Hundreds receive 2nd shot at Philadelphia vaccine clinic helping many with language barriers

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- State leaders and local organizations turned their focus Thursday to provide 2nd COVID-19 vaccine doses for those living in the Lawndale section of the city, which has a large population of residents that may experience language barriers.

Staff running the vaccine clinic at Cedar Grove Christian Academy in Lawndale are helping people who speak different languages receive their 2nd shot.

"We are in the most diverse community in the whole city of Philadelphia. 30% of my neighborhood is foreign-born," said Pa. State Representative Jared Solomon.

Solomon says it's taken translators making calls and helping on-site to inform the community.

"A lot of folks who are coming from other countries, there is a deep distrust of government. So you can't just assume you put out an email, or you put out a robocall that everything's okay. You need to really go that extra mile," Solomon said.

President Joe Biden is also taking the message surrounding vaccination to the next step and said that now is the time for everyone over 16 to get the shot.

"If you are fully vaccinated two weeks beyond your last shot, you are nearly 100% protected against death from COVID," Biden said.

Employees of companies like SunRay Specialty Pharmacy running the Lawndale clinic said community partnerships are key to reaching more people.

"We target a lot of the areas where the residents can't really get to the convention center or travel too far," said Daniel Kuo of Sunray Specialty Pharmacy.

Organizers like Heather Miller of the Lawncrest Community Association came to provide assistance and help ease worry for those who are hesitant to receive the vaccine.

"I'm hoping that once the adults are vaccinated, if there's any fears in the children, that'll be alleviated," Miller said.

Miller adds the hope is to continue to ramp up their efforts, especially as more vaccine becomes available.
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