With more than 20 years of international experience in crisis work, the INA team has developed an approach that combines sustainability and active participation in a process of Capacity Building of local professionals (psychologists, psychotherapists, teachers, educators, occupational and speech therapists, etc.).
The study of play therapy models and the practice of artistic-expressive modalities with an emphasis on the well-being and self-care of professionals enables the co-creation of highly specialized and effective short- and long-term interventions for the benefit of children, adolescents and families, as well as the professionals involved in the projects.
On this page you will find information about our main projects in India, Africa, Venezuela, Italy, and Switzerland. If you wish to support INA's projects, make a donation or pay the annual membership fee: it's simple and effective!
Special Care for Children with Special Needs
Local Partner: Rural Development Trust (RDT) of the Vicente Ferrer Foundation
The psychosocial project began in 2018 in the Anantapur region of India at 9 facilities of our local partner. The missions in 2019-2022 were dedicated to a Capacity Building process in play therapy and therapeutic play for 58 local professionals working with 495 children with special needs, intellectually disabled, and affected by cerebral palsy. The Covid-19 pandemic forced a temporary interruption of the in-person trainings for 2020-2022, but INA's colleagues in the field are committed to the daily support of the children according to the play therapy methodologies learned so far.
Filial Therapy: Parents as Primary Agents of Change for Their Children
Local Partner: Department of Health and Social Affairs of the Canton of Ticino
This psychosocial project proposes a comprehensive process of adult's awareness, prevention, and training -with a focus on parents- about the repercussions of consistent circumstances of tension, fear, anxiety, stress, and trauma on children and how to intervene to overcoming difficulties and preventing possible future similar situations. Special emphasis is given to Filial Therapy methodology, one of the most effective integrated family therapy interventions for the treatment of developmental and family issues in which the therapist trains and supervises parents in conducting special play therapy sessions with their children.
Developing Play Together in Public and Private Schools
Local Partners: S.O.Solidarietà Onlus & the Sisters of the Precious Blood of Ngugo
The psychosocial project was focused on training teachers and childcare workers in the application of psychoeducational skills and methodologies derived from the play therapy field. Over the years, 60 teachers were trained and 2,000 children in the region were reached. Research and our field experience show that improving the student-teacher relationship is found to develop a number of benefits including promoting successful school adjustment, improvements in social and behavioral problems, positive academic achievement, increased development in math, language and thinking skills, improved relationship with peers, and positive socialization orientation.
Therapeutic Play Skills to Improve Resilience and Reduce Stress Reactions in Children
Local Partner: Doctors Without Borders, Venezuela
The training project focused on a process of Capacity Building that involved professionals from the psychological, educational, and social sectors of four major local organizations engaged in different areas of the country in promoting the growth and well-being of children and their families. The training modules presented how to use the psychosocial approach and therapeutic play skills to improve resilience and reduce stress reactions in children in a high-risk context. A highly motivated group of professionals made the training possible despite the difficult circumstances that the Country has faced for years and that worsened during 2017.
Play Therapy at the Children's Hospital Bambino Gesù
Local Partner: Children's Hospital Bambino Gesù in Rome
The 15-month project was launched in February 2012. The objective was to positively affect the psychological well-being of patients at the Bambino Gesù Hospital in Rome and their families who attended the playroom.
Specifically, the activities considered by this project were carried out by instructing staff in nondirective play techniques applied to the hospital setting, offering them supervision throughout the period, and encouraging the gradual introduction of play sessions as part of regular programming.
Therapeutic Play in Shelters for Refugee Children and Families
Local Partner: Swiss Red Cross, Asylum Seekers and Refugees Sector
The psychosocial project involved the systematic application of therapeutic play models to support migrant children and families staying at the SRC's reception facilities. In addition to the creation of a special play room within the facilities, the project enabled the specialized training of relevant professional figures such as social workers, kindergarten and elementary school teachers, animators, and nurses. Details of the project are available in the book "Introduzione alla Play Therapy. Quando il Gioco è la Terapia" (Mochi and Cassina, INA Play Therapy Press 2021) and "Play Therapy and Expressive Arts in a Complex and Dynamic World: Opportunities and Challenges Inside and Outside the Playroom" (Cassina, Mochi, and Stagnitti. Routledge 2022).
Play Therapy for Families with Psychosocial Distress
Local Partners: Municipality VIII of Rome & Association Il Viandante
The psychosocial project was dedicated to the psychological support of vulnerable families residing in the Municipality VIII of Rome. Through collaboration with the local support system, the application of a variety of play therapy models, and the development of psychoeducational trainings, we supported parents and children in improving and overcoming psychosocial difficulties and developing additional skills to cope with possible adversity in the future.