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Professional Development

Helium Arts’ Professional Development Programme offers training and support to artists and healthcare staff who would like to engage in arts and health practice.

Professional development, mentorship and providing collaborative opportunities for artists are central to Helium’s work. Our CPD programme includes artist mentoring programmes, seminars, workshops and skills sharing between artists and healthcare professionals. Videos and documentation from some of these initiatives can be viewed below.

Keep an eye on our News & Events Page for upcoming events!

Engaging the Senses

Helium Arts in partnership with Kildare County Council Arts Service hosted the Engaging the Senses symposium and practical workshop on 30 May 2018, exploring multi-sensory, interactive arts for young children with complex needs. The symposium was informed by outcomes and learning from Helium’s Pop Up Picnic, a multi-sensory performance project created in partnership with the Jack and Jill Children’s Foundation.

Tim Webb, the Co-founder and Artistic Director of internationally renowned UK theatre company Oily Cart, gave the keynote address. Tim mentored the Pop Up Picnic creative team during the project development phase and we were delighted to welcome him back to Ireland to talk about the work of Oily Cart. Tim’s keynote included video excerpts and this audio file has been edited and shortened for clarity.

Margaret McGrath, Senior Occupational Therapist, and Eimear Quinlan, Occupational Therapist, with the Early Services Team at Enable Ireland’s Dublin Children’s Services, talked about how they use multi-sensory play in their work. They looked at the OT role in play development, sensory influence on play development, how to support and facilitate play, and how to structure sensory experiences.

The panel discussion was chaired by Lucina Russell, Arts Officer with Kildare County Council Arts Service, with the following panel: Tim Webb, Oily Cart; Margaret Naughton, Specialist Liaison Nurse with the Jack and Jill Children’s Foundation; Eithne Hourihane, a participating parent on Pop Up Picnic; and members of the Pop Up Picnic creative team – Director Joanna Williams and performers Thomas Johnston and Niamh Lawlor.

Art and Design Strategies in Healthcare

Helium Arts, in partnership with Create, the national development agency for collaborative arts, hosted this seminar in Dublin and Cork in 2014 with guest speakers Jackie Sands (Arts and Health Improvement Senior with the NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde) and Vicky Charnock (Arts Coordinator at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, Liverpool). The seminar focused on the importance of early integration and planning strategies in the design of new healthcare facilities.

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We would love to keep in touch to tell you about what's happening in our creative programmes supporting children and teenagers managing long-term health conditions across Ireland to access a meaningful creative and social outlet. We will also send you details from time to time on our events, fundraising activities, funding and sector news.

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+ 353 (0) 44 93 96 960


Helium Arts is a registered charity and compliant with the requirements of the Charities Regulator, the national regulatory authority for charities in Ireland


CHY Number: 19236
Registered Charity Number (RCN): 20075200
Companies Registration Office: 486621


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Helium Arts
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22 Pearse Street
Co. Westmeath
N91 VYP0



This website has been part funded by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.