The United Way for Southeastern Michigan is opening a competitive RFP process to fund partners already engaged in COVID-19 vaccine outreach and education among families with school-aged children to encourage vaccination uptake and support reaching the state’s target of a 70% vaccination rate. The 2022 COVID-19 Vaccine Outreach, Education and Mobilization investment process is an open call for applications from both potential and existing funded partners to expand existing COVID-19 vaccine outreach, education, and mobilization work.
Applications are due no later than 5 p.m. March 25.
The United Way for Southeastern Michigan is committed to ensuring that all households are stable and that all children can thrive in Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties. Every household should have access to systems and services that help them navigate times of crisis. Every family should have a safe home and the resources it needs to support a child’s healthy development. Every household should have adequate access to nutritious food, and individuals and families should be able to financially support and sustain themselves. We partner with organizations across the region to work toward this reality.
The State of Michigan seeks to vaccinate at least 70% of the eligible population. Yet, due to vaccine hesitancy and barriers to access, there is a clear unmet need for localized outreach, communication, and coordination to ensure equitable vaccine uptake occurs in Michigan.
The coronavirus pandemic has been hard on everyone, yet data shows that COVID-19 has affected black, indigenous, people of color (BIPOC) even more acutely. While BIPOC communities have suffered the most, white residents in Michigan are twice as likely to have received the COVID-19 Vaccine as Black residents.
Additionally, vaccine uptake is particularly low in households with school-aged children. Due to strains like the Omicron variant, there has been rapid spread of COVID-19 in the community, leading to higher numbers of children getting sick. This negatively impacts children’s ability to attend school in person, adds additional strain to our healthcare system, and continues to impact our stress and mental health. Additionally, adults in Southeast Michigan are experiencing hesitance about getting their children vaccinated, leading to lower numbers of children receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. Parents cite concerns like safety, side effects, vaccine effectiveness, and access. It is incredibly difficult to make the best choices for families when misinformation is consistent and widespread.
The challenges for equitably reaching 70% of the state’s population call for increased boots on the ground and coordinated fieldwork. The Census 2020 Michigan Nonprofits Count Campaign “hub model” demonstrated that nonprofits are ideally situated for such fieldwork. Nonprofits serve hard-to-reach communities, have well-established relationships, and speak the communities’ language. Positioned to reach those individuals who might be hesitant to respond to a request from the government, nonprofits are trusted community organizations driven by social missions for all to thrive.
United Way is seeking organizations that have the reputation and reach required to help answer lingering questions about COVID-19 vaccination safety and efficacy, connect people to vaccine access sites and mobilize people to fully vaccinate against COVID-19. Investment decisions will be made based on a variety of criteria, all of which are designed to identify organizations that have the capability to create the most impact both effectively and collectively.
Organizations are invited to apply for funding within the range of $5,000 and $20,000.
The grant period supports activities from April 15 – Aug. 31, 2022.
Eligible organizations include nonprofit organizations, community health centers, local government agencies, and public, private, and charter school districts. Organizations must be located in and be providing services within Wayne, Oakland, and/or Macomb Counties.
Funding criteria includes (but is not limited to):
1. Organizations that demonstrate a solid plan of action to engage directly with families with school-aged children, provide information about where to access the vaccine, answer questions about the vaccine’s safety and effectiveness and encourage and mobilize people to fully vaccinate against COVID-19.
2. Organizations that demonstrate a thoughtful commitment to engage with community members and/or partner organizations.
3. Organizations that demonstrate an understanding of their community’s needs and resources and use this to identify special groups of people or areas in their community that they will prioritize in their efforts.
4. Organizations whose budgets support outreach, education and mobilization efforts in areas with low proportions of residents who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
5. Organizations that commit to attending a required Train-the-Trainer workshop on vaccine hesitancy and communication and sharing this resource with other community members and/or partner organizations.
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For general inquiries about the grant, please contact:
Click here to apply. Applications are due by 5 p.m. March 25.