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Professional Development Opportunities

The Anti-Bias Therapist: Addressing Therapeutic Needs for Diverse Populations 

The recent racial justice movement has further highlighted the need for mental health professionals to recognize the unique needs of marginalized clients. A core ethical component is for clinicians to be mindful of their implicit biases.  But what exactly does that mean? Small group discussions and interactive activities will help challenge practitioners to evaluate the way they treat and view the behaviors of minorities in the clinical office and beyond. Additionally, attendees will learn how to apply the important characteristics of African American clients and gain strategies to engage them in culturally-competent play therapy.

Learning Objectives: 

  1. Identify how bias may appear in clinical practice

  2. List the guidelines for a culturally competent play therapist 

  3. Create a plan to address bias the clinician may present in clinical practice

Racial Trauma & Suicide in Black Youth 

Recently, Dr. Anthony Fauci stated the Black community was facing a “double whammy” due to the COVID-19 pandemic and recent civil unrest. Research has shown that psychological distress is linked to high rates of discrimination and microaggressions, and has contributed to thoughts and acts of suicide for Black children. This workshop will explore the racial trauma experienced by Black children and how clinicians can utilize Adlerian play therapy principles to help youth increase their coping skills to manage race-based experiences. Time will be spent exploring play themes that may reflect signs of trauma, grief, or suicide and play techniques to help adequately address those issues. 

Learning Objectives: 

  1. Analyze trauma stressors Black youth may experience in relation to racial trauma

  2. Identify issues contributing to racial trauma in Black youth

  3. List risk and protective factors for suicidal behavior in Black youth

Using Play to Disrupt the Preschool-to-Prison Pipeline

Recent research has highlighted the racial disparities in school discipline and punishment, resulting in African American children of all ages being funneled through the Preschool-to-Prison Pipeline. This workshop explores the trends contributing to racial disparities such as police presence in schools and zero-tolerance policies. Clinicians will gain an understanding of how play therapy can help engage children, their families, and teachers in reducing perceived problem behaviors and, ultimately, reduce school discipline and punishment among African American students. 

Learning Objectives: 

  1. Identify African American cultural concepts that practitioners need to incorporate into their clinical work for effective treatment of traumatized clients. 

  2. List ways to engage African-American children in play therapy in order to facilitate healthy social, emotional, and cognitive development. 

  3. Cite play therapy techniques that enhance efficacy when working with young African American clients.

Teleplay Techniques to Support Children & Adolescents through  COVID-19


The recent COVID-19 pandemic has moved many mental health professionals towards telehealth services. However, many professionals find it challenging to engage children and adolescents in telehealth sessions. Attendees will learn how to integrate play skills into a telehealth session that can mimic the work traditionally done in clinical sessions. There will be a focus on specific play interventions that can be used in virtual sessions to address emotions children may be experiencing due to the pandemic including anxiety, anger, and sadness.  

Learning Objectives:

  1. Discover teleplay activities to support  emotional dysregulation in children in a virtual setting

  2. Examine the ways to integrate mindfulness-based activities into a virtual setting

  3. Utilize play-based strategies to build rapport in a virtual setting

If you are interested in any of BMH Connect's Professional Development opportunities, please contact BMH Account Manager at
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