As more Tarrant County residents get vaccinated against COVID-19, registration efforts in hard-to-reach communities continue.
On Wednesday, the Huong Dao Temple on E. Rosedale Street served as both a vaccination site and offered in-person help with registrations. Students from the University of North Texas Health Science Center assisted with the efforts.
Vincent Hua was one of the students who went car to car, offering assistance.
“It feels good to give back because I was from a community like this when I was growing up. I was born in Houston, Texas, so it’s good to be able to reach out like this,” Hua said. “People have been very welcoming.”
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The temple has served as a food distribution site every Wednesday during the pandemic, according to Rev. Lam Nguyen. That particular area of the community faces challenges when it comes to registering for the vaccine, Rev. Nguyen said.
“They don’t speak English well. They don’t use technology, like internet to register and they don’t even know how to call in to register,” Nguyen said. “It is kind of difficult to spread the word to the people at this time. If we’re all working together, I think we can make this happen.”
According to Tarrant County Public Health, more than 842,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered in the county as of Wednesday. 450,240 residents in Tarrant County, or 21%, have received at least one dose and 265,617, or 12%, are fully vaccinated.
While the vaccine supply is increasing throughout the state, Tarrant County Public Health director Vinny Taneja said Tuesday their efforts with registration are continuing.
“Now going about the young folks, we are messaging with schools to encourage students 16 and older to sign up. We’re messaging with parents,” Taneja said.
As for Hua, he said his parents were not far from his mind as he helped at the temple Wednesday.
“It makes me feel good. It makes me feel accomplished. It makes me feel like I’m giving back,” he said. “I want to make not only my parents proud, but my community proud and I feel like I’m doing that by doing this.”
The food giveaways at Huong Dao Temple are every Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.