Last updated: September 16, 2022 at 2:15 p.m.

Vaccine Engagement Teams (VETs) have been a key component of the world-leading success and impact of the City’s COVID-19 vaccine campaign. VETs operate through 17 geographic and population-specific consortiums made up of health, community, and faith-based organizations. VETs are established in each of the City’s ten geographic Community Coordination Plan Clusters, and across various citywide population focuses. Indigenous organizations have been provided dedicated funding to self-determine culturally appropriate strategies for engagement among Indigenous communities.

VETs have mobilized over 720 Community Ambassadors across Toronto. These trained community members are key points of contact in the neighbourhoods where they live and/or work, provide access to vaccine resources, build vaccine confidence, and amplify public health messaging across their networks. Ambassadors reflect the diversity in culture, race and language of Toronto’s equity-deserving groups and facilitate targeted outreach to individuals and communities.

Vaccine Engagement Teams Program Evaluation

In July 2022, the City of Toronto completed an external and internal program evaluation of Vaccine Engagement Teams to assess the extent to which they have enhanced vaccine confidence and access for equity-deserving groups in Toronto. The program evaluation found that the work of VETs has resulted in increased vaccine confidence, access, and uptake among diverse communities across Toronto and reduced socioeconomic barriers to government services.

  1. Information Sheet
  2. Executive Summary
  3. Presentation

Vaccine Engagement Teams Outreach

VETs use a variety of strategies to increase vaccine confidence and access with a focus on equity-based engagement and mobilization, including:

  • Hyper-local COVID-19 vaccine clinics and testing
  • Public setting engagement sessions in parks, residential building lobbies, or shopping centres
  • Developing age-based, ethnic, or language-specific information sharing tools (posters, information sheets, multimedia products) and learnings opportunities (workshops, town halls, livestreams)
  • Direct messaging or phone engagement sessions, often cold-calling or through a phone bank
  • Building-specific engagement through door knocking, flyering, lobby outreach, or hosting information booths in common areas
  • Social media campaigns to raise awareness, share updates and information
  • Sharing pre-filled Presto cards and ridesharing vouchers to assist those facing transportation barriers
  • Supporting on-site clinic registration and the coordination of community members

Between March 2021 and June 2022, Vaccine Engagement Teams and Community Ambassadors spent over 119,000 hours building vaccine confidence by engaging with Torontonians more than 3.4 million times in over 40 different languages.

 

Learn more about the activity and impact of the VETs across the City of Toronto below.

Lead Administrating Agency: Lumacare

Number of Active Agency Partners: 12

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 51

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • Booster Dose Community Outreach (April 2022): Ambassadors conducted door-to-door outreach to disseminate information about booster doses and provide accurate information on the safety of vaccines. Residents reported increased confidence in vaccines. 15 individuals were registered for vaccine appointments and over 10 were provided transportation supports to access clinics.
  • Gramen Spelling Bee Francophone Outreach (June 2022): Ambassadors were invited to conduct outreach and engagement at the annual Gramen Spelling Bee competition for children and teens. Information and resources were shared in French. 250 individuals were engaged.
  • Food Bank Outreach (May-June 2022): Ambassadors attended food banks to provide vaccine information and promote local food banks in a convenient and relaxed environment. 7 children were registered for vaccines, 3 seniors were supported to get their 4th dose.
  • Community Outreach and Vaccine Clinics (January 22 and March 5, 2022): Consortium partners hosted vaccine clinics that offered goody bags and gift cards for residents. Community Ambassadors promoted the events to 2,200 residents over social media. 220 doses were administered in total at the 2 clinics.
  • Population-focused Vaccine Outreach (January to March 2022): Community Ambassadors engaged 600+ individuals directly and 2,000+ through groups in the francophone, African, Spanish and Caribbean communities. Youth were also engaged with 50 youth volunteering to distribute flyers to their peers resulting in 160 doses administered to youth.
  • Faith Community Engagement (January to March 2022): Consortium partners collaborated with a worship centre to support a vaccine clinic and provide personal protective equipment (PPE) to adults and youth as well as gifts cards. 200+ individuals attended.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Youth COVID-19 Vaccine Town Halls (March to June 2021): Vaccine Town Halls for youth aged 12 to 17, organized to address youth-specific concerns on the COVID-19 vaccine by debunking misinformation and addressing safety concerns.
  • Network Coordination Enhancements (March to August 2021): Development of a shared calendar with partner organizations for a more efficient deployment of Community Ambassadors. This allowed partners, such as the Ontario Health Teams, Toronto Public Health, Toronto District School Board and the Toronto Catholic District School Board to expand their network in planning for vaccine clinics and other engagement strategies.
  • Hyper-local Outreach Strategy (August 2021): A month-long outreach and engagement strategy developed and implemented by Community Ambassadors focused on neighbourhoods with the lowest-vaccine uptake. The outreach covered 16 neighbourhoods, with over 200+ people engaged directly and over 2,000+ people engaged indirectly.
  • Tailored COVID-19 Vaccine Outreach (September to October 2021): Community Ambassadors launched a focused and targeted outreach in communities with low vaccine uptake to increase equity and access to information. Different groups were formed to focus on specific communities, streets and buildings. The outreach covered more than 25 neighbourhoods and streets, 40 apartment buildings and close to 100 people directly engaged in vaccine promotion discussions.
  • I am Vaccinated COVID-19 Promotion Video (October 2021): Community Ambassadors created an innovative vaccine promotion video to promote more awareness of the vaccine and encourage people to get vaccinated. The video emphasized the importance and benefits of vaccination with Community Ambassadors delivering the same message in multiple languages to reduce language barriers, and promote diversity and inclusion. The video was shared with over 6,000 clients of the 8 consortium partners, using various social media platforms that included 12 WhatsApp groups.
  • Faith & COVID-19 Vaccines (October to December 2021): Consortium partners engaged members of different faith communities through townhalls and Q&A sessions. Townhalls and virtual forums were held with Hispanic faith leaders, Black faith leaders and households, and faith leaders from the Sikh, Hindu, Christian, Buddhist, Jewish and Muslim community. The key issues addressed included vaccine awareness and safety, vaccine passports, booster doses and debunking myths on the vaccines. Up to 74 faith leaders were engaged and over 150 households and 9,500 individuals reached through subsequent webinars and communications.
  • Parent for Child Vaccine (November to December 2021); Consortium partners facilitated townhalls for parents on the safety of COVID-19 vaccines for children. More than 350 parents participated at the different townhall sessions.
  • COVID Support Line & Social Media Campaign (Ongoing): Consortium partners launched different initiatives to improve access to COVID-19 information, vaccine resources and other support services. A targeted social media platform was created and dedicated to vaccine promotion messages and Toronto Public Health messages. Other support services provided included virtual fitness and mental health services and food access support. This initiative reached over 2,000 individuals in the neighbourhoods served by consortium partners.

Lead Administrating Agency: The 519

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 46

Number of Active Agency Partners: 20

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • Toronto Sri Maha Ganapathy Temple Clinic (April 2 and 9, 2022): In partnership with the Toronto Sri Maha Ganapathy Temple, consortium partners led 2 clinics to increase confidence in and access to vaccines. 60 people were engaged and 20 doses were administered, including 2 pediatric doses.
  • 2SLGBTQ+ Youth Field Trip (May 24, 2022): In partnership with Rexdale Pride, Consortium partners engaged queer youth from across the GTA to learn about vaccine and other health and social resources for 2SLGBTQ+ population and have an opportunity to socialize after two years of isolation. 15 youth participated.
  • Moss Park Queer Wellness Festival (June 18, 2022): In partnership with Building Roots and the Expand Partnership, consortium partners hosted a queer wellness festival featuring live music, local vendors, wellness info & more. 150+ people attended, 7 vaccines were administered, and 100 meals were distributed.
  • Downtown East Vaccine Phoneline (January to March 2022): DTE Vaccine Ambassadors staffed a vaccine hotline Monday through Thursday between 9am to 4pm to provide a non-judgmental space dedicated to supporting individuals in the DTE but open to anyone who called to get information about COVID-19 vaccines, booster eligibility, and booking appointments.
  • The 519 Weekly COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics (January to March 2022): In partnership with The Regent Park Community Health Centre, The 519 hosts weekly COVID-19 vaccine clinics for 2SLGBTQ+ communities, newcomers, older adults, youth, families and those experiencing homelessness/who are underhoused. 84 vaccine doses have been administered.
  • Q-mmunity Wellness Hub (March 12, 2022): In partnership with the 2SLGBTQ+ City Wide Table, the Downtown East consortium supported the Q-mmunity Wellness Hub offering vaccines and other health services along with food and entertainment. 60 individuals attended and 7 vaccine doses were administered.
  • The 519 EarlyON Outreach (February to March 2022): Ambassadors attend weekly EarlyON programming taking place at the 519 to promote vaccine confidence for families with children aged 5 to11, and prepare families with children under the age of 5 for future vaccine opportunities. 15-30 families are engaged each week.
  • Toronto Public Library Parliament Branch Outreach (January to March 2022): Ambassadors leverage the high volume use of this library to conduct weekly outreach and book vaccine appointments for library users. 212 community members engaged and 50 people booked into appointments.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Black Community Wellness Hubs (Spring/Summer 2021): Focal points to address health discrepancy and increase vaccination rates among Black community members in the Downtown East through engagement with Black-focused community health organizations and the roll out of mobile vaccine clinics with over 100 residents vaccinated.
  • 2SLGBTQ+ Vaccine Information Gathering (Spring/Summer 2021): Survey administered by Sherbourne Health Centre’s 2SLGBTQ+ Vaccine Ambassadors at the Church-Wellesley Village to gauge vaccine comfort and vaccination rates with the participation of 55 community members; research report developed by Community Ambassadors to help guide vaccine equity engagement in the Downtown East, and across Toronto.
  • Chai & Chats (September to December 2021): An informal and friendly drop-in space for Community Ambassadors and community members to have a dialogue and share information on COVID-19, vaccination, vaccine passports, and other pandemic related concerns over a warn cup of Chai Tea, with the opportunity to get vaccinated on site..
  • Free COVID-19 Testing (Ongoing): Weekly free testing clinics made available in community spaces, as a way to reduce barriers to access to services, and on an ongoing basis to reduce community spread of COVID-19.
  • Youth Fall Fair (October 2021): Multi-agency youth fair led by the Regent Park Community Health Centre that featured Black community artists, information on employment supports, awareness building on health and wellbeing, and COVID-19 Q&A; over 100 youth attended, with the opportunity to get vaccinated on site.
  • Regent Park Radio Segments (October to December 2021): Information session on Regent Park Focus Radio on COVID-19, including a segment with ‘true and false’ questions to address misinformation and concerns about vaccines to an audience of approximately 7,000 residents.
  • Fray & Fluffy’s Drag Storytime (November to December 2021): Educational videos with Drag stars Fay Slift and Fluffy Soufflé for vaccine engagement with families and children 5 to 11 years old, including videos on ‘Getting my 3rd Dose’, reading of children’s book ‘COVID Vaccine’, testimonial by Fay & Fluffy and Q&A with health care professionals.

