As part of SAF’s program of public engagement events we felt that it was time we left OCDEM and booked a stall at the Headington Festival.
We created a series of fun interactive lab-based activities to help explain our research including making DNA bracelets, undertaking milk experiments and ‘hunt the pancreas’ in the ever-accommodating Budget Paul. We also partnered with Alison Monks from the Diabetes Research Network and Sheena Cameron from the AHSN who helped explain how people could get involved in diabetes research.
After a very rainy start and losing the gazebo to the wind several times (a recurring theme throughout the day) none of us were too sure how well this would go. After an initial trickle of people, once the rain stopped and the event started to fill up the stall was constantly busy throughout the rest of the day. Our popularity was so high that whilst other stalls were packing up we still had people round ours.
Everyone involved got really stuck in and did a great job at explaining the research we do in OCDEM and enthusing kids about a career in science. A massive thank you goes out to everyone who gave up their Sunday to help including Amanda Bennett, Sheena Cameron, Laura Gathercole, Caroline Gorvin, Neelam Hassanali, Irene Kennedy, Laura McCulloch, Nicky McRoberts, Alison Monk, Anne Raimondo, Reshma Ramracheya & Matt Simmonds and to Samantha Pearce for administrative support.
We will definitely be doing this again . . . although hopefully next time will be nice weather or will be taking tent pegs to help keep the stall in place!!!