Brana Ninkov RN, MSN, CLEC, Birth Doula, BSN Nutrition Photo

Brana Ninkov RN, MSN, CLEC, Birth Doula, BSN Nutrition

Gentle Birth Doula Services

West Hills, CA Service range 30 miles

http://www.gentlebirthdoula.org

Birth Fee

$4250 to $5000

Postpartum Rate

$60 to $65

Birth Fee

$4250 to $5000

Postpartum Rate

$60 to $65


Medicaid and Third Party Insurers

Currently approved to receive payments from the following programs:


Birth Doula Experience

10 years and 170 births attended

Postpartum Doula Experience

7 years and 40 families served


Doula Training

  • DONA International-Approved Workshop, October 2014

Type of practice: Solo practice

Clients per month: 2 to 3 births and 0 to 1 postpartum families

Attends hospital births? All Hospitals

Attends birth center births? All Birth Centers

Attends home births? Any Home Birth


College Education

MA/MS


Special Services Offered

  • Abortion support
  • Acupressure
  • Antepartum doula support
  • Aromatherapy
  • Baby-led weaning
  • Babywearing education
  • Belly binding
  • Bereavement doula (pregnancy & infant loss)
  • Birth counseling for survivors of childhood sexual abuse
  • Childbirth education services
  • Cloth diapering education
  • First Aid and CPR
  • Lactation consultant/counselor services
  • LGBTQIA+ Support
  • Miscarriage support
  • Mother roasting
  • Placenta encapsulation
  • Sibling support (for your older children at the birth)
  • Surrogates and intended parents

Languages Spoken

  • Croatian
  • Dutch
  • English
  • Serbian
  • Serbocroatian

Fee Details

" I do not care what kind of birth you have…a homebirth, schedule cesarean, epidural hospital birth, or if you birth alone in the woods next to baby deer. I care that you had options, that you were supported in your choices, and that you were respected." - January Harshe ~~~$ 4,225 Basic Birth Package includes: initial 2hr intake session, 2 prenatal visits; unlimited phone calls/emails/texts; 24/7 on call starting at 38 weeks; 1 36-hour postpartum lactation session; 1 postpartum visit within 2 weeks; phone/email support for as long as needed; arrangement for a backup doula should I be unavailable ~~~$5,225 Upgraded Birth package includes all of the above plus 1, nutritional counseling session, 1 additional prenatal session and 1 additional postpartum session, and basic placenta encapsulation package PLEASE CHECK MY WEBSITE FOR DETAILS

Service Area

West Hills, CA Service range 30 miles

Client Testimonials for Brana Ninkov RN, MSN, CLEC, Birth Doula, BSN Nutrition

Post a testimonial for Brana Ninkov RN, MSN, CLEC, Birth Doula, BSN Nutrition

Eliza T.

4/2/2024

I cannot say enough amazing things about Brana. Any birthing parent would be lucky to have Brana by their sides. From our first prenatal appointment to our last post partum visit, she was so valuable to us due to both her knowledge and emotional support.

Before our birth, Brana was always available by text and call to chat after our doc appointments or discuss any concerns we had. Throughout labor and birth, she didn’t leave our side. My daughter’s birth turned out far more challenging than we hoped for, but having Brana by our side throughout made it so much more manageable. After our daughter was born, Brana stayed by our side and helped our baby to latch.

Brana was fully dedicated to the success of our daughter‘s birth and helping to create a fulfilling birth story in spite of the challenges we faced. She visited us in the hospital and at home after the birth and truly helped us process everything.

No matter how much you prepare and plan, labor and birth will most likely shock you. The best thing you can do to prepare is to make sure you have Brana as your doula.

Eliza T.

11/13/2023

I cannot say enough amazing things about Brana. Any birthing parent would be lucky to have Brana by their sides. From our first prenatal appointment to our last post partum visit, she was so valuable to us due to both her knowledge and emotional support.

Before our birth, Brana was always available by text and call to chat after our doc appointments or discuss any concerns we had. Throughout labor and birth, she didn’t leave our side. My daughter’s birth turned out far more challenging than we hoped for, but having Brana by our side throughout made it so much more manageable. After our daughter was born, Brana stayed by our side and helped our baby to latch.

