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The Smile Generation builds a playground

Nov. 8, 2010
Smile Generation builds playground and performs $80,000 in donated dentistry.
IRVINE, Calif. -- On October 31 more than 250 volunteers from The Smile Generation, Colette's Children's Home, organizers from KaBOOM! and residents of the Placentia community joined forces to build a new, safe playground for the women and children of Colette's as well as the surrounding community.

The Smile Generation is committed to bringing smiles to people's faces, so they partnered with KaBOOM! to create a place to play and a place to smile. The new playground's design is based on drawings created by children who participated in a Design Day event in September. Colette's Children's Home provides a transitional home for at-risk women and children and the new playground will provide nearly 100 children with a safe place to play annually.

"I can't express how grateful we are to have this playground. Today I've seen women with tears in their eyes because now their children have a place to play," said Billy O'Connell, executive director of Colette's. The playground is the first built by The Smile Generation, with KaBOOM! but was a landmark build as it was KaBOOM's 1,900th playground.

The playground was only one component of what the Smile Generation was doing. The Smile Generation set up an onsite dental clinic, and in only seven hours of operation provided members of the community with $80,000 worth of donated dental services.

"What an amazing event!" said Stephen Thorne, CEO & Founder of Pacific Dental Services and The Smile Generation. "Over 180 Pacific Dental Services/Smile Generation team members from five states gathered to build a playground and provide free dental services to over 100 people in the community, including the women and children sheltered at Colette's. From 9 a.m. until sundown, half the team worked tirelessly painting, moving dirt, digging holes, mixing cement, and installing a beautiful jungle gym. The other half provided free dental services, everything from general dentistry, to cleanings, to surgery, and even CEREC restorations. We want to thank our partner, Patterson Dental Supplies, for their donation for this event. Indeed, we helped some who are less fortunate, but the true blessing was all ours. The PDS/Smile Generation Team can't wait until we get to serve again. The real thanks goes to Colette's Children's Home for all they do in our community."

Added Dr. Noor Rahimi of Hastings Ranch Dental Group in Pasadena, "It was very rewarding to come here and see these patients. It was incredible what we were able to do in this alleyway. We had mobile X-ray units, mobile dental units, and CEREC machines accompanied by camping chairs and flashlights. It was the best of both worlds. I'm proud to be a part of the Smile Generation."

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