Who We are
We are a small team of three registered midwives working in Vancouver, BC and serving Vancouver’s Lower Mainland, including downtown and the Westend. We provide relationship-based, personalized midwifery care with a focus on evidence-based practice and informed decision-making. We work closely with the women in our care and their families to provide a warm and nurturing environment where women can feel safe and cared for in a way that respects their individuality and their hopes for their pregnancy, birth and postpartum.
Andrea Mattenley, RM
It was the birth of my son that brought me to midwifery. Both the birth itself and the personal experience through the maternity care system were inspirational in shaping my career. The support we received in those early years and that continues now that he is growing up inspired my own intention to build and contribute to community. My hope is that as a midwife, I am able to assist women in their discovery of their inner wisdom and knowledge through their pregnancies, and labours & births. My hope is that this trust and strength in themselves continues in the early days and as their children and families continue to grow.
While working towards my degree in Midwifery at the University of British Columbia I had the privilege of taking courses which provided training to support women with more complex social backgrounds, including training to act and acting as a doula for women in the FIR program as well as a course relating to HIV and how health care providers can support people with more complex medical histories.
My son was born in 2002, shortly after finishing my first degree, which is in Microbiology and Immunology. The significance of his birth was obvious, though I have maintained a strong tie to the academic aspect of myself, most recently through the study of acupuncture for use in labour.
Aside from work, my son and I enjoy hockey, biking, camping and hosting community dinners. While not working or parenting, I enjoy my book club, canning and I spend every spare minute knitting. I look forward to working with your family, sharing stories and helping to achieve your intentions as parents.
Carolyn Saunders, RM
My path to midwifery began in my teenage years when I was exposed to the homebirth movement in Ottawa, Ontario. Ina May Gaskin's "Spiritual Midwifery" was an eye-opening journey into women-centered pregnancy care, and natural birth outside of the hospital. It was a book I passed onto my older sister during her first pregnancy. Sharing in her pregnancies and births and seeing her approach each experience with such amazing strength and courage made a lasting impression on me. We both went on to pursue careers in Midwifery. She now practices in Stittsville, Ontario.
My formal training in Midwifery began in 2003 when I was accepted into the University of British Columbia Midwifery Program. Since graduating in 2007 I often remark how fortunate I have been to work with such amazing women and families who continually teach me more about the complexities of this work and the importance of respecting the beauty and uniqueness of each experience. In addition to my midwifery training, I have completed a Bachelor's degree in Anthropology and Biology. Anthropology has given me an understanding of the cultural diversity of our province and an appreciation of the rewards of working with women from different social, economic and cultural backgrounds. Summers spent studying birds in northern Canada in 2002 and 2003 gave me a deep respect and appreciation for biological processes, in particular the miracle of reproduction and the creation of new life.
Over the years I have been involved in a number of research projects in the field of midwifery and women's health including publishing papers in the Canadian Journal of Midwifery Research & Practice as well as the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology of Canada. As part of the clinical faculty of the Department of Family Practice at UBC I enjoy numerous opportunities to contribute to the education of midwifery students. It is work I really enjoy and hope will help expand excess to midwifery care across the province. In 2003-2004 I was involved in a project whose aim was to facilitate better communication between health care providers and their clients. Through this work I developed a strong commitment to empowering women to make their own health care decisions. It is my philosophy that a woman should leave midwifery care feeling empowered by her birth experience, feeling that she has done her very best, and feeling greater confidence in her own body. I hope that I can help women accomplish these goals.
In my free time I can often be found riding my bike, strolling through the Vancouver Art Gallery or taking a walk in the mountains. I gave birth to my daughter Violet in 2009. My own parenting journey is now something I can share with the families in my care. I look forward to supporting women and their families through their own birth and parenting journeys.
Natalie Johnson, RM.
For as long as I can remember I have wanted to be involved in the miracle of birth. I grew up with my mother telling birth stories at the dinner table and always dreamed of sharing in her experiences. I chose midwifery specifically because of its focus on birth as a normal experience and its value in empowering families.
Through my midwifery journey I have had the opportunity to work with families and care providers all across Canada. I am originally from Ontario, which is where I completed my midwifery training at McMaster University in Hamilton. During my schooling I spent a month in Nelson, BC with a team of midwives, which is what convinced me to move west after graduation. Since then I have spent the past few years living and working in Abbotsford, Squamish and finally Vancouver.
During my time off I love exploring the city and its incredible surroundings: hiking, biking, swimming and lazing at the beach. I am very excited to be joining Carolyn and Andrea and I am looking forward to getting to know you and your families!