Derbyshire Carers Association have teamed up with researchers from Psychology at the University of Derby to develop a more in-depth understanding of the experiences and challenges which unpaid carers encounter in their day-to-day lives. To achieve this, we are always looking for carers who may be interested in taking part in our research projects. We hope to use the findings from our research and evaluation projects to help inform the services which we offer and provide real benefit to carers in Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and hopefully beyond. Below are the projects which we are currently running and supporting.

To support these exciting developments at Derbyshire Carers Association, we have jointly funded a research assistant to support a number of projects and the development of a carers research strategy for Derby with the University of Derby.  James is in post for two-years developing this work and co-ordinating our projects.

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If you have any questions, you can email James at


The research projects which we run and support currently relate to three key themes:

1.       Understanding and influencing the physical and psychological wellbeing of carers

2.       Understanding the impact of COVID-19, lockdown and restriction easing on carers

3.       Understanding the impact of caring on employment.

Some brief details about each one and information on how to get involved is outlined below.


Our Projects


Enhancing Wellbeing and Reducing Loneliness for Carers in Derbyshire

Purpose: To explore carer’s psychological wellbeing and loneliness over a twelve-month period and to see how these are impacted by caring and improved through the services provided by DCA.

Brief overview: This project will follow carers from their initial carer’s assessment and through the first year of accessing support from DCA.  Taking part will involve completing a questionnaire about the same time as you have your assessment, and then repeating this 3-, 6- and 12-months later.

In the coming months any carer who opts for a Carer Assessment with DCA will have the opportunity to take part in this project.


The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and UK lockdown on the lives of informal carers

Purpose: An online study aiming to develop understanding of how the COVID-19 pandemic and nationwide lockdown have affected carers and the people that they care for.

Brief overview:  Taking part will involve completing an online questionnaire on one occasion, including some demographic information about you, your caring role and some open-ended questions about how COVID-19 and the lockdown restrictions have impacted on your wellbeing.

To see more information and have the option to take part, please click here


Derbyshire Carers Association Ongoing Service Evaluation

Purpose: To obtain feedback from carers on their experiences with the different services which Derbyshire Carers Association offer.

Brief overview: This project involves completing an online survey about the services you have accessed from DCA in the last year.  It then asks you to rate each of those services in relation to your satisfaction with it, and for some feedback on how this has been beneficial and how it might be improved in the future.

This project is currently under development.


Carers in Employment Study: Working life for carers after COVID

Purpose: To understand how COVID-19 and the lockdown have affected carers who are juggling work and care. Also, to understand what employers can do to support carers in their workforce.

Brief overview: This project explores how employment has changed for carers since the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions, and how this has impacted their caring role, ability to maintain employment and manage their wellbeing.  It also explores concerns that carers may have as lockdown restrictions ease and further changes start to take place in relation to employment and caring.

This project is currently under development – please contact us if you are a carer or an employer to register your interest either in our online survey study or to take part in an interview/focus group.



Research which we are supporting


Carers’ experiences of caring for a family member or friend with Dementia during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Purpose: A study involving 2 telephone or Skype interviews with a researcher to discuss the experiences of caring for an individual with Dementia during the pandemic and lockdown.

To see more information and have the option to take part, please click here. Alternatively, if you would prefer information emailed or posted to you, please contact the researcher, Dan Herron (email:, telephone: 01782 295866).

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