VACCINATIONS TO THE HOMEBOUND - Working with the IMPACT Project
I just want to give you some feedback on my experience with vaccinating the homebound people.
It was so well organized with the route set up, pick up of vaccines, and instructions. I called my clients the night before, answered questions, told them to have their ID and insurance cards ready and gave them estimated arrival times.
Everyone was homebound and so grateful. Some had family members present, which was helpful for all. One person asked to give us gas money, which I found so kind and thoughtful. Of course we declined and said that we could not accept anything but their thanks!
I had the best co-pilot, Kristin!! She kept me on the route, was so kind and thorough with the clients. I hope I can work with her again!
I told everyone that I would be back in a month to give the booster, so sign me up!!
Again, thank you all for the time and commitment to vaccinating the vulnerable and homebound people in the community
-- BW - Brigade Volunteer
State and Local Volunteer group bolsters Chicago COVID-19 vaccination work Aaron Warnick The Nation's Health July 2021, 51 (5) 9
In late 2020, COVID-19 vaccines were on the way, health officials promised. Chicago resident Peg Dublin knew she had to start organizing right away if she wanted to help her community. ”It’s about the moment,” Dublin, MPH, a recently retired public health nurse, told The Nation’s Health. “If you aren’t already up and running, yoursquore too late.” Like many of her friends and colleagues, Dublin, an APHA member, wanted to help. But many local organizations were not taking volunteers or had on-boarding processes that were a barrier. To ensure she could help as much as possible, Dublin began the Chicago Vaccine Brigade. “We know how very complicated health is, how complicated addressing the social determinants of health is, but vaccines are so simple,” Dublin said. “Once you have it, it’s a shot in the arm that saves lives.” The Chicago Vaccine Brigade’s initial group comprised about a dozen nurses and activists. The volunteers offered support to vaccination events in communities across the city, first reaching out to sites in the priority ZIP codes targeted by the Chicago Health Department. The grassroots organization quickly swelled in rank and activity. From January through March, the organization grew to 160 members, partly spurred by attention from local media. The group fielded requests from community organizations in need of volunteers on its website. Volunteers were able to find information about vaccine sites that were seeking help from the organization. In the spring, the brigade had nearly a dozen locations where they sent volunteers every week. Volunteers have skills to assist in administering vaccinations, community outreach and education. They offer outreach support in both English and Spanish. “We are focused on impact,” brigade volunteer Beth Blacksin, PhD, RN, an APHA member, told The Nation’s Health. “We exist to offer support where the most help is needed.” By late May, two-thirds of adults in Illinois had received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and cases were on a consistent downward trend. The organization adapted to the region’s needs, from helping to get shots in arms as fast as possible to helping find more arms. In addition to its ongoing outreach, the brigade offered classes on motivational interviewing to train people on how to talk to someone who is vaccine hesitant. “To be effective, we have had to be flexible,” Dublin said. The Chicago Vaccine Brigade has been helping a vast amount of people. But leaders want to ensure that the volunteer experience is enriching for each brigade member. “The past year has been so hard, but when you can help someone who wants to be helped, it’s a good day,” Blacksin said. For more information, visit www.vaccinebrigade.com. Copyright The Nation’s Health, American Public Health Association
Vaccine Brigade Volunteer Facebook Post
As part of the Vaccine Brigade, I volunteered for a COVID vaccine event in the 22nd ward. It was well organized... Other Vaccine Brigade members were present to register and monitor community members post-innoculation.
FEEDBACK FROM AGE OPTIONS - SECOND MAYWOOD CLINIC: "I have never worked with a more diligent group of volunteers. It was very reassuring to have evey activity being so competently managed...communicate my thanks. Hope to see you at some events in the future" - Becky Lerfelt
Peg Dublin is interviewed in mid-March on "Live From the Heartland" Radio Show on WLUW about the Vaccine Brigade. Peg's portion starts at about 30:00 into the interview. Here's the link