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Task Force Grant funds organizations aiding with vaccine hesitancy

Posted at 6:53 PM, Apr 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-19 18:53:26-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Only about 100 people showed up at Bethel AME Church's clinic on Saturday, where organizers had 600 doses to hand out; shedding an even bigger light on vaccine hesitancy that the Leon County Coronavirus Taskforce hopes to solve.

"Right now we're focused in on can we educate him and engage our people to actually get the shot," says project manager Dr. Elaine Bryant.

The Leon County Corornavirus Task Force is backing up their focus to get people vaccinated by giving 25 local organizations their share of $60,000 dollars. The goal is to come up with creative ways to encourage people in minority communities to get vaccinated.

Bryant says when it comes to concerns from people they've talked to.. there are a few that top the list.

"They want to know, 'will I get sick if I take this vaccine?'" said Bryant. "What are the repercussions to taking it now and what's going to happen to me in the future. And I can say I've heard young people say, especially, "how is it going to impact me 20 years from now?'"

With the goal of getting more young people involved and vaccinated, Leon County CHOSE Projsitive Chuck LLC as one of the organizations to help them get the word out. CEO Nick Fyson says he wants his mentees and others in the community to, "Stay alive by staying connected and staying safe." said Fryson.

Additionally, he says, he's using his grant money to buy t-shirts, flyers, and entertainment so the communities his organization visits get the message of just how important it is to get vaccinated.

"I am a firm believer in one thing I've been telling all of my kids, kids meaning my mentees, is if you can go out you also can go in. If you can go out to the parties you can go into the doctor and get a vaccination."

Despite the low turn at last week's clinic, Bethel AME Church will continue its vaccine efforts with another clinic planned for next month.