Mindfulness for Carers

Participants are being offered a FREE mindfulness-based training course.

Mindfulness for Caregivers Acceptability & Impact on Caregivers’ Well-being

Are you a over 18 and a caregiver? Would you like to contribute to the knowledge base on the usefulness interventions for caregivers and more specifically the acceptability and effectiveness of mindfulness based distance learning? Participants are being offered a FREE mindfulness-based training course (starting October 2015 for people in the first group/or after completion of the assessments in March 2016 for the control group). This research is being carried out by Now Unlimited under the supervision of Bangor University.

Project Title: Mindfulness for Caregivers: Acceptability and Impact on Caregivers’ Wellbeing

Researcher and Trainer: Maureen O’Callaghan, Masters Student affiliated to CMRP Research Supervisor/Principal Investigator: Dusanna Dorjee

Research Administrator: Sarah Spencer

You are invited to take part in a research project. Before you decide to take part or not, it is important for you to understand the aims of the research and what it will involve. Please take the time to read the following information carefully and , if you wish, to discuss it with family and friends. If you are unclear about anything or would like more information please ask. Take the time you need to decide if you want to participate or not.

Why Is The Research Study Being Done?

The research project aims to investigate the acceptability and impact of a mindfulness-based distance learning programme on well-being and related variables. Specifically we are looking at how the training influences the well-being and resilience of caregivers who are known to experience high levels of stress. Previous research with clinical populations, healthy adults and caregivers has shown that mindfulness can reduce stress, encourage positive emotions and improve well-being. We want to investigate whether similar effects can be experienced by care givers participating in a mindfulness based programme that incorporates additional learning around self-compassion and that is delivered using distance-learning methodology.

Who Can Take Part?

Caregivers can take part in the study if they are over 18 and have had their caring role recognised by a health and social care professional. In general, it is not recommended that people participate in mindfulness training if they are suffering from acute depression, acute psychosis or recent trauma. If you have any concerns about taking part in the programme this can be discussed in confidence with the Mindfulness Teacher.

What Will You Have To Do and When?

We will ask you to meet with the Trainer (in your own home) who will answer any questions you have about the course and will assess if it is the right time for you to do the course. Once you have agreed to take part in the programme you will be allocated to one of two groups. One group will take part in the distance learning course and a control group will be provided with a copy of Finding Pace in a Frantic World and will be placed on a waiting list ( to be offered mindfulness training after the study assessments have been completed in 2016).

Participants in both groups will be asked to fill in two short questionnaires before and after the course and again after three months i.e. October 2015, December 2015 and March 2016. Participants on the course will also be asked to fill in an Individual Learning Plan at the start and end of the course and to fill in a short learner review after each session outlining the learning that has occurred. We estimate that each questionnaire and the Individual Learning Plan will take 30 minutes to complete and the Learner Reviews will take 15 minutes. We estimate this will take six hours in total. You are free to decline any questions you are uncomfortable with. If you decide to take part in the study you will be asked to kept this information sheet and to sign the Consent Form.

What Are the Benefits of Taking Part?

In recompense for your participation you will be offered a free mindfulness-based training course (starting October 2015 for people in the first group/or after completion of the assessments in March 2016 for the control group.) You will be contributing to the knowledge base on the usefulness of mindfulness and self-compassion interventions for caregivers and more specifically the acceptability and effectiveness of distance learning. At the end of the research the data may be held by Bangor University, if this is the case it will be stored in line with data protection legislation.

Do You Have to Complete the Study Once You Have Started?

Is it assumed that participants will complete the three assessments questionnaires and will take part in all of the mindfulness training sessions. However, if at any stage of the study and for any reason you feel unable to continue you are free to withdraw without a penalty i.e. you will not be charged for the course. To be clear you will not incur any costs if you withdraw from the course early.

If you decide to withdraw from the course you can ask to have any data relating to your involvement removed.

Will the information you provide be safe?

All documentation will be stored securely and anonymously at Now Unlimited’s offices and will only be seen by the Research Team. All questionnaires and records will contain a randomly assigned number. Because of the need to compare responses and records before and after the course and at follow up, the Team will need to keep a linking sheet to help us to relate the random number on the documents with you name during data collection. This Linking Sheet will be stored separately from assessments, learning plans/reviews and feedback forms and will only be accessible to the Principal Researcher. Reported results in any publications resulting from this study will be pooled groups data which means no participants will be identifiable. If you would like to hear more about the results of the study when it is completed, please indicate this on the Consent Form.

To support the smooth running of the study will well be asking you to provide contact details i.e. email, telephone and postal address. This will enable us to send you course related information (or a copy of Finding Peace in a Frantic World for the control group.) and assessment questionnaires, and send you a copy of the results in the form of an Executive Summary at the end of the study. Contact details will not be passed on to anyone not in the Research Team, and will be stored separately from questionnaire responses and learning plans/reviews and in line with the same confidentiality protocol as all other research data. This additional information is voluntary, and can be provided at the orientation and assessment meeting in October 2015. The information provided will need to be accessible to the Research Administrator for data collection and collation. The trainer/researcher would not have access to information (other than the session notes) so would be unable to determine any association between participant numbers and names.

Safeguarding

In line with Lincolnshire County Council’s multi-agency safeguarding policy, if at any time we have immediate concerns about your physical safety we will inform the police. If we identify a Cause for Concern i.e. we think you might be at risk of abuse (physical, emotional, financial or sexual) we will inform the Adult Services Team. You will be advised of any action we are taking. We are unable keep confidential any information that would indicate that you or others may be at risk. During the orientation and assessment interview you will be asked for the name of a person we can contact if we are worried about any aspect of your wellbeing. This can be the name of a mental health professional, your GP or named adult e.g. spouse.

The Complaints Procedure

The study has been reviewed by the Research Ethics Committee at Bangor University and no risk or harm is foreseen.

In the events of a complaint arising from the research, please address them to School Manager Hefin Francis ( h.francis@bangor.ac.uk)

If you have any further questions regarding the research project please contact: Maureen O’Callaghan Now Unlimited, 16 Bramblewood Close, Gonerby Hill Foot, Grantham NG31 8QH

Telephone: 07939 845920 E Mail: maureen@nowunlimited.co.uk


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