Flags with the logo of Emergency during a demonstration in Rome | Photo: ANSA/Massimo Percossi
Flags with the logo of Emergency during a demonstration in Rome | Photo: ANSA/Massimo Percossi

In southern Sicily, NGOs have organizated a COVID-19 vaccination campaign that is open to all, including undocumented migrant farmworkers. They have set up centers in the towns of Ragusa and Vittoria.

With the immunization campaign in full swing in Italy, humanitarian organization Emergency is working to ensure that migrants working in the fields around Ragusa, in Sicily, can be immunized against COVID-19, the organization said on Monday, June 14.

Every Thursday afternoon, the headquarter of Catholic charity Caritas in Marina di Arcate hosts Emergency's medical personnel who immunize anyone who wants to be vaccinated, including migrants without a regular stay permit, together with colleagues from the provincial health authority (ASP) of Ragusa, labor union CGIL and the doctors of Caritas.

A total of 129 people were vaccinated on the first day, organizers said.

Vaccinations for migrants in Ragusa and Vittoria

A second vaccination hub is set to open on Friday, June 18, in Vittoria. Vaccinations will reportedly be offered on Friday afternoons in the auditorium of the church in Piazza Daniele Manin.

"Across Italy there are approximately 500,000 so-called 'invisibles' who have not been guaranteed a vaccine so far", said Ahmedi Echi, who is responsible for Emergency's project to provide psychological support and health assistance to farmworkers in Sicily.

Many undocumented farmworkers

Emergency said that its cultural mediators reached out to patients of their mobile health clinic to make sure that all migrants living in the area near Ragusa and Vittoria know about the opportunity to get vaccinated.

The organization has been active in the area since May 2019, providing medical services to undocumented migrant farmworkers.

Many undocumented migrants are living and working in the area surrounding Ragusa and Vittoria in Sicily, southern Italy. Most of them work on farms in the countryside for 10 to 12 hours a day in precarious conditions, living in abandoned homes, often without drinking water and hygienic services.


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