Paul Kennedy Bursary – 2019’s Recipient and Applications for 2020


Congratulations to Sunita Maharjan, a nurse working at the National Spinal Injuries Unit, Mater Misericordiae University Hospital, Dublin, who has been awarded the 2019 Paul Kennedy ‘Making a Difference’ Bursary.

Our thanks go to Total Community Care for sponsoring this award. Sunita plans to use the bursary to attend the International Spinal Cord Society (ISCoS) Annual Scientific Meeting in France in November 2019 to further explore and gain knowledge of patients’ understanding of neuropathic pain in the early aftermath of SCI and consider how this may influence their longer-term outcomes, in particular pain interference.  This will build on a research study Sunita has already undertaken as part of an MSc nursing degree. She will present at this year’s MASCIP conference and also feed back on her experience and learning in the Spring 2020 MASCIP newsletter.

We are now accepting applications for the Paul Kennedy Bursary for 2020. MASCIP members are encouraged to apply via the application form by the deadline of 17th April 2020.

In 2016, the spinal cord injury community were devastated by the unexpected and sudden passing of Professor Paul Kennedy. Paul was a leading clinical psychologist and researcher. He combined vision, knowledge and enthusiasm with his passion to promote and develop quality SCI management, and founded MASCIP in 1998 to support all professionals involved in the patients’ journey. He believed MASCIP could help provide a forum to contribute to ensuring optimal outcomes for the individual with SCI, whilst also producing professionals committed to best practice, team work and high levels of job satisfaction. This legacy remains and will continue with its aims and objectives remaining as important today as they were when MASCIP was founded.

In recognition of Paul and to acknowledge the immense and significant contribution he made to the profile and development of the SCI multidisciplinary professional team, MASCIP is establishing an ongoing bursary in his memory. The Paul Kennedy ‘Making a Difference’ Bursary is awarded annually to a MASCIP member to use for an initiative that will make an identified difference to the lives of individuals living with a SCI. The initiative could be attending a conference or training event, undertaking a qualification, completing an audit, project or anything that can be objectively seen to ‘make a difference’. The award will be a single amount of £1,000. The bursary has been kindly sponsored by Total Community Care.

Applications should be submitted by completing the application form. The closing date will be Friday 17th April 2020. Applications will be reviewed by the MASCIP committee and the successful applicant will be informed by 8th May 2020. Criteria for the award will be based on the outcomes that the submitted project will achieve and what will have the most significant impact on the lives of individuals with a spinal cord injury through the intervention of the professional.

There will be an expectation from the successful applicant to provide a written report on their initiative which will be published on the MASCIP website along with attendance at the MASCIP conference and delivery of a 15-minute presentation to share the ‘Making a Difference’ experience.

This bursary is only available to MASCIP members.

If you have any queries please contact Dot Tussler, MASCIP Chair, on


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