A vaccination clinic sponsored by the City of Wasco in partnership with United Against Covid-19 and St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church was back again for a second monthly event.
This time around, those that were vaccinated not only received a $50 Visa gift card from the City of Wasco, but they also got a $100 Walmart gift card donated by South Kern Sol News.
Over 90 adults and children came for their vaccination. Whole families attended, going home with hundreds of dollars worth of gift cards.
"This was something I promoted, and I think it is motivating people to come and get vaccinated. The council allocated $25,000 for this program, and I wish more people would take advantage of this incentive to protect them from severe illness or even death," said Mayor Gilberto Reyna.
According to the Kern County Health Department, Wasco has a high infection rate of 43.89% compared to the surrounding cities like Delano, McFarland, Lost Hills and Shafter.
"At 50.31%, the number of fully vaccinated is also significantly less than these cities."
As the percentage of those infected keeps increasing, Mayor Reyna said there is a need to continue this campaign to have more residents vaccinated.
"With this new variant, people need to be very careful because it is highly contagious," said Mayor Reyna.
The gift cards were an incentive for those that attended.
"It is a good thing considering how bad our economy is. I'm going to use it to buy food," said Jose Pelayo. "It's going to help me a lot."
"I heard they were giving out gift cards, so I decided to come," said Roberto Lopez.
"Getting the $150 gift cards was amazing. It's wonderful because people need it. The best part is I will tell people about the next clinic," said Beverly Forbs.
Individuals expressed their gratitude.
"I give thanks to all of the people who are here to take the weekend off to come to serve the community. I found that everyone was in good spirits and had a great attitude," said Esperanza Rodriguez.
"It was awesome. I am thankful for the organizations involved in saving people's lives," said Amanda Harris.
Those that came shared they were thinking of their loved ones.
"I want to protect my family. I don't want them to get sick," said Constantino Hernandez.
Others cited the rise in covid infections.
"They say covid is coming back strong," said Veronica Martinez.
Some came because they lost a loved one to covid.
"We had a good friend pass away and decided we needed that extra protection. We are not getting any younger and need to stay safe," said Esperanza Rodriguez.
There were words of encouragement for those unvaccinated.
"The process was simple. I would tell people to get vaccinated to prevent serious illness and help save their lives and the lives of others," said Francisco Sanchez.
Organizations were on site to provide information and resources. They gave away rapid at-home covid tests, sanitizers, masks and food boxes.
The clinics will take place every last Sunday of the month, with the next one scheduled for Aug. 28.
"I hope to see people there that still need their vaccination," said Mayor Reyna.
More information on the vaccination program is available at 661-558-2048.