Faith Leaders

10 Actions for Faith Leaders to Respond to COVID-19

NCDHHS recognizes the powerful role faith leaders play in our communities and congregations. We need your help, as Dr. Mandy Cohen, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, outlines in this letter.

Below is a list of actions to consider to help protect our communities and slow the spread of COVID-19.

New resources have been added to this toolkit to help you protect your community during the “season for gathering” - a time when many North Carolinians will gather with friends, neighbors, and loved ones to celebrate holidays and honor family traditions.

1. Follow NCDHHS guidance for places of worship to protect your community.

2. Keep your congregation and faith community informed about prevention, testing, contact tracing, and community supports.

3. Urge community members to “Get Behind the Mask.”

  • Help amplify the “Slow the Spread, Get Behind the Mask” PSA, available in English and Spanish. As your community plans celebratory gatherings during this season, it is important to remember that the decision to wear a mask is not about “who you know, or how well you know them... get behind the mask.”
  • Help amplify the message by sharing the PSA, available in English and Spanish. Everyone who puts on a mask does so for a reason – they are protecting and respecting someone.
  • Share the “Whatever Your Reason, Get Behind the Mask” campaign widely, including videos, flyers, and social media graphics available in English and Spanish.

4. Encourage your congregation to download and use the mobile app SlowCOVIDNC.

  • Use the SlowCOVIDNC toolkit to promote the app. SlowCOVIDNC is an anonymous exposure notification application for your smart phones that can alert you if you have recently come into contact with another SlowCOVIDNC user who has tested positive.
  • Watch the SlowCOVIDNC Demonstration Video to learn more about how the application works.

5. Urge your congregation to get tested for COVID-19 if they have symptoms or think they’ve been exposed.

  • Use our sample email to encourage members of your congregation to get tested.
  • Help people find a nearby testing site using Find My Testing Place. If someone is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or thinks they have been exposed to COVID-19, then they should get tested.
  • Let people know that if they are uncertain about needing a test, they can use Check My Symptoms.
  • NEW! Download 30-second testing radio ads to share in your community, available in English and Spanish. These are great to include on any podcasts you may produce or ask your local radio station to play the PSA and help get the word out
  • Share widely that resources and support are available for anyone who needs to quarantine or isolate because of a positive COVID-19 test result or if they were exposed to the virus.

6. Host a testing event in your community.

7. Help connect people to resources and supports.

8. Distribute masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE).

9. Encourage people to participate in contact tracing.

10. Amplify messages on social media.