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By Danny W. Pettry II, M.Ed., M.S., LPC, NCC, CTRS-BHS

Week # 5 out of 52 weeks (for blog of the week 2022 goal)

February is International Recreation Therapy Month

The question:

What is the Worst Advice on Advocating Recreation Therapy?

The Answer:

Let someone else do it.



One end of the spectrum:

A small handful of Recreation Therapists (on one longtail of a bell curve) believe that it is someone else’s responsibility to advocate the profession. They believe it is their administrators or some organization’s responsibility to do it, but not theirs.

The truth is – every one of us Recreation Therapists are an advocate for our patients and our services.

Other professions are going to advocate for their services. They’re not best suited to advocate for us.

We, Recreation Therapists are the ones who are best suited to advocate for the people we service and the services we offer.



The Other End of the Spectrum:

A small group of professional recreation therapists (on the opposite end of a longtail of a bell curve) pay a small annual tax to advocate the profession. However, the majority of recreation therapists do NOT pay this same tax. This small group of recreation therapists who pay this tax are the ones who pay annual membership dues to our professional association.

The majority of recreation therapists do NOT pay an annual membership fee to their professional association.


The Bigger Question:

John F. Kennedy put it this way: Ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country.”

Let’s put advocacy this way: Don’t ask what the American Therapeutic Recreation Association is doing to advocate for you. Ask what are you going to do to help advocate Recreation Therapy?

You can donate time and money to help.

  • Join ATRA and pay annual membership dues so your hard earned dollars can advocate for the profession.
  • Volunteer time assisting with the professional association.


What are you going to do to advocate for your profession?

                                 Link Click here to go to ATRA’s Join Page

Danny W. Pettry II is a Lifetime Member of the American Therapeutic Recreation Association (ATRA). Pettry joined the organization in 1999.

Dislciamer: Danny Pettry is NOT a hired spokesperson for ATRA. Pettry encourages those professionals who are not yet member.