Volunteers help to make vaccination clinics run smoothly

National Volunteer Week is April 18-24 this year and what better way to celebrate than to highlight the incredible work volunteers are doing to vaccinate folks against COVID-19 right here in Oregon. 

At vaccination sites of all sizes, volunteers are showing their dedication to their communities.  

Sue Moerer enjoyed a career as a registered nurse and felt it was her duty as a retired healthcare worker to volunteer. She recently participated at a drive-through clinic in Washington County where hundreds of people were vaccinated and plans to help at the Portland International Airport vaccine clinic soon. 

Moerer said, “It is an honor to meet people from all walks of life, the appreciation I get from underserved populations is especially rewarding.” She really enjoys meeting people from diverse backgrounds. Not only does Moerer volunteer with the Medical Reserve Corps of Washington County to assist in COVID-19 vaccine clinics, she also delivers food through Meals 4 Kids, a service in the city of Portland.

Tim Larson is the volunteer coordinator for Providence Health & Services. Larson says there are hundreds of volunteers throughout the state involved in the vaccination effort and without them, clinics such as the All4Oregon COVID-19 Mass Vaccination Site at the Oregon Convention Center would not be possible. Larson has heard from scores of people that they want to be part of the solution to end the pandemic and said, “This massive response is an inspiration. You can feel that people are dedicated to their communities and it’s a great thing to witness.”

Governor Kate Brown, pictured below, recently visited the drive-through vaccine clinic at Portland International Airport to see airport employees get their shots. Volunteers there were commended for their caring and professional service. 

Volunteers working at the Portland International Airport vaccine clinic.

Governor Brown said, “This vaccine operation is truly impressive, and I’m so grateful for everyone who’s working to get shots in Oregonians’ arms.” 

We want to express our deep gratitude to all the volunteers who are doing their part to bring an end to this pandemic. Volunteering your time and talent is a great way to give back to your community.

If you are interested in volunteering, visit Medical Reserve Corps or SERV-OR.

This article first appeared in the April 14, 2021 issue of Oregon Coronavirus Update.