Sumi's Touch full spectrum traditional birth worker training Part 1 is a 6 month virtual training intended to leave the participant with the information, skills, and confidence to support someone either as a professional or familial birth, loss, abortion and/ or postpartum support. This course includes over 120+ hours of online course work that is divided into weekly modules. The curriculum is made fully by Sumayyah Franklin, and consists of educational videos, an exclusive podcast by Sumi with esteemed guest, a workbook journal for reflections and note taking, extensive resources, a private portal to network and connect with your cohort members, and study groups in case you need additional support or just want to connect with others on the path alongside you.

Wait…I’m Not Done:

You will also receive 6 months access to virtual circle, an exclusive online community of birth workers, sacred entrepreneurs, parents, and artist. We host various workshops throughout the month and you will be able to join in! 

Still Not Done…

You will also have access to Sumi for one on one coaching at a major discount. Coaching is a great way to invest in your personal and professional growth. Sumi’s approach is holistic, spiritual, and relatable. Usually she offers packages that cost $$$$ but for all students and alumni you will have access to one off sessions for only $150! 

Our Philosophy:

 ✨ We believe that pregnancy, birth, miscarriage, and postpartum are all physiological processes that deserve support, tenderness, and sovereignty! 

 ✨We believe that traditional birth workers are essential care providers that optimize the experience and outcome for pregnant, birthing, and postpartum people. 

 ✨ We believe that a resurgence of traditional midwifery model of care is essential in optimizing the reproductive experiences of Black ( and all) people. 

We believe that traditional birth work is a calling not a job. 

We do not believe that you need a training to practice as a birth worker, but rather a training is a great way to deepen your practice, obtain essential skills, and to build community. Additionally a training can see you years learning via experience alone. 

We believe that each person should be able to determine who they wish to provide support for them during any and all reproductive experiences and that full informed consent, care, and collaborative decision making should be practiced always.

Meet Our Guest Lecturers

Yvette Murrell

Yvette Murrell is a Power Voice & Choice Coach! She is an authentic life-coach that supports professionals, community leaders, healers, and creatives in healing core relationships, enhancing influence within community and speaking up and showing up more fully in life!

Micah Hobbes Frazier is a Black queer mixed-gendered facilitator, somatic coach/healer, and magic maker; living, loving, laughing, and building in Tulum, Mexico. Micah facilitates spaces for individuals and organizations engaged in transformative work to address conflict and harm/violence, work through trauma and grief/loss, and create sustainable culture and practices that are aligned with their principles, mission, and vision.

Shirley Johnson

Shirley Johnson is a practicing licensed psychotherapist, herbalist, sound healer and yoga teacher based in Oakland, California. Passionate about authentic expression, movement, prosperity, slowing down and self care, Shirley creates space in her private practice and led workshops & retreats supporting people to live their most authentic life and embrace their whole selves to live their purpose and be wildly and abundantly compensated for it!

Leila Wright

Leila Wright is a certified in women’s herbal therapy and community centered herbalism. Her work centers women, lgbtq+ folks and non binary peoples. Her specialties include fertility issues, sexual wellness, mood disorders such as anxiety and depression, erratic menstrual cycles and pain, conscious conception, pregnancy and traditional postpartum healing..

Brandi Gates-Burgess

Brandi Gates-Burgess is mother of four exclusively breastfed children, and a passionate breastfeeding advocate. As an International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) since 2011, she has been empowering Bay Area families ever since wit the roles of Breastfeeding Peer Counselor, Breastfeeding Specialist, and Breastfeeding Coordinator.


Birth work called Jazz-Ylaine at a young age. Jazz-Ylaine served and support as a birth and reproductive health: Educator, Trainer, Mentor, Coach, Consultant, and Advocate. Throughout her life she studied and integrated holistic practices such as: yoga, meditation, Reiki, massage, womb healing and natural fertility.

TaNefer Camara

TaNefer Camara is a board-certified lactation consultant, maternal health strategist, and healer with 15 years of experience in supporting women through birth, breastfeeding, and postpartum.

TaNefer combines her educational background in psychology & community health with Spiritual and ancestral wisdom.

