Bordeaux (AFP)

"It's easy" and "here, it's a bit at home": for Beauty and Kamel, the obstacles to vaccination fall at the Restos du Coeur de Bordeaux which offer injections at the same time as food distribution, a way to go "as close as possible" to a "population under the radar".

Initially a little skeptical about the vaccine, Beauty, a 28-year-old Nigerian, took the plunge: "Here, we can talk, discuss with people, it's less scary and it's easy for me, it's nearby. ", explains this beneficiary-volunteer of Restos du coeur, which provides food aid to 600 families.

It's distribution day in Bordeaux near the train station, but this Tuesday, two nurses, Martine and Sarah, are also there to vaccinate the volunteers: one is installed in the kitchen while her colleague stings behind a wicker screen, placed there for more privacy.

With the pandemic, the Restos du Coeur, a network of 2,000 centers at the forefront of great precariousness, signed a national agreement with the ARS (Regional Health Agencies) to offer beneficiaries to leave not only a food package but also a health pass.

"We facilitate access to vaccination but we do not encourage", underlines the president of the "Restaurants" of Gironde Muriel Quilichini, specifying that the Bordeaux center offers an "unconditional" service, to beneficiaries as well as to non-beneficiaries of food aid.

"In July, we realized that there was a demand for vaccination but people did not know how to do it, who to contact (...) In 72 hours, we created this vaccination center" , explains nurse Martine Darzacq.

A nurse injects a dose of Pfizer vaccine against Covid-19 into a patient on August 31, 2021 at Restos du Coeur de Bordeaux MEHDI FEDOUACH AFP

The operation was set up in partnership with the Café santé solidaire, which it created five years ago, to offer the most vulnerable, within the Restaurants themselves, a place of discussion on health, under the aegis of the Department.

- "trust" -

For this very poor public, the obstacles to vaccination can be multiple: in addition to the language barrier, "these are people who are perhaps not registered in a usual health course, or quite simply not having access. digital, or who lack information, "explains Muriel Quilichini.

In short, "a population a little under the radar".

This Tuesday, around 70 first and second dose injections were planned but the center also welcomes without an appointment.

Martine and Sarah see undocumented migrants, workers in their thirties sent by a reception center for asylum seekers (Cada), home food deliverers, who have given themselves the word, young adults in great precariousness.

A nurse calls a patient to vaccinate him against Covid-19, August 31, 2021 at the Restos du Coeur de Bordeaux MEHDI FEDOUACH AFP

People on the street also like the 46-year-old Pole that nurse Martine approached on a sidewalk last week.

On a piece of paper, she had just scribbled "vaccination proposal".

By coming here, the candidates for vaccination find heads of well-known volunteers, "a relationship of trust" which facilitates the path to vaccination, underlines the nurse who pricked her first patients on July 27 and will receive more in September.

"It is there and it is immediately, and then here, they are a little at home", summarizes the volunteer Charles Destizons.

A doctor receives a patient before vaccinating him against Covid-19, August 31, 2021 at the Restos du Coeur de Bordeaux MEHDI FEDOUACH AFP

Kamel, a 42-year-old Tunisian sans-papiers, made an appointment because "it's easy here".

But if he made up his mind, it was also because he was looking for discretion.

"People who have no paper are always a little afraid," he slips.

© 2021 AFP

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