Anjali Raj, LCCE
Where do you live?
Recently moved to Hyderabad, India from Coventry, United Kingdom
How long have you been teaching?
What was your journey to a career in childbirth education?
The interest in childbirth was almost instinctive for me. But, I never knew there was a career called childbirth education. I came across my mentor by a chance meeting and I never looked back since! I was 19 when I completed my Lamaze training seminar. I was overwhelmed and drawn in by the miracle of birth and the need for change in the current system. I took a break and completed my bachelors and masters. Six months after my masters, at the age of 22, I wrote my LCCE exam and passed with flying colors. At that point, I was the youngest LCCE in India.
How, where, and what do you teach?
I have taught sessions in a hospital setting to families, other educators and health care professionals.
Why did you choose to become a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator?
I chose to become an LCCE because I believe in the philosophy and principles of Lamaze. As a professional, you always want to be attached to an organization that shares your values and principles. Other reasons being, the dedication of Lamaze to evidence-based teaching, to ensure we bring change in the community we live in and having a LCCE credential gives you recognition worldwide.
What or who influences your teaching?
I am a researcher. Evidence, experience and information influences my teaching. I adapt my sessions as per the audience I am teaching. Childbirth education is not a one-size-fits-all scenario. Every group is different and within groups, every individual has different needs and beliefs.
What is your goal as an educator?
My goal as an educator is to spread the principles of evidence-based childbirth practices to thousands of women across my country. One of the reasons I started online sessions when I moved to the UK is so that distance, time and physical resources do not act as a barrier to advocacy. I want to be able to create a generation of confident, educated and aware parents who have every resource necessary to make their choices.
How do you use Lamaze resources to support you as an educator?
I use publications from JPE to support my teaching, the handouts and infographics for class and sometimes the videos (depending on my audience).
How could you suggest other members receive maximum value from Lamaze?
The most valuable aspect of Lamaze is the information bank we have and secondly the strong member network. There are still too few of us and I believe that we are to be supportive of each other to achieve common goals and improve the way parents look at childbirth.
When you're not teaching, what do you enjoy doing?
As I am a PhD researcher, that takes up most of my time. When I'm not caught up in work, I enjoy cooking, reading and dancing. Yoga is my favorite method of relaxation and I try to practice for at least 20-30 minutes every day.