Information, support and training for PDA

PDA (Pathological Demand Avoidance) is widely understood to be a profile on the autism spectrum, involving the avoidance of everyday demands and the use of ‘social’ strategies as part of this avoidance. PDA individuals share autistic characteristics and also have many of the ‘key features’ of a PDA profile.

This short video is a brief introduction to PDA and the approaches that help. More details can be found throughout our website.

Find out more

The wide range of information on our website can be explored through the following sections …

What is PDA?
Life with PDA
Working with PDA
Events & training
Get involved

Practice Guidance

NEW practice guidance on identifying and assessing a PDA profile, collating the professional practice and experience of a multidisciplinary group of professionals, has been produced by the PDA Society and is FREE to download now.

The goal of this document is to aid assessment of a PDA profile, to distinguish PDA from other presentations of marked demand avoidance, and to signpost appropriate support and guidance for individuals and families.

Download Practice Guidance

Our Strategy 2022-2027

We’re delighted to share our new strategy which has 6 goals that explain what we hope to achieve from 2022 to 2027.

This 5-year plan was produced using feedback from the PDA community (with surveys run in 2018 and 2021), feedback from professionals and our own experience. From our surveys we heard that PDA individuals are still struggling to:

  • Access a diagnosis identifying a PDA profile, with lack of research given as a reason for this.
  • Have their individual needs as PDA individuals understood.
  • Access the personalised strategies needed to help.

Our 5-year plan aims to tackle these challenges and improve the quality of life for PDA individuals and those who support them.

View strategy

Join us

We currently have the following paid and unpaid opportunities with the PDA Society:

  • Finance and Fundraising Administrator (employee, 7 hours per week, remote)
  • Trustee, Treasurer (volunteer)
  • Trustee Lead for Inclusion (volunteer)
  • Volunteer Research Advisor

If you’re looking for a rewarding role with a friendly and committed team of people, are passionate about improving awareness and understanding of PDA and want to make a positive difference to the PDA community, we would love to hear from you.

Further details, including role descriptions and application forms for each role, are available here.

Join us

Q&A Live events

The PDA Society is hosting monthly online Q&A Live events via Zoom with guest speakers answering questions on specific topics based on feedback from our recent training survey. The Q&As will also be recorded and available for pre-booked ticket holders to watch for 30 days after the event.

View all upcoming Q&A Live events and booking links.

On Thursday 29th September – 8-9pm (BST), our Q&A Live event will be answering questions around understanding social care with independent social workers Cathie Long, Mary Cartlidge and Rachel Gavin.

Tickets & info

Featured training

PDA Society cources are delivered by training facilitators with valuable first-hand experiences of living and working with PDA

PDA for Educators (online)

Suitable for educators supporting PDA young people (5-16yrs) in mainstream, SEN or autism specific schools. Live training run over 2 sessions via Zoom.

Sept 19th & 26th, 3.30pm-5.00pm (BST), Tickets & info

Working with and supporting PDA children (online)

Suitable for healthcare practitioners, therapists and counsellors supporting PDA young people (up to 16yrs). Live training via Zoom.

Sept 19th, 9.30am-1.30pm (BST), Tickets & info

PDA for parents and carers (online)

Suitable for parents and carers of PDA children and young people up to 18 years. Run over two live online Zoom sessions.

Sept 30th & Oct 7th, 10am-12.30pm (BST), Tickets & info

Working with and supporting PDA children (online)

Live training via Zoom for education, health and social care professionals supporting PDA young people (5-16yrs).

Oct 12th, 3.30pm-5.15pm (BST), Tickets & info

About us

The PDA Society is led and run by a small team, all of whom have a direct connection with PDA. We provide information, support and training about PDA for individuals, families and professionals. We aim to increase acceptance and understanding of a PDA profile and to improve outcomes for individuals and families by focusing everyone involved on ‘what helps’. These aims are underpinned by our 5 year strategy. The PDA panda is our ambassador because, just like giant pandas, PDA individuals need specific support in order to thrive.

Find out more

Discussion forum
Donate or fundraise

Featured resources

PDA & Sleep
Q&A Live – What is PDA for parents and carers (video)
Information sheet for social care professionals
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