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Snap shots from the 2019 conference.  Please make plans to join us in 2020!

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A conference for those who touch the lives of children!

The Playful Child Foundation, founded in 2018 in memory of Kade Damian, has a mission of healthier children mentally and physically through play. Join us for our 1st Annual conference! This is a FREE gift to the community of Georgetown and surrounding areas. Our purpose is to inform, empower and encourage parents, educators, health providers, counselors, librarians and all others who touch the lives of children about why play is so important to the development of healthy children, healthy families and a healthy community. We hope to join our community together in this very important movement for encouraging the healthy hearts, minds and bodies of our children. 

Reserve your spot today!

The Playful Child Foundation Conference is coming!  Come and join the movement with us!

Playful Child Foundation Conference: Why Play? 

Where & When: Georgetown Public Library on Saturday, October 5th from 9am-noon.  


Who is it for? Parents, Grandparents, Educators, Coaches, Nurses, Counselors and all those who touch the lives of children.

Why? We hope to bring light to the importance of play in childhood and across the lifespan for mental and physical wellbeing. 

How Much?  This conference is provided to the community at NO COST TO PARTICIPANTS!


What is the Playful Child Foundation? We are a local non-profit organization inspired by the life of Kade Damian.  

Need Childcare during the conference?  Check out our children's programming option below!

Our mission is to encourage healthier kids: mentally and physically. 

Conference Agenda


8:40- Arrival and Reception


9:00- Welcome- Julie Damian, The Playful Child Foundation founder, Hewlett Room 222


9:15- Keynote- “Happy and Healthy Families” Sonya Jensen, LMFT, Hewlett Room 222


10:15- Breakout Sessions

“The Playful Teen”- Hewlett Room 222

“Development of Play Skills”- Friends Room 218

“It’s Only Dirt”- Classroom 211


11:00- Vendor Gallery


11:15- Breakout Sessions

“Why Play and How it Helps You Bond With Your Child”- Hewlett Room 222

“Fun Activities to do with Kids”- Friends Room 218

“Risky Play: The Benefits of Allowing Children to Play Freely”- Classroom 211


Noon- End of Conference *Vendor Gallery open until 12:20 

About Our Sessions


Julie Damian is a wife, mother of three boys, small business owner, and educator.  In March of 2018, Julie’s middle son Kade died in a tragic accident. The Playful Child Foundation is a work of heart for Julie.  She is passionate about creating healthy, strong, resilient children through play and developmentally appropriate activities.  Joy is the heart of play. Kade lived his life to the fullest and spread love and happiness during his 1065 days on Earth. The Playful Child Foundation has been created in Kade’s memory and honor.  



Sonya Jensen is a licensed marriage and family therapist and life coach who specializes in counseling couples and supporting people to be their best selves.  She is a seasoned public speaker and her dynamic style encourages the very best in those around her. Happy and playful households begin with happy and healthy adult relationships.  Sonya will kick off the conference with tools for couples using the Gottman Method Sound Relationship House Model. Her presentation will give us encouragement and practical tools for couples that decrease tension and increase engagement, opening the door to a more playful, happy family home.


10:15 Breakout Sessions (please select one, doors will close when full)

  • The Playful Teen: Erika Blair, LPC, RPT The tween and teenage years can be stressful on the entire family system. This presentation will give ways to engage your tween and teen in fun, developmentally appropriate ways!  The need to play doesn’t stop in early childhood and is a wonderful way to bond with your teen.

  • Development of Play Skills: Sarah Howard, Behavior Analyst An overview of how play skills develop from birth through school age (7-8 years) and how to teach play skills during the early years

  • It’s Only Dirt: Bonnie Hahn, M.Ed Play is very natural for children.  Learn about the differences in an adult’s view of play and a child’s view.  Discover ways to incorporate play-based experiences in outdoor classrooms and model this in children’s lives.  Gain ideas on how to create outdoor learning centers for children to experience


11:15 Breakout Sessions (please select one, doors will close when full)

  • Why Play and How it Helps You Bond With Your Child: Ken Dawson, LPC, RPT, Danielle Dawson, LPC, RPT, Traci Marant, LPC, RPT 3 Registered Play Therapists give an understanding of play as a communication tool and skills for parents to use this to help their child process experiences.  Through play, parents can see less anxiety and better coping skills to handle the daily stressors of life.

  • Fun Activities to do with Kids: Lexy Largent, Parent Educator Do you find yourself relying on screens to entertain your kids? Does hearing "I'm bored..." set you on edge? In this workshop, we will share ideas for games and activities that are fun for the whole family. 

  • Risky Play: The Benefits of Allowing Children to Play Freely: Donna Looper, M.Ed, Certified Child Life Specialist  Ever watch a child scale a fallen log or jump off the top of the monkey bars? It can make adults really uncomfortable, but research has found that they are necessary for a child’s development. During this session, we will talk about the importance and benefits of giving kids the opportunity for risky play and explore ways of promoting it.

Children's Programming will be available for $15 per child during the conference.  Space is limited and filled on a first come, first serve basis. You must register and pay by September 27th to hold your child's spot.  We ask that all children be comfortable with a childcare setting to participate.  Children will enjoy outdoor play time, bunny and book, Music with Mar, Mad Hatters performance, art, Chick-fil-a lunch and receive a Hold My Juice Box t-shirt!  Children will be supervised by highly qualified and trained childcare professionals. 

To make this happen, WE NEED YOUR HELP.


Here's How You Can Show Your Support: 

📱Connect with us on Facebook and Instagram 

📣 SHARE about the conference 

🎖 SPONSOR by becoming one of our tiered level supporters.  Learn more at the link below. 


Become a Champion of Play

Thank you to our Amazing Sponsors!

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Georgetown Public Library

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Children's Programming Sponsors & Organizations

Thank you to these organizations and businesses! 

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