Faith in God. Faith in Medicine. Faith in each other.

The past year has been a journey for everyone but we are finally drawing closer to a conclusion of sorts. The vaccines are now widely available in Alabama to anyone over the age of 16 and more pharmacies and clinics are accepting appointments, but still there are those among us who do not trust the vaccine development process and are hesitant to get the shot, and frankly, we don’t blame them. 

There are a lot of reasons for Black communities to have mistrust in public systems, especially the healthcare system. Even though there has been a worldwide push to develop a vaccine for COVID-19, there are many who seek first the guidance of their church leadership or local elected officials before taking a risk.

Our partner, Clergy United, wanted to give these local leaders an opportunity to have their voices heard so they partnered with the Jefferson County Department of Health to document the vaccinations of several community leaders within the Birmingham area. The purpose of this project is to encourage members of Jefferson County, and the surrounding communities, to address their reservations about getting vaccinated and take comfort knowing that leaders in their communities are stepping up and getting vaccinated. Each of the leaders below has given us a brief interview on what the vaccine means to them, what their hesitations were when they first considered taking the vaccine, and why they ultimately decided it was in their best interest to get the shot. 

We encourage you to share these videos with your friends, family, and neighbors to encourage them to get vaccinated as soon as they can. If you want to learn more about how you can stay healthy during this unhealthy time, we invite you to join the #NOWINCLUDED community where we provide updates on health-related news and offer tips for minority communities on staying healthy.

Sponsored by

The Jefferson County Department of Public Health

Learn More

Visit JCDH.org

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I chose to get
vaccinated...

...for my family and congregation
Hear My Story

Pisani Baldwin-Standfield

Abundant Harvest Church

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...people close to me, my mom, and college teammates got the vaccine and did well, so I decided to give it a try.
Hear My Story

Thomas Beavers

The Star Church

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...because it is necessary to prevent COVID from getting worse.
Hear My Story

Jay Bryant

610AM WAGG Heaven

I chose to get
vaccinated...

... because I wanted to set an example to the Black and Brown individuals in my community to inspire them not to be afraid to get vaccinated.
Hear My Story

Clinton Carr Jr.

Zion Temple Church

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...because of the information shared by experts in the medical field. I know that COVID will kill but the vaccine gives me a chance.
Hear My Story

John Dansby

New Creation Christian Fellowship

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...not only to protect myself but to protect the public!
Hear My Story

Kimberly Garfield-Kelly

Dr. K Show Podcast

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...because I understand the importance of getting it.
Hear My Story

Joseph Hamilton

Zion Church

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...I wanted to be a part of the solution to this global problem.
Hear My Story

Lee A. Henderson

Tabernacle of Praise Ministries

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...for safety.
Hear My Story

Jim Lowe

Guiding Light Church

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...because I want my family and me to be safe. It's a defense for myself and others.
Hear My Story

Mark Pettaway

Jefferson County Sheriff's Office

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...because I wanted to protect my family and others in the community.
Hear My Story

Donald Richardson

Birmingham Fire & Rescue

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...for my protection and that of my family, church family, and community. My passion is serving and this is an additional measure to ensure I am safe in doing so.
Hear My Story

Noah Rocker

Fountain of Life Ministries

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...to protect myself and others.
Hear My Story

Lawana Rooks

Tittusville A.O.H. Church of God

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...because this is the way to a normal life.
Hear My Story

Robert Sellers Sr.

Friendship Baptist Church Homewood

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...to protect myself and others.
Hear My Story

Patrick Smith

Birmingham Police Department

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...for myself, my family, and my friends.
Hear My Story

Andra Sparks

Forty-fifth Street Baptist Church

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...after I prayed and seeked an answer from God.
Hear My Story

Barbara Stewart

Zion Star A.O.H. Church of God

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...for the sake of life's preservation and for my family and those I meet. I want to be an example for people.
Hear My Story

Leo Taylor Jr.

610AM WAGG

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...to save lives. Be the example you expect.
Hear My Story

Joseph Kenneth Turnes Sr.

Tittusville A.O.H. Church of God

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...because I have done too many funerals from COVID related deaths.
Hear My Story

Michael Wesley Sr.

Abundant Harvest Church

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...because it gives me confidence that I am doing my part to help others be safe.
Hear My Story

Charles Winston Jr.

New Mt. Moriah Baptist Church

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...because I felt it was important to do for my family and community.
Hear My Story

Clinton Woods

Christ Church

I chose to get
vaccinated...

...to become part of the solution and not part of the problem.
Hear My Story

Peter Wren Sr.

East Birmingham Church of God in Christ