Children’s Bureau to Serve as Theraplay Institute Regional Training Center

by Joy Coordinator

Children’s Bureau, Inc. is pleased to announce its selection as a regional training center in the techniques of Theraplay, a child and family therapy that has been helping children and families around the world since 1975.

The Theraplay Institute trains mental health professionals, human services providers, parents and teachers in the techniques of Theraplay, used for building and enhancing attachment, self-esteem, trust in others and joyful engagement.

Theraplay sessions create an emotional connection between the child and parent or caregiver. They shape a child’s view of self as being worthy and lovable, and can transform his or her view of relationships from fear or trauma to something positive and rewarding. Proponents call this “building relationships from the inside out.”

Theraplay is a promising practice that may soon be added to the National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices ( As a regional training center, Children’s Bureau hopes to contribute to the research necessary to prove this model’s effectiveness and reduce unsound practices.

Vice President of Adoption and Foster Care Brooke Clawson said, “The fact that the Institute reached out to Children’s Bureau to serve as a regional training center is an honor. It shows that our agency is recognized for therapeutic, attachment-based work with children.”

Practitioners trained at Children’s Bureau may go on to help families like this one, that adopted a 5-year-old who became violent toward himself and others and had to be restrained daily. “When we first came to The Theraplay Institute, we were afraid that we could not be the forever family we had promised him,” his mother said. “Now we can fulfill that promise.”

Learn more about Theraplay and other attachment focused therapy services offered by Children’s Bureau.