The Bishops of Oxford, Buckingham and Reading join church leaders in a campaign to target COVID vaccination misinformation

19 February 2021

With the UK’s vaccination programme this week reaching the 16 million dose mark, bishops and church leaders in the Church of England, including the Rt Revd Dr Steven Croft, the Rt Revd Dr Alan Wilson and the Rt Revd Olivia Graham, have been speaking out amid warnings that misinformation and low uptake among some communities poses a risk to the programme’s effectiveness in protecting the whole population. As part of the NHS-backed #GiveHope campaign, bishops and church leaders have joined together in sharing video messages encouraging communities to seek accurate information on vaccines, hold local conversations, and to encourage one another to take up offers of vaccines.

While uptake of the vaccine so far has met government targets, significant numbers indicating mistrust, including in some UKME communities, mean that some people in younger age-groups may be less likely to take up the vaccine than the groups targeted to date.

Appearing in a compilation video are Stephen Cottrell, Archbishop of York, Olivia Graham, Bishop of Reading, Sarah Mullally, Bishop of London, who leads the Church of England’s recovery group, Rose Hudson-Wilkin, Bishop of Dover, Philip North, Bishop of Burnley, Philip Mounstephen, Bishop of Truro, Michael Ipgrave, Bishop of Lichfield, Guli Francis Dehqani, Bishop of Loughborough and Bishop-designate of Chelmsford, Martin Gorrick, Bishop of Dudley, Paul Butler, Bishop of Durham, Steven Croft, Bishop of Oxford, Robert Springett, Bishop of Tewkesbury, and Alan Wilson, Bishop of Buckingham.

Meanwhile, many more church leaders and individuals have been sharing their personal messages of encouragement using the hashtag #GiveHope.

The campaign aims are:

Have a conversation,
Offer information
Practical support
Engage and share

If you would like to add your voice to the campaign, you can share a video using the hashtag #GiveHope, or download the toolkit to use in your local area. The united churches campaign is being convened by YourNeighbour.org in collaboration with the government and the NHS.

You can view each individual video by clicking on the links below.

Bishop of Oxford

Bishop of Buckingham

Bishop of Reading

National Video