Bringing people together for egg-painting and health education

Girl in white sweater paints egg green

Persian New Year is March 20-21, 2023

Nowruz, which means "new day" in Dari, is the Solar New Year that marks the beginning of spring. Also known as Persian New Year, this important event is celebrated by millions of people around the world with various traditions and customs, one of which is egg painting and decorating. Hosting a Nowruz event can be an important way to help newcomers make social connections and share important information. 

As the COVID-19 public health emergency comes to an end in May, Nowruz is an excellent opportunity for organizations to share essential health-related information and answer questions. By combining Nowruz activities and health education, organizations can play a vital role in promoting healthier communities and improving the overall well-being of their clients.

A colorful tradition

From ancient time, dyeing and decorating eggs has been a significant symbol in many cultures around the world to symbolize rebirth. Consider hosting an egg painting activity for your organization to bring Afghan newcomers together in community and share important health-related information.

Key messages

  • This year, Nowruz is happening around the same time that the COVID-19 public health emergency is ending (May 11th).
  • We want to celebrate the light at the end of darkness and talk about how we can continue to stay safe from COVID-19.
  • During the Nowruz egg painting activity, we will be available to answer any health-related questions that you may have related to the end of the public health emergency, COVID-19, or any other health topic.
  • We hope you have a wonderful time at the egg painting activity and learn something new about staying healthy and safe in your communities. 

Answering common questions

Gatherings and celebrations provide a unique opportunity to engage with clients and promote essential health-related information, especially given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This guide includes anticipated questions and answers related to COVID-19 and the end of the public health emergency.

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What was announced by the federal government in January 2023 regarding the COVID-19 public health emergency, and what does it mean?

During the public health emergency, there was increased funding for COVID vaccine research, medical equipment, modification of health facilities, and hiring of more medical staff. The federal government announced in January 2023 that the COVID-19 public health emergency will end on May 11, 2023, which means that certain federal health support services that were provided during the emergency may change or discontinue. 

What does the end of the public health emergency mean for me?

Depending on your health insurance coverage, you may see increased costs for COVID-19 vaccines, testing and treatments. Therefore, everyone is highly encouraged to order free at-home COVID tests and to stay up-to-date with COVID vaccines and boosters while these are free under the public health emergency. 

Do I still need to wear a mask and practice social distancing now that the public health emergency is ending?

Though the public health emergency is ending, COVID-19 will continue to be around. It is important to continue to follow CDC guidelines and local public health guidance regarding mask-wearing and social distancing. COVID-19 is still infecting thousands of people every day including elderly, adults, teens, and children. You and your family will be safest if you wear a mask.

Can you explain what it means to be "fully vaccinated" against COVID-19?

Being "fully vaccinated" means that it has been at least two weeks since you received the final dose of a two-dose vaccine (Pfizer, Moderna, or Novavax) or the single-dose vaccine (Johnson & Johnson). However, it's important to note that being fully vaccinated doesn't mean you are fully protected. To ensure the most protection, it's recommended to stay up-to-date with your COVID-19 vaccines and boosters.

How do we know the COVID-19 vaccine is safe?

The COVID-19 vaccines have been proven safe and have met the high scientific standards set by the US Food and Drug Administration. Hundreds of millions of doses have been safely given in the US, and the vaccines' safety has been closely monitored with no serious safety concerns.

Why do I need a booster shot even if I've already been fully vaccinated?

Booster shots are an important part of staying up-to-date with your COVID-19 vaccines. They can help protect you against new variants of COVID-19 and maintain your immunity over time. By staying up-to-date on your vaccines, you are less likely to get infected with COVID-19, get dangerously ill, or spread the virus to others. It's important to follow the guidance of public health officials and get a booster shot when recommended, even if you have already been fully vaccinated with your two-shot vaccine.

How can I stay safe in events and celebrations like Nowruz?

To stay safe during events and celebrations, it's important to follow CDC guidelines and local public health guidance. This includes being vaccinated and getting booster shots when eligible. Additionally, wearing masks when necessary and maintaining good hand hygiene can also provide protection against COVID-19.