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Shot@Life Champion Summit

In case you missed it, last month was the 8th annual Shot@Life Champion Summit.


At the summit:

Shot@Life hosted 120 grassroots advocates from across the country for our annual three-day summit. Champions came to deepen their knowledge about global childhood immunization programs and issues, sharpen their advocacy skills, and meet with members of Congress on Capitol Hill.

  • Speakers included
    • Lea Anne Hegg, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation;Speakers included:
    • Joe Ruiz, UPS Foundation;
    • Dr. Folake Olayinka and Irene Koek, USAID;
    • David Sniadack, CDC;
    • and many more from the UN Foundation and our network of global health partner organizations.

Worth quoting:

“Our mission is simple. It’s to save lives.”
– Natasha Bilmoria, Director of US Strategy, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance


On the Hill:

Throughout the day, we heard from staffers and even members of Congress who recognized our Shot@Life brand and Champions as trusted advocates for global childhood vaccines.

  • We reached over 150 offices and that number continues to rise as drop-by meetings are confirmed.
  • This includes 29 member-level engagements – shattering our previous Hill Day records! 

Of particular note was a meeting with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who spent 20 minutes talking with our KY constituents, including polio survivor and Paralympic champion Dennis Ogbe.  McConnell, who contracted polio as a child, reiterated his commitment to finish the job of eradicating the disease globally.

The topic of global measles outbreaks featured prominently in meetings. Champions were armed with Kathy’s recent Op-Ed and champions’ own disease outbreak Op-Eds, which served as a springboard for discussion around CDC and Gavi investments.

Champion, Melody Butler had an impactful meeting with Sen. Schumer’s office who referenced her own Newsday opinion piece back to her. Staffers shared how reading her piece lead to an internal conversation about the measles outbreaks.

Worth quoting:

“If you think your voice doesn’t make a difference, it does. If you think you don’t matter, you do. Shot@Life has data showing Congress 3 x more likely to fund global vaccines when approached by constituents.” – Susan Tyler, Shot@Life Champion reflecting on Hill Day successes


In the news:

Alongside the Shot@Life Champion Summit, Martha Rebour was on Voice of America’s Health Chat. The discussion focused on the measles outbreaks in Madagascar and Martha was excellent at driving home the main points of vaccine access for children around the world. Listen here.

Martha was also featured in the closing quote of the UN Wire SmartBrief following the first day of the summit.

Finally, our keynote speaker vaccine scientist Dr. Peter Hotez recorded three interviews with journalists from VOA News discussing vaccine science and the impact of global vaccine campaigns while in D.C. for the Champion Summit. These pieces will run in the upcoming weeks and links will be shared at that time.

In advance of the summit, UNF’s own MJ Altman interviewed Dr. Hotez and this Q&A was published on the final day of the Shot@Life summit.

Worth quoting:

“The real heroes in this room are all of you.”
Dr. Peter Hotez, addressing Shot@Life advocates at the 8th annual Champion Summit


Thank you to everyone who helped support and amplify our message of global vaccine advocacy during the summit.

Lindsey Miller-Voss