Mwanamvua Boga, Nurse Manager at Kemri-Wellcome Trust Kilifi, Kenya, on her experiences of carrying out research in her care setting


The 1000 Challenge is a global initiative developed by Nursing Now Challenge and The Global Health Network to enable 1000 nurses, midwives, community health workers, and other allied health professionals in low-resource settings to lead research studies that gather evidence to address priority issues in their communities. This is a powerful opportunity for leadership and career development delivered through workplace learning whilst generating vital evidence to improve health outcomes in their communities, and by doing, creating leadership experience.

This challenge is needed because there is vast inequity in where research happens, who leads, and who benefits from the evidence. Too few studies address health issues where accessible and pragmatic solutions could change outcomes in patients. For many reasons healthcare settings to do not have research built into their operations and system and so their healthcare professionals are not supported, encouraged, or mandated to undertake research that could practically and effectively reduce the burden of a devasting health challenge – and tackle gaps they see every day. Such research can generate evidence to inform changes in practice, training, or guidance, or healthcare resource allocation, program development, and implementation. The 1000 Challenge system is a mechanism to introduce research into these care settings by taking these workers through the process and guiding every step and element that is needed to deliver good quality evidence that can change practice.

The goal is to enable 1000 nurses, midwives, community health workers or other allied health professionals to deliver a research study in their care setting

How the 1000 Challenge will work

The 1000 Challenge is an opportunity for nurses, midwives, community health workers, and other allied health professionals in low-resource settings to identify and be supported in setting up pragmatic and achievable studies designed to solve challenging healthcare issues they experience in their practice. These studies could be observational, social science (behavioural or practice), diagnostic, or clinical trials involving registered drugs or non-pharmaceutical interventions. These will ask locally important questions to generate evidence that can be taken up to change practice to improve patient management, care, prevention or treatment.

Help, support, training, tools, and resources will be provided to each research team for every step of the process. This will be delivered through a highly interactive online collaborative study builder facility. This begins by setting the question, progresses through running the study, right through to setting out how findings could be taken up into practice and sharing their recommendations. At each step the team are asked if they need any help and this is provided by connecting to specific digital training and resource, and also directly to volunteer experts from across the globe who will guide steps in how to take forward each step.

Institutional support for research is a common barrier to research. Many care settings do not have experience or even awareness of the value that bringing in research could deliver. Therefore, this facility will help the team approach their managers and set out why this research will be valuable and worthwhile for their organisation. This facility enables teams to undertake high quality studies, it does not provide funding. Teams might already have funds as these studies could be part of a wider programme. However, more typically because these studies are intended to practical studies embedded in care settings they should only be associated with the cost of the team's time and this should be worth the investment for the employer because of the benefit this research will bring to the patients and also in terms of career development through this workplace based training and the experience of being directly supported in undertaking a study.

Guidance and resources

Here you can can find out more about the 1000 challenge