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Case study: Making Research more accessible to a Digitally Enabled Community

We spoke with Celine, one of our Community Research Champions supporting the Research Ready Communities programme.

As part of the NIHR Research Ready Communities programme, earlier this year, the network partnered with Mary Seacole House (MSH), a mental health charity based in the Toxteth area of Liverpool. MSH is a resource service set up to offer support and advice in emotional and practical matters, primarily for black, Asian, minority ethnic and refugee communities. Together, we have been working with a group of refugees from diverse backgrounds to understand how the NIHR can make research more accessible. 

One of the aims of the project is to demonstrate to the wider research community that digital can play a significant role in bringing researchers and communities together.  Research that is better in design and delivery will help tackle the increasing health inequality burden.  

We spoke with Celine, one of our Community Research Champions supporting the Research Ready Communities programme. Celine left India and sought asylum in the UK over 20 years ago, Celine volunteers at MSH and has dedicated her time to providing support and guidance to other service users. Being from a South Asian background and recently diagnosed with diabetes, Celine is very passionate about educating her community about health research and understands the importance of the involvement of under-represented communities. Digital platforms that offer research opportunities will play a role in how Celine educates her community. 

Celine said: “When I came to know about this research it really opened my eyes, so the community needs to be taught, they need to understand what research is all about. And once they’re aware of that I’m sure they will come forward to take part in the research because it's not only going to help them but it's going to also help their community. My wish is that everybody takes part in research so that all communities are benefited by it.” 

Watch the short film by clicking here: 

Be Part of Research, the online service that makes it easy for people to find and take part in health and care research, is now available through the NHS App in England. The service, run by the NIHR, helps members of the public understand what research is, and what it might mean to take part. It also shows what research is currently happening across the UK. Through the Be Part of Research website, people can search for what trials and studies are taking place for particular health conditions they are interested in, at locations that are easy for them to get to. 

For more information about taking part in research studies near you, browse the Be Part of Research website today.