Dani Vicc is a master student committing herself to a lifetime of study & learning. She has immersed herself in almost all areas of Eastern medicine while also studying Western medicine. Some of her tools include acupuncture & moxibustion, tuina massage, Chinese herbs, feng shui, Chinese cosmology & astrology, & qigong & taichi.

Sarah has been a community abortion and death doula since age 15 forming the roots of her politicized approach to reproductive health and justice: Birthing The Block. In her commitment to this work, she strives to contribute to a landscape of care that goes beyond standardized models, recognizing the diversity of experiences and needs within reproductive health.

Register for Your Seat Today

Are You Calling in a Community of Aligned Birth Workers To Continue to Grow During Your Training and Beyond?

So you have decided that you are ready to say yes…but what’s the next steps exactly. Honestly, I never took a training and I don’t believe you need one in order to practice as a birth worker. BUT the advantages of taking a training is that you get to learn lessons that took me a decade, within moments or months. So often we reject support and guidance and convince ourselves that self-sacrifice and self-betrayal is strength. Im here to support you on your journey to feel held, seen, and resourced. Throughout the years we have trained over 1,000 people from all around the world. From our inception we have only training Black, indigenous, people of color. We have always centered the most marginalized and honor the legacy and resurgence of traditional midwifery. Why? Because a “doula” is a new word but a very ancient concept. They have convinced us that being a doula is where it stops but truly its a primal where it just begins. My training is a space for you to remember what that means for you, your community, and your lineage. The people who are drawn to this space that we all co-create together are dynamic, radical, spiritual, and serious as fuck about optimizing the reproductive experiences of Black, Indigenous, and POC!  

Hear From Our Alumni:

" [I took] Sumi's All Black Cohort and my gosh was it life changing. The curriculum and the verbiage. The history and knowledge that is shared and taught you will not find anywhere else. You're able to learn and grasp every lesson from a complete level of understanding and gentleness. You're working on how to doula yourself which I believe to be key while showing up as a birth worker. All in all. I'm so thankful to have prayed and manifested for such a beautiful opportunity. I will definitely be taking yet another course with this lovely team of ladies as I continue in my spirit work of being a birth worker. Thank you so much "

— Shanai U.

"Sumi’s Doula training is truly unmatched. The expansive knowledge and community she creates is so transformative! After finishing part 1 I was ready to support folks in all parts of their journey! I went on to writing my own prenatal and postpartum yoga course and more! I’m headed to Part 2 in Colombia to fill my cup and gain more knowledge so I can share with others!” 

— Amanda

 “I went into Sumi’s training thinking I was going to learn how to support and help heal and care for people during birth, but I left healed. I left the training learning the importance of truly and deeply caring for oneself. This training changed my life.”

— Victoria 

“The all Black doula training was a transformational experience for me. I learned the importance of starting with self when it comes to caring for others. Before taking the training this was such a foreign concept for me, but once I learned it I have been way more present with myself and intentional about responding to my needs before anyone else’s. I also learned how to let go of the idea of perfection and ego. I truly emerged from this training as a better human and I’m so grateful to Sumi for this life changing offering.”

— Mama J 

“A testimonial from your amazing training: I can confidently say taking Sumi’s training changed the course of my life. I walked into that training knowing the minimum about what a doula is let alone the world of birth work and walked out with an abundance of knowledge. I also left with a feeling that I had found my calling! I now work as a full time doula helping black women in SF. If you are considering taking this training I wouldn’t hesitate, do what you need to fundraise or save because the cost is nothing compared to what you will walk away with 💕”


I’m Sumayyah “Sumi” Franklin and I’m a traditional midwife, Mama, Healer, Business and life coach, and a master doula trainer/mentor. Since I was a small girl I knew I wanted to be a midwife. Throughout high school I binged on books and studied this sacred work any way I could. Shortly after high school, I went to a midwifery conference that changed my life! I met so many of who would become mentors, colleagues, and pillars on my path. By early college I was asked to support a dear friend of mine as her doula. Long story short, I missed her birth…BUT I gained so much embodied knowledge and I was more clear than ever that I was ready. 

