Welcome to ACLP's new website! During our first week (soft-launch phase) please be patient if you find broken links or missing pages. We are updating and improving the site quickly as we find discrepancies. If you'd like to help us by reporting issues, please send an e-mail to webmanager@childlife.org. Thank you for your support!

Infants, children, youth, and families benefit from help coping with the stress and uncertainty of illness, injury and treatment. Certified Child Life Specialists® provide evidence-based, developmentally-appropriate interventions including therapeutic play, preparation and education that support and reduce fear, anxiety and pain for infants, children, youth and families. Certified Child Life Specialists are educated and trained in the developmental impact of illness and injury. Their role helps improve patient and family care, satisfaction and overall experience.


  • ACLP Announces Recipients of 2017 International Conference Scholarships

    The Association of Child Life Professionals is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2017 International Scholarships to attend the ACLP Annual Conference in Las Vegas. Five full scholarships were made available through the Advancing the Field of Play for Hospitalized Children Initiative grant from Disney. We are pleased that these distinguished professionals will join us in Las Vegas, and take back what they learned to help improve the care of children in their respective parts of the world. We encourage all ACLP members planning to attend the conference to give our scholarship recipients a warm welcome!
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  • Registration for the 2017 ACLP Annual Conference Is Now Open

    Program Cover
    Don't miss the annual conference occurring in Las Vegas, Nevada on May 25-28, 2017. Be sure to take advantage of early rates from now through March 31st and save $200.
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  • Qi Cheng To Receive Mary Barkey Award

    Qi Cheng (640x427)
    Qi works as the Child Life Manager at Beijing United Family Hospital, where she founded the first child life program in mainland China. As a caring and respected member of an interdisciplinary team, she displays a consistent passion and talent for meeting the psychosocial needs of young patients and their families.
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  • Anita Pumphrey To Receive Distinguished Service Award

    Anita Pumphrey pic
    Early in her career, in 1993, Anita started the first child life program at St. Francis Medical Center in Monroe, Louisiana. She then moved into academic education in the fall of 1995, teaching in Family and Child Studies at Louisiana Tech University in the School of Human Ecology, where she still works currently. Anita was instrumental in founding and developing the university’s child life program into the thriving and dynamic course of study that it is today.
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  • Great Lakes Association of Child Life Professionals—Student Symposium

    Dates: 24 – 25 Feb, 2017
  • Child Life Month

    Dates: 28 – 30 Mar, 2017
  • Child Life Professional Certification (March) Exam registration deadline

    Dates: 09 – 09 Mar, 2017
  • 11th Annual Phoenix Area Child Life Conference

    Scottsdale | Dates: 31 – 31 Mar, 2017
  • Great Lakes Association of Child Life Professionals—Child Life Assistant Summit

    Dates: 21 – 22 Apr, 2017
  • ACLP 35th Annual Conference

    Las Vegas | Dates: 25 – 28 May, 2017

Future Child Life Specialists

Students, Interns, and Career Changers

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Internship Coordinators, Academic Professionals

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Parents & Caregivers

Parents, Families,Children, Caregivers

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Corporate Sponsors, Individual Donors, Foundations

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Health Care Administrators

Hospital Decisions Makers, Physicians, Nurses

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ACLP Bulletin

Quarterly Publication

ACLP Bulletin/Child Life Focus is the foremost professional resource focusing on the unique knowledge and skills of the child life community. Its aim is to provide content that encourages the continued clinical development of child life professionals, and a forum for highlighting their milestones, challenges, innovations and successes. The ACLP Bulletin is a quarterly digital publication for ACLP members, with a circulation of more than 5,500 child life professionals throughout the United States, Canada, and across the globe. 

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From the ACLP President

Kristin photo cropped

“This current milestone in our organization is built upon so many years of work and the devotion of so many people who strove to professionalize what we do.”
-Kristin Maier, MS, CCLS
PRESIDENT, 2016–2017

Child Life in the News

  • California Family Creates Mobile Play Stations for Hospitalized Children

    Feb 04, 2017
    The Oscar Litwak Foundation brings fun and creative materials to children in the hospital.
    Full Story
  • Project Pinball lets kids be kids at Yale New Haven Children's Hospital

    Dec 08, 2016
    Project Pinball lets kids be kids at Yale New Haven Children's Hospital.
    Full Story
  • Child life specialists help hospitalized children cope

    Nov 11, 2016
    Child life specialists help hospitalized children cope.
    Full Story

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The above clip featuring Certified Child Life Specialist and ACLP member Ellen Goldring is part of Beyond Medicine, a 17-minute film about Dr. Michael Harris, chief pediatric oncologist and hematologist at Hackensack University Medical Center. The film, which you can watch here in its entirety, centers around the importance of humanism in medicine, family-centered care, and interdisciplinary healthcare teams.

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