Responses to the COVID-19 pandemic have varied, but more successful responses to address issues facing communities of color as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic have included community participation and the inclusion of culturally and linguistically appropriate information in outreach, communication, and interventions. The purpose of this symposium is to highlight various examples of community responses to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The first paper of the symposium is a qualitative study of how school social workers (SSWs) responded to the COVID-19 pandemic to try and assist students and their families. The majority of SSWs in this study worked in schools that served a student population where the majority were Students of Color. The findings indicate SSWs had increased contact and interaction with studentsÃ¢â¬â¢ parents. However, findings highlight the barriers SSWs encountered when providing social-emotional telehealth interventions, including low attendance resulting in ineffective group interventions, technology-specific barriers, and concerns regarding studentsÃ¢â¬â¢ privacy.
The second paper in the symposium is a qualitative study of the adaptation of the Your Family, Your Neighborhood (YFYN) school-based, Latinx family intervention program using Photovoice and virtual modifications as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The findings indicated the challenges of adapting a community-based intervention with Latinx families to a virtual modality and embedding a Photovoice component during the COVID-19 pandemic. Nevertheless, findings also indicated the adaptations using Photovoice allowed for families to capture needs as well as strengths in their community.
The third paper in the symposium is a qualitative study which assessed awareness, experiences, concerns, attitudes, needs, knowledge and misconceptions regarding COVID-19 testing, prevention, research participation, vaccination uptake, and medical mistrust among members of Southern ArizonaÃ¢â¬â¢s urban American Indian/Alaska Native communities. The findings indicated a distrust of COVID-19 vaccines as a result of historical and current traumas. Participants identified a need for more transparency and visibility via the use of American Indian/Alaska Native role model stories to illustrate the experiences of those who received the vaccine. Ultimately this information is significant for enhancing public health messaging efforts to increase vaccine acceptance and uptake.
This symposium disseminates research findings on important issues facing various populations and communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This information can be beneficial to researchers, community organizations, and schools who are working with diverse populations to address issues exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Symposium participants will also gain deeper understanding of the culturally and linguistically appropriate responses and adaptations to address issues communities of color face as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.