The Tom’s of Maine program devoted to increasing access to quality dental care has made 200,000 patient visits possible. The nonprofit Kids Smiles is among 35 groups that have received funding. CEO Cheryl Janssen says the money is changing lives, “Tom’s really helps us care for our most vulnerable children.”
Like other Dental Health for All award recipients, Kids Smiles supports families that are struggling to make ends meet and don’t have the luxury of quality dental care to keep them from sinking into serious health problems. Kids Smiles provides clinical services for over 60,000 patients in Philadelphia and Washington D.C., and goes deep into communities to reach children with screenings, cleanings, X-rays, exams and awareness.
“Through Dental Health for All, Tom’s has awarded Kids Smiles $40,000 to boost the momentum behind our prevention and education services,” Janssen explains. “The funding is a safety net for our staff and their focus on keeping children in poverty from falling through the cracks. The money keeps us going, which is critical because the need never stops.”
You might be surprised to know that tooth decay is the most common childhood disease in the U.S. Three out of five kids are affected by it. And when you consider that more than 16 million children don’t have access to basic dental care, you can see why Dental Health for All is so meaningful, especially in highly populated areas.
Janssen believes Tom’s of Maine is committed to helping all Americans get oral health care services. “Tom’s pays it forward. That’s special. The people who make their products really believe in doing good in the world.”
The Dental Health for All program has reached smiles in need for ten years and the tradition continues in 2013. Find out how your child’s tooth fairy art could create new opportunities for a clinic close to your home. A little coloring could really make a big difference where it counts.