Welcome

The Association of Child Life Therapists Australia (formerly Australian Association of Hospital Play Specialists) is the national professional body representing child life therapists in paediatric healthcare.

“[Child Life Therapists] help children engage and subdue fears, misconceptions, anger and profound sadness that hospital experiences provoke, to protect and enhance their developmental integrity, and, wherever possible, use the experiences of illness and hospitalization to build strengths.”

– Wojatasik, S. P., & White, C. (2009). The Story of Child Life. In R. H. Thompson (Ed.), The Handbook of Child Life. Illinois: Charles C Thomas Publisher Ltd; p.12.

Whether you’re a child life therapist, parent/carer, other health professional, volunteer, student or interested community member, you’ll find out more about our role as you click through this website. We welcome new professional and affiliate members – find out how to join us on the ACLTA Membership page of our Membership Portal.

If you are interested in becoming a Child Life Therapist in Australia, check out our Training To Be A Child Life Therapist page, which lists all the information you need to know.

We’d love to hear from you – please use the Contact Us form on this website to get in touch (or email@childlife.org.au).

Dot the Calico Medical Play DollMeet Dot – the ACLTA logo mascot, a calico medical play doll. Child Life Therapists use dolls like Dot to help children understand hospital procedures – be that medication taking, blood tests, NG tube insertions, x-rays or CT scans!Calico dolls can be drawn on or decorated in whatever way the child wants; and provide an alternative to using precious teddies and other soft toys. Child Life Therapists around the country often rely on generous donations of calico dolls from community groups and individuals in order to have enough dolls for their work. If you feel you can assist, and would like to contribute dolls or materials, please contact the ACLTA Executive via the Contact Us form on this website, to be put in touch with your closest child life therapist.

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