Filipino residents who have rolled up their sleeves to receive the COVID-19 jab in the UAE have been united by an online campaign launched by The Filipino Times, which was aimed at conveying utmost gratitude and earnest support for the country’s inclusive National Vaccination Program.
Titled ‘I am vaccinated, Salamat (Thanks) UAE!’, the campaign encourages all Filipino residents to place a customized sticker on their Facebook profile photos. The sticker bears the flags of the UAE and the Philippines placed side by side that signifies both countries’ solidarity for one another spanning over four decades.
The campaign, which started last April 27, underlines a crucial message that getting vaccinated against the novel coronavirus disease is a social responsibility. The UAE has one of the world’s highest vaccination rates at 104.51 per 100 people, ranking second worldwide in terms of vaccinated people per entire target population, according to the latest statistics from Our World In Data.
“Filipinos spend at least nine hours online daily, half of which they spend on social media platforms such as Facebook. With this, The Filipino Times has thought of putting this to good use. We’ve conceptualized a digital campaign that could capture the Filipinos’ humongous appreciation to the UAE government for making the COVID-19 vaccines available for all, free of charge and on an optional basis,” said Vince Ang, General Manager of The Filipino Times.
Ang added that UAE-based overseas Filipinos have a significant share in the overall expats’ population in the country. “Almost a million and still growing, the Filipinos active participation in the ongoing National Vaccination Program has a role to play in giving the vaccine administration a further booster shot.”
Recently, the country has reached a milestone of injecting over 10 million doses of approved COVID-19 vaccines in the country which include Sinopharm, Pfizer-BioNTech, AstraZeneca, and Sputnik V.
The campaign participants said they experienced little to no side effects after getting their jabs and praised the UAE for its superb handling of the pandemic through a multi-pronged strategy including mass testing, nationwide vaccination, and awareness campaigns across all forms of traditional and digital media.
H.E. Abdul Rahman bin Mohammad bin Nasser Al Owais, Minister of Health and Prevention, highlighted the importance of public cooperation to help the country fully recover from the impact of COVID-19—assuring the public that all four vaccines available in the UAE are effective.
“The four types of vaccines are being distributed free to all segments of the community and in all areas of the country, and they are safe and highly efficient,” said Al Owais.
He furthered that the success of the National Vaccination Program stems from the “vision and directives of the country’s leadership and the significant efforts of the health sector and all front-line defenders to protect the community’s health and safety”.
Latest statistics from the National Emergency, Crisis, and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA) shows that the country has reached 65.54% of the total target population vaccinated against COVID-19.
H.E. Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, and Chairman of the National COVID-19 Crisis Recovery Management and Governance Committee, commended the cooperation of residents in the national vaccination.
“The cooperation of all members of the community and their support for the national efforts has helped the campaign to achieve its goals. The country is keen to provide the COVID-19 vaccine to all eligible categories of people,” he said.
4 easy steps to use the ‘I am vaccinated, Salamat UAE!’ Facebook sticker
- Go to your profile picture on Facebook and click ‘Update’.
- Choose the ‘Add Frame’ option.
- Search “The Filipino Times” on the search bar.
- Click ‘Use as Profile Picture’ and join many other Filipinos who have shown their support for the country.