During May and June, Seattle Public Schools (SPS) and the Seattle Fire Department (SFD) hosted COVID-19 pop-up vaccination clinics for students ages 12 years and older with parental consent at school sites citywide. Parents, guardians and family members were also invited to receive vaccines at select school sites to provide accessible options to get vaccinated before school was dismissed for summer. Each participating school hosted at least two clinics to help families receive both their first and second doses of the vaccine. These school-based clinics resulted in a total of 8,049 doses of COVID-19 vaccines administered to students and families before the end of the 2020-2021 school year.
DEEL is proud to have partnered in this effort to support youth and families’ access to vaccine education and vaccination opportunities by conducting youth and community outreach to inform planning of vaccine clinics. We know that many students and families still have questions and concerns about the COVID-19 vaccine and recognize the importance of ensuring information about vaccines is widely available, accessible in many languages, and that vaccine clinics result in positive, culturally-responsive experiences for students and families of all identities. To increase access to medically-accurate COVID-19 information, DEEL partnered with Seattle Public Schools, Public Health – Seattle & King County, and the Seattle Council PTSA to provide a virtual information session about COVID-19 vaccines for students and families.
DEEL offered a non-competitive mini-grant to support school vaccination clinics in response to community feedback that revealed supportive, culturally-inclusive, student-friendly vaccination opportunities were needed to help youth and families feel safe and utilize COVID-19 vaccines. Robert Eagle Staff Middle School (RESMS), who was awarded $1,389 to support their June vaccine clinic, provided student-friendly activities, free health and hygiene supplies, and multilingual COVID-19 resources for families. Students were sent home with information about what to expect after their COVID-19 vaccine and fluids to help them stay hydrated. RESMS’s school-based health center provider, Neighborcare, also hosted a fun game of COVID-19 vaccine trivia for students and families to learn about how vaccines work and how to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Parents and guardians of RESMS students were invited to receive COVID-19 vaccines at RESMS’ clinic.
COVID-19 vaccination continues to be an important tool to help protect our school communities from COVID-19 as we look toward a return to in-person learning this fall. DEEL is grateful to our partners at Seattle Public Schools, Public Health – Seattle & King County, Seattle Fire Department, Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs, and various community and medical organizations for helping make our communities safer by providing families with COVID-19 vaccination opportunities.
Families still have many options for where they can receive COVID-19 vaccines including pharmacies, community health centers, and through their health care providers. UW Medicine is also providing free COVID-19 testing at sites throughout the city. No matter where families choose to get vaccinated, all COVID-19 vaccines are free, even without health insurance.
To find the latest information about the City of Seattle’s community vaccination opportunities, visit the City’s webpage at seattle.gov/vaccine. Seattleites can also find COVID-19 vaccination options at vaccinelocator.doh.wa.gov and additional resources from Public Health – Seattle & King County here. Seattle’s Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (ORIA) COVID-19 vaccine helplines are available now in Amharic, Arabic, Cantonese, Korean, Mandarin, Somali, Spanish, Tigrinya, and Vietnamese. Learn more at welcoming.seattle.gov/covidhelplines.