The Life is Good Kids Foundation is spreading the power of optimism to help kids heal.

The Life is Good Playmakers

The Primary Initiative of the Kids Foundation

The term “Playmaker” comes from sports and refers to someone who makes good things happen when their team needs them most.

Simply put, a Life is Good Playmaker is someone who spreads the power of optimism to children who desperately need it.

Through the Playmaker Initiative, the Life is Good Kids Foundation supports the men & women who dedicate their careers to helping children heal from the devastating impact of early childhood trauma.

We provide a continuum of personal and professional development resources that help childcare professionals tap into the power of optimism and build healing, life-changing relationships with children in their care. Our initiative is based on the belief that in order to better care for the most vulnerable children, we must better support those who care for them.

To date we have offered retreats and ongoing support to over 5,000 professionals – including teachers, social workers, counselors, child life specialists and other youth workers.


The Life is Good Playmakers partners with schools, hospitals, social service agencies and enrichment programs across the country.
Some of our partners include:


Do You Work With Kids?

We offer a limited number of public retreats for individual childcare professionals working with children impacted by trauma. Learn more about attending a Playmaker Two-Day Retreat by clicking below.

Our Founder & Chief


Our Chief Playmaker, Steve Gross, MSW, is a clinical social worker and a pioneer in the field of using playful engagement and relationships to overcome the devastating impact of early childhood trauma.

Steve’s talents have been called upon to respond to some of the greatest catastrophes of our time. At the heart of his work, Steve helps others discover the power of optimism so that they can build resilience and bring greater joy, connection, courage and creativity to their lives.


“Life is Good Playmakers is absolutely the most amazing program that I have encountered and I’ve been doing this work for 30 years.”

– Pam Mottley, M.ED.
Retired Consultant for the Mississippi State University Early Childhood Institute


“If we want to have a society that works we would incorporate the things that the Life is Good Playmakers does in every school curriculum.”

– Bessel van der Kolk, M.D.
Medical Director of The Trauma Center at the Justice Resource Institute


“Life is Good Playmakers is brilliantly simple. They have created something truly revolutionary in our field.”

– Nick Hoffman
Executive Director, Newtown Youth Academy