“My Life” - co-producing self-management resources with people living with dementia

Rachael Litherland In progress  


In 2021 Rachael Litherland was instrumental in co-producing a resource for and by people with dementia called My Life, My Goals. This was an output of the GREAT-IP research project – cognitive rehabilitation that supports people with dementia with their everyday activities. Over eight months a team of people with dementia worked with researchers to: learn about cognitive rehabilitation, share and create examples, translate the research evidence so that people could practice strategies themselves and write and design My Life, My Goals.

This work potentially provides a model for the development of a suite of resources that meet a range of needs. These would provide practitioners with things to offer or signpost to and would lead to more helpful and hopeful discussions around living with dementia. In turn, these resources might be expected to help people to manage better with dementia and live more positively.


The aims of this award are to:

  1. equip Rachael with research skills to explore and draw conclusions about co-production and impact of self-management resources by and for people living with dementia
  2. build relationships with colleagues at University of Exeter particularly around routes to dissemination in primary care
  3. learn about and apply a realist evaluation approach to My Life, My Goals (in the first instance) to understand which people with dementia it is useful for, at what point, under what circumstances and why, as well as finding out what health and social care practitioners think about My Life, My Goals
  4. use these results to begin thinking about a broader model of the benefits of co-produced resources by and for people living with dementia, and how these are best disseminated for greatest reach and impact
  5. position herself for a broader career in research including exploring further funding options with colleagues at University of Exeter.