Missions of Mercy (MOM)
Since 2008, the North Carolina Missions of Mercy clinic program has provided more than $35 million in dental services with over 65,000 patients treated.
- Portable free dental clinics conducted over a two-day period for adults from underserved households.
- Programs rotate throughout the state and each requires a host community.
- Vary in size – depending on funding and volunteers – and serve anywhere from 300 to 3,000 patients.
- Offer a one patient to one dentist ratio and all sizes include digital X-rays, instrument sterilization and supplies for each patient.
- Clinics are staffed by volunteer dentists, dental hygienists, dental assistants, lab techs, health professionals and general community volunteers from the host city and across the state.
- The set-up of a clinic takes place all day on a Thursday, and the actual clinic runs that Friday-Saturday, from 6 am-4 pm, both days.
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.
- Some clinics include a lab feature so that certain patients may be fitted with partial prosthetics (dentures) for missing teeth.
- 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 must-needed relief.
- New Bern (45-chair clinic): August 23-24, 2019
- Charlotte (100-chair clinic): October 18-19, 2019
- Plans are underway for one 45-chair clinic and one 100-chair clinic in 2020.
See the transformational work of these clinics:
“I lost my bottom teeth to a blastoma tumor five years ago – I have been through so much and felt like giving up. Then I began to feel hope when I noticed the MOM clinic advertised for the Bethlehem Church in Gastonia. The clinic has fitted me with bottom teeth. If it wasn’t for love and compassion, these people wouldn’t be here doing what they’re doing. I can’t thank you enough for offering us assistance that many of us cannot afford. It’s people like you that help people like me, who didn’t have hope.”
“I used to cover my mouth when I laughed or smiled. Not anymore! These are the best people I’ve ever encountered! Everyone has been professional and compassionate. My self-esteem is back! I’m truly grateful for the care I’ve received. It has changed my life.”
– JANET, treated and fitted with a partial prosthetic to replace her front teeth
GIVE KIDS A SMILE® (GKAS)
On the first Friday in February, as part of National Children’s Dental Health Month, thousands of dentists across the country will take time from their practices to help underserved children get the oral health care they need.
What is it?
- 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 their poor oral health.
- For 15 years, NC Dental Society member dentists have participated in the Give Kids A Smile program by providing complimentary screenings, treatment and oral health education. In 2019, we are aiming for participation among all 100 North Carolina counties, and we need your help.
Are you interested in hosting or participating in a Give Kids A Smile event?
USO OF NORTH CAROLINA DENTAL SUPPLY DRIVE
Help us provide oral health essentials for the men and women who serve and protect us. In 2018, 1,375 lbs. of dental supplies, as well as cash donations, were collected for military service men and women — thanks to you!
Donations are delivered in November, in conjunction with Veteran’s Day. We’ll send you everything you’ll need — including a prepaid shipping label — to send your donations back to our office. All you need to do is register below.
Through the Foundation’s Endowment, three or more $5,000 grants are awarded to nonprofit organizations and/or clinics that address one of more of the following objectives:
- Access to care
- Prevention education/intervention
- Treatment programs
Applications will not be reviewed until the October filing deadline.
SCHOOL-BASED SEALANT PILOT
We support the work of a dental sealant pilot program in two rural counties to:
- determine effectiveness of school-based preventative services provided by private practice staff.
- provide students opportunity for dental home with community dentists.
Funding provided by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of NC Foundation and The Duke Endowment.
DENTAL LIFELINE NETWORK (DLN)
We support the work of Dental Lifeline Network, which helps people with disabilities or who are elderly or medically fragile and have no other access to dental care. The North Carolina DLN program is part of a network in which services are available in all 50 states. Since its inception, North Carolina dentists and labs have donated almost $4.8 million worth of comprehensive treatment for 970 vulnerable people.