The arts and PMLD

Making sure that people with profound and multiple learning disabilities (PMLD) have the opportunity to take part in the arts is very important for many reasons. Art is an integral part of the human experience, and it can help people to get involved in their community, find new ways to communicate, and increase their self-confidence.

As a professional, there are many things you can do to help people with PMLD get involved in the arts, and to make the most out of their experience. The information in this guide has been taken from a booklet which accompanies the DVD ‘In the Moment', which demonstrates the use and power of many of the techniques described here. It also shows people with PMLD taking part in the arts and showcases some of the most exciting work in this area.

Participating in arts projects is so important, to be visible and for people to be really valued for what they can achieve. 

This information has been written for professionals to outline the importance of engaging people with PMLD in the arts, and to explain the steps you can take to make the experience as enjoyable and productive as possible. It also contains useful information about additional resources and support that are available. Look for the What next? sign for things you can do.

In the Moment

In the Moment is a Mencap DVD about the arts and working with people with profound and multiple learning disabilities (or PMLD).

Why is it important to make the arts available to people with PMLD?

Find out what a difference the arts can make to someone with PMLD.

Things to consider when working in the arts with people with PMLD

If you are a professional working with people with PMLD, there are some key issues that you need to consider.

Working with wheelchairs

Read our advice on working with people who use a wheelchair.


No one should be filmed, photographed or recorded in any way without their consent, or the consent of someone who is their advocate.

Further help

Find out where to get further information and advice.