The CORE Institute for Healing in the Helping Professions

Play At The Core’s mission to inspire healing and change through play grows more urgent amid the evolving challenges confronting the helping professions. As we begin to emerge from the pandemic, baseline exposure to toxic stress and a need for mental health services among children, and the adults who work with them, is greater than ever before. Without changes that better prioritize the mental health and wellness (Woolley-Wilson, 2021) of this workforce, the education and human services sectors run the risk of grinding to a halt. CORE Institute

The truth is: We are facing a critical moment within the helping professions that will shape the trajectory of the sector for the coming generation. In light of your organization’s collective experiences since 2020, how are you thinking about the process of healing and recovery for your organizational teams? 


Introducing the CORE Institute

To partner with organizations as they become the authors of a new healing-centered paradigm for their work, Play At The Core is thrilled to announce the design of an innovative, experiential learning hub guided by what we call the C.O.R.E. Model (Collective Organizational Resilience through Empathy). To launch the C.O.R.E. Institute for Healing in the Helping Professions, Play At The Core is teaming up with Dr. G’s Lab – a user experience (UX) firm focusing on trauma-informed research and design – founded by psychologist, Dr. Bre Gentile, the Senior Product Designer and Researcher with Center for Youth Wellness, a program of Safe & Sound. The C.O.R.E. Institute is grounded in a research-based framework, designed to result in healthier organizational culture, increased workforce wellbeing and retention, enhanced leadership competence, more effective delivery of services, and improved outcomes for children and communities alike (Esaki, 2013).

Through the C.O.R.E. Institute, Play At The Core applies a parallel process approach to help partners highlight organizational strengths, explore the root causes of collective adversities, and co-create healing-centered systems that holistically support each partner’s workforce, honoring the unique contexts and inspiration that fuels their work. As organizations engage in shared meaning-making and systems-building, their unique approaches and outcomes will fuel an open-source online platform that builds community and a shared knowledge base across the helping professions. 


C.O.R.E. Institute Pillars 


Workforce Repair and Recovery Through Play

As we recover in the months and years ahead, the C.O.R.E. Institute hopes to help forge a new paradigm of healing – one where children, and adults who work with them, feel more connected, creative, and inspired as they confront  challenges, generate change, and thrive. What could be possible as more organizations think about the populations they serve and their workforce through a lens of collective wellbeing? How would work in these environments affect you personally? What impact would it have on the children and families you work with? 

This is our moment to build a new paradigm of healing.