COVID-19 Vaccine Speaker Guide for Community-Based Organizations
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This guide provides background information and resources on how to invite professionals to speak to your community about COVID-19 vaccines.
Vaccination Is the Best Protection Against COVID-19
Free COVID-19 vaccines are currently available for everyone ages 6 months and older.
Getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself, your organization, and the community your organization serves from the virus that causes COVID-19.
Encourage Your Staff and Community Members to Get Vaccinated and Boosted
Your organization can use its resources and reach as a leader in the community to share information and encourage community members, including children and teenagers, to get vaccinated.
Hundreds of millions of people in the United States have gotten a COVID-19 vaccine—but not everyone has gotten all the recommended doses.
For the best protection, everyone 6 months and older needs their initial doses and everyone 5 years and older needs their boosters when the time comes.
The Information Source Matters
Consider inviting health care providers in your community to speak with your organization’s staff and the community members that your organization serves.
When it comes to increasing confidence in and uptake of the COVID-19 vaccines, the source of information is as important as the information itself.
People tend to believe and act on the advice of people they trust.
People most trust their health care providers, such as doctors and nurses, to provide them with reliable information about the vaccines. People also tend to view medical experts other than their own health care providers as trusted messengers.
How to Find and Host Speakers
Find Local Experts: Your first place to look should be your local public health department. They will likely have a list of vetted health care providers/experts who can speak about COVID-19 and the vaccines. Or they can refer you.
Other organizations to reach out to include:
You can also visit vaccines.gov to find vaccine providers near you who may be able to connect you with a local pharmacist or doctor.
Pick a Date and a Location: Pick a convenient, trusted location for your event, such as a high-traffic location in your community. Work with the speaker to consider the date and time that may work best for your community, including weekend, after-work, and after-school hours.
Prepare for the Event and Begin Outreach: Work with the speaker to familiarize them with your community’s concerns about the virus and the vaccines. Finalize the event agenda and anticipate questions that may come up. Prepare handouts as necessary, such as We Can Do This campaign resources listed below.
You will play a critical role in engaging and educating your community. Share information about the upcoming event, as well as general vaccination information—including that COVID-19 vaccines are free for everyone 6 months and older. Make sure to share information on whether parental presence or consent is required for a COVID-19 vaccine, in line with state regulations. To amplify and engage your community, consider posting on social media, sharing signage, and leveraging trusted messengers.
Host Your Event: Work hand-in-hand with the speaker to finalize the operations of your event. Continue to engage your community, including with day-of reminders. Identify a lead to liaise with the speaker to help ensure the day goes smoothly.
Share the COVID-19 Public Education Campaign Materials
Whoever you invite to speak with members of the community you serve, make sure they have the latest fact-based public health messaging from the We Can Do This campaign to help everyone make informed decisions about their health and COVID-19.
Below are some helpful resources from the Campaign.