Child Life Services

I have been a Certified Child Life Specialist since 2003. That’s a long time! Over those years, the main question I was asked was ‘What is a Child Life Specialist?” Well, as a Child Life Specialist my purpose is to help infants, children, youth, and families cope with stressful life events by assisting them to increase their coping skills and resilience.

Many of my years in Child Life were focused in hospital settings. I have helped children and families cope with challenging diagnosis, assisted with procedural support, and walked alongside them as they navigated the healthcare environment. Now, I have delved into a new way to serve children and families. I have developed my own private practice where I can utilize my skill set and cater them to each individual and family in more of a community based setting outside of the hospital workplace.

My interventions are developmentally appropriate, evidence-based, and include but are not limited to therapeutic play, education, expressive activities, preparation, psycho-social support and coping enhancement.  My goals are to provide individualized services that increase resilience, coping abilities, and self-awareness while decreasing fear, anxiety/stress, and pain.  I value diversity of individual and family strengths and needs as well as recognize the importance of support systems and community connections.  My foundations in theories of child development, play, stress/coping, as well as family systems are a basis for my professional practice.  I am committed to building therapeutic relationships built on trust, respect, and professionalism that contribute to increasing confidence and problem-solving skills.

I offer Virtual Child Life Services to children and families from the comfort of their homes.

Child Life Services are not counseling. Although I can recommend good counselors as needed. Child Life services utilize play and psychosocial support to build a child’s coping toolkit as they face challenging life events. 
Services I offer include:
  • Coping and stress reduction related to separation anxiety with loved ones in the hospital or fears related to COVID-19
  • Grief and bereavement support after experiencing a loss (divorce, death of a pet/friend/loved one)
  • Developmental support helping infants and children meet developmental milestones
  • Emotional awareness and self-regulation
  • Stress reduction through guided imagery/mindfulness techniques
  • Parent coaching, consistency enhancement, coping during a pandemic
  • Procedural teaching and preparation for upcoming medical events (ie. dental visit, well child check, hospital visit, etc.)
  • Expressive art and various modalities of play: therapeutic, medical, and sensory which are how children process the world

I am also a Christian Family Support Specialist and offer consulting services to Children’s Ministries and other programs interested in incorporating teaching about Jesus to children. I offer speaking and group teaching engagements on a variety of topics via webinar or in person. 

Click here to learn more about my QUALIFICATIONS

To request a 20-minute virtual consult regarding my services and how I can help your family or church, fill out the form below. 
What Type of Services Are You Interested In? (required)


“Marinda is one of those special people that the Lord allowed us to cross paths with during Josh’s journey.  In doing that, we have gained a life-long friend, and one that we can say was always there for our family during his illness.  She is a very special lady who is gifted at what she does.  We are eternally grateful God blessed our lives with her.” – Adcock Family

Helpful Blogs




Hear this humbling testimony from my previous mentee and student, Brooks Gaut, MS, CCLS, CPST, CIMI. She is now an amazing Child Life Specialist in the Emergency Department at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital in Knoxville, TN.

Appointment Scheduler