Brana was fully dedicated to the success of our daughter‘s birth and helping to create a fulfilling birth story in spite of the challenges we faced. She visited us in the hospital and at home after the birth and truly helped us process everything.

No matter how much you prepare and plan, labor and birth will most likely shock you. The best thing you can do to prepare is to make sure you have Brana as your doula.

Maya

5/1/2023

If you’re even remotely considering getting Brana as your doula, I’m literally here to tell you to DO IT. I was on the search for a doula after three traumatic hospital births (2 vaginal, 1 unnecessary c section). After my c section I lost all hope in myself to actually give birth vaginally again. I interviewed several doulas none of them really meshed with my husband and I 100%. Then came Brana. My husband was present during the interview and we immediately knew she was the one. She was on board with everything I wanted in a birth and was there to make sure I saw it through. Just her being there whenever I felt scared was honestly enough for me. She brought my confidence back and made me feel like I was the most powerful woman. She made me believe that I was created to deliver naturally. She was there for me from the minute I decided she was going to be my doula. She helped me pick a VBAC supportive provider, she gave me tips on what I should be doing prior to labor, coached my husband on things that can help during labor, and honestly made me feel like I finally found what was missing with all my previous births. The day I went into labor Brana was there every single step of the way. She was speaking to my husband constantly and reassured him that everything was going to be ok. My labor happened fast and we couldn’t make it to the hospital. It was just my husband and I at my sister in laws apartment, but with Branas coaching on the phone  (labor came so fast unexpectedly and we didn’t call her in time prior) it was by far one of the easiest, simplest most amazing birth. I couldn’t even have dreamt to have such an amazing birth if I didn’t have Brana. To all the women out there who feel like they have been traumatized by the medical system and need to heal themselves, hire Brana, you will not be disappointed I promise you that. If anyone has any more questions feel free to message me at mayamaaz@hotmail.com.

Gina Corso

3/24/2022

Honestly, every woman deserves to birth with the support and love of a doula as wonderful as Brana. It's hard to put into words my immense gratitude to the universe for connecting us, so I'll share just 2 moments we had together:

1. I had a nightmare one evening around month 6 that my baby had been born and I kept “messing up” as a new mom. I kept dressing her “the wrong way” and clothes didn’t fit, I bought the wrong type of diapers, etc. I told Brana about this dream and to my amusement she replied - “Oh I’ve done things like that in real life!” And we had a good laugh. She comforted and reassured me there’s no perfection to be had and that I’d have strong intuition with my babe. I felt comforted and less scared.
2. I was having anxiety and some overwhelming stress near month 8, and I called her and she reminded me to unplug, focus on my breathing, take baths, try to calm my nervous system. She made me realize my feelings were valid and normal and reminded me to tap into my body and relax. It was a turning point in my pregnancy. I felt heard and seen.
3. I had a homebirth but I had to be transferred to a hospital and she came with me. I was naked and bleeding and sad and vulnerable and the nurses felt hostile. She advocated for my right to a support person being by my side; she made me feel safe and protected.

I wish I could go on and on; alas, there is a word limit to this review. She has a strong grounding energy and she walked me through  the most pivotal moment of my life, side by side, shoulder to shoulder. She respected and supported me from Day 1 and I’m forever grateful she was with me on this journey.

Thomas Pojunas

5/5/2021

What more can we say ... Brana was an absolute delight and the exact energy, presence, and level of expertise my wife and I were looking for in a doula. Yes -- she's kind, thoughtful, insightful, and everything leading up to the birth put us at ease and provided us with the information and mindset we needed. But even more than that, it was Brana's presence at the physical birth and her post-partum visits that made (yes, made) our birth experience and made all the difference in how my wife gave birth, nurtered our son, and made the transition home. Regardless of the time of day or the problem at hand, Brana was our guiding force who always had a kind word or touch, a ready response, and a warm, positive attitude. It's not often that people surpass your wildest expectations, but Brana was truly a godsend to us and, even now, we wonder where we'd be without her insight on birthing position, birthing exercises, and lactation/latching. Our only regret is we didn't take advantage of her post-partum services (do it!), and by the time we realized our error in judgement, our schedules didn't align. Honestly, we can't speak more highly of her and including Brana in this very intimate, personal experience of yours will be the best decision you'll make throughout. Thank you, Brana. We'll never be able to repay the kindness and light you have given us. 

