2020 Hal Kendig Research Development Program recipients

AAG congratulates the following members on their successful applications for the 2020 Hal Kendig Research Development Program grants:


Awardee: Dr Jacqueline Francis-Coad

Affiliation: Curtin University

Grant: $19,620

Co-designing and evaluating fall prevention education informed by community dwelling older people with dementia and their caregivers: A feasibility study

The overarching aim of this project was to assist community dwelling older people with dementia to take up safety messages for enactment in daily life to reduce their risk of falling. It specific aims were to:

  • Partner with dyads of older people with dementia and their caregivers to co-design a fall prevention education program (resources will include a poster, brochure, video and carer training guide) for implementation in the home setting

  • Implement the falls prevention education program using the co-designed resources and evaluate intervention feasibility

  • Evaluate the impact of the fall prevention education program in facilitating adoption of safety messages for enactment in daily life to reduce the risk of falls from the perspective of:

The older person with dementia

The caregiver of the older person with dementia

The allied health professional delivering the education

Read about the outcomes of this study in a separate awardee showcase.

Dr Jacqueline Francis‐Coad is a senior research fellow at Curtin University and titled gerontological physiotherapist with qualifications and expertise in falls prevention and education for older people. Her PhD (2017) was the first realist evaluation of falls prevention in a care home setting demonstrating an increased proportion of residents supplemented with vitamin D and a downward trend in the injurious falls resulting in fracture. She has a national and international research profile through team collaborations across Australia and Wales contributing to over $6.5 million in competitive research funding during the past five years and 30 publications in peer reviewed journals.

Awardee: Dr Louise Lavrencic

Affiliation: Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA)

Grant: $19,967

Supporting psychosocial wellbeing with older Aboriginal Australians: Listening to community members' knowledge about Culture and connection

This project aims to better understand and address concepts and approaches for supporting psychosocial wellbeing with older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians (respectfully referred to as Aboriginal). Wellbeing for Aboriginal people is holistic and approaches to psychosocial wellbeing must be culturally-grounded. Yet, appropriate research with older people is lacking, has not been synthesised/evaluated, and key translation priorities must be outlined. The aims of this project are to:

1. Critically review research on psychosocial interventions for Aboriginal people as they age, focusing on mindfulness-based approaches.

2. Hold a roundtable with stakeholders, including Elders, to disseminate review findings, determine community priorities/potential solutions, and inform policy on psychosocial and lifecourse social determinants of health for older Aboriginal people.

3. Hold a tailored workshop for community members and health, aged care and community service providers to translate findings (from aims 1 and 2) and engage in healing practices.

Dr Louise Lavrencic has a background in Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience, and undertook her PhD at the University of South Australia investigating structural and functional correlates of cognitive reserve in older adults. She is passionate about understanding the factors that affect cognitive ageing and dementia in late life, and how we can help people to age well. Louise currently works across a number of research and translation projects being run by the Aboriginal Health and Ageing Team at NeuRA, including implementing a co-designed and culturally-grounded stress reduction program in collaboration with Aboriginal communities.