Red Cross receives $350,000 to accelerate COVID-19 vaccination
The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies has received $350,000 from Coca-Cola Foundation to accelerate vaccination for Nigerians against COVID-19.
The Coordinator, Communications and Advocacy of the society, Mr. Chima Nwankwo disclosed this in a statement released on Thursday in Abuja.
“The grant, awarded through the #StoptheSpread fund, administered by the foundation is valued at $350,000.
“It will focus on increasing vaccine uptake and logistic support in key states where there has been established vaccine hesitancy in Nigeria.
“IFRC will work with local Red Cross Society teams and volunteers to execute the programme.
“This donation will enable the cross access some of the hardest to reach communities in Nigeria,’’ he added.
Quoting Mr. AbubakarKende, Secretary-General of the Society, Nwankwo said, “If we are to have any chance at stopping COVID-19 transmission, we must ensure that we make it possible for these communities to not just understand the danger this virus portends, but also through personal protection and access to vaccination.”
He said the mobilisation campaign would create public enlightenment messages about the benefits of taking the vaccine and also help interested persons find a vaccination site closest to them.
According to him, the society volunteers have already commenced risk communication and community engagement activities in communities in Bauchi, Bayelsa, Kogi, Ebonyi, and Edo states.
As part of the intervention and community advocacy, the cross volunteers would provide useful information to members of the communities about the benefits of the vaccine.
Nwankwo said that, the volunteers would also address the quell rumours and myths associated with the virus.
He said they would provide clear answers to questions relating to the pandemic as well as direct community members to medical facilities where they could get vaccinated safely.