The Child Life and Therapeutic Recreation Department has combined the expertise of these two professional groups and produced a comprehensive program which provides services that contribute to improving the patient’s psycho-social, recreational and developmental abilities. 

Inpatient Programs:

Child Life: Child life specialists help patients and families facilitate coping with and adjustment to illness/injury and hospitalization. The program focuses on emotional support, education on medical procedures and conditions, and enhancement of developmental skills through therapeutic play. Child life services are available to inpatients on the pediatric rehabilitation unit and pediatric feeding disorders unit, as well as multiple outpatient clinics in the 801 N. Broadway building.

Therapeutic Recreation: Therapeutic recreation specialists provide individualized therapy for patients requiring intervention for the effects of a traumatic illness or condition. The specialists facilitate the patients' involvement in structured one-on-one, group and/or community activities that focus on individualized treatment goals.

Music Therapy: The music therapist uses singing, songwriting, playing instruments, and other musical experiences to address treatment goals for patients during individual and group therapy sessions.

Outpatient Playroom Programs: 

Recreational activities staff provide supervision and activity programming for outpatients and their siblings above the age of three in a child-oriented play environment. We offer these services at the following playrooms locations:

  • 801 N. Broadway Outpatient Building- multiple clinics
  • 716 N Broadway Clinic Research Center- Social Work and Psychiatry
  • 1750 E. Fairmount Outpatient Building-Neuropsychology 

Professional Training:

Therapeutic recreation internships are available to students pursuing a bachelor’s degree in therapeutic recreation. Students interested in an internship opportunity may call or email Karen Hartlove for more information.

Child life practicum opportunities will be offered in the future.
Please contact Lauren Graffagnini, CTRS by email at for more information.

Professional Certifying Organizations:

Child Life Council (CLC)
National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC)
Certification Board for Music Therapists


Certified Child Life Specialists (CCLS)
Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialists (CTRS)
Certification Board for Music Therapists (BC-MT)