Delivering COVID-19 Vaccine via Trusted Social Services: Program Evaluation Results from the Chicagoland CEAL Program

For the Chicagoland CEAL Program

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


To describe the reach, implementation, and sustainability of COVID-19 vaccination programs delivered by social service community organizations. Five academic institutions in the Chicagoland CEAL (Community Engagement Alliance) program partnered with 17 community organizations from September 2021—April 2022. Interviews, community organizations program implementation tracking documents, and health department vaccination data were used to conduct the evaluation. A total of 269 events were held and 5,432 COVID-19 vaccines delivered from May 2021–April 2022. Strategies that worked best included offering vaccinations in community settings with flexible and reliable hours; pairing vaccinations with ongoing social services; giving community organizations flexibility to adjust programs; offering incentives; and vaccinating staff first. These strategies and partnership structures supported vaccine uptake, community organization alignment with their missions and communities’ needs, and trust. Community organizations delivering social services are local community experts and trusted messengers. Pairing social service delivery with COVID-19 vaccination built individual and community agency. Giving COs creative control over program implementation enhanced trust and vaccine delivery. When given appropriate resources and control, community organizations can quickly deliver urgently needed health services in a public health crisis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)61-69
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Community Health
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2024


  • COVID-19
  • Community health
  • Implementation science
  • Social determinants of health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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