In Fresno, Governor Newsom Highlights New Central Valley Vaccine Initiatives, Expanded Statewide Network of Community-Based Organizations for COVID-19 Education and Outreach in Vulnerable Communities  

Governor joins George Lopez, state legislators and local leaders at Fresno vaccination clinic serving farmworkers, one of two mobile OptumServe sites launched in the county this week

State and county partners have launched 11 new Central Valley vaccination sites 

An additional 34,000 doses are available to vaccinate food and agricultural workers through mobile teams 

State has increased vaccine allocations to the Central Valley by almost 60 percent above last week 

$52.7 million public-private partnership with the California Community Foundation, the Center at Sierra Health Foundation, the Public Health Institute and the State of California which collectively will support 337 community-based organizations for COVID outreach and education statewide 

FRESNO – Governor Gavin Newsom today highlighted the state’s efforts to bolster COVID-19 vaccination in the Central Valley’s disproportionately impacted communities, including increased vaccine allocations, 11 new vaccination sites in the region, and an additional 34,000 doses – on top of existing county allocations – to vaccinate food and agricultural workers through the deployment of mobile teams. The Governor also announced that California has expanded its statewide network of community-based organizations providing COVID outreach and education – in total, $52.7 million has supported 337 community-based organizations throughout California.

“Vaccines are making a remarkable difference in our fight to end this pandemic, with statewide positivity rates and ICU admissions down. It’s imperative that we continue to vaccinate the most vulnerable,” said Governor Newsom. “Guided as always by equity, we are helping ensure that the Californians hit hardest by this virus get access to the vaccines that will protect them and their communities. We’re building on our commitment to increase the supply of vaccines to the Central Valley to meet our farmworker communities where they are, and deepening the innovative public-private partnerships that exemplify the best of California’s civic spirit.”

Alongside state legislators, local leaders and George Lopez, the Governor today visited a mobile vaccination clinic serving farmworkers in Fresno, one of two mobile OptumServe sites launched in the county this week. Other farm-based, food processing and CBO hosted sites are being evaluated throughout the Central Valley to administer the additional 34,000 doses, on a one-time basis.

Governor Newsom and George Lopez speak to someone as they get their vaccination shot.


Farmworkers sit and wait to get vaccinated at the vaccination site in Fresno.

Governor Newsom and George Lopez visit vaccination clinic serving farmworkers in Fresno

As detailed by the Governor earlier this week, the state has partnered with OptumServe and local counties to open 11 new vaccination sites in the Central Valley, which are currently administering vaccines in Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, San Joaquin, Stanislaus and Tulare counties.

California has increased vaccine allocations to the Central Valley by 58 percent above last week, based on recent changes in our state’s allocation methodology that better reflect this region’s workforce. The state’s vaccine allocation formula began factoring in the employment sectors in Phase 1b, Tier 1 (education, emergency services and food and agriculture). The new formula weights age 65+ at 70 percent and employment sectors at 30 percent, which increases allocations to the Central Valley due to its heavy concentration of food and agricultural workers.

Building on the effort launched earlier this month to support outreach and public health education encouraging COVID-19 vaccination in communities that are disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, a total of $52.7 million – $23.3 million from the state and $29.4 million from philanthropic partners – has supported 337 community-based organizations throughout the state.

The work of community-based organizations (CBOs) as trusted messengers to drive adoption of the safe and effective vaccines is vital to the state’s strategy in administering vaccines equitably. CBOs have been providing critical services and information to Californians during the pandemic, in partnership with the California Department of Social Services and the Labor and Workforce Development Agency via the Center at Sierra Health Foundation and the California Community Foundation. The organizations received awards ranging from $50,000 to $300,000 for regional or statewide outreach efforts designed to connect vulnerable Californians with information and resources in multiple languages related to the safety of the COVID-19 vaccine, public health guidance, workplace protections and other state resources.

The state is also partnering with the Public Health Institute (PHI) in its statewide initiative to stop the spread of COVID-19 and strengthen health and resilience in California’s most impacted communities. PHI’s “Together Toward Health” initiative was created and funded through 18 major philanthropic organizations led by The California Endowment. The $29.4 million fund is supporting more than 180 local, community-rooted organizations across California, who serve as trusted experts for COVID-19 education, testing, and vaccination access in their communities, and additional CBOs will be awarded grants on a rolling basis in the months to come.

FAQs and the statewide network of community-based organizations can be found here.