Responding to COVID-19 Waves

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When COVID-19 waves happen, organizations and local governments may respond by adding new requirements, like masking indoors, or by prioritizing messaging that encourages people to choose preventative measures on their own. The availability of testing and vaccines is even more important during waves than it is normally. 

Some refugee, immigrant and migrant communities may have had different levels of access to information and tools, like testing, than other communities. Individuals can help by talking to others about COVID-19 waves and how to stay safe. 

Organizations can also take steps to respond to COVID-19 waves while centering the experiences of people in RIM communities:

If your organization needs help responding to a wave, consider requesting technical assistance.

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Initiating the COVID-19 Vaccine Conversation through Flyers

Initiating COVID-19 vaccine conversations through flyers is a creative way to use a traditional communication method. Hand out COVID-19 flyers to all clients regardless of the reason for their visit. 
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Multilingual COVID-19 Vaccine Education Workshops

COVID-19 vaccine education workshops, facilitated in a language the community understands, increases trust and helps clients make informed decisions for themselves and their communities. 
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Culturally Specific Vaccine Information Broadcasts

By partnering with media outlets that are trusted in the community, vaccine messages can be culturally tailored and address unique concerns. 
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WhatsApp to Reach and Engage RIM Communities

WhatsApp is a popular social messaging tool for many communities, including refugees, immigrants, and migrants and can be a powerful tool to reach and engage communities. 
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Youth Ambassadors

Young people serve as key sources of local news and community information, helping their families make important decisions and access services including those related to healthcare. 
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Faith Leaders

During the COVID-19 pandemic, faith leaders have played an important role in easing concerns, fears, and anxieties, and promoting COVID-19 prevention and mitigation.
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Healthcare Providers

Physicians and other healthcare providers are frequently viewed as leaders and trusted sources of information, especially if they are from the communities they serve. 
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Social Media Influencers

People in RIM communities may not use traditional media sources that are not published in their language. Health departments and CBOs can reach them through social media influencers.
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K-12 schools serve as community resources to assist students and families from refugee, immigrant, and migrant communities and are uniquely positioned to bridge cultural and linguistic knowledge gaps for health departments. 
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Local businesses can be great partners in COVID-19 testing initiatives, distributing health education materials, creating a safe work environment, and supporting public health interventions such as vaccination and contact tracing. 
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Engaging with consulates is a strategy for building or enhancing relationships with refugee, immigrant, and migrant communities. 
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Faith Organizations

Faith-based organizations frequently play an integral role within communities. Select this promising practice to learn more about involving faith-based organizations in vaccine campaigns.
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Mothers x Mothers

Mothers x Mothers is a toolkit designed to help organizations plan and implement health-focused meetup groups for immigrant and refugee mothers. By equipping mothers with the tools to host their own meetups, we can increase access to relevant information delivered in a safe, supportive space. Learn more

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#NoJudgment is a toolkit, created for and by immigrant and refugee youth, that offers resources for community-based organizations and individuals to help de-escalate the often polarized conversations that are taking place around the COVID-19 vaccine among young people. Learn more

Other Events

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Pop-Up COVID-19 Vaccine Sites

Through community partnerships, “pop-up” COVID-19 vaccine sites in locations such as apartment complexes are a promising practice to bring vaccines directly to the community.
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Mobile Vaccine Units to Serve Communities

Mobile vaccine units are proving to be a successful solution for ensuring COVID-19 vaccines reach RIM communities.
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Vaccination Events at Community Clinics

Offering vaccinations through pop-up events at community clinics already familiar to refugee, immigrant, and migrant (RIM) communities is a promising practice to support equitable and efficient vaccine distribution.

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Community Fairs

Hosted at an accessible site, community fairs can be organized around themes ranging from school to community health to community resources like food, rent and utility assistance.
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At-home testing instructions

NRC-RIM has compiled instructions for 8 brands of at-home tests in 20+ languages in written and video format. 
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Bring COVID-19 Testing Services Directly to Communities

Bringing testing services to RIM communities ensures culturally and linguistically appropriate access to COVID-19 testing services, reduces stigma surrounding testing, and builds trust. 
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Get the facts about testing

Our fact sheet offers information about COVID-19 tests available in 40+ languages. 
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Mobile Testing Clinics

Our comprehensive resource offers practice guidance to testing event organizers interested in mobile testing among refugee, immigrant and migrant communities.
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