Featured Activity: Mobile Food Pantry Project
Award-winning flu season activity: Mobile Food Pantry Project
In 2011, a group of Nevada’s public health leaders developed an innovative project to provide influenza (flu) vaccinations at three mobile food pantry sites in northern Nevada. This unique partnership was well-received by the participating locations. The project expanded in subsequent years, thanks to the collaborative efforts of Immunize Nevada, Walgreens, and the Food Bank of Northern Nevada. From September through December 2013, 563 food pantry clients in 14 clinics at mobile food pantry sites in the northern Nevada region received influenza vaccines. The project is expected to reach 24 food pantry sites in 2014. Food pantry clients typically took less than seven minutes to fill out the intake forms and see the pharmacist.
Who are you reaching through this activity?
Underserved adults due to high amount of underinsured and uninsured in Nevada due to transient/service economy (e.g., mining, tourism, gaming, and construction). We support and work with partners statewide, but many of Nevada’s rural and frontier counties include small and isolated towns often separated by hundreds of miles and have few community services and resources. Consequently, many of our partners travel to provide immunization services and offer flu vaccinations in non-traditional settings
What are the objectives of this activity?
Reduce barriers for the often high-risk population stay healthier during influenza season by removing the cost of and creating convenient and efficient access points for flu shots.
Who did you collaborate with on this project?
Collaborate with community organizations that serve our target audience: Walgreens, Food Bank, St. Paul’s Food Pantry, and pharmacists.
Did you measure the impact of your activity (e.g., how many people did you reach)?
Program has expanded from 3 sites in 2012 to 24 food pantry sites in 2014. Because of the overwhelming success of, response to, and participation in the project, Immunize Nevada intends to continue expanding this project by increasing partners and broadening its reach.
What are the overall costs of the program/activity? How did you fund it?
Walgreens supported this project through their vouchers program.
What advice do you have for other coalitions?
- Leverage partnerships – You don’t have to do it alone! Statewide immunizers, employers, media
- Take advantage of existing events, resources and materials
- Collaborate with community organizations that serve target audience – Food Bank, Children’s Cancer Foundation, Senior Center, Boys & Girls Club, Donor Awareness, Mexican Consulate
- Think outside the clinic – Make vaccine accessible – Sports events, malls, churches, legislature, parks
- Develop a call to action – Protect yourself & someone else
- Hashtag/Social Media