Our Programs

NCDSF Relief Fund

Dental Public Health Awards
and Endowment Grants

Give Kids A Smile®


  • Portable free dental clinics are conducted over a two-day period, offering complimentary care for adults from under-served households.
  • Programs rotate throughout the state, each requiring a host community.
  • Each clinic varies in size – depending on funding and volunteers – to serve anywhere from 300 to 3,000 patients.
  • Provides a one-to-one patient to dentist ratio, guaranteeing digital X-rays, instrument sterilization and supplies for each patient.
  • Clinics are staffed by volunteers, including dentists, dental hygienists, dental assistants, lab techs, health professionals, and community members.
  • Clinic set-up occurs on a Thursday, and patients are treated on a first come-first serve basis on Friday and Saturday, from 6 am-4 pm.

This model of access to care through volunteerism is the hallmark of the Foundation’s MOM clinic outreach program.

  • Dentists typically provide one major procedure per patient, such as an extraction or filling.
  • At all clinics, patients receive education on proper oral hygiene, as well as supplies to take home.
  • Patients who come to the clinic are in dire need of dental treatment, and most are in severe pain. Many have not seen a dentist in years, and some have never seen a dentist. These clinics provide much-needed relief with the help of dedicated volunteers.


GKAS is an annual volunteer program that provides free educational, preventative and restorative services to children from low-income families. Many of these children are unable to eat, sleep or pay attention in school, ultimately risking more serious health problems because of poor oral health.

As part of National Children’s Dental Health Month, the first Friday of every February is national Give Kids A Smile Day. Thousands of dentists across the country take time from their practices to help under-served children get the oral health care they need.

Can we count on you to host or participate in a Give Kids A Smile event?

For more than 15 years, NC Dental Society members have provided complimentary screenings, treatment and oral health education for deserving children. Each year, we aim for participation among all 100 North Carolina counties, and we need your help.

20190201 UNC-CH SOD GKAS-9


As part of the Give Kids A Smile initiative, we’ve put together a tailored lesson planactivitiesposters, and additional resources on how to keep your children’s smiles happy and healthy! Click the link below to access the kit.


Congratulations to the winners of the 2023 Dental Public Health Award and Endowment Grants!

2023 Endowment Grants Awarded to:

Moore Free and Charitable Clinic

NC Caring Dental Professionals

UNC’s Serving through Mobile dentistry to Inspire, Lift,
and Empower (SMILE) Clinic

Mountain Community Health Partnership

2023 Public Health Award Awarded to:

Veterans Smile Clinic

Each of the above organizations are helping increase dental access among their respective communities through direct services for uninsured populations as well as through education and awareness about dental care.

NCDS Foundation Relief Fund

The North Carolina Dental Society (NCDS) Foundation Relief Fund is a need-based program designed to provide temporary emergency relief to dentists who are not financially self-sustaining due to circumstances beyond their control. Please view the following Relief Fund Rules to see if you are eligible to apply.

Grants are awarded by the NCDS Foundation at the discretion of its Grant Review Committee (“Committee”), consistent with the Committee’s interpretation of Relief Fund Rules and subject to fund availability.

Application period: The application period is open.

To apply: Review the rules of the grant program and submit a complete application, along with supporting documentation to the NCDS Foundation as described in the application.

The level of financial detail on the application is required to show need-based funding and for compliance with the Foundation’s tax-exempt status. Personal information is kept confidential by the Grants Committee.

Dental Workforce Development Initiative

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a previously unheard-of disruption in the healthcare industry, both statewide and nationwide. A severe shortage of medical professionals means that the labor market for dental assistants and dental hygienists has tightened significantly. Many dentists in the state are finding it extremely difficult to fill these positions.

To address this challenge, the NC Dental Society Foundation is working with community colleges across the state to award need-based scholarships to students enrolled in Dental Assistant and Dental Hygiene programs. These scholarships assist students taking their Dental Assisting National Board exams, cover internship-related fees, and other out-of-pocket expenses. More than 60 scholarships have been awarded to date to students in Western NC through a grant from the Dogwood Health Trust. Scholarships continue to be distributed to students across all regions of NC.


School-Based Dental Programs

The NC Dental Society Foundation’s school-based dental programs aim to bridge the gap in oral healthcare for children attending Title 1 schools in North Carolina. By establishing on-site pediatric dental services at these schools, the Foundation aims to address disparities in access and ensure that every child receives the comprehensive dental care they deserve.

In addition to dental care, dentists can educate children on preventative care – from regular brushing and flossing to nutrition education to tobacco avoidance. Each participant will be given $5,000 to initiate a school-based program.

Click the button below to email Sharon D’Costa if you want to make a profound impact! You can also fill out and submit the application form here.

Caldwell West Lenoir Elementary

Interested in the events that help support these programs?