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C.O.O.L. Zone

Program Overview

Shaped like an "igloo," the C.O.O.L. Zone is an early intervention behavioral health evaluation program for kids ages 3 through 8.

What is C.O.O.L.?

Children Overcoming Obstacles & Limits (C.O.O.L.)

In partnership with the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC, the Children Overcoming Obstacles and Limits (C.O.O.L.) Zone, is an early intervention behavioral health evaluation program for kids in our region. Shaped like an “igloo” to provide a safe space for children, the C.O.O.L. Zone provides a community-based mental health program for young children who are at a high risk at developing, or who currently have, a behavioral health diagnosis.

The C.O.O.L. Zone aims to assist children dealing with traumatic experiences, such as community violence, poverty, and domestic abuse who may be displaying behavioral issues at school.


Number of C.O.O.L. Zone igloos in the Pittsburgh region

The first C.O.O.L. Zone was constructed at Edgewood Primary in the Woodland Hills School District. With the success of this initial therapeutic igloo, the Penguins Foundation now has a total of 4 C.O.O.L. Zones built or underway in the Pittsburgh region.

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Programs for Growing
  • Testimonials

    “The Igloo is like a secret cove. It helps kids open up a lot because they don’t feel like everyone’s watching. Other kids who aren’t in the program walk by and say, ‘I want to go to the C.O.O.L. Zone!’”

    Carolyn Passen, Clinician
    C.O.O.L. Zone
  • Testimonials

    “Our collaboration on the C.O.O.L. Zone project with the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation has enabled our agency to provide behavioral health services to children in a creative and innovative way. The therapeutic playroom – the C.O.O.L. Zone – with an Igloo for play therapy and specially designed programming centered around a penguins theme, provides a child-friendly and engaging setting where children and families can feel at ease obtaining mental health services and supports.”

    Dr. Kimberly Blair, Licensed Psychologist
    Matilda Theiss Early Childhood Behavioral Health