Powerful testimonial videos address vaccine hesitancy among new and expectant mothers

The New York Vaccine Literacy Campaign at the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy (CUNY SPH) has collaborated with Health Leads to produce a series of powerful testimonial videos featuring three new mothers sharing why they got the COVID-19 vaccine. The videos are the result of a series of participatory workshops with community-based maternal health practitioners and clients who are working to overcome vaccine hesitancy among new and expectant mothers.

Available on the CUNY SPH and Health Leads YouTube channels, the videos address commonly asked questions and concerns among mothers regarding getting vaccinated while pregnant and breastfeeding, misconceptions about the vaccine, and helpful advice for other pregnant people. Designed in partnership with local current and expectant mothers, the collaboration to create the videos aims to serve as an impactful model to raise confidence in vaccination with solutions from and for community partners.

"It is really important that we included the clients, because sometimes you think you understand something when making decisions or strategies," said one community member and co-design participant, "It is really important to include people who are 'going through it' in the process."

The video links and distribution resources can be found in this Social Media Toolkit. The two teams will support the distribution and wide promotion of these important communication tools through a range of channels.

This project was important for the Health Leads team as we recognize the overlap of low vaccination rates in the same neighborhoods where our work focuses due to higher inequities in maternal health outcomes. We were excited to incorporate Human Centered Design techniques into the co-design sessions with our community partners and develop a resource that met their vision."

Michelle Zambrano, Program Director, Health Leads New York

"We already plan to use this collaborative model again in our future efforts to increase community-based support for vaccine acceptance and education," said Karen Ortiz, Program Manager of the NY Vaccine Literacy Campaign.

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