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NAACP working to bring vaccines to underserved communities in Northern Kentucky

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Posted at 7:20 PM, May 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-22 20:19:49-04

COVINGTON, Ky. — The Northern Kentucky chapter of the NAACP partnered with St. Elizabeth and the Northern Kentucky Healthy Department to reach communities in Covington that haven't been able to get the COVID-19 vaccine yet.

"We wanted to make sure the under-served community had the opportunity to receive the full COVID vaccination," said Jerome Bowles, president of the NKY NAACP.

Bowles said the organization has seen a decline in vaccinations among under-served communities.

"We did find ages 20 to 35 is still kind of a challenge, so we've been working diligently to try to get information out in those communities," said Bowles.

Del Shawn Hayes, event chair for the NKY NAACP, said vaccine hesitancy has played a part in communities, but that they want to be sure they can make the shots available for community members who still want them.

Saturday's event, held at First Baptist Church, was set specifically in a walkable area, to allow the greatest access to community members.

The clinic offered a choice of either the Moderna or the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, to both provide options and to dispel myths about the vaccines that may be circulating in the community.

"There had been an unproven conversation going on in our community that the under-served community was only receiving the J&J vaccine a while back," said Bowles. "So, we asked our health care provider to, in order to increase our number, have options."

For families like that of Lois Brown, who showed up in force with several family members in tow, the vaccine provides a path to reuniting with family this summer.

"If we all want to spend time together this summer, we have to be safe and we have to looks out for each other as a family and as a community," she said.