A few years later I moved to Ghana, west Africa. Although my intention was to wrap up my undergrad I found myself working at a birth center for the year that I lived there. Can you imagine how I felt when I returned? I was ready to further my studies and needed to figure out how. Throughout the next 5 years I studied with various midwives, traveled the world sitting at the feet of various midwives, worked as a volunteer midwife in Uganda, and slowly grew into the midwife I am today. For the past 7 years I have been working as a traditional midwife in my community. Early on in my studies I watched other midwives closely and saw how pervasive the medical structures are and how they have infiltrated midwifery, too. I made a commitment to seek out authentic, traditional, holistic midwifery as my protest to these structures and as a way to honor my ancestors and what was truly calling me. Now a days I have the pleasure of serving my community as a traditional midwife, mentoring and training new and experienced birth workers, coaching, and more than anything being a Mama. 

Excuse Me If Im Wrong But….

  1. You Have been feeling a call to birth work for some time now and you are finally ready to say “YES”

  2. You have been searching for a training that feels aligned and you haven’t been able to find it…until now! 

  3. You feel passionate about physiological birth, body autonomy, consent, decolonization, reproductive justice, herbalism, natural medicine, and dismantling systems of oppression…or you wish to be immersed and learn more! 

  4. No one around you is surprised that you want to get into birth work….in fact they can easily see you thriving in this field! 

  5. You often times find yourself holding space for other people, people feel safe in your presence, you cant even count how many people confide in you even total strangers! 

  6. You are fed up and over hearing about the health disparities and ready to be apart of the solution! 

  7. You are the Black sheep of your family….but you are also the one who is breaking generational cycles, healing your inner child, and placing needed boundaries. 

  8. You feel more clear than ever that you want to say yes to this undeniable call! 

Midwives have been around since the beginning of time. In fact, the midwife is the oldest Profession in human history. For millions of years humans birthed in our homes: sovereignly, physiologically, and on our own terms. Midwives were an essential and honorable community member whose skill set expand much farther than simply “catching babies”. She was the community doctor, she support in death rituals, she had remedies for nearly everything, she was a relationship counselor, she held high ranking in the community and her skills were seen as a gift from God. By a strategic plan the midwife was eradicated and made out to be uneducated, irresponsible, dirty, and unsafe. Why? Because of greed, capitalism, patriarchy, and anti-Black/ indigenous racism. Just 100 years ago 99% of people were born at home and today 99% are born in the hospital system. Knowing this history is a core objective our our curriculum. So many people are drawn to being a doula but very few know how and why the doula was created. 

The word Doula is new but the role is ancient. The doula was the apprentice midwife, the student, the assistant. She was destined to support her community with wrap around care that was highly informed by time tested practices and remedies. We must decolonize the way we approach the work if we are gonna decolonize birth, and it starts with remembering where we came from. We need us now more than ever because there is a system that is thriving due to our collective amnesia and ignorance. A decolonial framework to me means striving to extract the intention our ancestors held in keeping the integrity of the medicine, even if we do not have access to the exact practices. If this resonates with you, then join us to dig much deeper and collectively decolonize through remembering together! 

Join now and receive immediate access to our first module!

  General Info
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  Community Resources & Reference Materials
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  1. Where It All Starts
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  2. The Art of Holding Space
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  3. Sacred Anatomy
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  4. Pregnancy
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  5. Signs & Sensation of Labor
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  6. Labor Land
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  7. The Opening : Labor and Birth
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  8. Emergence: Baby Releasing from the Body
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  9. Consent, Trauma Informed Care and Capacity
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  10. Pregnancy Conclusion & Loss Support
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  11. The Fourth Trimester
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  12. Feeding Fundamentals
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  13. Newborn Care
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  14. Herbal Medicine and Nutrition
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  15. Traditional Modalities & Indigenous Technology
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  16. Minding Your Doula Business
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Register for Your Seat Today

“I believe that each person who attends this training is already a Doula. As a facilitator my goal is to provide the tools to equip each participant to practice as a Professional Doula. This course is truly one that transforms each participant from a lay person to a practitioner. Holding space for people as a Doula is very ancient and I hope to activate the dormant memory of this sacred work in each participant’s DNA. ”

Sumayyah Franklin

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the formatting of this course?
Our Full spectrum traditional birth worker training is a hybrid. There are weekly modules that each student will complete and then two types of weekly live calls via zoom. On Sundays we have live sessions with either Sumi or an esteemed guest speaker. On Wednesday evenings and Saturday mornings there will be a study group hosted by one of our lovely TAs. 

