Community Engagement (CE) in biomedical research is a broad concept that covers a range of activities with different aims. The implementation of CE activities at the KEMRI Welcome Trust Research Project (KWTRP) has been informed by rigorous qualitative and quantitative research undertaken at the research centre by members of the HSR department. The aim of community engagement activities is to strengthen mutual understanding between community members and the Centre, to enhance ethical aspects of our research, and to provide feedback that will change local, national and international policy. CE activities are implemented by a Community Liaison Group, and supported by the Health Research Ethics (HRE) team in the Health Systems Research (HSR) department.
The programme-wide community engagement strategies involve information sharing on what research is and how participants’ rights are protected in research, and information on new studies. It also includes consultation with community representatives (chiefs, leaders, and typical community members) on planned or on-going research or research policy; and feedback of research findings. These activities happen independent of individual studies, through large and small scale community meetings or barazas, regular meetings in other settings in the field (for example schools, health facilities or chief’s offices) and open days and workshops at the research centre.
Study specific engagement activities involve development of programme guidelines to support study teams to design appropriate community engagement plans for each study. CLG members sit on a Community Engagement Advisory Group set up for each study that requires community engagement and can link with programme wide engagement where appropriate.
We also undertake specific schools engagement, led by Alun Davies.
Investigators : Investigators: Noni Mumba, Sassy Molyneux, Dorcas Kamuya, Vicki Marsh, Alun Davies