Ariel kohn

5/14/2020

Brana being our doula was an actual godsend and I cannot rave about her enough. I am beyond grateful for her. I gave birth for the first time a couple weeks ago with her help and I'm not sure how I would have done it without her.
Being my first time, and being pregnant during a pandemic, I had a ton of fears and anxieties leading up to my delivery and from the moment she came into our lives she did everything she could to help allay those fears and prepare us for every facet of pregnancy, delivery and post partum. Due to the pandemic all of my childbirth classes were canceled, so Brana went above and beyond providing me with any and all information I could need To feel confident about giving birth.
Brana is like a teacher, support group, friend and loved one all mixed into one. She provided education, support, and caring every step of the way. Anyone who has the chance to have her is extremely lucky. THANK YOU, BRANA!!!!

Ariel kohn

5/14/2020

Brana being our doula was an actual godsend and I cannot rave about her enough. I am beyond grateful for her. I gave birth for the first time a couple weeks ago with her help and I'm not sure how I would have done it without her.
Being my first time, and being pregnant during a pandemic, I had a ton of fears and anxieties leading up to my delivery and from the moment she came into our lives she did everything she could to help allay those fears and prepare us for every facet of pregnancy, delivery and post partum. Due to the pandemic all of my childbirth classes were canceled, so Brana went above and beyond providing me with any and all information I could need To feel confident about giving birth.
Brana is like a teacher, support group, friend and loved one all mixed into one. She provided education, support, and caring every step of the way. Anyone who has the chance to have her is extremely lucky. THANK YOU, BRANA!!!!

Alicia Atkinson

4/2/2020

I am so thankful that Brana was a part of my pregnancy and birth journey. I began looking for a doula when I was diagnosed with intraheptic cholestasis of pregnancy at 33 wks. This meant I had to have an induction at 37 wks. While I had had a successful natural birth with my previous birth, I was very nervous about having an induction and felt I was going to need some extra support. To add to that, I was a surrogate for a friend and this was her first baby.
We felt a connection with Brana right away when we spoke to her on the phone. Since my friend and her spouse lived out of the area we had to do our pre-birth visits virtually, but that worked out great. Brana helped us understand what to expect with an induction and listened to how we hoped the birth would go. Together we developed a birth plan. Then the Coronavirus situation happened and everything changed. I was only allowed one person in the delivery room with me and Brana switched to virtual support. When we met again (still virtually), Brana showed my spouse and the baby’s parents different techniques to help comfort me and progress labor. 
On induction day, we set up a video conference for Brana and the spouses that couldn’t be in the delivery room. My friend and I texted and video chatted them off and on throughout the day and Brana gave us great advice. Then the pitocin kicked in hardcore and I needed a lot of support. Brana really stepped in. She encouraged me and made me feel like things were progressing and she gave my friend the tools and coaching to provide me with physical support. I honestly think I would have felt traumatized by the induction process had it not been for Brana there on the computer. Instead, I felt accomplished that I successfully birthed my dear friend’s baby without pain medication with an induction at 37 wks. I am beyond grateful to have had Brana’s guiding light to help me navigate this birth during this stressful time.

Shany Trachtman

3/1/2020

Simply amazing. No other words to describe Branna.

i gave birth to my first child in December, and I was so nervous about the process and the brestfeeding. Brana wa always here to discuss my options with me, make me feel better, and reassuring me all the time. i knew I wanted an epidural, but was afraid of the pain before.

Once my labor started, Brana was here to help me, guide me, and make me feel better. She has amazing techniques, breathing, massage, essential oils, comforting, that make such a difference. I couldn't have done it without her. When we had to go to the hospital, because my water broke, brana really helped me cope with the pain until I got the epidural. I was panicked and stressed, and having her around helping me constantly made such a difference. She also helped me make the right choices (who would be the delivery nurse) when I was feeling vulnerable. She also wa amazing to my husband and helped him helping me better. 
Thanks to Brana, he could help me at birth as I needed.

she is also an amazing post-partum doula as I hired her after birth for a few shifts to help me get around. She helped me latch my baby successfully with no stress, as in the hospital I felt this constant pressure about latching right away. She helped me with smart advice, great tips for new moms as I had no clue about anything. 

