More and more we are learning the importance of recognizing the voices of women, men, and children of color. In order to do that, we must offer additional vocal platforms to those who face troublesome issues involving inequity and racism, especially where the pandemic is concerned.
To that end, the Community Health Center of Buffalo, Inc. (CHCB, Inc.), in collaboration with the Buffalo Documentary Project (BDP), will premiere Fight For Good, a 20-minute film documenting the Federally Qualified Health Center’s (FQHC) charge to better serve the needs of patients of color throughout the crisis. Aside from bringing to light the inequities, the documentary sets out to explore:
- The impact of FQHC and doctors in the “Fight”
- The leadership role of women of color
- The ongoing challenges presented by healthcare disparities
The Buffalo Documentary Project (BDP) was founded in 2016 by director Mani Mehrvarz, with the intention of unearthing and recounting the untold stories of Buffalo and WNY. The Fight For Good documentary is a multifaceted collaborative effort that is made possible thanks to the direction of:
- Mani Mehrvarz, director and editor
- Maryam Muliaee, a media artist-scholar and educator based in Buffalo, serves as the art director, researcher and animator of Buffalo Documentary Project.
- Naila Ansari, an assistant professor (Theatre and Africana studies at Buffalo State College and an original and former principal dancer for the August Wilson Center Dance Ensemble) serves as documentary interviewer.
“In the summer of 2020, the Community Health Center of Buffalo, Inc. was approached by the BDP to explore the possibility of sharing our stories with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic that was plaguing the world and severely threatening the lives of the communities that we serve,” said Dr. Ansari. “Fast forward to the Spring of 2021 and we are both humbled and honored to benefit from the tremendous film-making artistry of the BDP team; and indeed, extremely grateful to have this opportunity to share the experiences and voices of our all too often unheard women, men and children of color. By dedicating ourselves to serving them, we stand with them. But much more than that, in body, mind and spirit, we are them.
“By participating in this 20-minute film titled Fight For Good; we have shared and learned by giving voice to our common humanity including our innermost fears of personal vulnerability and loss; our frustrations and hopes for a healthcare system that is on one hand truly miraculous, and on the other, afflicted with implicit bias and systemic racism; and ultimately, our unshakable belief that the fight for good is both righteous and winnable!
“We are truly blessed through the communications medium of film to have this opportunity to invite viewers to engage in what we believe are some of the most important conversations of our present time. We are but one. But with others, ‘we’ quickly become many. And as ‘many’, our power to affect change is infused with significance and possibility.”
The film features interviews with Dr. Ansari, Dr. Kenyani Davis, MD, MPH, Chief Medical Officer; and Dr. Shilpa Kapoor, DDS, MS, BDS, Lead Clinical Dentist/Dental Director, each of whom share personal stories involving challenges brought about by systemic racism in the healthcare system.
The documentary will be virtually premiered in partnership with the Burchfield Penney Art Center at SUNY Buffalo State College on Thursday, April 22, 2021 at the Center, 1300 Elmwood Avenue. The presentation will be available for free online viewing beginning at 7:30 PM at buffalodocumentaryproject.com.
After the screening, viewers will be able to attend a Zoom “meeting room,” where a Panel Discussion will be held.
Panelists include Dr. LaVonne Ansari, Chief Executive Officer, CHCB, Inc.; Dr. Kenyani Davis, MD, MPH, Chief Medical Officer, CHCB, Inc.; Dr. Shilpa Kapoor, DDS, MS, BDS, Dental Director, CHCB, Inc.; Mani Mehrvarz, Founding Director, BDP; Maryam Muliaee, Art Director, BDP; and Naila Ansari, Interviewer, BDP. The discussion will be moderated by Karla Thomas, Director of Marketing, CHCB, Inc.
Fight For Good Premiere – Community Health Center of Buffalo at the Burchfield Penny Arts Center
April 22, 2021 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Meeting ID: 857 4125 7204