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Life Stories, Legacies, and Death Doula Services

Requiem Reiki Services

Based in the Dorchester area, my practice includes London, Woodstock, Ingersoll, St. Marys, and Stratford, Ontario. I offer supportive end-of-life services tailored to the individual, with a special interest in legacy projects. 

My goal is to make a person's final days as worry-free as possible so that they can live fully, and to offer comfort and support to those around them.

What is a Death Doula?

Death doulas (also known as end-of-life doulas or death midwives) are part of a newly emerging field in death care that seeks to make the end of life a more positive, less frightening experience for all. They are  not medical professionals, but rather privately hired community members who view death as a natural part of life and believe that a person can still be empowered and find meaning in their remaining time. They do not replace medical staff or hospice workers, but are an additional source of assistance. They recognize the vital support family members provide and help to minimize their stress. Death doulas offer a vast array of person-centred services during end-of-life,  such as spiritual and emotional support, death education, advance care planning, legacy projects, companionship, and help with vigils and memorial services, and may offer ongoing support to family and friends after a death has occurred. What a doula offers is unique to each individual, based on the person's wants and needs, and each doula has their own gifts and specialties. Because dying is a journey, not a one-time event, doulas are not necessarily present in the final hours when a family wants privacy (although they can be) and their goal is to give everyone the support and tools needed in the time leading up to death to offer a sense of peace. They adhere to a code of ethics and standard of care and are a trusted member of your team. 

80% of surveyed people say they would prefer to spend their final days at home and end-of-life doulas can help make that a little easier. 


Life Stories and Legacies


As a published writer I've seen the power of words, the healing that the telling of a story brings. Through reflection and processing memories, and by sharing the wisdom gained the fullness of our lives comes into focus, the continuity of life unfolds. 

By recording one's story (the good memories, the hardships, the wisdom) a treasure is left for family, a legacy is left for future generations. For those at end of life I can help you  create something beautiful and meaningful. I've helped many people tell their stories, whether at bedside or via telephone and Zoom, and these can be done in short sessions or longer ones, depending on the emotional/physical needs of the client. 

Everyone has a story ...  we can work together to tell yours. 




I offer support both to those at the end of their lives and to their families. Whether you need end-of-life companionship, help with legacy projects, or assistance with vigils, I'm here to help and assure you that you are not alone on this difficult path. As part of a larger network, I'm happy to direct you to others in the field, such as death educators, grief counsellors, or registered nurses whose specialty is in-home palliative care. For those who are caring for a dying loved one, I can offer reassurance, guidance, and lend an ear during a painful time, because even a strong support person can use support themselves. 




Requiem Reiki Services


Outside the scope of practice of a death doula, I offer Reiki energy treatmentsI am a certified master/teacher and practitioner of the Usui System of Natural Healing. This treatment can be offered anywhere, with little to no touch, and can promote a deep feeling of relaxation, balance, and well-being. I offer these services not only to those with life-limiting illnesses, but to anyone seeking peace and well-being, sometimes in the comfort of their own home. Appointments are also available where I work concurrently with counsellor Lisa Highfield, of Healing Hearts, in sessions where clients would like to delve deeper psychologically--a great way to move beyond trauma, self-limiting belief systems, and ways of being that no longer work for you.


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For many, the loss of a beloved pet feels like the loss of a family member. As an experienced animal rescuer who has had the privilege of being with countless animals as they finished their time on earth, I can support families during the difficult final days of vet visits, natural death, or euthanasia.  Whether it is a much loved dog, cat, or horse, I can aid you in creating meaningful experiences at the end, offering gentle Reiki treatments, dispelling fear, and honouring your cherished pet fully so that a family's healing can begin.

About Christen Shepherd

I hold a certificate from the End-of-Life Doula program at Douglas College in BC and am a registered member of the End of Life Doula Association of Canada and member of the Death Doula Ontario Network. I am also a member of EOLDAC's advisory committee for community and stakeholder engagement, helping to promote the important work  of Canadian death doulas. In addition to my own experiences with death, I've studied Thanatology (the study of death) for many years, have taken certificate courses in grief and bereavement counselling, and hold a degree in Anthropology from Western University where I gained a great appreciation for the death practices and rituals of various cultures and religions. For a decade I ran an animal rescue/farm therapy program where death and loss were daily occurrences, and although tragic, I was always moved by the healing and love that emerged, and I learned the importance of a sacred send-off. In 2018 I gained a post graduate certificate in creative writing from the Humber School for Writers in Toronto and am a published writer who loves weaving together happy memories, triumphs, pain, and challenges into a story that celebrates the hero at the centre. I believe everyone is the hero of their own story and I love interviewing people and helping them recognize that truth. I have written memoirs with many people, including a a renowned music producer and an American master art forger. I am also a certified Reiki Master practitioner.

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