Volunteer - research

NARI's research program relies on the support and interest of older people who generously give their time to take part in our research studies. Volunteers are needed as research participants as well as assisting with research work. Please note that we have many research projects and that some have specific eligibility requirements.

If you are interested in taking part in our research or volunteering your skills please fill out the Volunteer Expression of Interest Form.

 Volunteer Form

Once completed, please return the form to NARI.

Email: NARI reception

Post: NARI, PO Box 2127, Royal Melbourne Hospital, Victoria, 3050.

Please feel free to pass this form on to other people who may be interested in participating as a NARI volunteer.

There are several programs underway at NARI or affiliated organisations which require research participants. They are:


Are you caring for someone with dementia?

We are looking for research participants to take part in a program delivered via video conferencing. The aim is to determine whether is helpful for carers of a person with dementia to better understand and respond to the behaviours of the person they care for.

To participate in the study, you need to: be 18 years of age or over, be caring for and living with someone with dementia and live within 100k radius of Melbourne.

This program involves eight weekly face-to-face (via videoconferencing) sessions of education, relaxation and counselling.

To find out more about this project, please contact Ellen Gaffy at NARI on (03) 8387 2296 or at e.gaffy@nari.edu.au

Read more about how you can participate in START


Consumer Wearables for Healthy Ageing

With the current emphasis on ‘healthy ageing’, a growing number of older people are adopting wearable devices to monitor aspects of their health, such as physical activity level, nutrition and sleep.  Researchers at NARI and in the Health and Biomedical Informatics Centre (HaBIC) at The University of Melbourne are conducting a study to understand how older people use consumer wearables for health self-management.

We would welcome your participation in our 20-minute survey, if:

  • you are 55 years or older
  • you use (or have used in the past) a smart watch (e.g. Fitbit) or other wearable to keep track of your health and fitness

Note: No personal health records or evidence of medical diagnosis or treatment will be collected. Any information you provide in the survey is entirely anonymous and confidential.

 It is possible to take this survey online OR by email:
1.   To complete the online survey, go to: http://go.unimelb.edu.au/sor6
2.  To request a hard copy of the survey, contact Cecily Gilbert - cecily.gilbert@unimelb.edu.au


Older men required for research study

At The Royal Melbourne Hospital, we are conducting a research study on the immune system in children and adults with diabetes, compared to people without diabetes (Human Research Ethics Committee Project 88/03).

The immune system changes with age and we would like to include older people who don’t have diabetes in this study.

We are looking for healthy older men without diabetes, who are more than 80 years of age, living in metropolitan Melbourne, who would be willing to donate a single blood sample of 70 ml (4 tablespoons). The blood sample would be taken from an arm vein in the same way as a routine blood test.  It would be anonymous and no further sample would be needed.

No travel is required. We will visit volunteer donors where they reside, at their convenience.

Please contact Professor Len Harrison by phone (0418174188) or email (harrison@wehi.edu.au). 


Can your hearing be improved by a rhythm training game?

NARI wishes to inform readers of a study currently being conducted by a researcher at the Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences at the University of Melbourne.

To participate in the study you will need to be 65 years or older and experiencing some level of hearing loss. Over a period of 6 weeks you will play a game that requires listening to elementary musical note patterns on a simple touch-screen tablet-style computer and replicating those patterns using a keyboard (all equipment provided). The game can be likened to very popular brain-training games and is amenable to people across all age groups.

The games gradually become more challenging but players can stay on any level until they are ready to move to the next level. Should you choose to participate, some initial assessments will be undertaken including a range of hearing and cognitive tests. After you have completed the program, the tests will be repeated to determine whether any changes have taken place.

While the game is musical in nature, no previous musical training is required.

This study has been approved by The University of Melbourne Research Ethics Committee.

Those interested in participating in this research should contact Ms Jo Wigley on 0414 703 091 or j.wigley@student.unimelb.edu.au.