Will I be able to serve as a doula after? will I be licensed or certified?
Doulas and traditional birth workers work independently. There isn’t a governing body that regulates Doulas and traditional birth workers. Therefore, there isn’t a license associated with this sector of work. There isn’t a requirement for you to take a training or be certified to support your community and loved ones. Your ability to serve as a doula is contingent on your individual confidence and clarity. The curriculum will provide you will more than enough information and skills to equip you to serve as a doula. We do not provide certification as it is arbitrary considering there’s isn’t a governing body. We provide a certificate of completion and community to support you before, during, and after your training. 

Do you offer payment plans?
We offer several options for payment plans. You can pay in monthly installments for various lengths of time. The longer the payment plan the less you’ll pay each month. We also accept affirm, Afterpay, and PayPal payment plan options. You can find all of these options available for you to explore on the registration page here. 

When does class start? What’s the time commitment?
4/28/2024 - 10/20/2024 We will have our opening ceremony 4/28/2024. This is the official first day of class. However, you have until 5/10/24 to join us!! The weekly time commitment is about 7-10 hours including Sunday live call and one study group session of your choosing. 

When is the last day for me to sign up?
The last day for you to join us will be 5/10/24 11:59pm PST . If you have missed the deadline please email us at [email protected] 


What does the training consist of?
The training consist of 24 weeks of hybrid learning and community building. There are weekly modules that each student will complete via a platform called teachable. You can review an overview of the curriculum here. All material in the modules are pre-recorded. We meet a live a few times a week via zoom. Ok Sundays we have integration sessions with Sumi or a guest lecturer at 9am PST. On Wednesday evenings and Saturday mornings one of our amazing TAs facilitates study group. 

What is the time commitment?
The tile commitment fluctuates from 7-10 hours/ week. This includes live calls as well as completing the online modules each week.

How long do I have access to the course?
6 months unless you've purchased a lifetime extension.

If I am mixed with Black, or I do not read as Black or light skinned, am I welcomed to join?Race is a social construct, so how society defines Blackness can change. This course is for people who self-identify as Black and go about the world (in all settings) as a Black person. More than likely, if you have to ask if you’re Black, you probably aren’t.

What distinguishes the All-Black cohort from the POC-ONLY cohort?
Our curriculum always centers the most marginalized people. However, this course is a space that’s curated for Black people, meaning the topics, imagery, and conversation will be focused on serving a Black population. Being such, all participants and teachers will be Black. The curriculum will focus on Black history and the Black birthing experience.

Does the curriculum differ from the POC-ONLY curriculum?
A vast majority of the curriculum is the same, but the All-Black curriculum involves topics and discussions that center around serving Black people as a Black person.

As a Black person, how will taking this course benefit me and inform my skill set as a doula?
To my knowledge there isn’t any other doula training for Black people, taught by Black people, and provides a full-spectrum, radically-inclusive training. As a Black person, it is my hope that this course would benefit you in ways that are seen and unseen. You will gain historical knowledge that informs the current Black birthing experience. You will also be able to connect with other Black birth workers. We will be able to discuss and challenge the Black birth experience beyond the white gaze. We will have time to reclaim our traditions in a safe environment, to create new ones, and to imagine a collective future.

Is there going to be an All-Black In-person training as well?
Abso-fuckin-lutely. Once outside is open again and we can all safely frolic and gather together. We will announce once we solidify a date.

Is the course refundable?
No payments made by Registrant for any Sumi's Touch (ST) Program are refundable whether or not Registrant attends, participates in, or completes the applicable ST Program. If a Registrant is unable to complete a payment plan or participate in the enrolled cohort, the Registrants payments will roll over to a future training, workshop or service.

