A powerful new film from Romany journalist and film maker Jake Bowers, backed by the NHS in Surrey, is encouraging Gypsy, Roma, Traveller and Showmen to give COVID the jab and get vaccinated. A moving new film created in partnership with a Romani boxing gym and Britain’s top fairground artist has been released to encourage all Gypsy, Roma, Traveller and Showmen to get vaccinated against the Coronavirus.
Made earlier this month, the film weaves together the boxing and acting talents of the Pinewood Starr Amateur Boxing Club with the artwork of Showman artist George Hebborn who has created a mural to the community members affected by the pandemic. The mural provided a backdrop to an on-site vaccination clinic where community members queued up to get the vaccination.
“Lets face it this has been one of the most terrifying and sorrowful years of our lives,” says Jake in the film. “The coronavirus, has turned everyone’s lives on their head. So I’m off to find out what I can personally do to get life back to normal.” In the film he speaks to National Chaplain to Gypsies and Travelllers Father Dan Mason, and Gypsy and Traveller NHS Nurse Lisa Gavin to get the moral view and scientific facts about the vaccine. In it they powerfully tackle many of the myths about the vaccine while a Romany boxer fights a character representing COVID in the ring.
Much of the film was created in the boxing club run by the Romany boxing trainer Les Stevens. Les sadly was one of the first Romany victims of the virus. Les’s son Les and his grandson Les also feature in the film. All the people involved, from the NHS to the church and the community members involved are asking community members to get vaccinated and share the 1 minute version of film on their social media accounts with the hashtag #givecovidthejab