Melissa Smith, the president and CEO of Wex Inc., first had the idea to offer her employees volunteer opportunities at Maine’s vaccine centers. She hoped that if volunteers were on hand to help to keep the center running smoothly, then doctors and nurses could focus on administering the vaccines. 

Since then, about 500 employees from companies such as Wex, L.L. Bean, Camden National Bank and the Portland Sea Dogs have signed up to volunteer. The center also has many volunteers waiting to be called in the coming weeks as they work to ramp up vaccine distribution.

Volunteers can do one of three roles, which include greeters, who manage check-in; flow managers, who help patients move through the process correctly; and observers, who stay with patients after their vaccination to make sure they are safe.

“They’re doing whatever is needed,” Smith said. “People are hungry to help and are grateful that they’re part of this experience.”

Read more about the volunteers’ efforts here.