|#23 Salem Boys and Girls Club
|August 17 – 21 and 24 – 26, 2015 by Carrie Peterson
The Tooth Taxi wrapped up its summer schedule with a very special visit to the Salem Boys and Girls Club. We always look forward to our visits here. This is an incredible facility that has many programs that benefit Salem’s youth. There is also a three operatory dental clinic in-house. This is where the Tooth Taxi team started our visit, doing screenings on 53 uninsured kids who had been identified at a health fair the Boys and Girls Club had put on earlier in the month. We are so appreciative of Health and Dental Services Director Jodi Loper. She puts a lot of work into identifying, scheduling and coordinating transportation for the kids who need our services the most. She also had her staff on hand to take x-rays and help set up and sterilize rooms. As part of the health fair Jodi is also in charge of gathering backpacks and school supplies to be given out to kids that need them. Not one family got past her without being asked if they had what they needed for the kids to start the school year. She is a true advocate for the health and wellness of the children and families here.
We were introduced to a family that had three children who all needed to have a significant amount of dental work done. Dr. Karli and the team were able to complete treatment on all three of the children and ended up providing $4,894 in dental services at no charge to them. A huge burden had been lifted off their shoulders and Mom was grateful that her kids would be starting off the school year cavity free.
The team also met a 13 year old boy who had such decayed six year molars that they we weren’t able to save them. Unfortunately, we had to extract three permanent teeth to decay. This situation is one we always hope to avoid. Our hope is that we can reach these children before their teeth get to this point. Sadly he was not alone here. Another boy, about the same age, also lost two permanent molars for the same reason.
Another one of our patients here was a middle school aged girl who had several cavities on her front teeth, affecting her confidence to show her smile. After we cleaned up the decay and restored her teeth she left with not only a healthier mouth but she was smiling!
Art and Music Director, Tim Knight, brought his class outside to enjoy the sunshine and to use sidewalk chalk to draw pictures inspired by our visit. The Tooth Taxi team served as judges and got to choose the top three drawings. We really enjoyed watching this class at work and what dental inspired masterpieces they were able to create.
Salem Boys and Girls Club
Ken Jundt, President, United Way of the Mid-Willamette Valley.
Sue Bloom, Director of Operations, Boys and Girls Club of Salem, Marion and Polk Counties.
Tim Sinatra, Executive Director at Boys and Girls Club of Salem, Marion and Polk Counties.
• 68% of students screened needed treatment
• 53 students screened
• 45 appointments in the van
• $26,553 value of free dental services provided
September 2008- August 26th 2015
• 16,657 students screened
• 16,920 students received oral hygiene education in the classroom
• 8,721 appointments in the van
• $4,925,445 value of free dental services provided