The ADA Foundation launched its 21st year of the Give Kids A Smile program, offering free oral health and education services to underserved children.
The American Dental Association Foundation announced the 21st year of its Give Kids A Smile (GKAS) program, which officially launched at this year’s national kick-off event in St. Louis, Missouri where the program first began.
Since its national launch in 2003, GKAS volunteers have provided free oral health education and services to more than 7 million underserved children in the US.
In 2023, nearly 1,200 GKAS events are scheduled to take place throughout the country and it is estimated that approximately 300,000 underserved children will receive free oral health education, screenings, and preventive and restorative services, such as cleanings and fillings.
The services will be provided by 30,000 dentists and dental team members who volunteer at local GKAS events, using essential oral health care products donated by national sponsor, Colgate-Palmolive, as well as Henry Schein and its supplier partners.
“What began as a grassroots effort in St. Louis has become a national movement to ensure access to quality oral health care for all children,” said Craig Armstrong, DDS, chair, ADA Foundation. “The success of GKAS would not be possible without dental professionals who volunteer at local events each year in addition to national sponsors, Henry Schein, and Colgate. We are all involved for the right reason – to Give Kids A Smile and help children in need.”
Since the program’s inception, Henry Schein has contributed more than $20 million in oral health care products in partnership with its supplier partners. Team Schein has also provided thousands of hours preparing and sending more than 40,000 dental kits to ensure volunteers had the supplies to deliver much needed oral health care.
“Henry Schein is pleased to be an exclusive national partner of the ADAF’s signature access-to-care program Give Kids A Smile since its national launch in 2003,” said Dave Steck, vice president and general manager, US Dental Group, Henry Schein. “GKAS represents Henry Schein’s commitment to expand access to care to those who need it most.”