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Our Story

Established in 2017, PLAY is an innovative, Phoenix-based non-profit, focused on enhancing well-being, compassion, and joy in youth and families through an integrated approach to mindfulness, art, and yoga. We offer in-depth support and evidence-based teaching to youth and the parents and professionals who support them. Our curriculum is unique, and we consider it our mission to help students cultivate positive and healthy responses to the normal challenges and stresses inherent in every day life.

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Deanna Sheedy
PLAY Founder & Executive Director

Deanna Sheedy was born and raised in Phoenix Arizona and is now raising her 3-year old daughter with her husband, John. Deanna attended Xavier College Preparatory, University of Arizona for undergrad, and received her MA in counseling from Ottawa University.  She has worked in various non-profits in Arizona and California as a counselor, educator and program coordinator. After 15 years gaining experience, tools, and a passion for helping children and families, Deanna created the PLAY program to provide youth and families with the opportunity to learn and cultivate mindfulness skills through the practice of art and yoga. Deanna finds these outlets to be helpful and fun for people of all ages and is proud and honored to share PLAY with the Phoenix community. 

 
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Sarah Davis
Program Director / Mindfulness Instructor

Sarah has a Masters degree in social work from the University of Alabama and worked with the Birmingham City school system for 5 years. She has been a certified kids yoga instructor since 2016 and completed her RYT IN 2017. She has special training in prenatal/postnatal yoga and teaches it at Desert Song Art and Wellness in Phoenix. Sarah moved to Phoenix in 2017 with her husband and two children. They enjoy exploring Arizona as a family, camping and hiking throughout this beautiful state. She loves being able to use her training in social work and apply it to yoga and mindfulness curriculum. Sarah’s philosophy is to meet her students in a way that can translate into each of their individual lives.  Sarah’s favorite part of her work is teaching mindfulness skills to a wide ranges of ages and different socioeconomic backgrounds.     

 
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Terry Parry
Mindfulness Instructor

Terry Parry is a native New Yorker, who currently lives most of the year in Scottsdale, Arizona. She’s certified as a Yoga and Mindfulness Instructor and as a Special Education Teacher. She taught Special Education in New York for more than 20 years, with her greatest interest in children’s social-emotional learning and development. She attended training through Little Flower Yoga, so she could offer students a unique experience combining yoga and mindfulness in a developmentally appropriate way. Terry enjoys using her training in yoga and mindfulness and her background in teaching to support others in the development of fundamental life skills that are available for daily use.

 
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Leslie Pechkurow
Mindfulness Instructor

Leslie is a Licensed Professional Counselor, who in addition to working with PLAY, has her own private practice in which she sees children, families, and adults. Leslie utilizes much of her yoga learning and mindfulness in her counseling practice. Leslie was first drawn to yoga because of its unique coupling of strength and flexibility for the body. Desiring a deeper understanding of yoga, Leslie completed Yoga Teacher Training in 2013, and has also completed courses in teaching yoga to children and to expectant women, and recently completed advanced training. When Leslie is not engaged in yoga or counseling, she is spending time with her family and encouraging her barely one-year-old and three-year-old daughters to share in the love of yoga.

 
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Dan Strickland
Mindfulness Instructor / Marketing Director

Originally from Seattle, Dan began practicing yoga and mindfulness over a decade ago, and has been teaching mindfulness and social-emotional skills to at-risk and low-income youth around Phoenix since 2017.  He’s also an experienced marketing, public relations, and branding executive. He has developed and led global branding and marketing campaigns across myriad industries, including high-tech, action sports, fashion, music, non-profits, and entertainment. He’s worked with such companies as Google, Ducati, Red Bull, Sony, Warner Brothers, and others.

 
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Constance Sellers Mindfulness Instructor

Constance is originally from Alabama, where she received a Masters degree in Art Education and a Bachelors degree in Psychology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. In 2014 she moved to Arizona to begin a career as a K-8 art educator, and now uses her background to develop and implement mindful art practices at PLAY. She also works as a behavioral therapist, serving young children with autism. Constance’s goal is to support people of all ages in finding their own tools for personal growth and healing

 

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