Youth winners announced in vaccine awareness challenge

The County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency recently announced the seven winners of its 2021 “Our Health Is Worth a Shot!” challenge for county youths and young adults ages 12-24.

Entrants were asked to use video and visual art to help raise awareness about the importance of getting the COVID-19 vaccine. Targeted messaging allowed youths and young adults to learn how the COVID-19 vaccine works and understand why vaccination is so vital. All submissions were asked to include the phrases “Be COVIDSafe,” “Get Vaccinated” and “,” which is the county’s webpage for COVID-19 vaccination sites and other vaccine information.

Winners were awarded prizes, plus the opportunity to have their entries spotlighted and shared through county media communication outlets.

The Platinum winner of $1,200 is Bill Chen, 18, of Spring Valley, for the video, “The Perks of Getting Vaccinated.” A link to Puggytatoes, his YouTube channel, has been placed on the county website where all the winning entries are featured at See his other animations at

Gold winners received $400 each for their posters. They are Arthi S. Chandra, 13, of Carmel Valley, for “VAX FACTS: Stay Covid SAFE,” Christian Z. Kerbein, 16, of Escondido, for “Stop the Spread, Save the World,” and Sylvia Paredes, 19, of Chula Vista, for “There Will Be No Third Eye!”

Silver winners received $100 each for their posters. They are Marshall J. Gerber, 12, of Scripps Ranch, “The Defeat of Coronavirus,” Vivianna S. Lasley, 16, of Fallbrook, “mRNA for the Win,” and Hope J. Golden, 23, of San Marcos, “How mRNA Vaccines for Covid-19 Work.”

For more about COVID-19 vaccines, visit, which also has information on where the county has consolidated its vaccine centers. These no-cost vaccination sites offer shots for those ages 12 and older and allow people to choose which vaccine they wish from one of the three available in the United States: Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson. Appointments are not necessary, but are available if preferred. Those without access to a computer can call 2-1-1 to make an appointment at a county site.