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A multi-million-dollar bilingual education campaign to tackle vaccine hesitancy, disinformation, equity, access and fears has begun in South Central neighborhoods, backed by Kaiser Permanente and directed through two established and trusted nonprofits targeting Latino and African American communities.
The $5 million grant is strictly for COVID-19 education and outreach nationwide and has become even more important in Southern California as Los Angeles County as millions more people become eligible for vaccine.
The Kaiser campaign targets digital literacy, education, inoculations and saturation of accurate informational messages in a direct-contact campaign by multiple outlets to specific ZIP codes where low vaccination levels are being reported.
The goal of the grant funding is to reach hesitant Black and Latinx residents and empower them with the information necessary to overcome cultural hurdles and misinformation and to get them vaccinated to bring an end to this pandemic, according to Yesenia Monsour, associate director of regional government and community relations at Kaiser Permanente.
“There are many reputable studies that have been done since the vaccine first started to be administered late last year,” Monsour said. “We were looking at the attitudes toward vaccine acceptance. Early on in the acceptance there was concern that communities such as Latino and African American were hesitant for many reasons including historical reasons, mistrust in the past with the medical community. But we also saw a lot of it was misinformation and lack of information. So that’s why organizations like Kaiser Permanente have been doubling down on providing easy-to-understand and detailed information about the vaccines. Research also allows us to see what are the questions that people have so that allows us to be able to focus on answering those questions.”
The two Los Angeles-based organizations chosen by Kaiser to receive grant money are National Alliance of Latino Elected Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund that caters toward Latino residents and Watts Healthcare focused on Black residents.
Both organizations have a strong presence in the South Los Angeles area.
“We know these two are trusted voices in the community,” Monsour said. “That’s what this pandemic is going to take. Everyone has to do the most they can with their resources but then partner with others that are able to add additional resources and connections to the table. These organizations have strong histories in the communities, so they are also trusted partners. That trusted voice is incredibly important.”
Source:: Los Angeles Daily News
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