Francesca’s Child Life Story

“I feel so blessed to have the opportunity to help children”


Child Life has been a part of my life since I was treated for an abdominal tumor at 14 years old. The part of my hospitalization that I remember the most was working with my Child Life Specialist. She helped me to understand why I was there, gave me fun things to do, and prepared me for any procedures, all while clarifying any misconceptions I had. I knew that from the day I left the hospital, I would one day become certified and devote my time to helping other children, and their families, during their time at the hospital.

As a child, being in the hospital can be very scary and confusing. Child Life aims to help children cope, while working to decrease anxiety and fear in children through play and education. Whether it’s playing a game at the bedside or in the activity room with a child, or educating them about what an IV is by allowing them to place one on a stuffed animal, we are here to meet their psychosocial needs. You can find us in all areas of the hospital; including general pediatrics, surgery, PICU, NICU, emergency department, radiology, and oncology/hematology.

I feel so blessed to have the opportunity to help children cope with their hospitalization and provide play during what could be a traumatic experience. There is not a better feeling than having a child run up to you with their arms wide open, saying that they love coming to the hospital because they get to see me!”

Francesca Kizer, CCLS, BS
Child Life Specialist – Women’s & Children’s Hospital
Lafayette, LA

Editor’s Note: The Child Life Council defines Child Life Specialists as “trained professionals with expertise in helping children and their families overcome life’s most challenging events.” For more information on Child Life, please visit


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