Play Sessions

Eliana Gil, Ph.D., ATR, RPT-S, MFCC, is Director of Clinical Services for Childhelp, Inc. in Fairfax, VA. Originally from Guayaquil, Ecuador, she is bilingual and bicultural. Dr. Gil is a Registered Play Therapy Supervisor, a Registered Art Therapist, and a Licensed Marriage, Family, Child Counselor. She has authored numerous books on child abuse and related topics, and a number of educational videos feature her work on such topics as play therapy with abused children and family play therapy. Eliana served on the Board of Directors of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children and the National Resource Center on Child Sexual Abuse. She is also former President of the Association for Play Therapy. She has worked in the field of child abuse prevention and treatment for 36 years.

Pre-Conference Course

Assessment and Treatment of Abused and Traumatized Children through Play Therapy and the Expressive Arts

Children are naturally drawn to reparative processes such as drawing, playing, singing, movement, dramatics, storytelling, and other expressive outlets to self-soothe, understand, and begin to assimilate difficult experiences and emotions. This day-long course will explore an integrated approach to working with traumatized children that addresses the phenomenological aspect of interpersonal trauma; the use of expressive therapies for assessing, communicating, and processing traumatic events; plus other interventions from the trauma model, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy. These varied strategies enable the clinician to reach, engage, and facilitate full participation by abused and traumatized children in their recovery process. Child artwork and videos of sessions will be used to illustrate theory and demonstrate practice.