BELCHERTOWN, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- For months, we have heard from our Western Mass News viewers regarding their frustrations and challenges while trying to book COVID-19 vaccine appointments.
With all Bay state residents 16 and older eligible to receive the vaccine beginning Monday, we know this concern is growing.
Western Mass News spoke with one local mother who faced these booking problems first hand, and now she wants to help you.
It all started when Lindsey Fiero tried to book a vaccine appointment for her mom. It took her weeks to finally secure a time slot. Now known as the vaccine fairy, she is giving back to help people both here in western Mass. and across the state.
Lindsey Fiero, a Belchertown single mom of two, began booking COVID-19 vaccine appointments for her family and friends when she saw others in the community struggling to get appointments themselves.
“I was just like I can help you, and I started getting messages from people in the community, and it just kind of took off from there. It got way bigger than I ever thought it was going to get,” Fiero explained.
On Thursdays, when appointments became available, Fiero would spend hours refreshing the website for openings.
But when she had finally checked off all of the names on her list, she decided she wasn’t going to stop helping.
“And I had seen on the Belchertown forum there were so many people that were like somebody help me. I can't figure this out. People were frustrated and scared, and so that’s when I made it public,” Fiero said.
Now Fiero, who is known as the vaccine fairy, has helped over 500 people here in western Mass., across the state, and even some in Connecticut, including many elderly people or those who struggle with technology or internet access.
“At any given day, I had 30 to 40 people on my list; now they just pop up randomly throughout the day, and I'm able to get them in two minutes done,” Fiero said.
Fiero said she doesn’t see her efforts ending anytime soon.
“I’m here to help people as long as people need help,” Fiero said.
One man, she was able to help book appointments for was so grateful that he created a GoFundMe page to send Fiero and her two young children to Disney next month.
“I didn't want anything in return. I didn't expect anything in return. I just wanted to help people, and hearing people say that the relief I’ve given their family and just how grateful they were was enough to make me want to keep going,” Fiero said.
If you are struggling to book a COVID-19 vaccine appointment for yourself or someone you know, Fiero is happy to help.