Academic Collaborative Centre related to people with PIMD: helping others to get the most out of life
The main goal of the Academic Collaborative Centre related to people with PIMD (ACC-PIMD, in Dutch: Academische Werkplaats EMB, AW EMB) is to help to improve the quality of life of children and adults with severe or profound intellectual and multiple disabilities (PIMD) and their families.
Our vision is to help children and adults with severe or profound intellectual and multiple disabilities to develop their capacities to the full, to exercise as much control over their own lives as possible and to participate more fully in society. We cannot achieve these goals without thorough scientific research, appropriate education and policy that is aimed at improving the quality of life of this target group and their families.
If we are to improve the support that we can offer to this group and maintain this improvement over time, we need to take the knowledge that we acquire and clarify, underpin, test and embed it into daily healthcare practice and educational programmes.
Even for the most basic daily activities, children and adults with PIMD are dependent on others: parents, other family members (such as siblings) and healthcare professionals. Both their ability to function and their quality of life hinge on their relationships with other people. It follows that when developing knowledge about how to optimize the quality of life of people with PIMD, we need to focus not only on the individuals with PIMD themselves but also on the people who support them and on the wider context. Add to that the complex combination of disabilities and problems that members of this target group face in all areas of their development and it becomes abundantly clear that the best approach is an interdisciplinary one.