Announcement of grant round 2017: User engagement and participation in prosthetics and orthotics developments.

PORT-ER grants

2017 Grant Theme: User engagement and participation in prosthetics and orthotics developments.

Closing Deadline 5pm GMT 28 February 2017.

Micro grants £25 – £250.

Professionals and organisations: Our 2017 grant round is about encouraging professionals, services and designers to include prosthetics and orthotics service users in planning, improving or evaluation of developments (services, activities, support, advocacy or products).

Users: Our 2017 grants will also support prosthetic or orthotic user group meetings or social activities. Or perhaps a special meeting is called by an organisation locally, but you are an individual user having to fund your own engagement in that meeting. We would like to help you with that.

This year we are offering “mustard seed” micro grants ranging from £25 to £250. We hope that this will help to encourage small ideas and actions to grow – or simply help users to contribute to bigger projects. Sometimes development is hard to achieve without small costs for local travel or coffee being covered.

For more information see our grants page

Grants awarded to 3 user groups

We are delighted to announce that PORT-ER has awarded 3 grants in our 2017 Grant round with the theme of “User engagement and participation in prosthetics and orthotics developments”. This year the grant round offered “mustard seed” micro grants ranging from £25 to £250 to encourage small ideas and actions to grow – or simply help users to contribute to bigger projects.

We received 4 grant applications and 3 were successful. One application was rejected because it was not aligned with our charity objectives. With the unanimous agreement of our PORT-ER trustees, the 3 successful awards are as follows:

Edinburgh Limb Loss Association (ELLA) awarded £250 for their re-launch.

Moving Forward (Portsmouth) awarded £250 for help with restarting their amputee charity.

Orthotic and Prosthetic Users Stanmore (OPUS) awarded £250 for their work.

We are delighted to be able to support these projects. Our next annual grant round will be announced in January 2018 with applications possible throughout February 2018. Please note that we do not accept grant applications outwith these dates because we are a small charity working in a voluntary capacity. We welcome any donations and help from fundraisers to grow our 2018 available grant funds.


Can you help with a study about walking with a prosthetic leg or if you use an ankle foot orthosis after stroke?

Research participation request: Comparison of biomechanical and muscle activation variables between mobility impaired and unimpaired individuals walking outdoors, indoors and on a treadmill.
Treadmills are used to help people with different medical conditions recover the ability to walk. They are used, for example, in the rehabilitation of stroke survivors and lower-limb amputees. This type of training improves the fitness and the walking speed of the user. However, it doesn’t help as much when it comes to walking around the home environment or outside where individuals face several challenges, such as turns, slopes or obstacles avoidance. A new type of treadmill which adapts its speed to the person’s own speed and change gradient, while projecting a virtual environment, can lead to more variety in walking practice that is closer to a real-life walking experience.

The aim of our study is to investigate how closely this virtual-reality treadmill simulates outdoor walking. We are looking for the help of people who use a lower-limb prosthetic, and people who have been affected by stroke and use a foot-splint or AFO. If you, choose to participate, we will arrange for you to attend a three-hour session at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, where you will be monitored while walking outside, inside, and in virtual-reality.

Study recruitment to early August 2017

For more information, please contact: Dr Nicholas Smith at

Request for participation in a study about spinal cord injury

The Spinal Cord Injury Move More (SCIMM) study

Are you an 18-50 year-old adult with a spinal cord injury T6 to S5?
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in people with spinal cord injury. The Spinal Cord Injury Move More Study is investigating whether breaking up periods of inactivity with very short bursts of exercise over the day helps to reduce risk markers for heart disease.
This study is being run by the University of Bedfordshire. You will be asked to visit the Universities Bedford campus on 4 occasions with all travel expenses paid and you will receive a total of £75 if you finish the study. You will receive feedback on an assessment of your health and a report of the study findings. Please click this link to see the Information Sheet for Participants Spinal Cord Injury.

Study recruitment to October 2018

To express your interest in this study please contact Tom Withers at

Recruitment for volunteers for study – talking about limb loss

Study title: Talking about limb loss – Development of patient information resources based on “real life” experiences.

Recruitment for volunteers:

Would you be interested in taking part in an interview to discuss your experience of limb loss and prosthesis use?
We would like to produce a series of patient information leaflets giving real life examples of amputation and prosthesis use.
These leaflets would then be distributed via clinics and support groups, as well as being made available online, to help other individuals with this experience. We are looking for individuals with all types of experience so please get in touch!
You must be at least 18 years old, have a lower limb amputation, be a minimum of 6 months post-amputation.
If this is you we would love to hear from you!

Please see our participant Information Sheet – Talking about limb loss study

Study recruitment to 30 September 2017

Please email Rachel Munro at or Dr Clare Uytman at, researchers at Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh
Or contact project lead, Dr Clare Uytman on 01314740000 for more information.


Research study about myoelectric prosthetic arms

Do you have a myoelectric prosthesis? How easy do you find it to use?

We are looking for adult trans-radial users with a range of experiences to undertake a research study “Understanding the impact of skill, unpredictability and delays on the control of myoelectric prostheses”. This study aims to establish why some people find these devices difficult to control.

What you would be asked to do

PART 1: A series of simple tasks using your myoelectric prosthesis. Time commitment = 1 x 3-4 hour session. Location: University of Strathclyde, Glasgow. Alternative locations in England include: Salford, Manchester, Roehampton, Sheffield or Nottingham. Please contact the researcher for details.

PART 2: Assessment of everyday prosthesis use. Time commitment = 1 week. Location anywhere in the UK. This involves wearing two wristwatch sized sensors during normal daily activity.

for more information about this study please contact Alix Chadwell or Supervisor

The University of Salford, Manchester

Study recruitment to 5 October 2017

Download the PDF Advertisement for research participants Myoelectric prosthesis study