Lead Administrating Agency: Scadding Court Community Centre

Number of Active Agency Partners: 19

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 33

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • Older Adult Vaccine Clinic (April 22 & 29, 2022): In partnership with TPH and TCHC, Consortium partners organized a clinic to address health inequity through providing safe and supportive vaccine services to older adults with chronic health conditions using various mobility devices who are also non-English speaking. 115 doses were administered total.
  • Black Health & Wellness Town Hall (January 2022): Black Resiliency Table partners, Black Scientists Task Force, Black Health Alliance and West Neighbourhood House co-hosted an online town hall to address distrust of healthcare among Black-identifying communities resulting from medical anti-Black racism. 80+ individuals attended the online panel and Q&A.
  • Accessible Vaccine clinics (January 2022 to present): 7 specialized vaccination clinics were hosted between January and March for individuals with developmental, cognitive, and/or physical disabilities and their families. 342 community members have received vaccines or booster shots through this initiative so far.
  • Presentation to the Immunizing Children with Confidence (ICC) Vaccination Conversations Pop Up event (January 2022): Consortium partners presented on “Setting Up Accessible Vaccine Clinics for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities” to agencies and community members. The presentation showcased the consortiums’ specialized approach to vaccine distribution for those with intellectual and developmental disabilities that centres on accessible service, barrier reduction and inter-agency partnerships.
  • Parkdale Library Pop-Up Vaccine Clinics (December 2021 to March 2022): Consortium partners collaborated with the Parkdale Library, Parkdale Activity – Recreation Centre (PARC) and the Parkdale Queen West Community Health Centre to deliver weekly barrier free pop-up vaccine clinics in the community. 10 clinics administered vaccines and booster shots to 2,000+ community members.
  • Community Outreach to Pregnant People (January to March 2022): Consortium partners conducted focused outreach to over 50 stores in the Kensington Market neighbourhood as well as 200 homes in order to build confidence in vaccination for those experiencing pregnancy and in the postnatal stage. 100 pregnant and postnatal individuals were engaged.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Spadina-Fort York Community Outreach (Summer 2021): Consortium partners launched the Community Outreach with Vaccine Information Project. The project engaged individuals under-housed and those living in encampments to register for local vaccine clinics, and provide travel accommodations. Over summer 2021, the project engaged over 70,000 residents, and completed over 1,000 COVID-19 vaccine registrations.
  • Chinatown Community Member Engagement (Spring/Summer 2021): Consortium partners worked with residents and businesses in Toronto’s Chinatown area to provide culturally-specific engagement to reduce vaccine hesitancy, provide education about the COVID-19 vaccine, and help with vaccine registration. This strategy has engaged over 22,000 local community members, through language specific testing sites, pop-up vaccine clinics, and seniors focused workshops.
  • Downtown West Region Wide Support (Spring/Summer 2021): Consortium partners in Downtown West provided culturally competent vaccine engagement and visibility with activities that included running pop-up clinics, assistance with registration for vaccine appointments, door-to-door canvassing, and spreading the word through social media. This approach resulted in 4,500 vaccine doses being administered across 9 community specific pop-up clinics and 20 more mobile micro-clinics that were supported.
  • Community Clinics (May to December 2021): Consortium partners, in collaboration with the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), Toronto Public health (TPH) and the Women’s College Hospital, coordinated a series of weekly vaccine clinics and one-time vaccine pop-ups in areas with high COVID-19 rates and low first dose vaccination rates. Over 6,000 people were vaccinated through the community clinics, including a special day for children and third doses in December 2021.
  • Neighbourhood Outreach with Wrap-around Supports (April to present): Targeted approach with focus on apartment buildings, door-to-door outreach, information booths, and community events and youth webinars on the vaccine and data collection using hyper local surveys. This approach made it possible to book vaccine appointments while providing wrap around supports to reduce barriers to access to services, including the distribution of Presto cards, care kits and food vouchers.
  • Community Translation (April to present): Translation services provided by Community Ambassadors during vaccine clinics in Mandarin, Cantonese, Tagalog, Tibetan, Hindi and Spanish. This assistance helped to address language barriers and enabled residents to feel more comfortable accessing the vaccines and other health services.
  • Social Media Campaign (August to present): Outreach to the public and celebration of achievements through Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, with 282 Twitter followers and 85 Instagram followers to date.
  • Vax Shack (October 2021 to present): Conversion of a container at 707 Market Place into a meeting place for Community Ambassadors and residents for educational material and information on COVID-19 and vaccination. The supports provided also included printing and laminating over 200 vaccine receipts, in collaboration with agencies, for residents with no access to printing and support to residents without an OHIP card to access their receipts.

Lead Administrating Agencies: Access Alliance Multicultural Health & Community Services and The Neighbourhood Organization TNO