I definitely recommend her, she is amazing ! Thanks Brana!

Lauren & Steve

2/4/2020

Brana is simply amazing. She is deeply intuitive, calming, has an insanely high EQ, and a great sense of humor. Instead of feeling, as many of the women I know do, that the birth of my child was an unpleasant and out-of-my-control means to a glorious end, Brana's assistance made me feel completely empowered by the whole experience. I wanted to attempt a natural birth but had no misgivings about needing to opt for an epidural if it felt necessary. The breathing/vocalization techniques Brana taught me and her massages allowed me to stay at home FAR longer than I would have been able to on my own. I arrived at the hospital 8 cm dilated and opted for an epidural soon after. My baby came out in 6 pushes and the whole thing felt calm and joyous. I cannot imagine what a scary experience it would have been to navigate the hospital system without Brana there to gently help guide nurses and my husband. You realize once you are going through it how quickly things can change and how rigid and black-and-white our medical system is. They're trained to strictly categorize people and situations, which is depersonalizing and not always what's ultimately best to mother and baby. It's easy to reflect back after the fact on how small changes could have very big impacts on the outcome of your birth, but in the heat of the moment, I was so grateful we had Brana there to be our advocate and ensure that small measures were taken (allowing me to birth on my side, for example) that made huge differences for me in the end. With such an excess of conflicting information on the internet, on pregnancy apps, from parents and in-laws, Brana was an invaluable, trusted resource. She was also so giving of her time and was there to support us even after our formal sessions ended. She made space in our hectic lives for us to pause and take a moment to truly appreciate the life changing event that was about to unfold.  

Jenny and Max

10/16/2019

A wonderful experience.


As a single parent heading into my first (and only) birthing experience I was pretty nervous. Should I mention I was also an oly child? I had zero experience or understanding of how the process works, the myriad of potential issues, solutions and what options exist for pregnant ladies everywhere.


Like most experiences, the giving birth part was full of twists and turns. But I felt fully informed and empowered both leading up to and during the labor process as well as completely supported because of Brana.
She recommended books and pod casts that shed light on so many facets of pregnancy, labor and the postpartum period. She was there for us before, during and after.

Swaddling, feeding, regulating sleeping, crazy pre and post labor aches and pains...Brana is so knowledgeable and has such an amazing energy you basically want her to move in.


Can't recommend her more highly. Thanks Brana, we love you!

Andrea Felix

12/3/2016

I am an event coordinator by trade which is why having a doula present during my pregnancy and labor journey was so important to me. This was an overwhelming and huge life experience for us so I knew I wanted someone there with my SO and I who has professional and personal experience.

My SO was skeptical at first; he didn't want someone there who was going to take over or make him feel like he was taking a back seat. The moment he met Brana all those feelings and reservations melted away. We both instantly felt at ease and comfortable with her, but it wasn't just bc of her calm and reassuring demeanor or that all of our energies jived, it was that she is incredibly knowledgeable and has extensive experience as an RN and as a doula. Having her on our team made us feel so secure and confident in the decisions we were making when she guided us through her questionnaire. She asked questions and brought up points that we hadn't even considered and it was through that process that we were able to *really* put into words exactly how we wanted this process to go. We were no longer going in blind and knowing that felt AMAZING.
Of course, not everything went as planned but having Brana there empowered my SO and I and gave us the confidence to stand our ground when we had doctors trying to push for options that weren't medically necessary simply bc they were "protocol". I was able to have a natural delivery *I* wanted rather than the c-section that would have been more convenient for the doctors.
Our birth story would have turned out so much different than it did had we not had Brana by our side, and for that I cannot recommend her enough or more highly.

Diana Lou

11/2/2016

I had a very long (over 100 hr) labor with active level contractions and Brana was there for me THE WHOLE TIME. She was responsive via text, phone, and right there in person at all odd hours of the night and day. The whole time she maintained professionalism, a level head, and a positive attitude which helped me (and my husband) make it to the end! I highly recommend her!

