The San Diego Refugee Communities Coalition recruited youth and young adults ages 16-24 to be part of a team of Social Media Interns. The program started June 15th and ran until August 27th. The final cohort was made up of 13 youth from ages 15-20 spanning across 10 different refugee and immigrant communities who had previous experience with content creation and active social media presences.
The team worked to promote the national “We Can Do This” Public Education Campaign with the aim of increasing public confidence in and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines while reinforcing basic prevention measures such as mask-wearing and social distancing. Participants were tasked with taking information from this campaign and adapting it for a younger demographic, specifically targeting peers from their own communities.
In our cohort, 11 languages were represented: English, Arabic, Dari, Pashto, Tamizh/Tamil, Hindi, Karen, Tagalog, Kizigua, Somali, and Chaldean/Aramaic. The interns used their multilingual skill sets to translate existing content, and also create new content that accurately represented and spoke to the native languages and cultural practices of their communities. Over the course of the internship, the youth met with SDRCC staff on a weekly basis to share content, provide feedback, and research ideas for messaging in order to create and post at least two pieces of social media content per week. Throughout this process, the interns recorded the metrics of their content and adapted their methods to increase engagement. The internship concluded with an Exit Survey, where the cohort members reflected on their experiences and had a chance to give feedback on the program.