Today, Governor Laura Kelly applauded the COVID-19 Vaccine Equity Taskforce, the Hispanic & Latino American Affairs Commission, the Shawnee County Health Department, the Kansas Civic Engagement Table, Immunize Kansas Coalition and the El Centro De Topeka for their collaborative vaccine efforts in the Shawnee County community.

The collaborative groups led a COVID-19 vaccine canvas to encourage Kansans to get vaccinated. The door-to-door efforts resulted in 514 houses visited, 176 conversations held, and 43 confirmed vaccine appointments.

“Bringing the COVID-19 vaccine to the front door of Kansans breaks through huge barriers in our hard-to-reach communities,” Governor Laura Kelly said. “This hard work is critical to keeping our loved ones safe and getting Kansas back to normal.” 

A community-led Vaccine Fiesta will be hosted on Saturday, June 26th from 10 am – 2 pm at the Salvation Army building on S.E. Sixth Avenue in Topeka. The event will include:

  • Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccines
  • Bilingual patient navigators and staff members
  • No I.D. requirement
  • Mobile children’s museum from The Kansas Children’s Discovery Center
  • Free food
  • A book giveaway

“I am passionate about grassroots, data driven, targeted community organizing,” Audé Negrete, Executive Director of KHLAAC said. “When we give our community the tools to help their neighbors we make a difference with exemplary deliverables. We engaged with our community, brought them into the process and helped them develop the vaccination outreach process. I look forward to growing our efforts and working with more Kansans to continue helping their friends and neighbors get the COVID-19 vaccine.”

The Vaccine Fiesta hopes to ease vaccine accessibility for communities of color in Kansas. Over the span of the past four weeks vaccination rates for individuals of color ages 12-17 have surpassed those of white and Non-Hispanic/Latino Kansans. Vaccination rates per one hundred thousand people have reached 53% for Black and Hispanic/Latino populations and 55% for Asian populations. White and Non-Hispanic/Latino populations trail at 46% and 49%.

Please find photos from the canvas here: