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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Media

Thank you for your interest in the Vaccine Hunters!

We are at a critical time of the fight against Covid-19. While we wish Vaccine Hunters didn't have to exist, we are humbled to be playing this important role in our vaccine roll out. Our community of dedicated volunteers are working around the clock to help Canadians navigate the COVID vaccine rollout, understand vaccine eligibility, and connect eligible Canadians with appointment opportunities.

Given the urgency of the moment, we are singularly focused on our mission to get as many shots in arms as efficiently and safely as possible.
In the meantime we have prepared an FAQ and have aggregated all past media appearances for background here.
If you would like to put forward a request for an interview in the future, please email [email protected].
Many thanks for your understanding.

Sincerely,
Vaccine Hunters Canada

What is your mission?

Vaccine Hunters Canada is a community of volunteers dedicated to helping navigate the COVID vaccine rollout, understand vaccine eligibility, and connect eligible Canadians with appointment opportunities. Our motto is "neighbours helping neighbours, coast to coast". We feel an urgent sense of duty to work together so we can all move beyond this critical moment in the Covid-19 pandemic and begin reopening our communities.

We work with public health units but are not officially linked to any level of government.

What does your popularity say about the vaccination program rollout across the country?

This is a critical time for our country. While we wish Vaccine Hunters didn't have to exist, we are humbled to be playing this important role in our vaccine roll out. Our goal is to fight frustration with information and getting as many shots in arms as efficiently and safely as possible.

How does it work?

We use a variety of digital tools to crowdsource and aggregate available vaccine appointments with the thousands of personal tips we receive. These tips come from a variety of sources including public health units, pharmacists, and community members.

Our operation hub is on Discord , where we have set up a number of regional servers where our community are able to share and verify appointment information, as well as answer questions and concerns around vaccine safety.

Once we have the information and have been able to verify it to the best of our ability, we release the details on Twitter and Facebook .

We have relationships with a number of public health providers, vaccination clinics and pharmacies, who also share appointment information with us.

Who are the Vaccine Hunters? How did you start?

The Vaccine Hunters are a volunteer community dedicated to connecting eligible Canadians with booking vaccine appointments. Our story begins with our founder, Andrew Young, who was inspired by the US site VaccineHunter.org while trying to book a vaccination for his parents in Ontario. He bought our domain name VaccineHunters.ca, on March 19 as well as set up the Discord server and Twitter account. The rest is history. In just over a month, we had four key leaders (Andrew Young plus Joshua Kalpin, Sabrina Craig and Jonathan Clodman), dozens of contributors and a community of thousands all doing what we can to get shots in arms.

How many people have used your service?

The nature of sharing information on publicly accessible platforms means that we do not keep track of numbers, but we know it's in the thousands. We aim to offer our support and tools to any Canadian who wishes to use it. We are deeply touched that many people come to us to find a vaccine for themselves or a loved one, but then they'll often stay in our community and help others.

What are some of your favourite success stories?

One of our big early successes was when Jean Yoon from Kim's Convenience tweeted that she was able to book her vaccine based on info she got through our Twitter feed. We've assisted in a lot of cases for adults with learning or developmental disabilities, many of whom have language and accessibility barriers. We try to get everyone booked and even set up transportation. Then there's "Batman", who initially was looking for an appointment for her father. Since then, she's organized appointments for over 120 people—many essential workers in high-risk postal codes. We jokingly call her Batman: wave the vaccine symbol and she'll find an appointment out of thin air.

What has the feedback been?

The feedback has been incredible. We are so touched by the warmth with which Canadians citizens and officials have responded to this volunteer initiative. We hope to continue to do this work until every arm has a shot.

Where do you get your funding from?

The Vaccine Hunters is an independent, nonpartisan, volunteer-run community. We have no official affiliation with any level of government, public health unit or corporate entity. We do not accept donators and we have no political, government or business ties. Please consider donating on our behalf to The Frontline Fund .

What's next for the vaccine hunters?

Our goal is to help match every eligible arm with a shot. Our community of moderators is constantly expanding and we are particularly keen to grow the team outside of Central Canada, and in both official languages. We also hope to provide more information services including town halls and other events to help combat misinformation and vaccine hesitancy.

What's your advice to Canadians looking to get involved?

Get vaccinated! And reach out to every single person you know—friends, family, co-workers, members of your community, neighbours, people who you know where English or French may not be their first language—and help them get a vaccine if they are eligible.

If anyone is interested in helping with Vaccine Hunters, we encourage you to join our Discord channel .