SEL ICB secures second year of funding for Research Network Development Programme (REND)

A programme to build trust and empower people to contribute towards research has secured a second year of funding

20 Nov 2023

Marginalised communities are underrepresented in health and care research. The South East London Integrated Care Board (SEL ICB), alongside the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR), King’s Health Partners (KHP) and Mabadiliko CIC, are hoping to change that through Research Network Development Programme (REND), which aims to build rapport with community-based organisations by establishing models for equitable partnership and collaborative prioritisation of NIHR research. Through co-design, the programme will upskill communities in research capability, enabling community-based organisations to make informed and empowered contributions to research.

The funding will go towards identifying and engaging with ‘seldom listened to’ communities across SEL (including Black African, Black Caribbean and South Asian communities and anybody living with poverty). Through this process, building trust through the lens of Cultural Humility will be key to establishing capability, confidence, and readiness of ICB and NIHR colleagues to work in novel, equitable and inclusive ways.

Jonty Heaversedge, Joint Medical Director at the SEL ICB said: “I’m thrilled that we have received further funding for our REND programme. It’s important that south east London communities feel empowered and knowledgeable about the benefits of partaking in health research.”

Dr. Nadine Fontaine-Palmer, Director at Mabadiliko CIC said: “It’s great to see that we’ve secured funding for such crucial work. The bi-directional mistrust that exists between seldom listened to communities in south east London and the health system is a key barrier to health research. We’re proud to lead this programme that relies on equitable partnership with the VCSO sector, recognising the exceptional work of community organisations and the trust they have developed with the communities they serve.”

Watch Nadine Fontaine-Palmer’s keynote address at the King’s Health Partners Annual Conference 2023, about building a research engagement network.