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David Plummer: Documenting Parkinson’s Stories in Kenya 

This touching documentary follows David Plummer, a well-known wildlife photographer, environmentalist, bestselling writer, and motivational speaker, as he copes with Parkinson’s disease. Join him on his trip to Kenya, where he directly witnesses the discrimination faced by people with Parkinson’s. Director Olz McCoy, an up-and-coming talent in filmmaking, stated, “This film gives a voice to those who have been silenced, pushed to the sidelines, and mistreated due to Parkinson’s in Kenya. We are trying to increase awareness of the disease in the country as well as improve access to medication for those who live with Parkinson’s.” 

“Shaking Hands with the Devil” premiered at the World Parkinson Congress (WPC) in Barcelona, Spain in July 2023 and is now available for everyone to watch. 

Dr. Natasha Fothegill-Misbah, a Research Associate at Newcastle University, UK, revealed in her interview with the LSVT Global team that the idea for this documentary came from David’s work trip to Sri Lanka in early 2023. During this trip, David faced discrimination, including incidents involving the police and unwarranted scrutiny, all because of his Parkinson’s. This experience prompted him to investigate the situation ofParkinson’s in less developed countries and eventually connect with Natasha, an expert in Parkinson’s  in Africa. Their collaboration resulted in the creation of this impactful documentary. 

What sets this documentary unique in terms of Parkinson’s awareness?  

According to Dr. Natasha Fothegill-Misbah, it offers an incredibly personal viewpoint, allowing viewers to see the world through David’s perspective. She said, “It is also a very personal journey as we see everything through David’s eyes. It is about a man with Parkinson’s meeting others with Parkinson’s. Other documentaries are usually made by people who can’t relate or view things from a different perspective. There has been no other documentary telling the story of people with Parkinson’s in Africa or giving voice to their experiences.” 

The creators of this film are committed to amplifying the voices of those who have been overlooked and marginalized. Their mission extends to promoting a greater understanding of the disease in Kenya and advocating for improved access to medication for those affected by Parkinson’s. It is crucial to challenge the stigma surrounding Parkinson’s and address the significant differences in how it is perceived and treated globally. 

Watch the full film and learn more about this team and how to donate to their mission: https://shakinghandsfilm.com/film