Vaccination Before the Wedding

By Flarantxa Pereira

November 27, 2021

Anjuma* and Rishi* residents of Tholapalli village, Bagepalli Block, were ready to get married, surrounded by their family, friends and village elders. Wellness facilitators from Soukhya Sanjeevini Samsthe (SSS) were in the area conducting a street-to-street vaccination drive as a part of #COVIDActionCollab’s VaxNow initiative in partnership with Swasti. On seeing the group at the wedding, the facilitators, who were well known among the community were informed that both the bride and groom haven’t been vaccinated. The facilitators along with the ASHA workers used this as an opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of getting vaccinated. The elders and the community who had already been vaccinated supported the facilitators and encouraged the couple to take the vaccine to protect themselves from COVID-19 complications. After they received their first shot, many more community members wanted to get vaccinated as well. The SSS team vaccinated 210 people and were encouraged to continue their street-to-street vaccination drive. 


Community Based Care & Support for COVID-19

Swasti works with the most poor and marginalized communities in India partnering them to make health and well-being real. To break the chain of COVID-19 transmission, it is imperative to provide the most marginalized with practical solutions to isolate and receive care through, Community Care Centers, Home quarantine kits and HelloSwasti

During the initial vaccination roll out there was a sense of higher demand and shortage in supply. The team at SSS would hold these drives at a local Anganwadi and people would come to them. This didn’t last very long, soon the team realized they would need to go to the communities directly and conduct vaccination drives. When conducting street-to-street drives the wellness facilitators needed to build relationships with the community members which would, in turn, help them address the prevailing hesitancy. As a first step, the facilitators addressed the hesitancy prevalent in the minds of the elders of the households and the community leaders. This translated into the community elders themselves mobilizing the community to get vaccinated and instilled a sense of accountability among the wellness facilitators to ensure that vaccines reach the last mile. 

Our approach when addressing the many challenges that come up while creating awareness around vaccination continues to be focused on why it is important to be vaccinated as opposed to what needs to be done. Keeping communities at the center ensures all have access to vaccinations and the ability to #BounceForward.

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