THE NORTH-EAST has a vital role to play in the future of children’s emotional well-being and mental health and, thanks to new training opportunities from an industry leader, you can be part of it.

APAC - which has produced more than 4,000 qualified play therapists around the world and is currently training more than 300 in the UK – is now offering easily-accessible courses in the North-East at the picturesque Slaley Hall, near Hexham.

The estimated numbers of child play therapists needed by local authorities are:

  • County Durham - 159
  • Northumberland - 98
  • Newcastle-upon-Tyne - 88
  • Sunderland - 87
  • Stockton-on Tees - 68
  • Middlesbrough - 50
  • Darlington - 37

Hexham Courant:

Monika Jephcott, CEO of APAC, said: “APAC’s partnership with Slaley Hall means it’s never been easier for people in the North of England to become play therapists.

“Training to work with children and help them overcome difficulties in their lives is hugely rewarding, and our graduates know they are going to lead careers that make a real difference.”

Following a hugely popular one-day ‘Introduction to Play Therapy Training’ course held earlier in 2019, a second has been scheduled on February 8, 2020.

Participants will be introduced to the core concepts of play therapy and be able to experience the techniques for themselves. If they decide to pursue a career in play therapy, they can join the Postgraduate Certificate course in April and take the first step on the road to an exciting new career.

Because children either cannot or do not want to talk about their problems, play therapists are trained in the Integrative Holistic model, which has been developed in the UK over 20 years, and is now used in more than 70 countries.

Hexham Courant:

The model teaches therapists to let children choose what to do in the playroom themselves, selecting from a wide range of therapeutic media including sand worlds, clay, drawing and painting, musical instruments, puppets, role play, movement, masks, water and messy play, games, creative visualisation, and therapeutic story.

Therapists are trained to not only observe the activities, but to communicate with the children using the same media they have chosen. Talking by the children only accounts for 7 per cent of the session time on average.

Play therapy is effective for a wide range of issues including family and social relationships, anger, attachment issues, loss and bereavement, lack of confidence and self-esteem, ADHD, autistic spectrum, and bullying.

The part-time Postgraduate Certificate takes around 20 to 24 months to complete, during which time students will attend five weekends of experiential training at Slaley Hall, complete written assignments, and carry out 100 hours of clinically supervised practice with children who have mild to moderate therapy needs.

For further information, contact the APAC Admissions Office on 01825 761 143, or by emailing: