Saturday, 12 July 2014

The Knitter Scientific

It's been a wonderful week of weather here in Orkney, with visitors and residents alike enjoying sunny strolls along the street in Stromness. We've enjoyed meeting those who have taken a break from the sun to visit the library, both new visitors and familiar faces. 

It was particularly nice to get chatting to a regular visitor who turns out to be a fellow knitter and Ravelry member Westendangela from Dundee. Combining her job as a biochemist with her passion for all things woolly she has been using knitting to bring her research to life. 

Her most recent project,  as part of the Women in Science Festival, involved creating a knitted display for her local yarn shop representing the human  blood stream when dealing with the sleeping sickness (her area of research) , with knitted red blood cells, white cells, Trypanosomes, the flu virus, and the DNA helix. 

knitted Trypanosome being attacked by antibodies

We are hoping Anglea might be able to join us at Yap and Yarn on a future visit to Orkney, but in the meantime she has very kindly left us a knitted Trypanosome of our very own. 

While researchers like Angela are studying the behaviour of the Trypanosome parasites, in the hope of developing more effective drug treatments, charity MSF (Doctors Without Borders) is responsible for supplying and distributing the drugs currently used to treat Sleeping Sickness, the disease caused by the Trypanosome parasite.

Sleeping Sickness is a devastating disease spread by the Tsetse fly, which  poses a risk to 60 million people in 36 countries in sub-Saharan Africa. To find out more about Sleeping Sickness and the role of the Trypanosome parasites visit the MSF website, where you can also donate to support the work of MSF in offering treatment to those suffering from this, and other, neglected tropical diseases. 

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Mythical Maze

It's the first day of the school summer holidays and of course it's raining! But never fear the library is here to save the day, with the launch of this year's Summer Reading Challenge Mythical Maze!

For children aged 4-11 this free scheme will keep you reading all through the holidays as you collect stickers to complete your Mythical Maze poster. For every two books read you will receive a set of stickers and a special gift, and if you read six books and collect all three sets of stickers, you will be invited to a special closing event which will include an author visit, crafts, and a presentation of certificates and medals to all who complete the challenge. 

Visit the Mythical Maze website to find out more about the challenge and share book reviews and recommendations with other readers.