Science Communication Expert | Scientist | Public Speaker
Highlights of my recent COVID-19 science communication and advocacy efforts (mostly in Spanish).
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT & PUBLIC HEALTH EDUCATION
Since September 2020, I have directed Aquí Nos Cuidamos, a community-centered project improving the capacity and agency of marginalized and vulnerable communities in Puerto Rico to promote COVID-19 prevention and vaccination and mental health through science engagement and multimedia education. Aquí Nos Cuidamos was named the 2021 Breakthought of the Year in Science Engagement at Falling Walls. Learn more by watching my talk below.
Aquí Nos Cuidamos, which roughly translates to "we take care of each other" features a multimedia education toolkit consisting of four public service campaigns with images, infographics, videos (in Spanish and sign language), audios, and written materials that present science in accessible and practical ways, contextualized to the Puerto Rican reality and culture, and that anyone, from individuals to government entities, can use to promote COVID prevention and community well-being. Meanwhile, our community engagement program consists of listening sessions, conversations, WhatsApp chats to listen to leaders and representatives of marginalized communities and entities that provide them with services and a Community Ambassadors Program, to train and support 10 Puerto Rican leaders intheir efforts, with funding, communications and graphic design help and mental health workshops.
Video from campaign #2: Physical, not social distancing
Video from campaign #3 "Get vaccinated, for you and for me"
Video from campaign #4 "Mental health is plenitude"
Poster from campaign #1 "Have a digital party"
Image from campaign #4 "Mental health is plenitude"
Project staff, community ambassadors, and collaborators
PRESS FOR AQUÍ NOS CUIDAMOS
Promueven la ciencia en las comunidades (Promoting science in local communities) (January 9, 2022) El Nuevo Día
Para derrubar os muros da divulgação científica (To break down the walls of scientific dissemination) (December 2021 edition) Ciencia Hoje
Reconocen a nivel internacional proyecto educativo "Aquí Nos Cuidamos" (Educational project "Aquí Nos Cuidamos" wins international recognition) (November 16, 2021) El Nuevo Día
From March to June 2021, CienciaPR, with Puerto Rico Public Health Trust (PRPHT), Ciencia en Tus Manos (CETM) and Internews, participated of a rumor tracking program called "Infórmate, protégete, vacunate", led by Mercy Corps Puerto Rico. The program monitored social media and worked collaboratively with 14 communities in different parts of Puerto Rico to collect rumors about COVID-19 and vaccines, and create and provide science- and needs-based information in real time to address them. I was CienciaPR's lead for the project. You can see examples of the content below and read more about our approaches and results HERE and HERE.
In the fall 2020, the Puerto Rico Public Health Trust (PRPHT), Ciencia Puerto Rico (CienciaPR), and the humanitarian organization Mercy Corps Puerto Rico, ran "Cuídate, Cuídame" (Take care of yourself, Take care of me) campaign to encourage young adults between 20-39 years of age (who have consistently had the highest number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Puerto Rico) to adopt healthy behaviors to minimize their risk of infection. The campaign included social media content, public service announcements, and conversations between scientists and influencers. I was CienciaPR's lead for the campaign. You can find all the content HERE.
MEDIA & SCIENCE COMMUNICATION
Since early March 2020, I have guided more than 60 members of the CienciaPR network in the publication of more than 90 Spanish-language articles about SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19. I have also coordinated or facilitated more than 70 Spanish-language radio, TV, podcast, and press interviews with scientists and experts who are members of the CienciaPR network. You can learn more about the story behind some these efforts in this NPR interview. You can read, check out of the articles and many of the interviews HERE (in Spanish).
Hay que tomar acciones contundentes (We most take urgent actions) (April 25, 2022) TeleOnce
Inicia segunda campaña de Ciencia Puerto Rico a favor de la vacunación (Ciencia Puerto Rico launches second campaign to promotion COVID-19 vaccination) (April 26, 2021) Noticias Telemundo
Organización empodera a comunidades marginadas con campañas educativas durante la pandemia (Organization empowers marginalized communities with educational campaigns during the pandemic) (Feburary 15, 2021) Noticias Telemundo
Op-Ed: How Puerto Ricans fought COVID: Together
(February 9, 2022) Los Angeles Times
I reflect on the lessons learned through Aquí Nos Cuidamos, working with community leaders in Puerto Rico and the importance of solidarity and collective care — not individualism & nationalism — to end the pandemic and be prepared for future emergencies.
La desinformación antivacunas: el nuevo reto de la pandemia (Vaccine misinformation: The new challenge of the pandemic)
El Hilo Podcast
(October 15, 2021) I was one of three experts interviewed for this episode focused on vaccine misinformation in Latin America: why it's happening, who is spreading and what we can do about it. In particular, I provided recommendations for what people can do to combat this misinformation and for discussing the subject with our friends and family. An edited version of this episode was published by Radio Ambulante on December 28, 2021.
COVID-19 y la pandemia de desinformación (COVID-19 and the infodemic) (La Ventana
Una hora con Edmy (An hour with Edmy) (September 2, 2021) WISA 1390 AM
Repaso Noticioso: Puerto Rico Department of Education wants to restart in-person classes in March (February 4, 2021) Repaso Noticioso
¿Qué es la que hay? con Luis Herrero (October 28, 2020) Radio Isla 1320AM
Ahora con Damaris Suárez (Now with Damaris Suárez) (September 23, 2020) Radio Isla 1320AM
Recomendaciones para la próxima orden ejecutiva (Recommendations for the next Executive Order) (September 8, 2020) Sin Tapujos, WIAC 740AM Radio
Repunte de casos de COVID-19 en Puerto Rico (Spike of COVID-19 cases in Puerto Rico) (July 13, 2020) Sin Tapujos, WIAC 740AM Radio
Center for Investigative Journalism's Agenda Propia (May 25, 2020) Radio Isla
Of earthquakes and pandemics (May 4, 2020) Latino Rebels Radio
Puerto Ricans are at risk from the coronavirus and a lack of information (April 7, 2020) NPR's Short Wave
Los virus, las vacunas y COVID-19 (Viruses, vaccines and COVID-19) (voice over) (2022) American Museum of Natural History
Ómicron ¿cuánto preocupa la nueva variante y cómo me protejo? (Omicron: How concerning is this new variant and how do I protect myself?) (November 30, 2021) El Nuevo Día
Temporada de Huracanes 2021 y la vacunación para COVID-19 (2021 hurricane season and COVID-19 vaccination) (August 3, 2021) Ada Monzón
¿Causalidad o coincidencia? Cómo comunicar la ciencia detrás detrás de los efectos secundarios de las vacunas de COVID-19 (Causality or coincidence? How to communicate about the side effects of COVID-19 vaccines) (March 2, 2021) Association of Journalists of Puerto Rico
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