Not long before the MRI Maakers had their first meeting, while Harriet was trying to get the Harriet’s Hat pattern ready in time, there’s a few people who really helped make that possible. More or less everyone in the Jamieson and Smith’s store fall into that category in one way or another, but we were quite taken back by just how far their support was to extend when Harriet went in with an example of the final draft. It was then, speaking to Sandra and Derek, they told her that not only would they make up yarn kits in the right shades, but they would donate the entire cost of the kits sold in store to the appeal. Even then we were overwhelmed by the gesture but had no idea just how successful it was to become.
Since then, bus loads of tourists have arrived, already primed about the MRI Scanner appeal by the tour guides, asking for the patterns and yarn kits. Many of the MRI Maakers themselves went in and bought kits to make finished hats with from their own pockets, donating them to sell here on the site. Local knitters who made the hat’s for themselves, bought the patterns and kits from Jamieson & Smith’s knowing every penny would be going to the Scanner appeal. The yarn kits donated to the appeal may have been specifically those bought in the store itself, but the hats made from them have been knitted and finished all over the world, including here in Shetland.
Speaking to them all today it was obvious how happy they have all been to support us in this very generous way. Everyone was excited by the amount they’re raised doing it, rather than in any way burdened by it. Indeed, Oliver Henry – Patron of Shetland Wool Week – spoke enthusiastically about how good it was to see so many people from all over getting behind the cause in such a big way.
Pictured above, Oliver presented Harriet with the cheque for £2566 at lunchtime today, all the while speaking passionately of why he believes Shetland should have its own MRI Scanner. Talking of more senior people, he proposed that some after diagnosis when presented with their options might feel the journey for an MRI scan, as is currently undertaken, would be too much of an ordeal and decide not to. Obviously we have no way of knowing if that ever happens, and if so how often. However as he argues, if there’s a scanner right here in Shetland, the proposition becomes that there’s no harm in it. No 14 hour ferry journey in ill health.
It was, we were told, Derek Goudie who had first suggested donating the yarn pack sales to the appeal. Pictured here with Harriet, Derek (on the right) and some of the team were receiving more Shetland wool in it’s raw state. He was speaking openly about when he himself had an accident working with sheep and suffered a blow to the head. Afterwards he had to make several trips to Aberdeen, initially for MRI scans assessing the extent of his injuries. So he understands more than most how much better it would have been, particularly in such sudden circumstances, if an MRI scanner had been available locally then.
Now that the arrangement with the yarn packs has come to an end, we’d gone there to receive their donation and say thank you. As you can see while we did accept an incredibly generous cheque for £2566 on behalf of the MRI Maakers made out to the MRI Scanner, we came away with much more. Four of the people there today had been for MRI scans in recent years, 2 of them more than once. As what the MRI Maakers has been achieving became bigger, more global, we started to ask if it was getting too much. Today we understand better why every time they simply smiled and said no.
Everyone at Jamieson & Smith’s has been incredible, we really can’t thank them enough.