#VaccinatedWhile… High school sisters create clothing, conversation campaign aimed to overcome vaccine distrust


INDIANAPOLIS – Two local high school students, and sisters, are getting creative while trying to help people be more comfortable with getting the vaccines. They’re using the hashtag Vaccinated While… to get people to share stories of their experience.

Zoe and Jordan Sims Rhodes may be in high school but their goals to help people overcome the fear of the COVID-19 vaccine reaches many generations.

“When we thought of it, we were like, we can help fix this,” said Zoe Sim Rhodes.

Their mother, a scientist with Eli Lilly told her daughters some people are skeptical towards the vaccine and that inspired the sisters to create a clothing line.

We are the daughters of scientists. We are believers of science. Our Vaccinated While… campaign promotes the sharing of vaccine experiences to encourage informed vaccine decisions. Our campaign aims to overcome fear and mistrust with data and experiences in hopes of more willing vaccinations. So, whether you are Vaccinated While Black, LatinX, American, Queer, Dog/Cat loving, or even Boomers, we hope that you will share your collective experiences with #vaccinatedwhile..

Zoe & Jordan Sims Rhodes

Their idea is targeted at communities largely impacted by the pandemic.

“Really focusing on black communities, LGBTQ+ communities and really trying to get a broad scope of everyone,” said Jordan.

Zoe added, “You see people who look like you, people who live close to you or around you get the vaccine and spread the story about what happens after you got it.”

Doctors, like Mike Fletcher are inspired by the sisters’ work.

“So many people have stepped up from so many places and it’s not just the medical community, it is our community,” said Fletcher the Chief Medical Officer of Hancock Health.

That’s why he encourages people to speak to a community leader about the vaccine if they’re unsure about a doctor.

“Anyone who has concerns needs to be listened to,” Fletcher added.

And he emphasized that the vaccine is safe.

“Even though this was done very fast, all the proper steps were still followed,” explained Fletcher.

He believes a lot of the concern comes from people not knowing what the future holds after getting the vaccine. He said, “The FDA actually pulled out and looked a prior study and they found out that for any vaccine that had long term side effects normally they’d found evidence of that within the first two months. We’re now 7 months out from the initial studies done, plus the huge numbers we have today I think that should be very, very reassuring.”

As for the Sims Rhodes sisters, it’s not just about helping people get the shot it’s also about bringing back a sense of normalcy.

The sisters launched #VaccinatedWhile… to coincide with Black History Month. If you’d like to check out the clothing line, click here.

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