Number of Active Agency Partners: 21

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 61

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • Afghan Newcomer Wellness Program (June 20, 2022): Consortium partners and the Wellness Line team hosted an information session on COVID-19 and general health & wellness to address the specific barriers faced by the newcomer population. 20 individuals participated.
  • Multilingual RAT Kit Distribution + Pop Up Vaccine Clinic (April & May 2022): Consortium partners conducted outreach and distributed rapid antigen test kits to residents in high rise buildings with a concentration of newcomers facing language barriers. Ambassadors speaking English, Urdu, Hindi, Persian, Dari and Arabic were on site conducting the engagements. A pop-up vaccine clinic with language interpretation was subsequently arranged in the same buildings in response to residents’ requests. 648 RAT kits were distributed. 35 doses were administered.
  • Multilingual RAT Kit distribution to Seniors (June 2022): Consortium partners distributed rapid antigen test kits in seniors’ buildings where many residents face mobility and accessibility barriers. Ambassadors conducted outreach in four non-English languages. 324 RAT kits were distributed.
  • Lobby and Door-to-Door Clinics (January to March 2022): Consortium partners hosted low-barrier and accessible clinics for isolated residents in the Taylor-Massey neighbourhood. Clinics were hosted is 28 buildings. Ambassadors visited 23,000 homes in the area to promote the clinics, resulting in 4,067 residents vaccinated in lobbies or at their door.
  • #VaxtheEast Campaign (February 2022): Consortium partners collaborated with Michael Garron Hospital, East Toronto Health Partners, and the City of Toronto to support vaccine access for children and families in Taylor Massey, Oakridge, Victoria Village and Flemingdon Park neighbourhoods. Community members were offered free TTC service to the Ontario Science Centre vaccination clinic and a free family pass to the Ontario Science Centre along with books, pencils, and certificates for children once vaccinated. 10 buildings in Flemingdon Park and distributed more than 500 flyers. 28 Ambassadors promoted the event to neighbours resulting in 1,700 vaccinations received.
  • Vax & Spring – Oakridge (March 2022): Consortium partners supported the TPH Vax & Spring initiative on March 25 from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. This clinic was offered at a convenient and comfortable location in a neighbourhood with pockets of low vaccine uptake and low child vaccination uptake. 50 adults and 25 children received vaccinations.
  • Thorncliffe Park Women’s Committee Engagement (January to March 2022): Thorncliffe Park Women’s Committee organized door-to-door engagement providing fresh healthy meals to isolated seniors and families with children aged 5 to 11 to promote vaccine access. 1,785 individuals were engaged and 1,052 meals were distributed.
  • Mobile Vaccines (January to March 2022): Mobile vaccine bus initiative, led in partnership with Toronto EMS and Michael Garron Hospital, resulted in: 26 vaccine clinics in residential buildings; 2,464 residents directly engaged; 5,460 flyers distributed to residences with no answer and 656 vaccine doses administered.
  • TNO and Afghan Women’s Organization Community Ambassador Outreach (January to March 2022): Ambassadors engaged residents across the region to build confidence in vaccines and improve access by providing transportation vouchers, assuring people had the appropriate documents and supported them in scheduling appointments. Ambassadors visited 391 buildings and 4,871 people, and distributed 4,338 rapid antigen test kits. They also attended 16 vaccine clinics and 2 mobile clinics to promote access for community members.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Thorncliffe Park and Flemingdon Park Data Driven Outreach Strategy (May to December 2021): Consortium partners developed a building-based, data-driven vaccination mapping and monitoring strategy for Thorncliffe Park to mobilize a hyper-local response, and inform building-specific, door-to door Community Ambassador engagement activities and vaccine clinics. This resulted in 29 building-based clinics, over 16,000 doors knocked, 89 buildings reached, 29,000 residents directly engaged, and 600 vaccine appointments booked in summer 2021. Consortium partners, led by The Neighbourhood Organization, continued to coordinate building-based and community clinics to include Flemingdon, targeting buildings and communities with lowest rates of vaccination and highest rates of COVID-19 positivity as well as homebound clients. Combined efforts from September to December 2021 for Thorncliffe and Flemingdon resulted in 60 clinics, 49 targeted buildings and over 1,500 residents getting their first, second or third dose.
  • Community Ambassador Mobilization Series (March to August 2021): Series of engagement sessions to equip Community Ambassadors for their community outreach. The sessions featured weekly 5 to 10 hours of engagement, including PPE distribution, a ‘Connecting with Residents’ presentation, strategies on how to address vaccine hesitancy, and support at pop-up vaccine clinics. The series enabled reach to over 29,000 participants.
  • Crescent Town and Taylor Massey Outreach (March to December 2021): An extensive outreach plan to establish pop-up clinics, increase awareness, and recruiting people to register. Over 11,950 community members participated, creating a working strategy for future community engagement plans in the Crescent Town and Taylor Massey. In collaboration with WoodGreen, building-based outreach similar to the outreach at Thorncliffe Park and Flemingdon Park resulted in engagement with residents in 6,018 units across 22 buildings.
  • Town Halls, Information Sessions and Virtual Conversations (September to December 2021): Collaboration with health partners and Michael Garron Hospital to organize hyper-local town halls for residents of Taylor Massey, Oakridge, and Clairelea-Birchmount with Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Janine McCready. Over 150 residents were reached and engaged. A language-specific town hall in Bangla was also organized. Various other workshops, events and virtual conversations were held, with ongoing updates and extensive social media campaigns across the community to both partner organizations and community residents.
  • Bus Ride for Kids Vaccination Day & School-based Clinics (September to December 2021): Collaboration with the City of Toronto to organize a free TTC bus ride for families of Taylor Massey to receive their vaccinations at Scotiabank Arena for Kids Vaccination Day. Consortium partners also partnered with local schools to support 41 clinics across Flemingdon Park, Thorncliffe Park and Taylor Massey.
  • Lobby & Door-to-door Clinics (September to December 2021): Collaboration with health partners to organize lobby-based/door-to-door clinics in Taylor Massey in response to low vaccine uptake amongst residents. Results include 22 building-based clinics, over 23,000 doors knocked, over 16,000 flyers distributed in Bangla, Urdu, Gujarati, and Farsi and 4,200 newcomers engaged.
  • Hyper-local Clinics (September to December 2021): Collaboration with health partners to organize hyper-local clinics in hard-to-reach portions of the catchment area. Vaccine clinics were organized with the East Toronto Health Partners/Michael Garron Hospital, Toronto Public Health and The Scott Mission, Toronto Public Health and Secord Community Centre. Supports to access the clinics included access to transportation and incentives through grocery and Tim Hortons gift cards. These hyper-local clinics, combined with other ongoing vaccine clinic promotion, engagement and support have enabled the consortium to engage 35,000 residents with the support of over 25 ambassadors.

Lead Administrating Agency:  Rexdale Community Health Centre

Number of Active Agency Partners: 12

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 76

Engagement Highlights from April 2022:

  • Cram-a-Cruiser (April 18, 2022): In partnership with Toronto Police Service and Giant Tiger, consortium partners held an awareness event that collected donated food and distributed wellness kits. Community members were better informed about the options for addressing COVID 19 and about local vaccine clinics. 1 police cruiser was filled with food for donation to local community and 150 wellness kits were distributed.
  • Field Trip to the Theatre (May 24, 2022): In partnership with the 2SLGBTQ+ collaborative and Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, consortium partners provided youth from North Etobicoke and Rexdale with information about COVID-19 vaccine and clinics as well as sexual health information, a tour of the Toronto’s Gay Village, and information on programs and employments supports for careers in the theatre.
  • Movie Night & BBQ (June 14, 2022): Consortium partners were invited to conducted outreach a community event led by the Toronto Police Service and Parks, Forestry and Recreation. Youth and parents were engaged by Ambassadors at the event. 100 wellness kits consisting of PPE, rapid antigen test kits and vaccine clinic information were distributed.
  • B’Well (Black Wellness Clinic) (January to March 2022): Ongoing monthly wellness clinic launched in January. Hosted on location of ongoing vaccine clinic, in partnership with the Black Vaccine Engagement Team (BVET), the Black Physicians Association of Ontario and other Black population-serving organizations. In March, 45 doses administered, 29 residents accessed blood-glucose checks and foot care. 415 grocery store gift cards also distributed to address food insecurity.
  • Community Wellness Partnership (January 2022): Partnership developed to identify and address health and social service needs in the community. Monthly meetings launched in January have included 7 community partners and identified gaps in supports for mental health, social programs/events, education & employment opportunities, food security, physical health, housing, and legal.
  • Wellness Kits (January 2022): Ongoing initiative to distribute personal care kits to residents through outreach activities at clinics, buildings, and in public spaces. 31, 781 kits distributed since January that include PPE, rapid tests and information on local vaccine clinics.
  • Mobile Clinics (February 2022): Ongoing initiative to offer vaccinations on the Go-Vaxx Busses reduces barriers to vaccine access presented by cold weather. 200+ doses administered since February (28% Black, 46% South Asian, 18% White, 5% Latinx, 3% Arabic).
  • Q-mmunity Wellness Day (March 2022): Wellness event piloted for 2SLGBTQ+ community held to reduce barriers to wellness supports and vaccines. 8 agency partners engaged 35 individuals from equity-deserving communities.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Home Stretch Initiative (July 2021): Strategy to address barriers to vaccination, such as transportation, work schedules, and child care duties by organizing pop-up and smaller micro-clinics across high-traffic community spaces in buildings and areas with lower vaccination rates. Close to 7,500 people were vaccinated through this approach, with 2,000 at micro-clinics and 5,500 though pop-up clinics.
  • Our Shot Partnership (July to August 2021 and September to October 2021): Partnership with community organizations private sector organizations for donations to be used as incentives for vaccination. Consortium partners were successful in securing Door Dash gift cards, President’s Choice (PC) grocery gist cards, Presto cards, Raptors’ jerseys and an event sponsorship from Lululemon. Donations were also used as incentives for youth who were getting vaccinated. This approach resulted in over 2,000 people being vaccinated between July and August 2021 and support to up to 56 vaccine clinics between September and October 2021.
  • Las Lap Caribana Event (August 2021): Designed as a local capstone to Toronto’s Caribbean Caribana Festival, a pop-up vaccine clinic was hosted alongside a neighbourhood event to celebrate and reconnect with the community. A total of 345 were vaccinated at this event, and community connections strengthened.
  • Accessibility for Families (September to November 2021): Micro-clinics in spaces already frequented by families, such as grocery stores and mall plaza parking lots, to reduce barriers to access to the vaccines. Heated tents and TTC buses were used to host over 30 micro-clinics for families completing their weekly shopping for groceries and other household needs.
  • Black Wellness Clinics (September 2021 to Present): Started as a pilot in Tandridge Crescent with the support of the Black Physicians’ Association of Ontario (BPAO), vaccination clinics with a wellness component are now consistently held at the North Kipling Community Centre. Delivered in collaboration with the Black Resilience Collaborative, the wellness component to the vaccine clinics included checks on blood pressure and sugar levels, mental health supports, and any other additional resources and referrals to residents in the North Kipling areas which has a high Black population.
  • Leveraging Community Events (September to Present): Vaccine clinics, PPE distribution and information sharing at various community events pre-existing events, such as the Braeburn’s Thanksgiving family event and Rexdale Community Health Centre’s youth school supply give away and basketball program. Over 500 people engaged, including youth, and over 60 people vaccinated.
  • Community Wellness Partnership (October 2021 to Present): Planning with five community partners to identify current and future community needs. The purpose is to develop a model where residents can be engaged holistically to better understand that health and social needs. In this model, vaccine engagement would happen alongside interventions related to employment, food security, mental health etc.

