei which means "God's Wisdom or the Higher Power" and Ki which is "life force energy." Therefore, Reiki can be defined as a "spiritually guided life force energy."


An attuned Reiki practitioner is a conduit for this "spiritually guided life force energy." With the gentle laying-on of hands some recipients can feel a warm or cooling flow of energy resting on them or moving through and around them.  Whether a person is sensitive to this flow of energy or not; Reiki treats the whole person, leaving them with a sense of well being and relaxation.