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Gainesville church hosts vaccine event

Published: Feb. 19, 2021 at 5:00 PM EST
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - Several hundred Gainesville residents got their second COVID-19 vaccine shot Friday thanks to the help of a local church.

Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist Church hosted a first dose event of the Pfizer vaccine in January where 364 people received their shot. Friday, the church welcomed each recipient back to get their second dose.

Church leaders and healthcare professionals say that being able to host an event like this is a great way to serve the community and build trust.

RELATED STORY: Biden tours Pfizer vaccine plant as weather delays 6 million shots

“Healthcare is not always accessible in the Black community, so that goes back over time, and then there’s some mistrust. But the best way to take care of that is to have communication, open communication, and then discuss these openly. And that’s how we started and that’s actually what brought us here today,” said Darry Lloyd, a deacon at Mt. Moriah.

“People trust people and people trust places, and so coming to a community center like this let’s people feel a little more comfortable, where maybe you’re a little more anxious [otherwise] and it’s a little more of a personal touch,” said Matt Walser, a physician assistant with the UF Student Healthcare Center. “People want to get vaccinated. A lot of the people we’ve been seeing are 65 and older, most everybody, and those folks have been at home for almost a year, they have not seen their grandchildren… and this is a light at the end of the tunnel event for them. I have seen so many tears of joy and it’s actually been very moving.”

To find out more information about the vaccine and where you can get it, click HERE.

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