12-year-olds, teenagers head to Pennsylvania Convention Center for vaccinations

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Twelve-year-old Derrell Jordon and his mother Alisha were at the Pennsylvania Convention Center on Friday morning for Derrell's first shot, the second day the site was offering vaccinations to this younger age group.

"I wanted to get it straight away because I think it's important to stay safe during this pandemic," Jordan said.

Thirteen-year-old Nola Shaenen also didn't waste any time.

"A lot of my classmates have actually scheduled their appointments. Everybody wants to, but sometimes it's hard to find appointments," Schaenen told Action News after she received her first dose.

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FEMA recently welcomed ambassadors from the Philadelphia Department of Public Health's Philly Teen Vaxx program to tour the Convention Center site.

The teens are volunteering to help get the word out to their peers. They are also planning themed vaccination events.

"I do know some of the city sites, they have great plans to come in and do some themes to encourage more teens to come out," Charlie Elison of FEMA explained.
Sixteen-year-old Alex Huth received his second dose and is hoping more vaccinations means more normalcy.

"It's definitely going to be a lot better compared to last summer. It's probably going to be very beneficial to me since I am a camp counselor over the summer," Huth said.

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FEMA's Esperanza site in Hunting Park is not offering first dose Pfizer shots to 12-15 years olds, but that age group can still get them at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

FEMA will continue to support the Convention Center site through May 25, then it will transition back to a city site.

"The current plan is that the city will continue to manage this site as a city facility well after the federal support ends, but there are also several other city locations where folks can schedule their second doses of Pfizer vaccines," Elison said.

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