CMC/DHK Celebrates 1500th Doula Supported Birth

December 10, 2012
Keene, NH

Matthias and Parents

Left to Right Craig, Tiffany and newborn son Matthias with Cheshire Doula Marilyn Buck

Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth-Hitchcock Keene (CMC/DHK) celebrated its 1500th Cheshire Doula-supported birth with baby boy Matthias born on December 4, 2012. Parents Tiffany and Craig were coached and assisted at the hospital during the labor and birthing process by Cheshire Doula Marilyn Buck.

Mom and baby are doing well and at home enjoying the holiday season with husband and dad, Craig, and the rest of the family, Silas, age 8; Mercy, age 6; and twins Justus and Ruby, age 4. The entire family considers Matthias their most precious holiday "gift".

Although experienced parents, both Tiffany and Craig expressed enthusiastic appreciation for Marilyn Buck and her Doula support, assistance that was not available where Matthias' siblings were born. "It was wonderful the way Marilyn attended to and anticipated our needs during the labor and birth," exclaimed Tiffany. "She even walked with us throughout the hospital and suggested a few new easy movements that made the process more comfortable." Craig said he was pleased as well, saying, "As husband and father, I appreciated Marilyn's reassuring comments along the way that all was proceeding well, and she always deferred to me to participate in whatever ways I preferred; she did not interfere at all with my part of the experience with Tiffany and Matthias." Both said, "Why wouldn't parents want to accept the wonderful help from the Cheshire Doulas?"

The Doula program at CMC/DHK began in 1999. Cheshire Doulas are volunteers who undergo extensive, ongoing training and certification to provide nonmedical support to a birthing woman and her medical team during labor and delivery. Becoming a practicing Cheshire Doula involves a commitment to undergo initial and ongoing training and to be available to laboring women at a moment's notice day and night. Available at no charge to CMC/DHK birthing mothers, the Cheshire Doula volunteers offer encouragement, information and techniques to help keep women comfortable, and help with personal needs and communications with nurses, providers and family members.

Marilyn Buck became certified as a Cheshire Doula and has been practicing since 1999. She also provides ongoing training to other Cheshire Doulas. "Being a Cheshire Doula is one of the most rewarding experiences I have ever had, other than having my own children," shares Marilyn. "My goal is to give mothers the best birthing experience possible."

Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth-Hitchcock Keene is a nonprofit community hospital and clinic with a mission to lead our community to become the nation's healthiest through our clinical and service excellence, collaboration, and compassion for every patient, every time. Founded by CMC/DHK, Vision 2020 is a community-wide health initiative designed to actively engage the citizens of Cheshire County in the process of becoming the nation's healthiest community by 2020. For information, please call (603) 354-5400 or visit

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