Australasian Dental Practice

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01 Sep 2008 | Australasian Dental Practice

news > Spectrum > Page 22

Salvation Army partners with Colgate to help children in need

The Salvation Army has joined Bright Smiles, a national pilot program sponsored by Colgate, to recruit hundreds of volunteer dentists to provide children in need with dental care.

The global charity organisation and support services provider will identify children from their existing network who have poor oral health and will facilitate treatment with volunteer dental practitioners.

Unfortunately receiving necessary dental care is not a reality for underprivileged children, according to Major Marina Randall, Community Services Consultant for The Salvation Army.

"We've seen how a child's poor dental health can affect so many other aspects of their life, from their health and diet through to general selfesteem and sleep patterns," Major Randall said. "When it affects their sleep it can also affect their concentration levels and school work.

"We were extremely impressed with what the Bright Smiles initiative was trying to achieve and jumped at the chance to be involved. We believe that improving the dental health of children who really need it could turn some lives around," Major Randall concluded.

Dr Barbara Shearer of Colgate said the partnership with The Salvation Army was an obvious choice for Bright Smiles due to the organisation's trusted reputation, national reach and understanding of who the underprivileged children are throughout Australia.

"We have found the assistance of The Salvation Army and the dental community at large truly inspiring and hope Bright Smiles will put a healthy smile back on the faces of hundreds of kids who need dental care," Dr Shearer said.

Launched as part of Colgate Oral Health Month, Bright Smiles is a national pilot program developed by Colgate and the social change campaigner Jon Dee.

Dentists from all over Australia have been registering their interest for involvement in Bright Smiles and over the coming weeks campaign organisers will be utilising the critical help of The Salvation Army to nominate hundreds of children in need to arrange free of charge dental treatment.

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