ALEXANDRIA, VA, Aug. 5, 2022 – Global Impact, on behalf of the Alliance for Advancing Health Online (AAHO), is pleased to announce the launch of an additional round of Request for Proposals (RFP) for the Vaccine Confidence Fund (VCF). The VCF is a program of AAHO and is financially supported by Meta and Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, NJ USA (known as MSD outside the United States and Canada). This round of funding for global research will focus on harnessing the power of social media to increase vaccination confidence and uptake with an emphasis on enhancing routine immunization and educating health care workers on addressing vaccine hesitancy. Global Impact is publishing the Full Insights Report on the first Vaccine Confidence Fund which features findings from the grantees’ research and insights on potential ways to drive vaccination confidence and uptake.

Following the success of last year’s open RFP, managed by Global Impact, where the Fund sought proposals that address how social media can be best utilized to better understand vaccine hesitancy and increase vaccination confidence and uptake, this additional round will build on the insights of the 33 prior grantees globally to continue to pursue new and transformative approaches using social media and behavioral science to bring new insights on both COVID-19 and routine immunization in communities.

“We’ve been excited to see the results of the first Vaccine Confidence Fund and learn from how organizations around the world are using social media to drive positive health outcomes,” said Lu’chen Foster, Head of Health Partnerships at Meta. “We look forward to seeing more innovative projects with the next round of research.”

Grantees will be selected in a competitive, open process managed by Global Impact, the fiscal sponsor and Fund manager, with the support of the VCF Advisory Council, a small interdisciplinary group of domain experts from the vaccination confidence, public health, social media, and behavioral and data sciences fields. The projects selected will use a variety of novel research approaches and explore how behavioral nudges, natural language processing, the use of chatbots, and targeted influencers impact vaccination confidence and vaccine uptake.

“We are honored to be a founding member of the Alliance for Advancing Health Online (AAHO) and are enthusiastic about the initial insights seen in the Vaccine Confidence Fund research and how they contribute to filling the research and knowledge gap around how to reach hesitant populations through social media” said Michael D. Fornwall, Associate Vice President, Vaccination Confidence, Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, NJ USA (known as MSD outside the United States and Canada). “We are proud to financially support this next round of research to continue to advance the learnings to improve the health and resiliency of communities around the world.”

The report and open RFP have been announced in advance of the Insights Dialogue event, “Using Social Media to Increase Vaccine Confidence,”, on Tuesday, August 9, at 1:00 PM GMT, at which speakers will discuss key findings from the Vaccine Confidence Fund and share best practices from projects implemented in Guatemala, Algeria, Kenya, the United States, and the United Kingdom. Attendees are invited to learn how grantees effectively harnessed the capabilities of social media platforms and designed effective engagement activities and customized, targeted messaging to increase vaccine confidence in marginalized and underserved communities.

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