A child's needs for security and age-appropriate activities are often magnified by the stress of illness and hospitalization. Recognizing that being hospitalized can be frightening to children, the Child Life Department at The Children's Hospital of San Antonio creates an environment designed to ease children's fears and provide the important emotional and social care to make the hospital experience as pleasant as possible for both the child and the family.

The Child Life staff consists of professionals trained in child development and special education who apply their expertise to help children understand their unfamiliar situation. Through their knowledge of child growth and development issues and children's reactions to the stresses of illness and medical procedures, the Child Life Team offer opportunities for patients and their families to gain mastery over difficult experiences. They provide developmentally appropriate information to children and adolescents about their diagnosis and treatments, helping to clarify misconceptions and fears while maintaining a child's self-esteem.

Our staff provides strong support and works to help children understand what will happen before, during and after their surgery or hospital stay. The Child Life Team are academically prepared in child psychology, child and family development, counseling, education and creative arts therapies.

The largest Child Life program in San Antonio can be found at our hospital. The Child Life Team works with the entire hospital staff to make the hospital stay a positive learning experience for children and their families.

Child Life also creates magical moments for patients with special events, celebrations, and holiday parties. Patients even enjoy visits from special visitors in our Child Life Activity Center from time to time.

Our Child Life staff provides special activities that offer normalcy during a stressful time with crafts, art projects, and more. The Child Life Team work with patients on each unit, both in the playroom and at the bedside with developmental activities for all ages.

Child Life Zone