‘Travelling to Better Health’ in the South West of England

15 June 2016

Gypsies and Travellers in the South West of England have produced a booklet to help improve the community’s health.

The booklet, called ‘Travelling to Better Health’, is published by Plymouth & Devon Racial Equality Council and contains advice on mental health, smoking, eating and other subjects to help Gypsies and Travellers stay well and healthy.

 The health improvement guide was written by Gypsy Health Champions for Gypsies and Travellers as part of a two year health improvement project in Devon, with the support of Devon County Council and Health Promotion Devon.

Anne Crocker, Elizabeth Isaacs, Helen Halkes, Helen Bellamy, Linda Broadway and Kristal Birch were the community members that did the research and the interviews for the advice in the booklet.

“We made this booklet because we all know family and friends who have been affected by serious illnesses and early death,” they said.

 “We didn’t know that it was different for Gorja people; we thought everyone had ill health like us.”

“When we heard the statistics from the Department of Health we decided to do something to help ourselves and our own people.”

“This booklet gives a few guidelines on some really important health issues. We can use it to improve our health by making some small changes to our diet and lifestyle. It’s not too difficult, but it could make a real difference to our health and help us beat illness, live longer and be there for our children and grandchildren.”