Lead Administrating Agency:  Lakeshore Area Multi-Service Project (LAMP)

Number of Active Agency Partners: 21

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 28

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • Hyper-local Clinics and Outreach (April to June 2022): Vaccine clinics were held throughout the spring in a number of residential buildings to increase access for residents. Ambassadors provided outreach in advance to provide education and logistical information about the clinic. 396 vaccine doses administered total.
  • Stonegate CHC Vaccination Clinic (January 24, 2022): Ambassadors supported a vaccine clinic run by Stonegate Community Health Centre, ensuring residents were comfortable with the experience. 43 vaccinations were administered.
  • MABELLEarts Vaccination Clinic (February 2022): Ambassador supported two vaccine clinics in partnership with MABELLEarts which included distribution of fresh produce to low-income residents. Ambassador promoted this clinic by attending other programs at MABELLEarts and distributing loot bags with PPE and a flyer with information about the clinics. A total of 140 doses were administered at both clinics.
  • Etobicoke Civic Centre Clinic (March 2022): Ambassador distributed flyers in buildings of areas of Etobicoke with low vaccine uptake in advance of a March vaccination clinic. The team also conducted outreach via social media and through TDSB networks. 66 residents were vaccinated with many identifying the flyers or the TDSB as their source of information about the clinic.
  • Faith Community Clinics and Outreach (March 2022): Consortium partners established clinics at two local churches. Ambassadors conducted outreach in the area in advance of the clinics and posted on social media. Ambassadors screened clients, hosted a children’s arts table, distributed children’s loot bags and provided gift cars to youth and adults. A total of 51 doses were administered at both clinics.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • VET Central Help Line (Spring/Summer 2021): Consortium partners activated a dedicated, local phone line to arrange vaccine appointments for residents with transportation barriers and without access to online booking registration systems. Over 1,000 people were vaccinated through this initiative, and arranging transportation supports to/from the clinic.
  • Mobile Pop-up Vaccine Clinics (Spring/Summer 2021): Neighbourhood focused mobile pop-up clinics in West Mall, East Mall, New Toronto, and Long Branch addressed the low vaccination rates in the respective communities. The focused approach allowed for greater engagement, convenience, and local vaccination opportunities for community members. Over 200 vaccine doses administered at these one-time pop-up clinics.
  • Vaccine Information Town Halls (July to December 2021): A series of town hall meetings to address misinformation about vaccines and build vaccine confidence, in collaboration with Toronto Public health, The information sessions were promoted to an audience of over 12,500 with agency partners and Community Ambassadors, with over 100 people directly engaged.
  • Mobile Clinics (September to December 2021): Vaccine clinics hosted monthly, in collaboration with Toronto Public Health and community partners. Over 600 vaccinations were administered at the mobile clinics with up to $2,500 worth in incentives in the form of Presto cards, gift cards for groceries, DoorDash and UberEats.
  • Personalized Outreach to Residents and Faith-based Organizations (Fall/Winter 2021): Developed personalized community bulletins that were mailed to residents, including translation in the top five languages spoken in the local area and incentives for vaccination. Personalized information bulletins were also developed and shared with local faith-based organizations to advertise vaccine clinics. Close to 500 residents vaccinated using this personalized approach and vast outreach with partners.
  • Leveraging Community Events (Fall/Winter 2021): Deployment of Community Ambassadors to various community events and initiatives, in collaboration with agencies promoting food access, affordable housing and health services. This approach enable trust building through regular contact with residents and facilitated vaccine engagement, knowledge and access. The deployment of Community Ambassadors was accompanied by training, team building and branding to build their reputation as recognizable and trusted resource for the community.

Lead Administrating Agency: Scarborough Centre for Healthy Communities

Number of Active Agency Partners: 12

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 34

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • Go-Vaxx at the Mall (April and May 2022): In partnership with RioCan Plaza and Morningside Crossing Mall, consortium partners coordinated Go-Vaxx mobile bus clinics at busy shopping centres. Ambassadors were present to answer questions and to distribute PPE and rapid antigen test kits. 223 vaccines were administered, 26 to children and 97 to adults.
  • Go-Vaxx at the Rec Centre (June 3, 2022): Consortium partners coordinated a Go-Vaxx mobile bus clinic at the Centennial Recreation Centre to combat persistently low vaccination rates in Woburn. Ambassadors were present to answer questions and to distribute PPE and rapid antigen tests. 102 vaccines were administered, 16 to children.
  • Mobile Vaccine Van (March 2022): A Mobile Vaccine Van was launched by consortium partners to promote vaccine uptake in convenient and familiar environments throughout Scarborough. The team is administering ~150 vaccines per day.
  • Rapid Antigen Test Distribution (January 2022): Consortium partners received a donation of rapid antigen test kits which were distributed to residents through community clinics, info booths and at other community programming events.
  • Youth Ambassadors (February 2022): The consortium has recruited a youth ambassador to address growing inequities in youth uptake of the vaccine. The ambassador will develop a targeted strategy that partners with other youth ambassadors and youth-serving organizations.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Multilingual Vaccine Information Series (June to August 2021): Group vaccine information sessions were held in multiple languages with one-to-one follow-up to provide customized education, and assist with appointment booking. Over 1,000 residents in isolated, non-English speaking communities were reached.
  • Ambassador Training (March to August 2021): Educational sessions to ensure that community Ambassadors were provided with the knowledge and resources needed to navigate vaccine hesitancy in their communities. Ambassadors contributed over 2,000 hours to equip themselves with skills that were later implemented in their outreach, which included weekly engagements at in-person food banks.
  • Community Partnerships (July 2021 to Present): Coordination with local community organizations to tailor vaccine engagement strategies to neighborhoods that have no access to the vaccine or access to vaccine related information. Over 50 adults vaccinated through this targeted approach.
  • Data Driven Engagement (July 2021 to Present): Targeted engagement in the top three neighbourhoods with the highest rate of unvaccinated residents. Community Ambassadors were deployed to map out these areas and identify the most suitable locations to target for vaccine clinics and extensive engagement activities. This approach, along with other activities, led to a decrease of nearly 28% in the number of unvaccinated residents in those three neighborhoods.
  • Vaccine Information Booths (October 2021 to Present): Information booths were set up weekly in high traffic foot locations to engage with community members based on Community Ambassador’s knowledge and connections within the neighbourhood. Over 400 people engaged through the information booths. Educational material on COVID-19, flyers on vaccine clinics in South Scarborough, that were also made widely available in the area, and masks were also distributed.
  • Engagement at Places of Worship (September 2021 to Present): Collaboration with religious leaders with influence within their communities to plan vaccination clinics at mosques, churches and temples. These vaccine clinics were set up in partnership with provincial GO-VAXX program and Toronto Public Health. Up to 97 people, including 23 children (5 to 11 years), were vaccinated at the Salahudine Mosque in December 2021 alone.

