It is not surprising that Cheshire residents are stepping up to help our community during this time of need.
For the past several years, the Chesprocott Health District has had a group called the “Citizens Help in Disasters,” who are trained to respond to public health emergencies. This group was small yet mighty and I was so humbled that when the time came for them to actually participate in the mass dispensing of vaccinations, they accepted and acted.
In September of 2020, the Department of Public Health acknowledged our small group of volunteers as an official Medical Reserve Corps in the state of Connecticut — one of 23 in our state and one of 1,000 in the United States. When the governor declared that our communities were in need of medical and non-medical volunteers, our once-small MRC grew at an astonishing rate — starting at just 35 members to now over 160 members and growing.
Our volunteers have participated in over 35 mass vaccination clinics, donating over 3,000 hours of their time to vaccinate over 8,000 people within our surrounding communities, including firefighters, police, teachers, and the elderly. Our volunteers did a lot to help behind the scenes as well, including navigating the federal vaccination software that was new to many of them, and making it more accessible to members of the community. These MRC volunteers will continue to offer their assistance and effort until this declared public health emergency has been withdrawn.
In today’s edition of The Herald, there is a list of Chesprocott MRC volunteers who gave their time to serve our community. I hope that you take the time to recognize your neighbors and friends, so that you can give them a sincere “thank you” for all that they have done to keep our community safe.
I personally want to thank all our MRC volunteers. They arrive early to each and every clinic with a smile on their face, greeting each person with a welcoming “hello,” and working in all types of weather conditions to keep the clinics running smoothly. Every individual who received a vaccine commented on how well the clinics were operated and this was all due to the hard work and dedication of our MRC volunteers.