Connecticut College Corps

Public Health College Corps Work To Help With Vaccine Hesitancy

NBC Universal, Inc.

Young people are joining in on the effort to help boost vaccination rates around the state. It's thanks, largely, to a a partnership with Quinnipiac University and the State Department of Public Health.

At least 110 college students, who live in the state, are apart of the Public Health College Crops at Quinnipiac University. The effort has a goal of reaching those individuals who have yet to get vaccinated in the state.

Several students made their way through Hartford's North end to try and reach individuals who have yet to get their shot.

"We're really trying to talk to pedestrians going to different local businesses and promote our vaccination clinics inside of the state," said Cheyenne Johnson, who recently graduated from Central Connecticut State University.

Throughout Connecticut, similar teams are canvassing neighborhoods within cities and towns where vaccine numbers may be lagging.

"We have to make sure that we're doing everything that we can to protect those who remain vulnerable," said Mayor Luke Bronin.

Protecting each other is one of the reasons why city and health leaders believe this method may help. Health leaders tell NBC Connecticut that they're leaning on the grassroots approach to meet people where they are in the community.

One of those places is Hartford. On Tuesday, the capitol city hit the C.D.C.'s recommended threshold for universal masking indoors.

"This is really a great thing for us to have and I also think it's the way to get people involved in public health," said Liany Arroyo, the health director for the City of Hartford. "We really want to have those conversations where we give people the information letting them make their own own choice but giving them the information they need to make a truly educated choice."

The hope with the initiative is to have more people informed about the resources so they can make a decision that's best for themselves and their loved ones.

"We really try to educate the public on vaccines and encourage them to go out to the pop-up clinics and let them know that the vaccines are accessible," said Kripa Patel, a student a Quinnipiac University.

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