Lorraine Freedle
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Photos by Mark Venner

Dr. Lorraine R. Freedle

Dr. Freedle is a pediatric neuropsychologist and the owner/operator of Black Sand Neuropsychological Services, Inc. in Hilo, Hawaii.  She is also a licensed Clinical Social Worker and Psychologist and a teaching member of the Sandplay Therapists of America (STA) and the International Society for Sandplay Therapy (ISST). Dr. Freedle provides pediatric and school neuropsychological evaluations and consultation services; NMT® assessment and trauma work; psychotherapy; sandplay therapy; clinical supervision/case consultation; personal sandplay retreats; and training at the national and international level in children’s behavioral health, trauma, neuropsychology, and sandplay therapy.

Dr. Freedle is also the Clinical Director of Pacific Quest, a therapeutic wilderness program for adolescents and young adults that utilizes the Sustainable Growth™ model to treat young people with a variety of personal struggles by integrating rites of passage, horticultural therapy, holistic wellness, experiential learning, and effective psychological and family supports.

Dr. Freedle holds a doctoral degree in clinical psychology with a specialization in neuropsychology. She completed postgraduate training and board certification in pediatric neuropsychology and school neuropsychology. She is also a trainer in the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics (NMT) through the Child Trauma Academy and uses this approach to clinical practice. Dr. Freedle also holds graduate degrees in social work and school psychology, and has over 25 years experience in behavioral health and clinical administration. Dr. Freedle currently serves as a Research Editor for the Journal of Sandplay Therapy, and has numerous professional articles published.

Dr. Freedle combines her background in social work, education, behavioral health and neuropsychology to create a thorough, child-centered, systems approach to neuropsychological evaluation. She is committed to helping parents and all of those who work with children to develop an informed, strength-based approach to meeting a child’s unique needs.

Dr. Freedle’s current research interests center on studying the multi-sensory aspects of sandplay therapy and the process of neural integration in the treatment of trauma. She conducted award winning research on “Sandplay Therapy and the Individuation Process in Adults with Moderate to Severe Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)” and “The Role of Sandplay Therapy in the Treatment of Adolescents and Young Adults with Co-occurring Substance Use Disorders and Trauma.”



The mission of Black Sand Neuropsychological Services is to facilitate “whole brain” healing for children, adults, and helping professionals.
Whole brain healing involves a mind-body approach to expanding consciousness and integrating neural networks to maximize growth, balance, and learning potential.  The result is a deeper connection to our essential self, others and the larger world.
~ For children with learning differences or a variety of medical or psychological conditions that impact the brain, healing can take place when their neuropsychological profile is better understood and effective interventions can be implemented tailored to their specific strengths and needs.
~ For individuals who seek therapy to overcome personal challenges, whole brain healing involves using methods such as sandplay, art , active imagination, and meditation to tap into unconscious resources, reorganize neural networks, change behavior, and ultimately develop vitality, purpose and a new perspective on life.


  • Sandplay therapy - including personal process, training, individualized retreats, and case consultation
  • Pediatric and school neuropsychological evaluations and consultation services
  • NMT® assessment and trauma work
  • Psychotherapy for children, families, and adults
  • Supervision for social workers, mental health counselors and psychologists
  • Professional consultation in clinical administration and staff development
  • Speaking/training in children's behavioral health, trauma, neuropsychology, and sandplay therapy
Featured Events
For the Soul
18 years after his Sandplay process, "Ese" writes Dr. Freedle from Afghanistan. 18 Years Later... Sometimes it takes a grain of sand to make a lifetime of changes. Ese On the night of my daughter's graduation from high school, I felt heartache and joy. My baby, now a beautiful young woman, was leaving the nest. Alone at my computer, I discovered an e-mail from "Ese," a once gang-involved young man who completed a Sandplay process with me eighteen years prior.