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Douglas College launches B.C.’s first end-of-life doula program

To fill the need for end-of-life care practitioners, Douglas College launches the only end-of-life doula program in B.C.

An end-of-life doula provides physical, emotional and spiritual care to a person at the end of life.

“The doula sees death as an experience that a family will remember for their entire lives and an opportunity for the dying person to experience a transformational experience,” says Jennifer Mallmes, Instructor with the End-of-Life-Doula program.

After launching a pilot project in early 2017, the program is now accepting students for the November intake. The program has been offered four times in the past year, including once in Prince George. The program will also be offered in Regina this November.

The next course starts Nov. 18 in-class over four Saturdays at the Douglas College Coquitlam Campus, from 9am- 6pm. Registration deadline is Nov. 15.   

“There are no prerequisites for the program, but this is a perfect fit for people who have a desire to educate, empower and support those who are dying or terminally ill. Social workers, nurses, support workers and hospice volunteers find this course gives them practical ideas on how to support persons at the end of their life,” says Mallmes.

The program curriculum was approved, and is reviewed by, an advisory committee made up of members of the BC Palliative and Hospice Care Association, doctors, social workers and nurses.


  • It is estimated the number of Canadians dying each year will increase 40 percent by 2026 to 330,000. (Statistics Canada, 2001, cited in CHPCA, 2015)
  • Most Canadians say they would prefer a loved one die at home surrounded by family and friends, but seven out of 10 die in the hospital – many in intensive care. (CHPCA 2012)
  • By 2023, spending on seniors’ health care in the provincial budget is expected to increase by 41 percent. (B.C. Care Providers Association)

Douglas College is the largest degree-granting college in B.C., combining the academic foundations of a university and the employer-ready skills of a college to provide the most relevant and inspiring undergraduate experience in British Columbia. 

For more information, visit douglascollege.ca.



Sucheta Singh

Communications Coordinator


604 527 5806