Three Ways Students Can Support COVID-19 Vaccinations
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1. Get yourself vaccinated.
While COVID-19 hospitalization rates are lower for young people compared with older adults, you’re still at risk of getting severely ill and spreading COVID-19 to friends and family if you’re unvaccinated. In fact, many young people who get mild cases of COVID-19 end up experiencing symptoms months after an initial infection.
Find where and how to get vaccinated. Visit vaccines.gov, text your ZIP code to 438829, or call 1-800-232-0233.
If you are under 18, talk to your parent(s) or guardian(s) about getting vaccinated. Getting vaccinated is a personal choice, and we know family relationships are a consideration in vaccination decisions. In many states and jurisdictions, parental consent is also required for people under age 18 to get vaccinated. Start the conversation with your parent(s) or guardian(s) early:
- Choose the right time for the conversation.
- Make sure you know the facts about COVID vaccines—including that they’re safe, effective, and free.
- Think about how you feel and why you want to get vaccinated—whether it’s to protect your family or get back to activities like seeing friends and returning to school.
- Consider reaching out to trusted people who can talk to your parents, such as another family member, doctor, or school nurse.
2. Encourage your friends and family to get vaccinated.
As a trusted friend and family member, you can play a role in their decision to get vaccinated and help get them the information they need—through texts, calls, and in-person conversations at school, sports, and church.
Listen to their questions. Listen without judgment and identify the reasons for their concerns. Acknowledge how they’re feeling.
Ask open-ended questions. Understand what your friend or family member is worried about, where they get their vaccination information, and what they’ve done to get answers to their questions.
Ask to share information. Ask if you can provide them with some information from trusted sources—including CDC.gov; local health department websites; or their doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.
Help them find their own reason to get vaccinated. Everyone who chooses to get vaccinated does it for a reason—to protect their family; to protect their children; to be less anxious; or to get back to activities like seeing friends, resuming work, or returning to school. Feel free to share your own reasons or discuss common goals you may have, like visiting with each other safely.
Help make their vaccination happen. Offer to help make a vaccination appointment at a location nearby. And, if needed, go with them to the appointment. Offer transportation or child care. See vaccines.gov for more information.
3. Mobilize vaccination action around you.
In your broader community, you can be a leader to get the word out, help make vaccinations more convenient and accessible, and inspire others.
Spread the word on social media. Share information on where and how to get vaccinated. Amplify the We Can Do This social media campaign. And share your own vaccination decision and experience.
Organize a door-knocking, phone calling, or texting event to talk to people about COVID-19 vaccines. Working with an adult, get your club, band, or team to host community events where you talk to people about COVID-19 vaccines. To start, visit madetosave.org/act and sign up for trainings and ready-made scripts to help with your conversations. If needed, find an adult sponsor—a teacher, coach, parent—to talk through how you can get engaged and involved. Always take an adult along when going door-to-door.
Set up a vaccination event in a location convenient for your community. If you’re having a vaccination site at a local school, church, or community organization to help get your community vaccinated, work with an adult sponsor—a teacher, coach, parent—to use the On-Site Vaccination Clinics Toolkit to set one up. Reach out to a local vaccine provider like a pharmacy or hospital. Vaccine providers will typically do everything related to administering the vaccine, and your job will just be to get people to show up.
Get creative. You know your friends, classmates, and neighbors, and we encourage you to do what you do best. A few ideas to start include:
- Work with your teachers and school to build vaccination outreach activities into projects or summer programming
- Build vaccination outreach activities into your club’s or sports team’s service or membership requirements.
- Launch challenges and competitions to see who can design the best vaccination meme or who can increase awareness of vaccination opportunities the most.
- Set up a town hall with trusted community members and medical professionals to answer questions about the vaccines and talk through their own vaccination decisions.
- Organize a concert, party, or other event at your local vaccination site to get people excited about vaccination.