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DeKalb County, Georgia, leading the way to get children protected with vaccines

DeKalb County, Georgia, leading the way to get children protected with vaccines
Photo Credit: Steed Society

DeKalb County is making a full force effort to get families and school children vaccinated. In a new partnership, the County Board of health, community organizations and the school board are banding together to vaccinate students and their parents at after school and weekend events, and the county will incentivize every person getting a shot age 5 and older with $100 cash cards.

“These shots in arms are our best defense with the new Omicron variant,” said DeKalb County Commissioner Ted Terry. It’s the goal of the county to roll out these incentivized vaccine opportunities to all schools in the system if they’re well received.

Pilot vaccination programs will begin at the International Community School in Decatur and Indian Creek Elementary in Clarkston. “Providing the vaccine in a safe and well-known environment is key,” said Temple Moore of the Refugee Women’s Network, and organization that is working with the county and the school system to ensure that vaccine info is shared in a number of different languages and with every community member.  Questions about the vaccine and its effects on children were answered at an event on Tuesday, December 14th at Indian Creek Elementary. Hundreds turned out for an annual Holiday store event hosted by Friends of Refugees where toys and coats are available for purchase at a discounted price to the community.  “We had a chance to make appointments for families to get vaccinated at an upcoming event on January 26 at Indian Creek Elementary,” said Temple Moore. “We expect over 300 people — parents and children — to get vaccinated that day.”

“Our plan is to offer a first event and then another event 1 month later for people to get their 2nd shot,” said Indian Creek Elementary Principal Stephanie Brown-Bryant. “We are so excited that DeKalb County will offer incentives of $100 a shot for our parents and students. I know this will make a HUGE difference in getting our families to turn out. Being in a safe space and wanting kids to be able to return to normal is a big motivator for our folks.” International Community School and Indian Creek Elementary will be the pilot programs for DeKalb County elementary schools offering vaccines after school and on weekends with incentives.

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