Dozens of volunteers help make Metro Nashville's vaccination clinic possible

Posted at 5:20 PM, Feb 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-06 19:16:27-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Metro Nashville Public Health doesn't have near the amount of staffing it takes to vaccinate thousands of people a week. That's why they've been relying on about 50 volunteers a day from Hands On Nashville.

"Is it still morning? Yes it is. Good morning," said Nadia Ali, one of the Hands on Nashville volunteers helping out Saturday morning at Music City Center.

Nadia's joy is so infectious, it can't be matched, or in this case, masked. "I’m like a bouncer at a club -- I’m just making sure you’re old enough to get in," she joked, as she worked the registration table.

So many people have tried to volunteer at the vaccine clinic, there's actually a waiting list. All of Hands on Nashville's slots are filled through the month of February. "This operation is about 80 percent volunteers," said Ali.

Nadia has enjoyed the experience so much, she just keeps coming back. "You’ll see several groups of us that have been here every weekend, and we’ve been really enjoying the friendship we’ve been able to develop by seeing each other every weekend," she said.

She says it's a way to be social in this socially distant world, and also make a difference. "Sharing these stories of hope -- it’s been very rewarding," said Ali.

One of those people on the receiving end of Nadia's joy is Marie Cothren. "Oh yes, I’m so excited," Cothren told us.

Cothren is 89 and until Chick-fil-a closed their lobby due to the pandemic, was greeting people every single day she worked. She says she's missed her social life and saying hi to folks at the Music City Center Saturday was the next best thing. "Oh they’ve been great, they are awesome, all of them," said Cothren.

"This is the most fun volunteer thing I’ve ever done. Everyone’s so happy," said one man, who was directing patients to the right table.

A reminder -- Metro’s vaccine clinic is only accepting those with scheduled appointments that meet the state’s criteria. You will not be charged any money -- to receive a vaccine.

If you'd like to sign up for various volunteer opportunities with Hands on Nashville, you can click here.