Angie Chapados

8/31/2016

If you are looking for an amazing doula, then look no further. I set a few interviews with doulas in early 2016 for my first pregnancy. I could tell right away Brana was special just in her responses by email. I met her and we instantly connected. She answered all of my questions, and made me feel totally comfortable. Everything she said aligned with my philosophy, and was exactly what I wanted to hear. I cancelled all my other interviews, and went with her, I just knew. I was right. Brana ended up being everything I was hoping for.

Since she was a nurse previously, she gave me scientific and accurate information, always. She shared book recommendations and articles with me. She is professional in every way.

I wanted to have an unmedicated birth more than anything. Brana believed in me and my goals. As they say, birth plans don't always go your way. Mine didn't. Our baby was breech, and though Brana guided us to try many different things to achieve our goal, our baby wouldn't turn. Brana supported me through an unsuccessful ECV procedure. I ended up needing to have a C-Section and was devastated at first. Brana helped me get over my upset and learn to frame it in really positive way. She was there for me even though she was not allowed, by my hospital, to be in the operating room. She was there before and after for as long as I needed her. She helped take care of me immediately after the operation, and helped our baby to breast feed right away. My birth story is not what I expected, but Brana helped me to make it positive, supported and joyful. I'll love her forever as a result.

marianne mazurowski

7/8/2016

Brana's support with bringing our second child into the world was a true gift. My experience with my first was a (unfortunately) typical harried hospital experience. Brana helped me see there are other ways, and helped me learn so much. She truly cares for her clients and takes time to get to know them and explain all their options. She is without judgement and only wants to support, no matter what decisions her clients make. She sent me fantastic articles that helped with new ways of viewing all aspects of birthing and having a newborn. I learned so much from her, and had my eyes opened to an entirely new life-changing perspective. When the day arrived that our baby girl came into the world, her presence was invaluable- the baby came so fast that there ended up not being time to go to the hospital as planned. Brana rushed over immediately after speaking to me on the phone, to hear my voice through contractions. She was there to help me breathe and relax, to help my husband do the same, to help relay our information to the paramedics, to catch the baby, to grab our cellphone and snap a few invaluable pics of us holding our baby girl for the very first time. She came to the hospital ER and continued to support us. Even amidst all the rushing around, she thought to bring a nursing pillow, snacks and drinks. Brana handles everything with a confident inner peace and grace. Expectant mothers have so many questions and their minds are flooded with so much uncertainty- Brana's presence is exactly what any expectant mother needs to help alleviate that stress and truly enjoy the birth of their child.

Sara Raz

11/11/2015

I felt privilege to have had Brana be my doula for my third baby girl, it was then that I knew what I was missing the two times before. And it was simply somebody showing me the support I needed to get through the miracle of birth and anything in between. From the talks and meetings during pregnancy to the day of delivery, she was there to offer me a calming ambient that made my experience much more enjoyable. She gave her all to me with a 100% of her mind, body, and soul. I highly recommend Brana to any woman out there expecting, especially the first timers, because that’s when we are most terrified of the unknown, but then again it doesn’t matter how many times you’ve done it, it can still be scary and she will be able to ease your mind and address all your concerns, and make sure you are at peace as you prepare yourself for delivery. Most importantly, if you have a birth plan, she will make sure your doctor and nurses stick to it! When I have my next baby, without hesitation, I will ask her to be doula again!

Haaland Dewart

11/11/2015

Brana is an amazing doula. She will walk you through every step with a kindness and consideration that seems endless. For those who are able to take the most natural route she will be right by your side helping you and your partner understand all of the innumerable decisions that come up. Due to a health condition I've had since childhood, I ended up having to have a cesarean in the hospital and I was extremely disappointed that we had to change my husband and my plan for a natural birth. Brana was able to walk me through step by step how to give my son the most natural experience of his birth. She is so fascinated by the beauty of birth that she keeps up with all of the latest research and information on how to create your ideal birth even when conditions may not be that ideal.

liron shir bonen

11/9/2015

On my 2nd pregnancy I decided that I want to try a natural birth, with no epidoral. Brana was there for me for every question I had, and helped me with all my concerns. when I went to the hospital, I called Brana and she came so fast and supported me, listened to me, and helped me with each contraction.

The thing I liked most in my experience with Brana was that although Brana believes in natural birth, she never tried to force it. She listened to me and she did everything she could to make it easier on me. I am so happy that Brana was there for me.

