Share Your Experience – Submit an Abstract!

    Abstract Submission Deadline: Wednesday, January 29

    This year, Lamaze International and DONA International have teamed up to jointly provide a conference that aims to promote collaboration between doulas, childbirth educators, and other childbirth professionals while listening to mothers and honoring the beliefs, desires and cultural preferences of childbearing families in order to support and protect natural, safe and healthy birth and the transition to parenthood.

    Quick Links:
    Conference Objectives
    What We're Looking For
    Important Dates
    Selection Process
    Speaker Honorarium
    Abstract Submission 

    Conference objectives:

    • Incorporate the use technology and innovation in order to meet the needs of childbearing families.
    • Discuss how evidence-based research and best practice guidelines may be incorporated into practice, used to advocate for safe and healthy birth, promote professional collaborations, and support quality initiatives.
    • Implement innovative techniques that support the physical, emotional, cultural and educational needs of childbearing families.
    • Describe current research initiatives and approaches to perinatal care that may impact safe and healthy birth, postpartum, breastfeeding and early parenting.

    What We're Looking For

    The Conference Planning Committee is looking for evidence-based presentations and hands-on sessions that build transferable skills and collaboration among conference attendees. We invite childbirth educators, doulas, midwives, nurses, administrators, doctors, physical therapists, birth advocates, social workers, authors, researchers and lactation consultants to share their expertise by submitting an abstract proposal.

    Submissions should be for one of the following presentation types: concurrent presentations, morning exercise sessions, poster presentations, or four-hour pre-conference intensive sessions. These sessions should concentrate on four areas of prime importance to childbirth professionals. Each area has a direct impact on how we listen to and connect with parents. While each of these areas is interconnected, we are looking for proposals that focus specifically on one of these four areas for the 2014 confluence sessions:

    • Using Technology and Innovation to Reach Childbearing Women: The Listening to Mothers III Survey indicates that childbearing women are highly connected to social media and widely receive information about childbirth, postpartum, and parenting through social media platforms. How can childbirth professionals connect electronically with new or potential clients and integrate technology into education, support and advocacy? How can we best connect to families with diverse needs? These sessions may consist of case studies, technology tool demos and best practices, or marketing tips for the independent provider, educator and doula.

    • Evidence Based Teaching and Practice: The use of evidence based information is at the heart of childbirth education and labor and postpartum support. Recently developed quality initiatives and professional guidelines can be used to advocate for safe and healthy birth, breastfeeding support, VBAC, parent-infant attachment, and other topics important to parents and to those who provide childbirth support. How can evidence-based practices be combined with awareness and sensitivity to the range of cultural and religious traditions and preferences to promote safe and satisfying births? These sessions will provide information about how to incorporate evidence-based information into support, education, quality initiatives and advocacy efforts.

    • Supporting the Needs of Childbirth Professionals: Doulas, childbirth educators, nurses, midwives, and others are continually searching for creative ways to understand and meet the physical, emotional, religious, cultural and educational needs and preferences of childbearing families. Topics that sometimes generate strong political, cultural and social opinions (for example circumcision, vaccination, and co-sleeping) may be addressed. Presenters will share innovative techniques for supporting and sharing information with pregnant and parenting families. In these sessions the attendees will act as the learning audience and presenters will share with peers unique learning tips and support techniques.

    • New and Emerging Research in the Field of Childbearing: These sessions are for the presentation of new research, practice guidelines and collaborative efforts (published in the last three to five years) that are relevant to childbearing families and those who serve those families. Topics may range from holistic approaches to perinatal care, nutritional recommendations, effects of stress and toxic environmental exposures on pregnancy, the life course approach to healthy birth, preconception health and other subjects. These abstracts may be submitted for a live session or for a poster presentation.

    Important Dates

    The deadline for submissions is Wednesday, January 29, 2014. The Conference Planning Committee will notify the primary submitter regarding acceptance by Friday, March 14, 2014

    Selection Process

    Each abstract is initially reviewed and ranked by an Abstract Review Taskforce and session selection is conducted by the Conference Planning Committee. The committee ranks abstracts based on:

    • Completeness: Inclusion of all required information presented in a clear manner
    • Quality of Presentation: Abstract is grounded in evidence-based information.
    • Innovation: Presentation introduces a new or unique insight to the childbirth profession
    • Relevance: Abstract meets the conference purpose and theme.

    All abstracts must be submitted online using the Online Abstract Submission Portal. Incomplete and late submissions will jeopardize consideration of your proposal. Review the submission guidelines and instructions page prior to logging into the online submission tool. If accepted, presenters will be required to work with the planning committee to supply more information on their session.

    Note: There are always more positively ranked abstracts than there are slots available and therefore those with the highest ranking are selected. The Conference Planning Committee appreciates the time and energy that all submitters put into the development of their session proposal. Abstracts not selected for a live presentation may be asked for submission in the form of a poster to share with attendees.

    Speaker Honorarium

    Concurrent and morning exercise speakers* selected to present at the 2014 Confluence will receive a $300.00 honorarium and a reduced conference registration ( $175.00).

    Poster presenters selected for the 2014 Confluence will receive a reduced conference registration ($300.00).

    Pre-conference intensive session speakers* selected to present at the 2014 Confluence will receive a $500.00 honorarium and reduced conference registration ($175.00).

    *Honorarium is per session and offered to primary presenters on the abstract.


    Click the button below to begin the abstract submission process.


    If you have any questions regarding the abstract submission process, please email or call us at 202-367-1128.