Lead Administrating Agency:  Agincourt Community Services Association

Number of Active Agency Partners: 16

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 53

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • Intensive Targeted Vaccine Awareness Event (May 13, 19 and 20, 2022): Consortium partners targeted two TCHC buildings for engagement to build awareness about booster doses and the children’s vaccine. An information table and craft workshop were established and door-to-door engagement was conducted. A micro-vaccine clinic was also set-up onsite. 100+ residents were engaged, 15 parents and children participate in the craft workshop and 20 doses of vaccines were administered.
  • Swing into Spring: Health Information Fair (May 28, 2022): Consortium partners collaborated with Toronto Public Health and TAIBU to increase community confidence in and awareness about neighbourhood health care infrastructure/human resources in Malvern. Outcomes included increased trust between residents and service providers. 500 individuals participated.
  • Weekly Public Information Tables (April to June 2022): Ambassadors for all NSVET Partners were stationed 5 days/week at information tables in 16 locations throughout the community (malls, libraries, community centres, etc.). Ambassadors established a community presence, built trust and familiarity to increase awareness amongst residents in North Scarborough of walk-in vaccine clinics at libraries and recreation centres and to promote information about the booster dose and children’s vaccine.1400+ residents engaged weekly.
  • Filipino Heritage Month Engagement (June 12, 18 and 25, 2022): In partnership with the Filipino Cultural Centre and Filipino Consulate, consortium partners set up information tables and a micro clinic at events during Filipino Heritage Month in North Scarborough. Multi-lingual engagement centered on building awareness amongst Filipinx residents about the importance of the booster dose, sharing information about clinics and learn more about barriers to vaccine access in a positive, celebratory environment. 580+ individuals participated in engagement, 10 people register for vaccines and 15 vaccine doses were administer at the micro clinic.
  • Youth Vaccine Engagement Training Program (May 18 and 19, 2022): Consortium partners organized a two-day Youth Vaccine Ambassador Training Program. The community-based learning experience familiarized youth with COVID-19 vaccines, equity practices, vaccine engagement approaches and built critical thinking and problem solving skills. 45 high school age students completed the program.Youth Mental Health Awareness Forum (May 5, 2022): A mental health awareness forum targeted at Tamil youth included a range of Tamil professionals including a physician, social worker and educator. Youth gained and shared insights into the mental health impacts of isolation, the importance of vaccinations and COVID-19 public health measures. 50 youth attended.
  • GoVaxx Clinics at Religious sites (April 30 and May 26, 2022): Consortium partners worked with religious leaders and organizations to host vaccine clinics at a local temple and madhir in order to build confidence and understanding of the importance of accessing booster doses amongst the South Asian community. 50+ doses were administered including to religious leaders.
  • Mobile Vaccine Clinics (February to March 2022): Consortium partners set up mobile, pop-up and local vaccine clinics in partnership with GoVAXX, the Canadian Centre for Refugee and Immigrant Health Care, and the Scarborough Health Network in order to provide local access to vaccines in high needs areas for seniors, migrant workers and temporary foreign workers. 600+ individuals received vaccine doses.
  • Children’s Vaccine Information Sessions (February 2022): Consortium partners hosted a virtual information session on children’s vaccines in partnership with Toronto Public Health offered in English, Arabic and Tamil. 100 parents attended the sessions with many reporting subsequent increased confidence in vaccination for their children. In the lead up to each session, Ambassadors reached over 2000 people with information about vaccine resources.
  • March Break Community Outreach (March 14 to 18 2022): Information tables set up at L’Amoreaux and Stephen Leacock Community Centres to conduct outreach during March Break to parents and also youth participating in the centres’ drop-in programs. 70 parents engaged.
  • Vaccine Clinic for Black Communities (February to March 2022): Tropicana, with support from the consortium partners and Scarborough Health Network, established a monthly vaccine clinic to increase uptake amongst Black communities in North Scarborough.
  • Booster Dose Quiz and Draw (March 2022): Ambassadors engaged community members in low uptake areas in Tam O’Shanter in a quiz about the booster dose to increase knowledge about and reduce barriers to accessing the vaccines. This resulted in direct engagement with over 200 people about the booster dose and information-sharing with over 2000 people.
  • Lunar New Year COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic (January to February 2022): Consortium partners promoted the Chinese Lunar New Year Vaccine clinic hosted by North York General Hospital at Seneca College in early February 2022. Information was shared with local businesses and through social media channels to help address vaccine hesitancy amongst Chinese owing to worries about mRNA vaccines.
  • Home Vaccination (January 2022): Consortium partners offered vaccinations at home for isolated and vulnerable residents, amidst limited clinics available in the community. Over 100 residents were vaccinated at home.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • East and Southeast Asian Engagement Project (March to August 2021): This initiative focused on supporting East and Southeast Asian youth and older adults with culturally specific, one-on-one interpretation, registration system navigation, and transportation arrangements. Over 12,000 non-English speaking community members were reached – 7,000 of which were directly engaged by Community Ambassadors.
  • Centennial College Outreach Plan (March to August 2021): Spearheaded by student Community Ambassadors, this outreach initiative focused engagement on newcomer students, South Asian community members, and people with disabilities. Additionally, it provided avenues and resources for students to provide their peers with the education and resources needed to address vaccine hesitancy. Approximately, 31,000 community members were reached in 2021, and a projected 90,000 is expected to be engaged in 2022.
  • Door-to-door Outreach and Engagement (September to October 2021): Using census tract data, Community Ambassadors connected with residents door-to-door in high-needs areas with a large portion of unvaccinated or under-vaccinated communities. This was done in an intentional way to share information and also learn about the needs, realities and challenges of individuals and specific populations. Between 1,500 and 2,500 residents were engaged weekly through newsletters and door knocks in high rise buildings and homes with information on vaccines, booking appointments, obtaining vaccine certificates and contact information of Community Ambassadors for support in multiple languages.
  • Local Vaccine Clinics (September to October 2021): Coordination among consortium partners to set up local vaccine clinics and continue to support ongoing pop-up clinics in target census tract areas. These efforts contributed to over 4,000 people getting vaccinated.
  • Operation l’Amoreaux (October to November 2021): Concerted effort on high needs communities (Black and South Asian communities) in L’Amoreaux, the North Scarborough neighbourhood with the highest number of unvaccinated individuals. The specific focus was on areas with TCHC residences within the target census tract areas. A multi-pronged outreach consisting of online workshops, vaccine clinics and information sharing through door-to-door engagement was undertaken to increase uptake of the first dose of COVID-19 vaccines. Over 3,000 residents were engaged in the target areas, with approximately 100 residents getting a first or second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
  • Local Vaccine Info Tables & Networks (October to November 2021): Set-up regular information tables in community spaces including malls, buildings and community agencies with the onset of colder weather. Newsletters with information on upcoming vaccine clinics were also shared with schools in under-vaccinated communities as part of efforts to increase vaccine uptake for 5 to 11 year olds. The regular presence of Community Ambassadors in those spaces regular helped to establish trust in under-vaccinated communities and to understand and respond to the needs and realities of those communities.

Lead Administrating Agency:  North York Community House

Number of Active Agency Partners: 21

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 26

Engagement highlights from 2022:

  • Community Health Information Fair (May and June 2022): Consortium partners, In collaboration with the North York Toronto Health Partners (NYTHP) and the Flemingdon Health Centre (FHC), hosted 4 events targeted towards vulnerable seniors. The goal was to increase access to community, health and vaccination information and services amongst the most vulnerable communities in North York by facilitating one stop shop community/health events. 201 individuals attended. 116 survey respondents reported benefitting from the services and referrals and the opportunity to enjoy a community event after so much isolation.
  • North York COVID-19 Support Resources Info Sheet (April to May 2022): In response to community request, an info sheet was developed in English and Spanish to provide information on COVID-19 resources. Information includes vaccine eligibility, testing, isolation centres, mental health services and more. The sheets were distributed at in person engagements.
  • BBC Seniors Art and Mindfulness Sessions (May and June 2022): The BBC delivered art and mindfulness activities to vulnerable seniors residing in the North York area in English, Russian and Ukrainian. These activities helped seniors to cope and recover from the adverse effects of the pandemic. During these sessions, ambassadors also provided information about vaccination, booster doses, nearest vaccination clinics and handed out RAT kits. 72 seniors participated, 20 seniors were assisted with filling out government forms and registering for vaccine appontments, 80 RAT kits were distributed.
  • “Our Covid Experience” Childrens’ Booklet (April to May 2022): A booklet was created by children for children with the support of an Ambassador and guest artist to inspire parents and children to follow COVID-19 health and safety measures and to get vaccinated. 200 copies were distributed at after-school programs.
  • Rapid Antigen Test distribution (February to March 2022): Ambassadors distributed 4,429 rapid antigen test kits to residents and service providers to increase access to testing and initiate conversations about vaccination and vaccine clinics.
  • NORC Vaccine Clinics (March 2022): Ambassadors partnered with North York General Hospital and VHA Home Healthcare to host door-to-door vaccination events in 10 naturally occurring retirement communities (NORCs). Ambassadors promoted the events in advance to 1800 residents resulting in 131 individuals vaccinated.
  • VET March Break Program (March 2022): Ambassadors ran a 3-day camp for 26 children aged 6-12. Participants received vaccine education and were led through art activities to support them in expressing their feelings with each other about vaccination.
  • Afghan Refugee Engagement (January to March 2022) Ambassadors conducted language- and culturally appropriate outreach to Afghan refugees in hotels. 900 refugees and Afghan newcomers were provided information about vaccinations and vaccine clinics.
  • Vaccine Certificate Educational Video (January to March 2022) Vibrant Healthcare ambassador developed educational video guiding individuals on the process of booking a vaccination appointment and print vaccine certificates. The video was distributed to 50 individuals and service providers who were assisting others with vaccine and vaccine certificate access.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Partnerships on Vaccine Clinics (July to December 2021): Consortium partners developed strong partnerships with local health organizations to coordinate and host vaccination clinics in various locations, including a weekly vaccine clinic held at the Bathurst-Finch Community Hub. Community Ambassadors promoted the vaccination clinics and assisted residents in making vaccine appointments. At the Bathurst-Finch Community Hub alone, a total of 6 clinics were held and 190 vaccine doses were administered with 30% being first doses from July to August 2021. An additional eight vaccination clinics were held in various locations in North York from September to December 2021, resulting in 2,210 more individuals being vaccinated.
  • Latin American Community Radio Show (Summer 2021): Consortium partners hosted a radio-show to engage and inform the Latin American community about vaccines. A Spanish speaking faith leader joined the Community Ambassador team in hosting the radio-show. The radio-show targeted issues around vaccine misinformation and low vaccination rates in the community to over 10,000 viewers. This outreach led to seven vaccination clinics where over 3,000 people were vaccinated.
  • Partnership with Toronto Public Library (September to December 2021): Consortium partners established a partnership with three branches of the Toronto Public Library to host weekly vaccine information tables. Community Ambassadors shared information on local vaccine clinics for adults, youth and children, webinars for parents, access to vaccine certificates and vaccine hotlines for individuals who were hesitant about getting vaccinated. This partnership resulted in 61 library outreach visits and 775 people directly engaged.
  • Oriole COVID Outreach Centre (September to December 2021): Weekly engagement sessions were hosted at the Oriole Community Centre, in partnership with the Flemingdon Health Centre, North York General Hospital, Working Women Community Centre, Toronto Public Health and North York Harvest. The sessions included information on to vaccine clinics and wraparound supports and social supports to high priority communities in North York. This partnership resulted in over 1,066 residents getting vaccinated through 23 vaccine clinics for high priority communities within the Henry Farm neighbourhood which continue to have vaccine uptake fall behind the city average. .
  • LGBTQ+ Wellness Road Show (September to December 2021): Strategy table established among multiple partners to address vaccine confidence in the LGBTQ+ communities. Planning to engage the LGBTQ+ communities and respond to their concerns centers on a Wellness Road Show with medical and mental health services and entertainment. This approach is intended to provide individuals within the LGBTQ+ community with information and resources related to COVID-19, vaccination and answer other physical and mental health concerns.
  • Afghan Newcomer Vaccine Engagement (September to December 2021): Consortium partners, in collaboration with the Afghan Women Organization, Toronto Public Health and the East York, Don Valley Cluster, focused vaccine engagement efforts on newly arrived Afghan refugees and newcomers. The partnership aimed to reduce language barriers and cultural barriers for access to information on COVID vaccines. It resulted in direct engagement with over 500 Afghani newcomers and refugees, Community Ambassadors successfully provided information about vaccines in a culturally and linguistically appropriate manner and established links for further settlement support these newcomers and refugees.

