Volunteers Work to Vaccinate Fair Haven Neighborhood

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With more than 5,600 doors to knock on in Fair Haven, volunteers got moving. Their goal: Vaccinate Fair Haven.

One of the homes they visited on Saturday belonged to Maritza Acevedo who expressed hesitancy about getting the vaccine. But after a door knock and a chat, she says she’ll make sure she and her family get it.

“I think that’s a great thing they’re doing is knocking on doors. I definitely will bring my son and me to get the shot,” said Acevedo.

Community-based organizations, medical providers, and elected officials made up the more than 200 volunteers who came out to go door to door. In addition to signing up those who are currently eligible for the vaccine, they also made sure to address any misinformation or concerns.

“I think it was important to come out so that we could raise awareness about the vaccine and encourage more people in the community to get vaccinated,” said Jaye George, a volunteer.

George is also a Quinnipiac University medical student and he said it’s about making sure people have access to the vaccine and know what that access is.

“A lot of grassroots organizations go door to door talking to people. It works in politics, so why doesn’t it work in health equity and healthcare as well,” said George.

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Organizers said the Fair Haven neighborhood is one of the hardest hit communities during the pandemic, not just in New Haven but in the entire state, so outreach is critical.

“We are mostly 83% people of color, and we have a large number of essential workers living in our neighborhood. These workers have helped lead us through this pandemic,” said organizer Kica Matos.

“Marginalized and minoritized communities are often the first to be forgotten, especially when resources are in short supply. So we remain committed. What we’re doing today is disrupting that narrative,” said Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, who is the chair of the White House COVID-19 Health Equity Task Force.

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