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Grants of up to $25,000 are available for vaccine access and equity projects. Applicants may be eligible to reapply for additional funding. 

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COVID-19 has disproportionately affected many racial and ethnic minority groups, putting them more at risk of getting sick and dying. Culturally specific, community-based organizations that have deep and meaningful relationships and roots within their community are critical to improving vaccine access, information, and equity.

EMBARC received grants to help fund strategies and activities to ensure greater equity and education, outreach, support, and access to COVID-19 and flu vaccines.  

The Refugee & Immigrant Vaccine Alliance (RIVA) is a collaborative, community-based program focused on providing culturally responsive and equitable vaccine access, education, and services to refugee and immigrant communities in Iowa.


  • Ethnic community-based organizations (ECBOs)E

  • Refugee and immigrant led, non-profit organizations

  • Refugee and immigrant led, mutual aid associations

  • Faith-based organizations

  • Other as approved by EMBARC

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  • Vaccine Access & Support: Plan, organize, coordinate, and support accessible, safe, and trusted vaccine events

  • Vaccine Education and Outreach: Develop and distribute culturally and linguistically appropriate and accurate vaccine information, and materials that build trust, increase vaccine confidence, and resonate with communities

  • Partnerships & Collaborations: Leverage existing and cultivate new community partnerships to increase impact

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Vaccine Access & Support:

  • Plan and coordinate vaccine clinics

  • Coordinate clinics with community events (e.g., food pantries, ethnic gatherings, etc.)

  • Ensure culturally and linguistically accessible vaccine sites; convenient locations with flexible hours

  • Simplify vaccine registration; offer options that do not require pre-registration, online platforms, or non-essential documentation

  • Assist with phone, video, or in-person support to answer vaccine questions

  • Send appointment reminders

  • Provide resources before and after the vaccine

  • Offer free or subsidized transportation to/from vaccine appointments


Vaccine Education & Outreach:

  • Develop community-based, culturally and linguistically appropriate, educational materials (e.g. flyers, posters, videos, radio ads, social media posts, etc.)

  • Support grassroots-style campaigns (e.g., text messages, phone-banking, door-to-door canvassing, etc.) to share information, raise awareness, and build trust

  • Engage and train trusted messengers, influencers, and spokespersons

  • Create testimonial videos that encourage vaccine confidence

  • Organize presentations

  • Canvas in neighborhoods

  • Conduct one-on-one conversations

  • Sponsor local events

  • Utilize culturally specific media outlets


Partnerships & Collaboration:

  • Support and engage culturally specific community organizations that have existing relationships with the community

  • Strengthen local partnerships or alliances to allow for coordinated outreach activities


  • Transportation (e.g., gas cards, Uber codes, bus passes, etc.)

  • Marketing materials (must include COVID or flu vaccine info)

  • Printing fees

  • Interpretation/translation fees

  • Administrative/staffing fees

  • Facility rental fees

  • Software subscriptions (e.g. text messaging, Adobe Acrobat Pro, Canva, etc.)

  • Event supplies

  • Other


  • Incentives (e.g, gifts, gift cards, or other items for receiving the vaccine)

  • Healthcare staff salaries

  • Insurance reimbursements

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Partner organizations are required to complete a Subcontract Agreement with EMBARC outlining (in further detail) the following program expectations:


Partner organizations are required to complete a Subcontract Agreement with RIVA/EMBARC outlining (in further detail) the following program expectations:


All partnering organizations are required to submit a monthly report. RIVA/EMBARC will provide the reporting template and training. Monthly reports will be due the 2nd of each month (unless this falls on a weekend).


Success Stories

As part of the monthly report, all partnering organizations are required to share examples and photos of their vaccine work.


As part of the monthly report, all partnering organizations are required to submit an expense form and attach all receipts in a .zip file. Funding and reimbursement of expenses will be distributed in accordance with the Subcontract Agreement.

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