Lead Administrating Agency:  Syme Woolner Neighbourhood and Family Centre

Number of Active Agency Partners: 13

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 39

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • YWP Tenants’ Union Engagement (April and May 2022): In partnership with York Weston Pelham (YWP) Tenants’ Union, consortium partners conducted vaccine engagement at two tenant association meetings to combat persistently low vaccine uptake in Weston’s apartment communities. Ambassadors used pre-existing relationships with tenant-organizers to build vaccine confidence in the neighbourhood. 65 individuals were engaged.
  • Home Bound Seniors Engagement (May to June 2022): Consortium partners conducted outreach and provided vaccines in residences of disabled Older Adults and Seniors to increase their access. 140 information and PPE packages were distributed. 55 booster doses were administered.
  • Pelham Park Gardens Clinic Series (May- June 2022): The Good Neighbour Project community ambassadors conducted extensive and focused outreach to residents in the neighbourhood to combat persistently low vaccination rates. Residents were engaged 200+ times resulting in 15 vaccines administered and requests from the community for future vaccine clinics.
  • Portuguese-language Community Vaccine Clinic (January 18, 2022): Consortium partners, in partnership with Portuguese-speaking Community Ambassadors and the Red Cross, held a vaccine clinic at the Casa das Beiras Cultural Community Centre to reduce barriers to access for the Portuguese-speaking community. A news release promoted the event to 28 Portuguese media outlets resulting in 198 individuals receiving vaccinations.
  • York Fairbank Centre for Seniors Outreach Campaign (January 7-17, 2022): Community Ambassadors conducted door-to-door and business outreach to reduce barriers for seniors to access vaccines. 3700 flyers were distributed and 272 vaccine appointments were booked.
  • Community Outreach Campaign (February 2022): Ambassadors engaged local community centres, childcare centres, libraries and other community-service organizations to partner in COVID-19 outreach to their patrons and participants. 34 organizations re-distributed information on vaccines and vaccines clinics to their patrons and participants. Ambassadors also conducted in person engagement in libraries, connecting with 60 individuals and distributing 80 flyers.
  • March Break Camp Vaccine Clinic (March 2022): Vaccine clinic was established on the final day of March Break camp resulting in 10 doses administered to children under the age of 13. Community Ambassadors promoted the camp and clinic in the Weston area and on social media in advance.
  • Vax Art Workshops (February – March 2022): Residents were invited to explore their vaccine hesitancy through art engagement. A Community Ambassador was present to answer questions and share information on clinics.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Syme Woolner Bi-Weekly Micro-Clinics (March – August 2021): In collaboration with the Newcomer Collaborative, community partners established one of the first micro-clinics in York-Weston Pelham, offering an accessible and familiar place for residents to get vaccinated. This approach resulted in 492 vaccine doses administered from March to August 2021.
  • York Fairbanks Vaccine Clinics & Outreach Tables (July – August 2021): In collaboration with Newcomer Collaborative, consortium partners hosted outreach tables in advance of vaccine clinics to raise awareness. This proactive approach has resulted over 1,156 vaccine doses administered in between July and August 2021.additional 100 doses were administered in December 2021.
  • Community Place Hub Outreach Event (March – August 2021): In collaboration with the Newcomer Collaborative, community partners coordinated door-to-door outreach to share information on COVID vaccines. Community Ambassadors engaged 2,500 residents through on-the-ground community outreach and one-on-one resident engagement.
  • Halloween Engagement at Parks (September – December 2021): Outreach tables geared towards families were set-up in parks throughout the fall. Over 100 residents were engaged through this approach.
  • York Hispanic Centre OMNI TV Program Ad (October – December 2021): Advertisements on access to COVID vaccines were created for OMNI TV’s Hispanic Roots program. The advertisements were broadcasted three times a week.
  • Youth Spoken Poetry Video Series (December 2021): Shakespeare in Action, a professional theatre and arts education company, engaged youth Community Ambassadors to create spoken word poetry videos about the pandemic, vaccines and the effect COVID-19 has had on youth. The videos have been used to engage with youth on social media, an important demographic for vaccine engagement. The videos were posted in December 2021. They will continue to be shared on through the consortium’s social media accounts.
  • Vaccine Clinics (December 2021): Coordination of vaccine clinics at Abrigo Centre’s and York Fairbanks Centre. The vaccine clinic at York Fairbanks Centre was specifically organized for seniors. In total 450 doses were administered, including 100 doses administered to seniors in December 2021.

The Black Vaccine Engagement Team develops agile, population-specific, culturally responsive strategies to increase COVID-19 testing, vaccine confidence and access among Black people of African and Caribbean origins. COVID-19 continues to have a disproportionately high impact on Toronto’s Black and other racialized communities. The collaborative works closely with the Black Scientists’ Task Force on Vaccine Equity and the Black Physicians Association of Ontario (BPAO).

Lead Administrating Agency: TAIBU Community Health Centre

Number of Active Agency Partners: 12

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 36

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • Street Outreach to include Youth and East African Immigrants/Refugees (April-June 2022): Consortium partner Margaret’s Housing recruited a youth Ambassador and expanded its outreach efforts to engage homeless youth as well as broadened its geographic to support East African immigrant groups with high vaccine hesitancy rates in South Etobicoke. 500+ individuals engaged
  • Weekly Senior Wellness Meetings (April-June 2022): Belka Enrichment Centre Ambassadors host weekly community meetings for seniors to reduce isolation and provide resources needed to access vaccine clinics and promote vaccine confidence. 76 individuals attended; 19 people assisted with booking vaccine appointments.
  • Recurring Black Wellness and Vaccine Clinic (March 2022): A recurrent integrated Black wellness and Vaccine clinic was launched on March 25th in the Mount Olive-Silverstone-Jamestown neighbourhoods which have consistently had the lowest rates of COVID-19 vaccination. Ambassadors engaged with 200+ residents over 3 day to amplify messaging about the clinic. BVET, in partnership with Rexdale Community Health Centre, offered vaccinations to 7 attendees and vaccine education, blood-glucose monitoring, diabetes education and chiropodist services to numerous other attendees. Responses to the integrated model were positive and efforts will be ramped up through June.
  • WhatsApp Expert Engagement Sessions (January-March 2022): Monthly information and discussions sessions were held with rotating medical experts and immunologists over WhatsApp. Targeted a individuals living with HIV/AIDS and Sickle Cell disease, the sessions could be accessed from home and enabled discretion for those preferring privacy. Roughly 50 individuals attended each session.
  • Hair Salon and Black Beauty Event Outreach (February – March 2022): BVET Ambassadors have been partnering with Black beauty events across the city to hold engagement sessions. These settings enabled engagements with members of the Black community in a comfortable setting. Two events were held with ~50 attendees engaged at each one.
  • BVET Community Care Kit Distribution (February 2022): Launched in February, approximately 400 Care Kits have been distributed during outreach activities in public settings and at clinics. Kits include rapid antigen tests, PPE, grocery cards, vaccine information and contact information for nearby vaccine clinics. Intended to mitigate vaccine and PPE access issues in the Black community, partners aim to distribute 2000 kits by the end of June.
  • COVID-19 Online Information Hubs for Black Communities (January 2022): Launched in January 2022 and addressing a gap in culturally appropriate vaccine information for the Black Community, online hubs have attracted ~6000 visitors since inception. They are being translated into French for broader access amongst the Black Francophone population.
  • Dedicated Faith Group Outreach (January-March 2022): Consortium partners have partnered with Black and African faith leaders to provide vaccine information and PPE to congregants. Ambassadors have spent ~100 hours reaching 200+ individuals via small and large group meetings and one-on-one engagements, both virtual and in-person.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • BrAIDS for AIDS Outreach (March – August 2021): A series of outreach activities, led by partner agency BrAIDS for AIDS, a foundation to connect with vaccine hesitant communities in Little Jamaica, Malvern, and Rexdale. This approach fueled a closer-knit relationship with residents and enable to gather statistics to better understand the concerns of vaccine hesitant communities. The data revealed a need for further outreach in spaces such as salons and barbershops by Community Ambassadors
  • TAIBU Vaccine Clinic Series (March – August 2021): A coordinated series of vaccine clinics hosted by TAIBU Community Health Centre, in collaboration with Toronto Public Health and other partners such as the Black Health Alliance, Sickle Cell Awareness Group of Ontario (SCAGO), Belka Enrichment Centre, and Black Creek Community Health Centre. The vaccine clinics were held once a week, alongside wellness events and COVID-related educational activities for community members. This series of vaccine clinics was a unified effort that mobilized all Community Ambassadors within the collaborative and reached over 20,000 residents.
  • COVID-19 Vaccination Hotline (March – December 2021): Consortium partners established a hotline for information on COVID-19 and vaccines for Black communities in Toronto in March 2021. Starting in May 2021, the hotline was extended to include support for Black Francophones through a partnership with the Centre Francophone Du Grand Toronto (CFGT), Université de l’Ontario français and Conseil scolaire Viamonde. A total of 847 calls were received by the hotline from March to December 2021, leading to 837 bookings for vaccines. CFGT estimates that roughly 40% of participants engaged over phone lines, social media and webinars/events represent Black Francophones.
  • Outreach to the Ghanaian-Canadian Community (March – October 2021): The Ghanaian-Canadian Association of Ontario (GCAO) successfully launch a COVID-19 Hotline and associated WhatsApp messaging group as a way to establish two-way communication with the Ghanaian – Canadian community. The WhatsApp messaging group was used to broadcast COVID-19 and vaccine related messaging to its 3,000 active WhatsApp contacts as well as receive inquiries and follow-up on vaccine clinic bookings. GCAO has also championed outreach in Black churches through various town halls and vaccine clinics. In total, 8,052 people were engaged through GCAO’s outreach activities, not including its WhatsApp messaging group.
  • Vaccine Education Online Webinars (March – December 2021): Consortium partners created and led webinars on COVID-19 and vaccines for Black communities in Toronto. The webinars reached 565 registrants from March to December 2021.
  • Social Media Vaccination Campaigns (Fall/Winter 2021): In collaboration with Sickle Cell Awareness Group of Ontario (SCAGO), consortium partners launched monthly social media live sessions, using Facebook Live and Zoom, with medical doctors and public health experts. Up to 1,333 people were engaged through the live sessions from September to November 2021. General outreach through posts on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, as well as websites and newsletters, were also coordinated by the Black Resilience Collaborative. In total 124,679 posts were disseminated through various outlets to provide accurate and timely information on COVID-19 and vaccines.
  • Awareness Building for the Homeless & Precariously Housed (May – December 2021): Led by Margaret’s Housing and Community Services, messaging to build awareness building on COVID-19, preventative measures was targeted to people who are homeless and precariously housed, Focus was on Downtown East neighbourhoods and communities through a partnership with the Inner City Health Associates (ICHA). Weekly COVID-19 vaccine clinics were held with ICHA, with 539 people being vaccinated between May and December 2021, over 50% of whom identified as Black. Beyond the vaccine clinics, Margaret’s Community Ambassadors engaged over 1,000 people in 2021, including tenants living in TCHC in the Downtown East.
  • Community Conversations & Webinars (September – December 2021): Community Ambassadors hosted conversations at local libraries, community centres, African cultural events, food banks and more to hear the concerns of Black communities on COVID-19 and vaccines. Led by the Uzima Women’s Relief Group International (UZIMA), webinars, workshops and information sessions were also held on the short term and long-term effects of COVID-19 using scientific data. A total of 1,371 people were reached through the community conversations and 275 took part in the deeper dives led by UZIMA.

