BREVARD, N.C. (May 11, 2017) – The Delta Dental Foundation (DDF) awarded a $2,500 Smiles for Kids grant to the Transylvania County Department of Public Health. This grant will help to deliver educational materials and oral care to uninsured children from birth to age 12 through the Healthy Smiles dental program. The program utilizes a comprehensive approach to oral hygiene through preventative care and treatment.
The Healthy Smiles program is a success-driven, collaborative project between the Transylvania Department of Public Health, the North Carolina Oral Health Section, local dental practices, regional hospitals, childcare centers and elementary schools. The program’s two main goals are to eliminate cavities in children from birth to age 12 and to improve access to dental care for children. By visiting children at childcare centers and elementary schools free of charge, the program removes barriers that parents may face when their children need dental treatment.
“On behalf of Transylvania Public Health, I would like to thank the Delta Dental Foundation for their support,” said Elaine Russell, dental director of the Transylvania County Department of Public Health. “Without their financial assistance, this agency would not be able to offer preventive dental education to childcare centers and preschools. Together, we are able to improve the dental health of our community’s children.”
The Delta Dental Foundation focuses on ensuring that children and adults in North Carolina receive high-quality oral health education and dental care. The grant awarded to the Transylvania County Department of Public Health is one of 21 grants totaling $45,000 given to North Carolina oral health organizations and programs. This is the third year that the Transylvania County Department of Public Health has been awarded a Smiles for Kids grant. Grant recipients were selected based on various criteria, including the number of at-risk children served, the uniqueness of the program, the level of community involvement in the program and the ability to measure results.
“Tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease today, and children in the United States miss a combined 51 million hours of school every year due dental issues,” said Curt Ladig, president and CEO of Delta Dental of North Carolina. “The Delta Dental Foundation’s grant to the Transylvania County Department of Public Health will help provide the education and access to dental care that underserved children need in order to be healthy and show up for school ready to learn.”
About Delta Dental of North Carolina
Delta Dental of North Carolina is a nonprofit dental service corporation created in 1970 to provide dental benefits throughout the state. Its mission is to improve the oral health of the communities it serves. It does so by providing affordable access to oral health care with the largest network of providers, including two out of every three dentists, in North Carolina.
About the Delta Dental Foundation
The Delta Dental Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization established in 1980, which serves as the philanthropic arm of Delta Dental of Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and North Carolina. The foundation’s goals are to support education and research for the advancement of dental science, and to promote the oral health of the public through education and service activities, particularly for those with special needs. For more information, visit www.deltadentalnc.com.
About Transylvania County Department of Public Health
The Transylvania County Department of Public Health is dedicated to improving and protecting the health of all people in Transylvania County by preventing disease and injury, promoting and encouraging healthy behaviors, protecting against environmental hazards, ensuring access to needed services and nutritious foods, and responding to outbreaks and disasters. To learn more, visit www.transylvaniahealth.org.
Contact: Blair Kelly