Café com Letras celebrates the centenary of the birth of Laura Ayres

On the eve of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, Café com Letras has as guests Leonor Cancela and Rosalía Vargas

“Women in Science” is the theme of the next session of Café com Letras, which will take place this Friday, February 10th, at 18:30 pm, at Fnac, of the Algarve Forum, in Faro.

As part of the commemorations of the Centenary of the Birth of Laura Ayres, and on the eve of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, Café com Letras has Leonor Cancela and Rosalía Vargas as guests. Moderation is in charge of Adriana Freire Nogueira, regional director of Culture of the Algarve.

Laura Guilhermina Martins Ayres, honored, was a doctor, university professor, specialist in public health, virologist and the “voice and figure” of the fight against AIDS in Portugal, being at the origin of the National Commission for the Fight against AIDS.

Born in Loulé, Laura Ayres graduated in 1946. She trained in England, where she specialized in virology, having returned to Portugal to dedicate herself to research at the Virology Laboratory, which she founded, at Instituto Superior de Higiene Dr. Richard George.

After the 25th of April, she founded and directed the National Influenza Centre, created the National Registry of Congenital Malformations and was also responsible for founding the Center for Epidemiological Surveillance in Communicable Diseases.

In 1985, she was appointed coordinator of the SIDA Working Group, and thanks to her skills as a great communicator, Laura Ayres also stood out in the way she used the means of social communication in the prevention of communicable diseases, in particular AIDS, contributing to an effective health promotion in the population.

Rosalía Vargas, one of the guests, is president of Ciência Viva – National Agency for Scientific and Technological Culture – and director of the Pavilion of Knowledge – Centro Ciência Viva, which highlights the creation and implementation of the networks of Ciência Viva Centers, Schools Ciência Viva, Ciência Viva Farms and Ciência Viva at School Clubs.

He is also president of the School Council of IGOT – Institute of Geography and Land Planning, is a member of the International Committee of the Copernicus Science Center, Warsaw, and is a member of the General Council of the Open University and the Consultative Council for Monitoring the National Arts Plan .

Leonor Cancela, another guest, is Full Professor at the Faculty of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences of the University of Algarve/UAlg, member of the Algarve Biomedical Center and founding member of the Center for Marine Sciences/CCMAR.

She is director of the Degree and Doctorate in Biomedical Sciences at UAlg, since its implementation, director of the Colégio Doutoral da UAlg, by appointment of the rector since 2019, and president of the Scientific Council of the newly created Faculty of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences of the University of Algarve. She is co-founder of Technozeb, a Business Unit of Technophage SA involved in the discovery of molecules with therapeutic interest from zebrafish.

The Municipality of Loulé signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Regional Directorate of Culture of the Algarve, the National Institute of Health Doctor Ricardo Jorge (INSA), the National School of Public Health of Universidade Nova de Lisboa (ENSP-Nova), the Faculty of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences of the University of Algarve and the Dr. Laura Ayres, Quarteira, in the sense that over the course of a year they will develop actions that recall the woman, the doctor, the researcher, the pedagogue, the teacher Laura Ayres, whose life was dedicated to Public Health, a theme so present in today's times.

From the 10th of February, for a week, an exhibition on the life and work of Laura Ayres will be open to the public at Forum Algarve, an initiative of the Municipality of Loulé.

“Café com Letras” is an initiative organized by the Regional Directorate of Culture of the Algarve, by the UAlg Library and by Fnac Portugal, with the collaboration of RUA FM – Rádio Universitária do Algarve.