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Band Together Against the Flu

More than a dozen Minnesota artists are lending their talents in a new campaign launched by CCF and the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) to encourage everyone to ‘band together against the flu’ this year. With cases of COVID-19 on the rise, health officials are encouraging widespread flu vaccination to prevent the spread of the influenza virus.

The campaign showcases local artists’ designs featured on normally pale-peach bandages. The result is a vibrant collection of whimsical patterns, geometric shapes, bright colors and soft hues, as well as Minnesota state themes, landscapes and musical motifs.

The artwork will be shown on billboards, in digital and social media, and in print, including the Star Tribune. A bandage coloring sheet was added to the Thanksgiving issue which features the annual “Oh, You Turkey” coloring page.

“Similar to the iconic ‘I voted’ sticker, we wanted a way to turn the mundane task of getting a flu shot into something that could give people a sense of communal pride for participating,” explains Molly Hull, Director of Brand Development at CCF.

“Flu can be serious, even for people who are healthy, so getting vaccinated is one of the best ways to help us keep people from getting sick with flu. That is especially important this year with COVID-19 circulating,” says Andrea Ahneman, Communications and Social Media Planner at MDH.

CCF reached out to area artists inviting them to submit their designs.

“The immediate outpouring of artist-intrigue was truly inspiring, and within hours, our first artist eagerly offered their work,” Hull says.

The artists are supplying their time and talents for free. The list of contributors includes Cadex Herrera, She She, Marlena Myles, Neal Peterson and Adam Turman, among others.

“As an art activist whose work centers around advocating for social justice for black and indigenous people, people of color and immigrants, who are currently the most vulnerable communities, I wanted to do my part by participating in the MDH flu shot campaign to encourage everyone to stay healthy through this flu season, so that we can collectively face the challenges that lie ahead,” says Cadex Herrera, St. Paul artist.

Hull adds that art has played a significant role in helping communities heal in 2020, so applying art to a bandage, which also helps heal, was a natural fit.

The newly designed bandages will not be available to the public this year, but CCF hopes to partner with a Minnesota company to manufacture and distribute the decorated strips in the future.

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