Volunteers and dental companies deliver care to underserved children across the United States

Working with the American Dental Association to guarantee that young people in need have access to care, Dexis, Henry Schein Dental, and Colgate provide assistance for Give Kids A Smile for the 12th consecutive year.

Feb 20th, 2015
Content Dam Diq Online Articles 2015 02 Kkg Gkas Photo Thumbnail

Working with the American Dental Association to guarantee that young people in need have access to care, Dexis, Henry Schein Dental, and Colgate provide assistance for Give Kids A Smile for the 12th consecutive year.

As long-time advocates of oral health, Dexis — a member of KaVo Kerr Group — Henry Schein Dental, and Colgate are proud to announce their ongoing support of the American Dental Association’s Give Kids A Smile (GKAS) program. Launched with the mission to demonstrate dentistry’s commitment to addressing access to care issues; raise awareness of the high levels of oral disease among children, primarily from low income families; and urge policymakers to increase funding for children’s oral health, GKAS events enable volunteer dental teams across the country to provide free dental care, screenings, and education to children in need.

Michele Penrose, director of global professional relations and development for Henry Schein Inc.; Candy Ross, director of industry and professional relations, dental technologies, North America for KaVo Kerr Group; and Nicole Stoufflet-Catral, RDJ, MS, manager, health education at the ADA’s corporate relations and strategic marketing alliances office of the executive director.
Coinciding with the start of the ADA’s National Children’s Dental Health Month (NCDHM), the first Friday in February heralds the kickoff for the GKAS program, which delivers dental care to children all over the country. Services from X-rays and cleanings to restorative and oral surgery are provided to hundreds of thousands of kids that may otherwise go untreated.

Once held for a single weekend, GKAS events now begin in the first week of February and continue for months thereafter, thus increasing the number of children that can be accommodated. Because of the generosity of volunteers and corporate partners, 2015 participation —recorded as of Thursday, February 19, 2015 — includes 1,405 events, an estimated 329,000 children served, 8,000 participating dentists and an additional 25,768 volunteers.

Originally held as a single event in one location — St. Louis, Missouri — volunteers treated 400 children. Dexis was one of the founding sponsors of GKAS. Dr. Jeffery Dalin, a long-time Dexis owner and founder of GKAS in St. Louis, was instrumental in getting Dexis on board with the ADA. GKAS now falls under the broader efforts of the ADA Foundation.

“The company felt then and continues to believe today, that it is our corporate responsibility to give back to the profession. It has been so rewarding to work with the ADA on such a worthy cause,” stated Candy Ross, director of industry and professional relations, dental technologies, North America for KaVo Kerr Group; long-standing member of the GKAS advisory committee; and vice president of grants for the ADA Foundation executive committee. “I feel very fortunate to work with a company that not only supports my role on the boards of these wonderful organizations but supports the activities they make possible.

Since the inception of GKAS, the ADA reports that more than 4.2 million children have received treatment to improve their oral and general health through its efforts.

For more information on the GKAS program, including the latest statistics, information on its background and sponsors, and how to volunteer, visit www.ada.org.

More in Clinical