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Over the past five months, ACM partnered with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on the We Can Do This campaign to help increase the public confidence and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines among families and children. In just a short time, ACM shared critical updates and campaign information with over 53,000 people through social media, member discussion forums, virtual calls with museum CEOs, and at our annual 2022 InterActivity conference.
In addition, children’s museums across the country supported these efforts by educating and sharing information about vaccines and the importance of getting loved ones and community members vaccinated with their audiences. Below are five ways children’s museums helped share the word about COVID-19 vaccines.
Museums did what they do best—share it with an exhibition! Over 25 children’s museums signed up to print and display the 4-panel exhibit on vaccines and viruses created by ACM and HHS to help parents better understand vaccine safety and increase parental confidence in COVID-19 vaccines. Together, more than half of the participating museums reported the ability to reach nearly 401,000 people, while one museum that integrated the panels into its own exhibition reported over 13,500 viewers.
Direct communications with community members were vital to the campaign. 13 children’s museums helped educate nearly 170,000 parents and caregivers on the importance of COVID-19 vaccines through dedicated social media posts, emails/e-newsletters, and vaccine-related information shared on their websites.
In hallways, bathrooms, bulletin boards, and more, displaying COVID-19 vaccine-related posters was another way 11 museums encouraged close to 179,000 visitors, including parents and caregivers, to protect their children by getting them a COVID-19 vaccine.
Some children’s museums saw the opportunity to host other health-related events like Teddy Bear Clinics, in which children role-played with their teddy bear “patient” during several stages of a healthcare visit. Facilitated by health care professionals, these clinics helped reduce fear and empower children by providing their chosen toy with the same treatments they would receive, such as COVID-19 vaccines.
Children’s museums have been busy serving their communities this year. Thirty-seven ACM member museums have reported hosting a vaccine-related program, 26 of which were vaccination clinics that served numerous families and children. Several other children’s museums plan to host or participate in vaccination clinics later this summer in an effort to get more parents, caregivers, and children protected against COVID-19.
If your children’s museum is interested in hosting a vaccine clinic, displaying the 4-panel exhibition on vaccines, or sharing more information about COVID-19 vaccines, you still can!
The We Can Do This website has up-to-date resources for getting the word out, guides for hosting your own vaccination clinic, and supplemental information for helping increase vaccine confidence among parents and caregivers. All resources are available in Spanish on the Spanish language site, JuntosSíPodemos. You can also contact Keni.Sturgeon@ChildrensMuseums.org at ACM for a copy of the 4-panel exhibition for your museum. Together, We Can Do This!
The Associations of Children’s Museums (ACM) champions children’s museums worldwide. Follow ACM on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
ACM is proud to partner with We Can Do This, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ COVID-19 Public Education Campaign, to share critical information about the availability of COVID vaccines for children. In addition to the resources from the We Can Do This website below, ACM is providing potential funding opportunities for children’s museums to support programs, events, and exhibits developed to build broader vaccine confidence. For more information, visit www.ChildrensMuseums.org/covid-19.
From hosting a vaccination clinic to installing a poster, below are six ways your museum can help increase vaccine confidence by sharing the facts about COVID vaccines and children with parents and caregivers.
Interested in any of the steps below? ACM wants to support your work! Let us know by contacting Maureen Devery, Project Manager.
Museums are trusted organizations within their communities. Before preparing your museum’s outreach plan, review the facts about COVID vaccines and how to communicate with parents and caregivers about eligible children getting a COVID vaccine.
You can also catch a recording of the recent We Can Do This Summit featuring conversations among leading doctors, medical professionals, and community leaders about COVID vaccines.
If your museum frequently sends newsletters to parents and caregivers, consider including a reminder that free COVID vaccines are available for everyone ages five and older. You could also send a dedicated email newsletter using this template as a guide.
3. Host a COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic
Is your museum interested in hosting a vaccine clinic but don’t know where to start? Check out the We Can Do This Family Vaccination Site Playbook for step-by-step guidance on organizing an event, including planning checklists, staffing considerations, and more.
4. Offer Activities for Children
Kids love to color! If your museum is hosting an on-site vaccination clinic, print out this fun, super-hero-inspired coloring page for children to engage with before or after vaccination.
5. Engage Your Visitor Services Team
Familiarize your public-facing employees and volunteers with these frequently asked questions from parents and caregivers about COVID vaccines as part of their ongoing training. One answer can make a difference!
Place one of these posters in your museum common spaces (bathrooms, hallways, education rooms) to encourage visiting parents and caregivers to protect their children by having them get a COVID vaccine.
Learn more about the We Can Do This campaign and ACM’s partnership by visiting: www.ChildrensMuseums.org/covid-19.
ARLINGTON, VA (March 22, 2022): Today, the Association of Children’s Museums (ACM) announced its partnership with We Can Do This, the COVID-19 public education campaign of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
An international membership organization with 470 members in all 50 states and 16 countries, ACM will collaborate with children’s museums and related organizations across the U.S. to share critical information about the availability of COVID-19 vaccines for children.
“As the foremost professional society advocating on behalf of children’s museums, we are committed to the health and wellbeing of children and families,” said Arthur Affleck, Executive Director of the Association of Children’s Museums. “We are excited by this opportunity to partner with the Department of Health and Human Services to support children’s museums across the U.S. in sharing critical information with parents and caregivers about vaccine availability for young children.”
As part of this partnership, ACM will share HHS resources with museums across the United States, and will also support programs, events, and exhibits in children’s museums to build broader vaccine confidence. ACM will also create and disseminate a four-panel exhibit sharing critical information about vaccines with parents and caregivers, available for free to museums to download and print. For more information about these resources and potential funding opportunities for museums, visit www.ChildrensMuseums.org/covid-19.
The Association of Children’s Museums (ACM) champions children’s museums worldwide. With more than 470 members in 50 states and 16 countries, ACM leverages the collective knowledge of children’s museums through convening, sharing and dissemination. Learn more at www.childrensmuseums.org.