Cluj-NapocaChild life program



The Child Life Program was initiated in Bucharest in 1990 in collaboration with several hospitals and universities in the United States, including Boston Children’s Hospital, University of Massachusetts Medical Center and Wheelock College. Now, the Inocenti Child Life program’s active partner for both education and knowledge exchange is Johns Hopkins Children’s Center in Baltimore, USA. 

In 2016 the “Child Life” program was implemented in Cluj County, at the Pediatric Psychiatric and Drug Addiction Clinic and at the Clinical Recovery Hospital (program suspended in 2020 due to the transformation of the hospital unit into a COVID support hospital).

Emotional support

Art therapy

Dedicated specialists

  • Stronger together!

We seek to facilitate increased resilience and adherence of treatment, as well as increased understanding of a diagnosis, focusing on:

  • Promoting optimal development of children and adolescents in the hospital setting; 
  • lowering anxiety levels in children and parents;
  • facilitating faster and more effective medical recovery;
  • adaptive processing of the hospital experience.
  • We provide emotional support during hospitalization for both children and family. 
  • We organize art therapy and recreational activities in a dedicated space.
  • We carry out structured activities aimed at: managing emotions, anger, anxiety and sadness, developing self-esteem and self-confidence, encouraging team spirit, collaboration and support.
  • We teach children interactive techniques for relaxation, awareness and accessing their own resources.
  • We explain the role of treatment to children and parents in a way they can understand and help them become familiar with the hospital environment.
  • We provide resources on different disorders; psycho-education. 
  • We encourage a holistic approach to various disorders through referrals to psychotherapy services.
  • We organize special events (Christmas event, Easter, special visits, Childrens’ Day etc).

The Child Life Program helps children and their parents from:

During 2021, the team of Inocenti specialists, together with 45 volunteers, supported:

  • 264 children
  • 65 parents and legal guardians


WHO WE AREMeet our specialists

Ioana Meșterelu

Clinical Psychologist and CBT Psychotherapist

Alexandrina Sabău


Maria Nistor


Bianca Nițu


Simona Samoilă

Program Coordinator



Inocenti Foundation psychologists support children and adolescents with a series of materials adapted to their psycho-emotional needs, providing them with information, resources and strategies to manage symptoms associated with various mental disorders. These materials are useful for both parents and mental health professionals.

Information booklets for adolescents

We bring to the attention of teenagers and their parents relevant information on six of the most commonly discussed mental health topics: ADHD, generalised anxiety, social anxiety, depression, specific phobias, anger and frustration management.

Therapeutic stories - RUFI

Rufi is not just a dragon, he wants to be the little ones’ friend, taking them on a journey of self-discovery. Written in a creative and playful way, the 4 therapeutic stories offer valuable insights into managing anger, depression, anxiety and ADHD.


Our partner in this project is Fondation d’ Harcourt, an organization whose mission is to improve the quality of life of people with mental disorders and their families.

An important component of the Child Life programs is the involvement of volunteers selected and trained to carry out therapeutic and play activities with children.

The main partner in the implementation of the Child Life programme is the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, “Babeș-Bolyai” University Cluj-Napoca, a partnership based on didactic and practical support in the professional development of volunteers and future professionals in the field.

MEDIAMoments from the program


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Ways to support us

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