An Idea for a Small Business You Can Start

Start-up costs range $50 to $500,000+, earnings $5,000 to $2,000,000++, skills from knowing nothing to running an airline. Bon appetit!


Start-up cost: $3,000 - $5,000

Potential earnings: $20,000 - $35,000 for an individual; $50,000+ if you have others working for you.

Advertising: Word-of-mouth referrals, doctor's offices, ads in parenting publications. Contact midwives and childbirth instructors; talk to parents' and mothers' support groups.

Equipment needed: Telephone with answering service, cellular phone and pager, dependable transportation, brochures and business cards.

Qualifications: 40 hours of certification coursework; education in postpartum conditions, breast-feeding, first aid; experience and/or training in obstetric nursing and counseling.

Doula is a Greek word that pertains to a woman who supports and sustains new mothers and their families -- "one who mothers the mother." It is based on an old custom of mothers helping mothers adjust to their lives that have changed due to the birth of a baby. The practice of some health plans allowing the release of new mothers from the hospital within one or two days of birth has increased the demands for such services.

Some doulas are also midwives and experienced labor companions. They will give constant support through the labor and birth process as well as later during the period of adjustment at home with the family. Some areas of the country (and some physicians) are more receptive to this personal service business than others.

Excerpted with permission from "More 101 Best Home-Based Businesses for Women" by Priscilla Y. Huff. Published by Prima Publishing. For more on this and 100 other great businesses you can start, Buy the book now or ask for it at your favorite bookstore. You can also call (800) 632-8676

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