The Jonesboro, Ark, chapter of Smile for a Lifetime (S4L)recently awarded its 100th orthodontic scholarship to an Arkansasresident. In less than 3 years, the Jonesboro chapter has awarded morethan $600,000 in orthodontic scholarships to underserved children.

Smile for a Lifetime was started in 2008 by Benjamin Burris, DDS, MDS, owner of Braces for Burris,as a local nonprofit called Smile for a Lifetime Foundation. A yearlater, S4L became a national nonprofit. S4L equips orthodontists withresources and tools to develop their own local chapters.

To date, S4L includes 90 chapters in 30 states, and plans to increaseto 200 chapters, covering all 50 states and Canada, in the next 5years. Each chapter commits to serve at least six or more young peopleannually. By the end of 2012, at least 800 young people will havereceived more than $4 million in donated orthodontic services throughthe nonprofit.

Scholarship applicants are asked to fill out an application andprovide a letter of recommendation and a photograph of the applicant’steeth. Applicants work directly with the local S4L chapter and theorthodontist providing the free services.