During the pandemic, Groundswell produced accessible, relevant resources about the constantly changing COVID-19 restrictions. We also produced the COVID-19 vaccine Q&A guide where people from NHS, Public Health England and Sage answered questions from Groundswell’s national peer network. These resources have been translated and over 12,000 copies distributed nationally (plus 1000’s more accessed via the website).
These guides have been pivotal in ensuring people experiencing homelessness have accessible information to make an informed choice about the COVID-19 vaccine, however we heard that vaccine uptake in accommodation settings for young people experiencing homelessness was low.
To address this problem, we knew we needed to work with an organisation whose primary audience were young people experiencing homelessness and were put in touch with St Basils. As soon as we heard about their ‘Youth Voice’ project we knew they were the perfect partner.
Youth Voice is made up of young people between 16-25 years old that have experienced homelessness, sharing their lived experience to support and bring about change. We consulted with these young people to understand why they thought that young people entitled to the vaccine were not getting it. We asked them what their views on the vaccine were, where they would go to for trusted information and where they would avoid. They then helped us plan and design the best communication messages and tools for the campaign.
We now have a campaign, and our asks are simple:
- Use our materials to give young people the information and knowledge they need to make decision about protecting themselves and others from COVID-19.
- Make this campaign your own. Local services should personalise these resources, so they are relevant to the young people they work with. We have created materials and messaging, but you know the young people you work with best.
Campaign materials can be found on the Groundswell website can be accessed on a shared drive. They include posters, fact sheets and stickers. We encourage you to use the hashtags (#getthejab #rollupyoursleeves #armyourselfagainstcovid #preventthespread) and tag @ItsGroundswell and @StBasilsCharity on social media to show the campaign resources in action.
Groundswell exists to enable people who have experience of homelessness to create solutions and move themselves out of homelessness – to benefit of our whole society.
St Basils works with young people to enable them to find and keep a home, grow their confidence, develop their skills, increase opportunities and prevent homelessness.