Patterson Companies Inc, St Paul, Minn, recently announced cash and in-kind donations made to Oral Health America (OHA) totaling $268,000 to date in 2016. These donations support several OHA initiatives to improve the oral and overall health of children and youth in underserved communities.

Most recently, Patterson Companies made a $65,000 donation to expand the Smiles Across America (SAA) Program and support OHA’s Human-Centered Design pilot project. The project goal is to inspire communities and strengthen the delivery of oral health preventive services to children in school-based settings. In the 2014-2015 school year, OHA reached 400,000 at-risk children with oral health screenings, education, and sealants through the Smiles Across America program.

“Patterson has a history of giving back to the community, with a focus on increasing access to quality dental care for people in need,” said Ann B. Gugino, executive vice president and chief financial officer of Patterson Companies. “We are honored to continue to support OHA and share in their commitment to connecting communities with resources to drive access to oral health care.”

Patterson’s donations help support other OHA programs, including: A Future to Smile About (AFTSA), a joint campaign effort to raise funds for Smiles Across America; in-kind support for OHA’s annual Fall for Smiles campaign; and sponsorship of OHA’s Annual Gala & Benefit.

“The generous contributions we have received from Patterson allow us to make an even greater impact in our communities,” said Beth Truett, president and chief executive officer of Oral Health America. “Through their support, we will build on our previous successes and continue moving the needle forward.”