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Farai Pfende

Farai Pfende

Senior Lecturer

School of Social Sciences


Farai Pfende is a Senior Lecturer in Nursing at Nottingham Trent University. She is based in the Health and Allied Professions Centre part of the School of Social Sciences. She teaches on the Trainee Nurse Associate (TNA) Apprenticeship programme and BSc Nursing Degree and Apprenticeship programme.

Career overview

I have been a Registered nurse in Learning Disabilities (RNLD) since 1999. My experience began in NHS services working with people with dual diagnosis of learning disabilities and mental health conditions in short-term assessment and treatment and forensic services. I moved into the social care sector gaining experience in nursing home management and workforce development in the domiciliary care sector. I developed a passion for dementia and care of older people which led to completion of an Advance Practice in Delivering Person Centred Dementia Care (MSc) qualification honing skills and knowledge in psychosocial interventions. From then I became involved in consultancy work developing music and arts community wellbeing projects and workforce development programmes using focussed interventions in training and support (FITS) for dementia and learning disabilities services in the NHS, social care and third sector organisations. I completed a Master’s in Public Health at NTU before joining the Nursing academic team designing curriculum, teaching and engaging in early career research.

Research areas

My interests are in:

  • public health issues and experiences of  people with learning disabilities, autism, dementia and their carers
  • public health issues and experiences of black sub-Sahara Africans and global perspectives of health
  • workforces wellbeing, learning and development
  • psychosocial interventions (music and arts for health and wellbeing)
  • nursing student experience and nursing education  developing global perspectives and decolonial approaches and practices.

Currently funded projects:

  • QR Fund - Exploring the healthcare experiences of adults with learning disabilities and autism in Nottinghamshire


Research publications:

  1. Nyashanu, M., Pfende, F. and Ekpenyong, M., 2020. Exploring the challenges faced by frontline workers in health and social care amid the COVID-19 pandemic: experiences of frontline workers in the English Midlands region, UK. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 34(5), pp.655-661.
  2. Nyashanu, M., Pfende, F. and Ekpenyong, M.S., 2020. Triggers of mental health problems among frontline healthcare workers during the COVID‐19 pandemic in private care homes and domiciliary care agencies: Lived experiences of care workers in the Midlands region, UK. Health & social care in the community. Health & social care in the community, 30(2), e370-e376.
  3. Nyashanu, M., Ikhile, D. and Pfende, F., 2021. Exploring the efficacy of music in palliative care: A scoping review. Palliative & Supportive Care, 19(3), pp.355-360.
  4. Dowson, B., Atkinson, R., Barnes, J., Barone, C., Cutts, N., Donnebaum, E., Hung Hsu, M., Lo Coco, I., John, G., Meadows, G. and O'Neill, A., 2021. Digital Approaches to Music-Making for People with Dementia in Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic: Current Practice and Recommendations. Frontiers in Psychology, 12, p.1273.
  5. Nyashanu, M., Pfende, F. and Osborne, J., 2021. Evaluating the benefits of inclusive community singing towards well-being: narratives of diverse community members attending an inclusive singing group. Journal of Public Mental Health, Vol. 20 No. 4, pp. 312-319.


  1. Pfende, F. 2020. Exploring the attitudes and perceptions of sub-Sahara Africans in Nottingham towards dementia and dementia care. UK Dementia Congress: Abstract and Presentation

Acknowledgements in the work of:

  1. Thomson, L., Argyle, E., Khan, Z., Schneider, J., Arthur, A., Maben, J., Wharrad, H., Guo, B. and Eve, J., 2018. Evaluating the care certificate (ECCert): a Cross-sector solution to assuring fundamental skills in caring.(Policy Research Programme final report). University of Surrey.
  2. Osborne, J. 2016. Soundtrack to My Life. Fastprint Publishing
  3. Osborne, J. 2016 Music is Medicine. Fastprint Publishing
  4. Osborne, J. and Fiddes, L. 2019 My Journey in Music. Fastprint Publishing


  1. Pfende, F. 2016 Arts in dementia care: beware of the silo building. Dementia Day to Day Blog.  IDEA: University of Nottingham Available at:
  2. Pfende, F. 2016 Are organisations failing working carers? Dementia Day to Day Blog.  IDEA: University of Nottingham Available at:
  3. Pfende, F. 2016 Becoming a Dementia Friendly Organisation. Dementia Day to Day Blog.  IDEA: University of Nottingham Available at:

Press expertise

Course(s) I teach on