Public Speaking

Nelson Public LibraryI have been doing plenty of speaking engagements in the past few years, largely due to the publication of Rain on a Distant Roof. It turns out, there is growing interest in Lyme disease in Canada and speaking engagements allow readers, Lyme disease sufferers, parents, pet owners, outdoors enthusiasts and other interested parties to benefit from my years of research.

I have spoken to audiences across Canada and I've been interviewed on the radio many times. Below is a clip from an interview that was done with the CBC when Rain on a Distant Roof was first published.

CBC MANITOBA (September 23, 2013):

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I have several different presentations on Lyme disease and all of them contain a significant Q & A component so that audience members get a chance to ask the questions that will yield answers that are of the greatest benefit to them. Here are a few of my favourite presentations:

Kids lying in a field

Lyme Disease in Canada: What's Bugging You?

There is a lot more to Lyme disease than what the headlines suggest. In this presentation, I'll step beyond the controversy and talk about the things Canadians really need to know about Lyme disease. By the end of this presentation, you will know:

  • What Lyme disease is and why we are suddenly hearing so much about it.
  • When and where you are at greatest risk for contracting Lyme disease.
  • What to do to protect you and your family from contracting Lyme disease.
  • What to do if you suspect that you, your children, or your pets may have come in contact with Lyme.
  • What the future holds and why it's so important that we educate ourselves about Lyme now.

Audience: General public. This presentation is perfect for groups or individuals who spend time outdoors and want to avoid a run-in with Lyme disease: Gardeners, hikers, hunters, mountain bikers, campers, fishing enthusiasts, nature lovers, parents and pet owners. 

Ticks in a testtube

Lyme Disease in Nature: Revenge of the Ticks

What is Lyme disease and why is an illness that most of Canadians had never heard of ten years ago suddenly on everyone's lips? It has a lot to do with what's happening in nature. In this presentation, I discuss the geeky stuff:

  • A brief history of Lyme disease in nature and humans.
  • Where Lyme-infected ticks can be found in Canada and where they are spreading. 
  • The factors that are driving the rapid range expansion of ticks.
  • The genetic diversity of the Lyme bacteria and why it matters.
  • The role of rodents, birds, and mammals in the maintenance and spread of Lyme bacteria.
  • What is known about tick-borne illnesses other than Lyme disease in Canada.

Audience: This presentation is perfect for groups or individuals who want to know more about what's happening in nature to cause the rise in Lyme disease cases in Canada: Naturalists, gardeners, environmentalists, farmers, park and wildlife workers, loggers, tree planters, surveyors, geologists, landscapers, field workers and naturopaths.  


"Farnsworth is an excellent advocate for the Lyme community, both on the page and in person: she is articulate, passionate, invested, well-informed, and vital."  ~ Charlene Diehl, Director, Winnipeg International Writers Festival

"Attendees appreciated greatly that Ms. Farnsworth talked at length not just about Lyme disease and all its complexities but also Lyme specifically in Alberta!" ~ Susan McInnis, President, Lyme Disease Association of Alberta

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