Community Groups Teaming Up to Help Provide COVID Tests in East San Jose

Three neighborhood associations are working together to help seniors living in one of San Jose's hardest hit areas

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A South Bay community is pulling together to help provide COVID tests in a San Jose neighborhood hit hard by the pandemic.

Three neighborhood associations have teamed up to help the Mayfair community in East San Jose. The Mayfair, Cassell and Plata Arroyo neighborhood associations have set up shop in front of the Mayfair Community Center to hand out free COVID home test kits to seniors and families.

Organizers used the free lunch giveaway at the community center as a chance to hand out the test kits.

Judy Alvarez, a senior resident in the community, said she is grateful for the group.

The public health department and the agency known as Community Health Partnership are providing the hard-to-find kits. But the gesture came with a few bumps along the way.

The community center last week initially told the group they could not hand out the kits in front of the facility.

"We've been ignored for so long," said Danny Garza, Plata Arroyo Neighborhood Association president. "And we're doing it because of that. I hope the city and the county open their eyes and realize that they need to use us to get these issues and other community issues out."

The center's stance changed after NBC Bay Area contacted San Jose City Hall, which stated there was miscommunication and they welcome the partnerships with the groups.

"We do value our community volunteers and we ask them to help us reach our marginalized communities and our communities that have been impacted the most by COVID," San Jose spokeswoman Carolina Camarena said.

The community leaders said they will be back again on Friday to give their elderly neighbors the tools they need to fight the pandemic.

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