Terms of Agreement
Below you will find the Terms and Conditions applicable to your registration for programs with Sumi’s Touchl, LLC (“ST”). The terms “ST Program” or “ST Programs” shall be deemed to refer to any and all programs offered by ST. The term “Registrant” shall be deemed to refer to the person who is registering for and will participate in a ST Program. (1)Exclusive Terms and Conditions. ST does not accept any terms and conditions for registration for ST Programs other than those expressly set forth below and hereby offers ST Programs only upon the following terms and conditions. Registrant’s payment in full or payment of the first payment under an installment plan shall constitute Registrant’s assent to the terms and conditions set forth below. The terms and conditions of registration contained herein supersede all prior agreements, discussions, negotiations, proposals, or communications between ST and the Registrant. The terms and conditions of registration contained herein are not subject to amendment or modification unless expressly agreed to by ST in a writing executed by an authorized officer of ST. (2A) Payment Terms. No payments made by Registrant for any ST Program are refundable whether or not Registrant attends, participates in, or completes the applicable ST Program. If a Registrant is unable to complete a payment plan or participate in the enrolled cohort, the Registrants will payments will roll over to a future training, workshop or service. (2B) Registrant may choose to pay for the entire program at the time of registration or to pay under an installment plan. If Registrant chooses to pay for a ST Program under an installment plan, Registrant authorizes ST to make automatic withdrawals from the credit or debit account Registrant provides at the time of registration for a ST Program. The dates on which ST shall make automatic withdrawals from Registrant’s account shall be determined according to the installment plan selected by Registrant at the time of registration. Registrant will lose the right to participate in a ST Program and will be removed from community groups if an automatic withdrawal is declined and not successfully completed in 7 business days. When the withdrawal is processed, ST shall charge Registrant a $35.00 processing fee for failed automatic withdrawal in addition to Registrant’s outstanding balance. Once withdrawal is approved, the Registrant can continue in the program and be added back to the community groups. (3)Program Transfer. No registration may be transferred to another ST Program date and/or location without the prior written consent of ST executed by one of its authorized officers. All transfer requests must be received by DTI no later than thirty (30) days prior to the original ST Program for which the Registrant registered. All transfer requests must be sent by the Registrant via email to ST at [email protected] and the assigned trainer for the original ST Program for which the Registrant registered. If ST accepts Registrant’s transfer request in writing executed by one of ST’s authorized officers, ST will notify Registrant. ST will transfer Registrant to a different ST Program upon Registrant’s payment of a one time $99.00 transfer fee. The transfer is valid for one year from the date of payment. (4)Program Cancellation. Registrant is responsible for the full payment of any registration cancelled by the Registrant at any time before the ST Program’s completion. Registrant may not cancel a registration and obtain a refund without the written consent of ST executed by one of its authorized officers. If Registrant becomes unruly or disruptive during the course of a ST Program, in the sole discretion of the on-site ST trainer, Registrant’s right to participate in the ST Program will be terminated and Registrant will not receive a refund. If ST cancels a ST Program for any reason, Registrant will have the option of receiving a full refund or registering for a different ST Program. (5)Release and Hold Harmless. Registrant hereby releases ST and its members, independent contractors, employees, and agents from any and all claims, damages, liabilities, losses, and expenses, including but not limited to attorneys’ fees, of any nature arising out of or resulting from Registrant’s participation in any of the ST Programs or a certification ST conferred upon Registrant, except as may be caused by ST’s gross negligence or intentional misconduct. To the fullest extent permitted by law, Registrant shall defend, indemnify, and hold harmless ST and its members, independent contractors, employees, and agents from and against any and all claims, damages, liabilities, losses, and expenses, including but not limited to attorneys’ fees, of any nature arising out of or resulting from Registrant’s provision of services as a doula to any and all individuals. (6)Waiver and Severability. A waiver of a breach of any provision of these Terms and Conditions shall not operate or be construed as a waiver or estoppel of any subsequent breach. In the event that one or more of the provisions contained in these Terms and Conditions shall for any reason be held unenforceable in any respect, such unenforceability shall not affect any other provision of these Terms and Conditions. (7)Governing Law and Exclusive Jurisdiction. All transactions between ST and Registrant shall be deemed to be entered into in the State of California and shall be governed by the laws of the State of California, without regard to conflict of laws provisions. By accepting these Terms and Conditions and/or by registering for a ST Program, Registrant hereby submits to the exclusive jurisdiction of the state and federal courts of the State of California for any disputes arising from, concerning, or relating to these Terms and Conditions, any transaction between or involving ST and Registrant, and/or any ST Program. (8)Signatures. Registrant accepts these Terms and Conditions through ST’s payment portal during registration for a ST Program by electronic signature. Registrant agrees such electronic signature constitutes an original signature.