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While the vaccine supply around the Chicago area is low, confusion remains high when it comes to information about the shot and places to get it.
A new effort launched Thursday in the northern suburbs with the goal of helping seniors sign up.
Behind the doors of the Vernon Township Building in Buffalo Grove, there is a new type of training happening in the office as people prepare to make a lot of phone calls in the coming days with everyone taking notes from the Lake County Health Department.
The focus is reaching thousands of seniors across multiple villages in the township who need help with the COVID-19 vaccine.
“They’re spending hours if not days trying to get appointments,” said Jonathan Altenberg, Vernon Township supervisor. “They don’t know where to turn. They don’t know what vaccine they should get or if they have a choice.”
So staff and volunteers will take hours of their own time to make informational calls.
“Our individuals will have a phone script to explain what the process is,” said Altenberg.
Ron Sebort, a new volunteer, plans to make a call a day to help navigate those frustrating pharmacy sites and the Lake County registration portal.
“It’s going to be fairly time consuming,” he said.
If a senior doesn’t even have internet, Sebort will volunteer to do everything himself. But he has tried for himself but still hasn’t gotten the vaccine.
“Whether I can personally get it or not, the more people that have the vaccine, the better off we all are,” he said.
The spouse of a township trustee finds purpose in taking part after a coworker died from the virus. Numerous friends have struggled with covid.
“It needs to get done, and people who have time, it’s definitely something that is definitely a worthwhile thing to do,” he said.
Right now, about 25 volunteers have signed up. Staff want to reach people beyond just seniors once more vaccine and appointments become available.