LONGWOOD, Fla. - As COVID-19 vaccination efforts continue across the state, the Governor is calling on places of worship to volunteer their space for vaccination distribution.
"Of course we want to work with our houses of worship," Governor Ron DeSantis said at a news conference in Pensacola.
He praised the efforts of one church in Escambia County for offering the COVID vaccine and now other churches across the state are answering the call to serve, including one local mega church, Northland Church in Longwood.
"We’re more than willing to open our campus however we need to support the vaccination," said Bradley Nolff, Communications Manager at Northland Church. "We have a great relationship with Seminole County Health Department and Emergency Management, so anytime we are asked to help them we do that. We’ve done that with COVID testing sites over the last several months across the street."
Right now church officials said they are just waiting on word from Seminole County on when they can begin distribution,
"We’ve already talked about moving people’s offices and stuff just so we can clear that space so we’re ready whenever," Nolff said.
Once in operation, the vaccination site would be setup indoors, likely in the old sanctuary.
"We call it the Rink," Nolff said. "It used to be a roller skating rink before we purchased the property several years ago."
Just like the rest of Seminole County, it will be by appointment only.
DeSantis said he hopes adding more venues will allow more people access to the vaccine.
"There’s a lot of demand for the vaccine, but there’s still folks that aren’t sure that they want to take it and when you have community leaders stepping out showing that they’re doing it – a pastor – someone that the people trust I think that does make a positive difference," DeSantis said.
Northland Church officials said once they receive the green light, they could be up and running in as little as 24 hours.
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