Building Community: For Dentists, Giving Back Leads to Healthy Smiles

Over 200 volunteers came together, donating their time and dental expertise, to promote healthy smiles by building a playground at the Futuro Academy Public Charter School.

The Smile Generation® and KaBOOM! build Las Vegas playground to promote healthy smiles and healthy play.

Playgrounds are not the setting where you would expect to find a gathering of dentists on a Sunday afternoon. But for professional members of The Smile Generation, a referral service that connects patients with trusted dentists, the location was the perfect spot for their 13th service project with KaBOOM!

This specific event, which took place on October 20, 2018, was a partnership between The Smile Generation, Futuro Academy Public Charter School, Chicanos Por La Cause, Inc., and KaBOOM! the non-profit that works to develop safe PLAYces for children in mostly underserved communities.

The afternoon event brought members of dental practices from around the Irvine, California area to build participate with community members to complete a playground at an empty site on the Futuro Academy Campus. The executive director of Futuro Academy, Ignacio Prado, said. “Our families are so excited for a space that will promote safe play, fun, and a sense of community for our students.”

While some dentists took up the manual labor of building the physical structure for future generations of children to enjoy, others partnered with the Pacific Dental Services Foundation to operate their Mobile Dental Clinic.

All told, the dentists who volunteered their time totaled about $45,000 worth of services and treatments including cleanings, x-rays, scaling and root planing, restorations, and extractions.

The afternoon was one of many service events members of the Pacific Dental Services DSO participate in annually. Kyle Guerin, director of The Pacific Dental Services Foundation said, “We’re passionate about helping people get healthier and happier. What better way to do that than by building a playground to benefit the children of the local community?”

Futuro Academy and the children who will play on the newly constructed playground are displaying happy and healthy smiles thanks to this initiative.

Are there service opportunities out there for your organization? As you plan your 2019 practice goals, try to look for ways to engage your community in a way that will not only allow your employees to give back, but promote oral health!