The accessibility cluster builds sector capacity for outreach to people with disabilities in their communities through training sessions, community-specific webinars and by supporting vaccine clinics and mobilizing Community Ambassadors from within the disability community. The collaborative works closely with the City of Toronto’s Accessibility Task Force on COVID-19 Vaccines.

Lead Administrating Agency: Centre for Independent Living Toronto (CILT)

Number of Active Agency Partners: 8

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 34

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • Best Practices Video (May 2022): Collaborative partners produced a training video for other VETs recapping best practices related to accessibility during vaccine engagement. The plain-language, 23 minute video was distributed to over 150 VETs, community organizations and ambassadors across the City along with other accompanying resource materials.
  • Accessible COVID-19 Outreach Virtual Discussion (June 14, 2022): Collaborative partners hosted a one-hour virtual discussion for members of VETs citywide. VET members were brought together in a safe, intimate and accessible space to discuss their experiences of implementing accessibility practices and to build their capacity. 23 individuals from across the city participated.
  • Our Journey With COVID Town Hall (June 8, 2022): The Alliance for Equality of Blind Canadians, Toronto Chapter (AEBC) facilitated a town hall titled “Our Journey with COVID”. The interactive event was for the blind and deaf communities, and a wide spectrum of diverse disabled communities. Panelists included representatives from the medical community and people with lived experience of vaccine hesitancy, long COVID, and booster side effects. The event was supported by 2 ASL interpreters and additional resources were provided afterwards.33 individuals attended.
  • Accessible COVID Vaccine Experiences: What is next? Webinar (May 26, 2022): Ethno-Racial People with Disabilities Coalition of Ontario (ERDCO) hosted a webinar to provide information about the status of the COVID-19 pandemic and how to promote personal health through vaccines and other public health measures. Panelists shared insights on vaccine rollout, other available supports, and information on the social determinants of health for Deaf and disabled BIPOC communities. The session was supported CART and ASL interpretation. 60 individuals attended.
  • Accessibility Clinic (January 2022): Consortium partners organized an accessible vaccine clinic located at Metro Toronto Convention Centre in partnership with Toronto Public Health and the City’s Accessibility Task Force. The clinic feature cross-accessibility supports targeted at those with mobility, vision, hearing, developmental and other accessibility needs. This initiative resulted in 212 vaccine doses administered to members of the disability community.
  • Partnership development:
    • (February/March 2022): A partnership with the Downtown East cluster has been established through the cluster coordinator, 519 Community Centre. The collaboration expands engagement opportunities with those at the intersection of disability and 2SLGBTQIA+ identities. It also builds capacity to serve disabled Queer youth enhance the accessibility of the 519 Community Centre’s vaccine clinics.
    • (February 2022): A partnership with Surrey Place has been established to reduce a service gap in the cluster with respect to the developmental disability community. Plans are in place for on-site vaccine clinics.
  • Capacity Building (January-March 2022): Resources and training for ambassadors engaging Deaf and hard of hearing communities across has been prioritized. These efforts have thus far resulted in outreach engagements with 2960 individuals.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Accessibility Clinics (Summer 2021): Consortium partners supported two Metro Convention Centre Clinics that were run by Toronto Public Health in July 2021. These efforts resulted in 1,900 vaccine dose administered to people of the disability community. In November 2021, Toronto Public health ran what was dubbed Super Supportive Clinics in under-resourced Toronto neighbourhoods with enhanced accessibility supports such as ASL and attendant services with the support of the Accessibility Teams.
  • Accessibility Webinars (August 2021): Consortium partners ran two webinars in August on Accessibility Best Practices. The webinars were designed for partner agencies, covering topics on the impact of the pandemic on the disability community and best practices in relation to vaccine outreach. Over 100 partner agencies from the City of Toronto’s Neighbourhood Clusters and Community Vaccine Engagement Teams were engaged in delivering the webinars.
  • Accessibility Townhall (November 2021): In collaboration with the Toronto Public Health, the Centre for Independent Living Toronto (CILT), consortium partners held a townhall covering disability-inclusive vaccine outreach practices, developments in vaccine rollout, and emerging knowledge on COVID-19 vaccines. Up to 64 people attended the townhall, including Community Ambassadors, City staff, and Accessibility Collaborative members. The townhall allowed to expand awareness of disabled and Deaf populations as vulnerable equity-seeking populations and provided knowledge on the tools to accommodate their access needs and rights in vaccine outreach and vaccine clinic delivery.
  • Accessibility Resources (September – December 2021): Consortium partners developed and shared resources specifically geared towards the disability community in Toronto with vaccine equity consortiums and collaborative across the city. Best practices and accessibility recommendations were provided to the City of Toronto, including Toronto Public Health. These were key activities to enable cross-disability expertise in accessibility best practices and capacity building to deliver disability-inclusive vaccine engagement and communications with City of Toronto and community partners.
  • Capacity Building for Consortium Partners (September – December 2021): The Centre for Independent Living Toronto (CILT) led the development and distribution of resources and supports to the collaborative 9 organizational partners and Community Ambassadors on vaccine engagement with Deaf and disability communities across the GTA. This work resulted in over 1,720 individuals served in fall 2021
  • Advancing the Accessibility Task Force Recommendations (September – December 2021): The recommendations of the Accessibility Task Force (ATF) on intervention tools and measures to help close equity gaps for disabled and Deaf residents were shared widely among consortium partners, other clusters and City of Toronto partners. This vital work was enhanced by collaborative input from cross-disability partners with specific expertise, such as Silent Voice and Balance for Blind Adults.

Lead Administrating Agencies:  FCJ Refugee Centre and Jane Finch Community and Family Centre

Number of Active Agency Partners: 18

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 33                      

Engagement Highlights 2022:

  • Borderless Voices Podcasts: Podcast developed in Spanish and English to respond to requests from newcomers regarding access to vaccine certificate QR codes and booster shots.
  • Social Media posts in Amharic to reach over 2000 people in the community.
  • Health Leader Information Sessions
  • Domestic and Pre-Arrival Newcomer Youth & Family Vaccine Engagement Project: Survey conducted with newcomer youth to explore experiences with vaccination, barriers around getting vaccinated and hesitations about the vaccine. The survey linked participants to relevant resources. Two videos were produced featuring newcomer youth sharing why they got vaccinated and medical professionals responding to questions about vaccination from survey responses.
  • Vaccination contre la COVID-19, m’informer dans ma langue: The Centre Francophone of Greater Toronto created a telephone line and three webinars to provide vaccine information to French-speaking newcomers.
  • Arab Community Centre of Toronto Engagement: phone campaign in the Arab community to provide vaccine access support.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Syme Woolner Bi-Weekly Micro-Clinics
  • Community Place Hub Outreach Event
  • Belka Enrichment Centre Town Halls
  • Domestic and Pre-Arrival Newcomer Youth and Family Vaccine Engagement
  • York Fairbanks Vaccine Clinics & Outreach Tables
  • Vaccine Engagement with Eastern European Communities
  • Vaccine Engagement with Francophone Communities
  • Culturally Appropriate and Language Specific Outreach and Support
  • Borderless Voices Podcasts

The South Asian Vaccine Engagement Collaborative (SAVEC) is a community-driven initiative that works with South Asian agencies, community leaders, and media outlets to develop agile, population-specific, culturally responsive strategies to increase COVID-19 testing, vaccine confidence and access among South Asian communities in Toronto. SAVEC provides training sessions, community-specific webinars, and supports vaccine clinics mobilizes South Asian Community Ambassadors for focused outreach.

