Meet the Midwives & Lactation Consultants!
We would like to acknowledge with respect that we work on the unceded territory of the Lekwungen People, also known as the Songhees and Esquimalt First Nations communities.
Emily and Devi work in a team of two for full-scope midwifery. Ali and Michaela work in a team of two for full-scope midwifery. Ella works specifically in the postpartum period with families for full 6 week care or individual consults. Scroll down to read more about your midwives.
My name is Emily and I am a mother to three amazing children.
I am a Registered Midwife and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant providing care to families in Victoria and surrounding areas.
With gratitude, I am living in Colwood British Columbia; a second-generation settler residing on the traditional lands of the Xwsepsum (Esquimalt) and Lekwungen (Songhees) ancestors and families.
I discovered the incredible power of birthing people and my passion for this line of work while volunteering in Uganda in 2005. Following this experience, I worked as a birth and postpartum doula for 15 years. I gained so much experience as a non-clinical support person providing emotional and physical support to birthing families and with infant feeding challenges. I decided that providing clinical care for families was important to me, and pursued my Bachelor in Midwifery through UBC. After becoming a Registered Midwife, I spent the first years of my career in Vancouver at BC Women's and St Paul's Hospital, before coming back home to the island. I had the opportunity to work at Access Midwifery, the same practice that helped me welcome my oldest son into the world! When that clinic was closing, together with Devi Garner, I decided it was time to open a new practice in Esquimalt.
I am honoured to serve families with diverse backgrounds and life experiences. Our practice is inclusive and provides catered care for Indigenous families; queer famlies; newcomers to Canada; solo parent families; surrogate birthers and more.
I love working in the midwifery model because it allows us to spend time bringing clinical care and a holistic approach to the support we provide, catering to a family's specific needs.
Outside of midwifery I enjoy spending time outdoors enjoying the beach; cold dipping year-round; hiking through the beautiful trails; camping with my kids and tending to my garden.
Registered Midwife & International Board Certified Lactation Consultant
my name is Devi Garner, my pronouns are she/her. I am from a family of European ancestry and was born in Aotearoa (New Zealand), the traditional territory of the Te Atiawa Maori. I have lived in four countries, but for most of the last 20 years I have been grateful to live, study, work, and raise my children on southern Vancouver Island. I acknowledge with humility and gratitude that I am an immigrant and settler in these traditional unceded territories of the Lekwungen-speaking Coast Salish peoples.
Long before completing my training as a Registered Midwife at the University of British Columbia, I grew up listening to my Auntie’s stories about her work as a midwife and I witnessed the excellent midwifery care that welcomed my five younger siblings. I was five years old when I attended my first birth and it made a big impression. My own children were born at home into the skilled hands of midwives. Providing support to friends and family as a doula and working as a medical office assistant for midwives made the call to birth work impossible to ignore. Prior to becoming a midwife, I earned a diploma in Business Administration. I have a background in environmental science, fine art, technology, and entrepreneurship. I find that midwifery is the thread that weaves all my interests and passions together. I am particularly interested in perinatal mental health, community building, and working with families affected by migration.
Outside of midwifery, I maintain my wellness through belly laughs with friends, trying to keep up with my children as they step into adulthood, and by walking my clever dog and determined cat with my partner. I can often be found breathing in forests, paddling in the ocean, and muddling my way through yoga and meditation.
I look forward to facilitating connection and empowerment as you expand your family. I can’t imagine a greater privilege than to accompany you and your family through the transfmormative experience of growing a tiny human.
Ali is a Canadian Born British trained midwife. Born in Alberta, she grew up on beautiful Vancouver Island before leaving Canada to backpack in the 90’s. She spent 7 years travelling before settling in the United Kingdom where she discovered Midwifery through her own pregnancy. She graduated in 2008 from Bournemouth University and practiced in the UK until 2018 when she returned home to Canada. In 2020 Ali completed the Internationally educated Midwifery Bridging program at UBC and began practicing in Langley BC. She is very happy to be joining a team on Vancouver Island and looks forward to practicing in Victoria.
Ali believes wholeheartedly that birthing persons have a fundamental right to unbiased information and the right to choose the care that is right for them and their families. She loves the model of care in British Columbia as it fosters the ability for midwives to earn trust and build a relationship with their clientele. Her background includes high risk pregnancy care, midwifery led care and she particularly loves a water birth.
She can be found gazing into tide pools whenever the opportunity arises, paddle boarding, walking her dogs, snowshoeing and of course spending time with her family.
My name is Michaela Smith (she/her) and I am a settler of European ancestry who was born and raised on the traditional and unceded ancestral territories of the lək̓ʷəŋən and W̱SÁNEĆ peoples here in Victoria.
Prior to midwifery, I completed a degree in Sociology at UVic and worked as a research coordinator at the Canadian Institute for Substance Use Research for 5 years. My research work focused on the lived experiences of people working in the sex industry across Canada. While my time in research was fascinating and rewarding, I knew that I was not cut out for office work long term. Fortunately, I happened to stumble across midwifery and had an immediate sense that it would suit my personal interests and values, as well as keep me on my toes! I was fortunate enough to be accepted into the UBC Midwifery program in 2018, and my journey to becoming a midwife officially began!
Midway through my midwifery education, I took a year off to do some “experiential learning” as a first time parent after giving birth to my daughter with help from a lovely team of midwives. Experiencing pregnancy, birth and postpartum firsthand gave me a different insight and appreciation for the immense highs and lows that can accompany this transition in life. My hope going forward into practice is that I can be a steady source of support, empowerment, and compassion to you and your family as you navigate your own way through this transition.
In my off-call life, you can find me spending time with my daughter, partner and dog in our neighbourhood of Cook St Village. When not chasing a toddler around, I unwind by doing puzzles, reading, crocheting, and experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen.
I have always been passionate about supporting families through pregnancy, birth and the
postpartum period. I started out as a doula in 2014 and worked for a year before starting
midwifery school at McMaster University. Though I enjoyed doula work, I felt that I would have
more impact as a primary care provider. After graduating in 2019, I worked in the Abbotsford
Mission area. I enjoyed working with families in urban and rural settings. I also went on to have
two children of my own who are now three and one years old.
After my own postpartum experiences, I felt drawn to becoming a lactation consultant and
focusing my work more on that period. The first week postpartum is such a hugely
transformative time and the support that midwives offer is very valuable and unique. I am
currently working towards my IBCLC accreditation and in the meantime, continue to help
families with infant feeding support as well as general postpartum care.
When I am not working, you will find me with my family, likely at a coffee shop or doing
something outdoors. We love Victoria and feel very lucky to call it home. I look forward to
supporting you on your parenthood journey.