TEP is supporting a local campaign to spread awareness and increase COVID-19 vaccination participation within communities that have disproportionately faced barriers in healthcare access.
The “Take Your Shot” effort will include bilingual marketing, grassroots outreach and advertisements featuring prominent local residents, including University of Arizona Women’s Basketball Coach Adia Barnes.
TEP contributed $33,000 to the campaign from corporate resources that won’t be recovered through customers’ rates.
The Arizona Center for Empowerment (ACE) is leading outreach efforts, along with the Pima Council on Aging and Pima County. Other funders included the United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona and the Community Foundation of Southern Arizona to reach a total of $100,000 that will match funds from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The group kicked off the campaign at a press conference in late May.
“There are still many residents who have questions about the vaccine,” said Wendy Erica Werden, Manager of Community Investment and Philanthropy. “These efforts are intended to build their confidence and ability to get vaccinated so that the entire community can safely move past the pandemic.”
TEP joined the campaign to promote social equity and public health. The effort will reach older residents and members of Black, indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) communities.
“I think that this campaign is all about health equity and justice in our community and ensuring equitable distribution of vaccines,” said W. Mark Clark, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Pima Council on Aging. “The digital divide can certainly be an issue in terms of people’s access to information and registration for appointments.”
ACE will take the lead in contacting residents in zip codes identified by Pima County as having low numbers of vaccinations. Bilingual outreach workers will call people to answer questions and arrange for vaccinations either in their homes, or at nearby vaccination locations.