Shani Thornton is a child life specialist working in private practice in the Placer County and Sacramento region in the USA. She is also a blogger at Child Life Mommy, an adjunct faculty member for the Graduate Child Life Program at Bank Street College of Education and works with The Standish Foundation for Child & Family Centred Healthcare.
Shani has written a children’s preparation book for a wellness visit (available in paperback and digital format via Amazon) and completed her thesis on working with children with special needs.
“I discovered the profession when I was working as a recreational therapist assistant at a children’s convalescent hospital that was on the main campus of a large children’s hospital. I knew right away that health care and paediatrics was for me, but my role was missing something.
I started to do research and ask my co-workers lots of questions about their field (OT, SLP, nursing, etc.) and would take on any tasks that they gave me.
I discovered child life when one of our residents was referred to the child life team on the main campus for preparation for an upcoming surgery. I said, “What is Child lIfe?”. It was that night when I read about it on the computer that it all made sense and I just had this overwhelming sense of “This is what I am suppose to be doing!”
The rest is history.”