Diana Merovingians

10/23/2015

Three months ago I was blessed to give birth to a beautiful baby girl. While being pregnant I hesitated a lot whether to use a doula for my birth experience or to rely on the nurses in the hospital. After hearing stories about how stressful the experience can be in the hospital and about how much pressure is for medical interventions that speed up the birth, I decided to give a doula try. I have to say, it was the one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Throughout the whole experience, Brana was there for us. We hired her about 5 months before the due date. She informed and prepared us thoroughly for the whole experience and helped me ease calmly into what is to come. My fears and stress were replaced by excitement and enthusiasm.

The dilevery itself was simply magical. Brana did a wonderful job accompanying us throughout the whole experience. She helped us set the room up based on my wishes, providing a very homey environment. Brana kindly took care of all the details such as candles, dimmmed lights, calm meditative music, the pilates ball that ended up being a life saver. Brana’s calm personality, helped me tremendously to relax, breath and enjoy. I am unsure how she did it, but she truly helped me to be in the “here and now”, and take it all in! instead of suffering from the pain, I found myself welcoming it and even enjoying it in some weird way , while hearing Brana calmly remind me, “with every surge, my baby is coming closer and closer to me..: )

I ended up having my baby girl completely natural, without any intervention. Thanks to Brana being by my side, and all the confidence and knowledge that she gave me, I trusted that I could do it, and I did it. I cannot thank you Brana enough for being there for us and for helping us create such memorable and beautiful experience!

Diana McClean

10/19/2015

Brana is the most gentle, honest, and loving person I know.  To have Brana participate in my birthing process was an incredible blessing; and I am proud to call her among my most intimate friends.

She was calm.  She was knowledgable.  She supported me and my birthing partner (husband Joe).  Having attended the birthing class at Bini Birth (based on Brana's recommendation), I felt prepared for the journey to come.  Joe was next to me the whole time, and prepared for the process.  His job was to "protect me like a wild bear."

Brana was there to support us.  She knew to breathe next to me.  She knew when and how to make suggestions that felt tolerable to me while I was in active labor.  Having Brana as a doula allowed my team (midwife, sister, husband) to take breaks.  Who knew they would need to eat or use the bathroom?

Having a doula was like having a committed expert as a friend through my pregnancy and brithing process.  She answered questions along the way and provided reassurances to my weary pregnancy brain.

I believe having Brana in the room while you birth, and with you through your pregnancy, is the most wonderful experience you could have.  Having her positive, calm, gentle energy is the exact way I wanted to have my son greated into the world.

Sonia Capretta

10/9/2015

Brana was the best presence we could have asked to have at our birth. From the first meeting, we felt that Brana's services were individualized to our situation. My first son was born 4 weeks early, so Brana went on call 1 month prior to my due date because of my history. She responded to my text messages quickly, and answered all my questions with patience. To our surprise, my water broke with my second 4 weeks early too, and as Brana had anticipated a possibility of a preterm birth she was ready and there in no time. I desired a natural birth, and felt well informed and supported by my doula at all times. Her calm, non pushy attitude was appreciated by the nurses and my doctor as well. She is also an expert in breastfeeding ( I think she is still breastfeeding her 3.5 year old), so it was wonderful having her as a resource in the early weeks.
To anybody who is looking for a pleasant birth experience, I highly recommend Brana! Enjoy, Sonia

Anna Frenkel

10/5/2015

I have nothing but amazing things to say about Brana Ninkov. Brana was my doula for the birth of my second child in March 2013. She supported me emotionally and even physically through the process, putting me at ease with her gentle bedside manner- even bringing humor and fun to the process (as she understood that's what I wanted). My birth plan was modern: I accepted to be induced and use an Epideral. Brana was open minded and non-judgemental and accepted of all of my wishes and took actions that were consistent with my plan at all times. Her presence in my delivery room was vital to the success and beauty of my experience. Whatever your birth plan, you will not meet a more supportive, knowledgable, relatable doula anywhere. I highly recommend!

Birth Availability for Brana Ninkov RN, MSN, CLEC, Birth Doula, BSN Nutrition

= Available. Calendar last updated: 05-26-2024

Postpartum Availability for Brana Ninkov RN, MSN, CLEC, Birth Doula, BSN Nutrition

= Available. Calendar last updated: 05-26-2024