What is Child Life?

What I love about enCourage Kids

is that we have the same mission, and that doesn’t always happen with other philanthropic groups we interact with. There is such great synergy between child life and enCourage Kids because they enable us to initiate programs and have the supplies we need, and we know that the patients and families are the ultimate beneficiaries of that.

CHRIS BROWN, Director of Therapeutic Recreation, Child Life, and Creative Arts Therapies at NYU Langone Medical Center

What is a child life specialist?

A child life specialist is a trained professional that works closely with children and their families in a hospital or other medical setting, providing support and helping them cope during traumatic and difficult situations.

What does a child life specialist do?

Child life specialists develop coping strategies for pediatric patients and their family members to decrease the stress and anxiety that comes with the challenges of hospitalization. Their goal is to make a hospital experience as comfortable and positive as possible. One of their most important roles is to explain a child’s diagnosis and/or treatment in a way that the child will be able to understand and know exactly what is going on.

What is our history with Child Life?

For more than 25 years, enCourage Kids has developed a strong partnership with the child life community. We’ve listened closely to their values, goals, and requirements in order to best understand their unique needs as well as the needs of the pediatric patients they serve. With that knowledge, we have aligned our mission to directly support child life specialists and hospitals across the country, helping them to provide critical programs for their patients, including many that they don’t have the budget for.

As a member of the Association of Child Life Professionals (ACLP), we continue to stay in tune with the ever-changing hospital landscape and how we can best serve our partners and the millions of children they serve.