Earlier this year, the American Dental Association held its 20th Annual GKAS program, which was a resounding success. Over the years, the Give Kids a Smile program has provided over seven million underserved kids in the U.S. with free oral health care services and education. Not everyone has easy access to a dentist like Dr. Sharma, and the program aims to overcome this barrier.
Nearly a Thousand Events
Instead of a single GKAS event, there are typically hundreds every year. There are almost 1,000 of these events scheduled for 2022. They will occur throughout the country. These events will provide oral health preventative and restorative services and education to underserved children numbering around 300,000. These dental services include fillings and cleanings.
Volunteers and Sponsors Are to Thank
The Give Kids a Smile program relies on the efforts of volunteers who donate their time and expertise to help underserved children. In 2022, there will be more than 20,000 volunteers on the dental team alone. This includes about 5,000 volunteer dentists.
Various corporate sponsors have also contributed significantly. For example, Henry Schein, Inc., Colgate-Palmolive, and its supplier partners have donated around 3,200 kits of essential products for oral health care. Henry Schein has been the exclusive sponsor providing professional products for all 20 years of the GKAS program. Colgate-Palmolive has been the only sponsor of the program’s health and hygiene consumer products since 2007.
Next time you have a dental appointment, think about how lucky you are to have access to oral healthcare. The GKAS program is just one way dentists and dental organizations are working to bridge the gap and provide care to those who currently don’t have access.
If you want to learn more or schedule an appointment with our dental office in Downtown Chicago, contact us today.