Lead Administrating Agency: Council of Agencies Serving South Asians

Number of Active Agency Partners: 11

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 12

Engagement Highlights from 2022:

  • Online Magazine (July 2022): TheCouncil of Agencies Serving South Asians (CASSA) and consortium partners are highlighting South Asian experiences during the pandemic through an online magazine to promote awareness through digital media. The content is distributed to over 40 organizations with an average of 100 site visits per month.
  • Social Media Engagement (April-June 2022): Consortium members conducted online engagement in Bangla, Punjabi, Tamil, Gujarati, Hindi and Urdu on the topics of mandate reversal, booster shots, children’s vaccines, reopening, and variants. Over 10,000 people were engaged via social media and other online engagements.
  • Consortium Capacity Building (April – June 2022): Consortium partners have generated webinars, a podcast and other media in English and South Asian languages to build on other training opportunities for community Ambassadors. The goals is to overcome information fatigue and provide new ways to comment to community members about vaccines and other issues that may be creating barriers for them.
  • Online Information Hub Re-Launch (January-March 2022): TheCouncil of Agencies Serving South Asians (CASSA) and SAVEC partners re-launched the online SAVEC community hub. The hub provides vaccine resources and the SAVEC Illustration Campaign to 40 organizational partners to support their vaccine promotion initiatives as well as all capacity building materials provided to Community Ambassadors in English and South Asian languages.
  • In-Person Engagement (January-March 2022): SAVEC members hosted community engagement events to distribute translated flyers, rapid antigen test kits and PPE and to reduce barriers to vaccines in geographic areas with high density of South Asian residents such as Malvern, Taylor Massey, Crescent Town, Agincourt, Dorset Park, Wexford, and the Danforth. 5000 residents were engaged and 500+ vaccine appointments were booked.
  • Social Media Engagement (January-March 2022): SAVEC members conducted online engagement in Hindi, Urdu, Tamil, Punjabi, and Bangla on the topics of children’s vaccines and booster shots. Over 10,000 people were engaged via social media and other online engagements.
  • Virtual and Remote Live Engagement (January-March 2022): Collaborative members organized online events such as town halls, webinars, phone calls to residents, one-on-one meetings, and Facebook Live sessions with medical experts, public health officials, faith leaders, and community leaders to answer questions about vaccines and vaccination. 30 engagements were conducted in English and South Asian languages with 1000 individuals in attendance in total.
  • Ethnic Media Outreach Campaign (January-March 2022): SAVEC distributed vaccine information in South Asian languages through local ethnic newspapers, radio stations and TV channels. Paid ads, public service announcements, interviews, and multimedia content was shared by 20 media outlets, reaching an audience of 100,000+ residents.

Engagement Highlights from 2021:

  • Having the Conversation Series (March 2021): Consortium partners hosted a series of town halls to support South Asian communities and fuel healthy discussions on vaccine concerns. Approximately 22,000 residents were engagement through the conversation series in March 2021.
  • Culturally Responsive Door-to-door Outreach & Clinics (March – August 2021): Community Ambassadors conducted door-to-door outreach in places of worship. Education materials was developed and disseminated with culturally appropriate content for South Asian communities (Punjabi, Tamil, Bangla, Urdu, etc.) to support the Community Ambassadors in their outreach. With the support of the City of Toronto, mobile clinics geared towards South Asian communities were also held. These efforts contributed to supporting up to 83 residents for their first dose of the vaccines.
  • Vaccine Education Series (May – August 2021): Led by the Council of Agencies Serving South Asians (CASSA), consortium partners created a repository of information with training sessions and materials for Community Ambassadors, known as the Hub. Community Ambassadors were provided with essential information on COVID-19 and the vaccines in languages spoken by the South Asian community in Toronto. Community Ambassadors were able to utilize this information through over 400 hours of engagement in their local communities.
  • In-person Campaign (September – December 2021): Consortium partners created materials for in-person activities such as the distribution of translated flyers to places of worship and ethnic businesses, distribution of PPE, door-to-door outreach, pop-up vaccine clinics, and information booths at community health centres, events, and malls. The outreach was focused on areas with high concentration of South Asian residents, such as Malvern, Etobicoke, Dorset Park, Wexford, Danforth, and Agincourt. The outreach was geared towards individuals with little to no access to technology and older adults or seniors in those neighborhood. Over 20,000 residents, 200 ethnic businesses and 50 places of worship were directly engaged. Over 1,000 vaccine appointment were also booked as a result of the efforts of over 20 dedicated Community Ambassadors and volunteers.
  • Indirect Online Campaign (September – December 2021): Consortium partners created online content such as translated infographics, animations, podcasts, poster campaigns, and social media campaigns. This information was developed in Hindi, Urdu, Tamil, Punjabi, and Bangla. The target audience for this campaign were people who have access to technology and the internet and are not actively looking for vaccine-related information. The purpose was to dispel myths and provide accurate information. Over 120,000 people were engaged via social media, and over 150 creative content was collectively developed and disseminated.
  • Direct online campaign (September – December 2021): Consortium partners organized online events such as town halls, webinars, phone calls to residents, one-on-one meetings, and Facebook Live sessions with medical experts, public health officials, faith leaders, and community leaders. The target audience of this strategy were residents who were actively seeking clarification about vaccines. The online events were done in English and other South Asian languages by members of the community. Over 10,000 people collectively attended live events, another 100,000 accessed recorded events, over 50 collective online events were organized by SAVEC members.
  • Ethnic Media Outreach (September – December 2021): Consortium partners engaged with ethnic media to dispel vaccine misinformation in various South Asian languages through paid advertisements, public service announcements, media interviews, and multimedia content sharing. The target audience for this strategy were members of the South Asian communities with access to technology and language barriers. Media outlets included South Asian newspapers, radio, and TV channels. Over 20 ethnic media outlets were engaged, reaching over 100,000 people.
  • Consortium Capacity Building (September – December 2021): The Council of Agencies Serving South Asians (CASSA) worked with Consortium partners to create and disseminate creative content and training materials for the Community Ambassadors and other consortiums. The goal was to provide all consortiums with content in South Asian languages and relevant to South Asians to use as they do outreach to the South Asian communities in Toronto. This included creating translated infographics and animations on booster vaccines and vaccines for children, training sessions on mental health and gender-based violence and vaccine access. A repository of information, known as the Hub was also regularly updated for Community Ambassadors to utilize. The creative content in the Hub was accessed by over 50 organizations in various consortiums, including SAVEC members. The Hub is currently under maintenance and set to relaunch February 2022.

Lead Administrating Agencies: Lumacare

Number of Active Agency Partners: 1

Number of Active & Trained Community Ambassadors: 5

Engagement Highlights 2022:

  • Vaccine Clinic at Tariq Islamic Centre (March 14, 2022): Consortium partners supported a clinic onsite at the Tariq Islamic Centre to promote uptake in the faith community. 250+ adults and children’s doses were administered.
  • From Hurt to Hope Through Healing (April 11, 2022): Consortium partners hosted a panel event with faith leaders to provide support to the faith community for the stress and hardships of the pandemic. Panelists shared stories of resilience and navigating challenges and emphasized the importance of vaccination to remain safe and healthy. 50+ people attended in person; 75+ people attended virtually.
  • Faith Leaders Power Hour: Faith and Peer Support during the Pandemic (April 28, 2022): The power hour was an interactive session for faith leaders s to share support strategies and safety practices with community groups and congregants. 12+ leaders of different faith communities participated.
  • Multi-Faith Newsletter (April 2022): Consortium partners created a newsletter to shed light on the importance of COVID-19 vaccines and promote vaccination within the faith community. The newsletter also promoted different Faith Observances to create awareness and bring community together. 900+ copies were shred in print and electronically.
  • Faith Leaders Round Table (May 2022): Seven leaders of diverse faith groups were invited share perspectives on adherence to mask mandates in spaces of worship an to discuss exemptions to vaccines on religious groups.

The 2SLGBTQ+ Collaborative is a community-driven initiative that works with 2SLGBTQ community agencies to develop agile, population-specific strategies to increase COVID-19 testing, vaccine confidence and access.

Lead Administrating Agencies:

  • The 519
  • ASAAP
  • Friends of Kensington Market
  • Madison Community Services
  • Rexdale Community Health Centre
  • Spadina-Fort York Community Care Program

Lead Administrating Agencies:

  • Anishnawbe Health Toronto
  • 2-Spirited People of the 1st Nations
  • Na-Me-Res
  • Native Child and Family Services of Toronto
  • ENAGB Indigenous Youth Agency

In 2021, Indigenous-serving organizations were allocated $1 million in funding to self-determine culturally-appropriate strategies for engagement among Indigenous communities. In 2022, an additional $500,000 is being allocated to enhance and continue this work. These funds are allocated in coordination with the City of Toronto’s Indigenous Affairs Office and are being used to:

  • Increase the capacity of Indigenous-focused mobile and on-site COVID-19 vaccination and testing program by hiring nurses, admin staff and other medical support staff;
  • Support the delivery of COVID-19 vaccines while providing wrap-around services, including addressing food security needs;
  • Provide mental health and case management supports through Indigenous counsellors and Elders to 2-Spirited individuals and children and youth; and
  • Support vaccine incentives for Indigenous community members who receive vaccinations at Auduzhe Mino Mesewinong.
  • Operate 24 day-long Indigenous vaccination clinics in the East and West ends of the City through additional medical staff and outreach workers