The new initiative aims to bring information about vaccines, safety, and resources directly to residents and businesses
SOMERVILLE – The City of Somerville is launching a COVID Ambassador program to deliver information about vaccines, safety protocols, and support services directly to residents and businesses in their neighborhoods.
The City developed this initiative in partnership with Block by Block, a national organization that deploys ambassador teams to meet a range of needs in cities around the country.
Starting in early June, Somerville’s eight COVID Ambassadors will walk local neighborhoods, city squares, and public events to answer questions and connect people with resources. They will also have free masks on hand for those who need one (for example, to enter a business that requires them). Ambassadors will be available seven days a week, wearing orange polos that say “COVID Ambassador.” Somerville’s team includes Ambassadors who speak fluent Spanish, Haitian Creole, and French.
“I want to welcome our Ambassadors and thank them for providing this critical service. This initiative is one more way we can continue to engage and support our residents,” said Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone. “We’ve seen time and time again in this pandemic how important it is to bring resources directly to our neighborhoods and meet folks where they are. As we shift out of crisis response and into recovery mode, our Ambassadors will be key to ensuring we’re rebuilding effectively and equitably.”
“We are excited to partner on this important initiative of the City of Somerville by having Ambassadors provide guidance, information, and resources to Somerville residents during the recovery,” said Blair McBride, President of Block by Block.
“We are glad to be able to offer more support services and more vaccination opportunities than ever before, but we know it’s a lot to keep track of,” said Kristen Stelljes, Somerville’s COVID-19 Incident Commander. “This new outreach strategy will build on our ongoing engagement efforts to make it as easy as possible for people to get the information they need in a way that’s convenient, accessible, and culturally competent. I’m confident our Ambassadors will do just that, and I can’t wait to see them in action around town.”