Neighborhood Health Center celebrated National Health Center Week August 9-13 with
giveaways, including backpacks and school supplies, at all four of its locations (see schedule below).
The week was also highlighted by the launch of Neighborhood Health Center’s #ImVaccinatedBecause
campaign to help address vaccine hesitancy in the Western New York community.
The #ImVaccinatedBecause campaign aims to motivate vaccination-reluctant Western New Yorkers to get vaccinated through peer-to-peer, grassroots encouragement. By showing first person accounts – through photos and videos – of why people have chosen to get vaccinated, the campaign can serve as a movement to increase vaccination rates and reduce the spread of COVID-19 in the region.
“Every Western New Yorker has been impacted by the pandemic. Vaccines are one of the best tools we have to stop the spread of COVID-19. Our campaign is helping our staff, partners and community members to have another tool to start loving conversations on the importance of getting the vaccine,” says Joanne Haefner, CEO of Neighborhood Health Center. “The vaccines are safe, effective, free, and readily available in our community including our Neighborhood Health Center locations.”
The campaign will live virtually, with participants downloading an #ImVaccinatedBecause fillable card from www.ImVaccinatedBecause.org, writing their “why” on the card, and then sharing a photo or video on social media using the hashtag #ImVaccinatedBecause. The campaign also lives physically on poster boards in each Neighborhood Health Center site where participants are encouraged to add their “why” cards to the poster boards. All vaccinated Western New Yorkers are invited and encouraged to participate in the campaign.
"COVID-19 vaccines are our ticket out of the pandemic," says Dr. Gale Burstein, Erie County Commissioner of Health, who has shared her own #ImVaccinatedBecause photo on social media. "When more people are vaccinated, the less this virus can spread, mutate, and continue to disrupt lives and harm the public’s health."
#ImVaccinatedBecause is launching in conjunction with National Health Center Week, an annual celebration with the goal of raising awareness about the mission and accomplishments of America’s health centers over the past five decades. Community health centers serve as the beacon of strength, service and care in communities across the nation.
“We are proud of our role in supporting the community through the pandemic and of our over three decades of work to improve health equity in Western New York,” Haefner says. “We are excited to share this year’s celebration to honor all of our front-line providers, staff, beloved patients and our neighborhoods who have confronted the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.”
Community members are invited to stop by for giveaways including backpacks filled with school
supplies. The backpack giveaways were made possible through generous donations by the
Neighborhood Health Center staff. #ImVaccinatedBecause cards will also be available at this week’s events for anyone who wants to participate in the campaign.
Neighborhood Health Center National Health Center Week event schedule:
Monday, August 9
Neighborhood Health Center - Southtowns
151 Elmview Avenue, Hamburg, NY
Tuesday, August 10
Neighborhood Health Center - Blasdell
4233 Lake Avenue, Blasdell, NY
Wednesday, August 11
Neighborhood Health Center - Mattina
300 Niagara Street, Buffalo, NY
Thursday, August 12
Neighborhood Health Center - Northwest
155 Lawn Avenue, Buffalo, NY