Here’s an initiative worth grinning about. Future Smiles, Southern Nevada’s largest school-based preventive and restorative dental health program, received a $70,000 grant from the Delta Dental Community Care Foundation to help fund the hiring of a dentist, dental assistants and a community dental health coordinator for the Nevada Women’s Philanthropy Dental Wellness Center.
Future Smiles aims to help make the NWP Philanthropy Dental Wellness Center a dental home for underserved children and youth in the Las Vegas Valley and bring comprehensive dental care to 650 students.
“Through the partnership with the Delta Dental Community Care Foundation, Future Smiles sets the stage for an innovative school-based dental home model that features programs in education, prevention, and restorative care,” Future Smiles founder and Executive Director Terri Chandler said. “We could not be more grateful for this opportunity.”
Over the past three years, Future Smiles, a Las Vegas-based nonprofit agency, has received $270,000 in grants from the Delta Dental Community Care Foundation. The 2017 and 2018 grants were for education and prevention; the 2019 grant is for restorative services.
The Delta Dental Community Care Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Delta Dental of California and its affiliates, has provided more than $39 million in funding since its inception in 2011 to support increased access to quality dental care, oral health education, and to advance research across the enterprise’s 15 state service area, and the District of Columbia.
The Delta Dental Community Care Foundation annually provides grants to fund community oral health programs and education; dental clinic services for the underserved, low-income and/or uninsured people; dental and dental hygiene student scholarships; local events and programs for underprivileged children and adults; and scientific research related to oral health.
“The case management knowledge base which is the foundation of the (Community Dental Health Coordinator) program will enable critical follow-up for children within the sealant program to experience treatment plan completion,” Jane Grover, the director of the Council for Advocacy for Access and Prevention for the American Dental Association, wrote in a letter supporting Future Smiles’ grant request.
Since its 2009 inception, Future Smiles has provided dental services at low or no cost to more than 100,000 at-risk children in Southern Nevada. No children are turned away, even if they lack insurance.
The Nevada Women’s Philanthropy Dental Wellness Center at Elaine P. Wynn Elementary School, funded by NWP’s $465,000 2018 Impact Grant, was created to deliver comprehensive dental treatment to at-risk schoolchildren enrolled in the Clark County School District and their siblings. It opened in March.
About Future Smiles
The mission of Future Smiles is to increase access to dental health care for underserved populations. Founded in 2009, Future Smiles is Southern Nevada’s largest school-based preventive and restorative dental health program directly serving more than 6,000 students annually. Its goal is to improve overall health, which includes oral health, by eliminating health care barriers ending dental pain and suffering for Southern Nevada’s youth. To learn more about Future Smiles, visit www.futuresmiles.net.