How one Vermonter is making sure her community is heard during the coronavirus pandemic



Show Thumbnails

Show Captions

Burlington recently launched an effort to ensure New Americans are getting the information they need about the new coronavirus. For Tiffanie Katsuva, this was the perfect opportunity to get even more involved with the people around her. 

Katsuva, who works at Spectrum Youth and Family Services, is among a small group of people who will participate in the Trusted Voices Community program. The city’s Community and Economic Development Office will oversee the program, intended “to improve two-way communication between the City and immigrant and refugee communities,” according to an April 24 mayor update

More: How multicultural help desks are serving students of color in the Burlington area

“I was like wow, this is great, this is amazing,” said Katsuva, who is from the Democratic Republic of Congo. 

Katsuva was trying to communicate important information to her community even before this Trusted Voices presented itself. She worked to drive home the severity of the pandemic to people around her and translated videos that relayed information about COVID-19, the official name of the disease related to the coronavirus that first started to affect people at the end of 2019. 

Katsuva, who describes herself as a people person, said she has been working with New Americans for the last few years. She misses the youths who she used to work with, a group she worries about and tries to regularly connect with over text and email. 

Through this new position Katsuva can work with individuals across all age groups. To her, touching base with the people around her isn’t work.

“Because I’m, just like, so used to doing it,” she said. “Sharing the information that I have with the community.” 

Contact Maleeha Syed at or 802-495-6595. Follow her on Twitter @MaleehaSyed89

All coverage of the coronavirus is being provided for free to our readers. Please consider supporting local journalism by subscribing to the Free Press.

Read or Share this story: