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Counseling Center

Our Counseling Center offers individual and family therapy services for children ages one to eight, with trauma-responsive therapists who support children and families as they process life’s hurts.

Children visit us to heal from a wide range of difficult life experiences—everything from loss to divorce to abuse. Traumatic wounds are similar to physical wounds—they hurt, and the sooner treatment begins, the quicker the pain subsides and prevents long-term suffering and future complications. We are here to walk hand in hand with children and families who are overcoming the effects of trauma. Together, we pursue healing. Families leave The Children’s Place with renewed hope. Childhood is restored.

What is Trauma?

Trauma can be anything that happens that overwhelms our nervous system. This can be something that is too much, too fast, too soon, or too little for too long.
What is trauma?

Types of Therapy We Use:

The staff in our Counseling Center are leaders in the industry and highly trained in the latest research-based treatment approaches, and they can help you discover what type of therapy is the best fit for your child. We offer the following therapeutic modalities:

Play Therapy

Play therapy creates a safe, age appropriate atmosphere where children can express themselves, try new things, learn more about the world and work through their problems. Play therapy gives children an opportunity to explore, to show, to rehearse and open up more easily. Through play, children are able to communicate about their experiences and feelings.

Our therapists are highly trained to recognize the different types of play. This information, combined with background about a child’s history and behavior, allows therapists to work with parents and caregivers to develop the coping skills and strategies which will be most helpful to alleviate the pain and confusion a child feels.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)

EMDR is a specialized form of therapy where a child recalls a traumatic experience while following the rapid movement of the therapist’s fingers or a gentle tapping noise. The rapid eye movement from this process has been shown to help the child face a difficult memory without becoming overwhelmed by the emotional pain, allowing them to heal from the experience and build healthy coping skills.

Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT)

Through individual sessions with children along with joint sessions with their caregivers, this intervention helps children heal when they have experienced some form of trauma. After 12 to 16 weeks (on average) of sessions, cognitive behavioral therapy can help children and their caregivers see the connection between their thoughts, feelings and behaviors as they share their trauma story with the therapist and each other.

Adult Mental Health Therapy

The Children’s Place is proud to offer adult mental health therapy specifically for caregivers of the children we serve. We recognize that uncertainty can be an insurmountable barrier for many interested in pursuing therapy, and providing therapy for grownups in the same familiar facility where their children receive services can help remove this obstacle. This program is specifically available for the caregivers of children who are in one of our four programs. Clients who have participated in this program have told us they have learned more about trauma and its effects, gained confidence in their parenting skills, and built new self-regulation skills.

Theraplay® for Families

The Children’s Place is proud to incorporate Theraplay® in its Counseling Center. Developed over 50 years ago and now practiced around the world, Theraplay® was created to support healthy attachment between the child and caregiver, which can support good mental health and provide resilience in the face of adversity. Through activities, games and more, we integrate Theraplay® in individual and family sessions to build relationships and strengthen attachment.

Young child with dad

“My son has benefited so much from counseling at The Children’s Place. He’s now able to communicate better, process his emotions and stay positive in challenging situations.”

– Caregiver in our Counseling Center program

Meet Our Therapists

Candis Boily

Director of Counseling & Family Support Services

Candis Boily is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the states of Missouri and Kansas who also supervises professionally licensed counselors and provides EMDR training. Candis has worked with children and families since 2011 and joined The Children’s Place team in 2022. She is trained in Trauma Focused-Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) and Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) for children. Candis’ favorite playroom activity is playing card games, and her favorite game is UNO Flip.

Abby Davis

Child & Family Therapist

Abby Davis is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Missouri and is trained in TF-CBT and DBT. She began her work with children spending ten years teaching preschool, and she has now worked as a mental health therapist for seven years. Abby started with The Children’s Place in 2023 and has over 200 hours of play therapy training, is trained as a Level 1 TheraPlay® therapist and is EMDR trained. Abby appreciates that each toy in the playroom represents something different for each child and meets specific needs, but she gravitates towards sand tray miniature toys as a favorite for herself because they tell stories without words. You’ll find some of her favorite miniatures scattered around her desk.

August Dutt

Individual & Family Therapist

August Dutt is a Licensed Professional Counselor in Missouri. August has worked in nonprofit, community services for over 12 years and as a therapist for the past five. August is passionate about helping individuals and families affected by difficult life experiences and is a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Theraplay. August especially enjoys supporting adults and children to heal and grow using sandtray miniatures.

Meagan Freund

Child & Family Therapist

Meagan Freund is a licensed professional counselor in the state of Missouri and a board-approved supervisor. She has been working with children and families since 2010 and started working at The Children’s Place in June 2024. Meagan is trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT). Her favorite toys in the playroom are puppets, miniatures and dress up clothes. Her favorite book is A Color of Your Own.

Olivia Garcia

Child & Family Therapist

Olivia Garcia is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in the state of Missouri. As an LMFT, she believes that each individual within a family or community has the power for healing and that this power ripples into the rest of the system. Olivia has been working in nonprofits and community mental health since 2015 and started with The Children’s Place in 2023. She has completed more than 150 hours of play therapy instruction and training along with Theraplay Level 1 training. Her favorite toys in the playroom are her plethora of puppets, with sandtray taking a very close second place.

Allie Hable

Child & Family Therapist

Allie Hable is a licensed professional counselor in the state of Missouri and a board-approved supervisor. She has been working with children and families since 2018 and started working at The Children’s Place in May 2024 after moving from Minnesota. Allie is trained in Eye-Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), and trauma sensitive yoga. Allie loves playing with kinetic sand, coloring and board games. Her favorite book is Pout Pout Fish.

Kassie Popper

Child & Family Therapist

Kassie Popper is a dual-licensed therapist in Missouri (PLPC) and Kansas (LPC). She started with The Children’s Place at the beginning of 2023 but has worked in the mental health field for seven years. Kassie has extensive experience in trauma-informed care and is trained in Trauma Systems Therapy, Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), Positive Behavioral Intervention Supports (PBIS). Her favorite toys in her playroom include musical instruments, sensory toys (like water, sand and clay) and dress up clothes. 

Healing for all

One in four children will experience a traumatic event. The Children’s Place exists to support young children and their caregivers in their healing journeys. We accept all forms of payment for therapy. We bill private insurance companies, such as Blue Cross Blue Shield of Kansas City, United Healthcare and Aetna, among others. We also bill Medicaid and offer a sliding scale fee payment so no child will ever be turned away because of financial challenges.

Learn More
To learn more or enroll your child, please contact us at 816.363.1898 or fill out the form below and your information will be securely sent to our Admissions Coordinator.


Check out our Counseling Center Frequently Asked Questions