Keeping children safe, strengthening families, and building healthy communities since 1899.

Give Kids a Smile Dental Program

The Bethany for Children & Families Give Kids a Smile Dental Program provides preventative and restorative care to children who do not have access to oral health care.

What is the Give Kids a Smile Dental Program?

The Give Kids a Smile Dental Program is a community program aimed to increase access to dental care to underserved, low-income children. This program is endorsed by the American Dental Association (ADA) and the ADA Foundation and is coordinated locally by the Give Kids a Smile Board of Advisors. It is one of the many community services programs provided by Bethany for Children & Families.

What qualifies my child for these services?

Services are available to children ages three to 17 who are at or below 200% of the federal poverty level, who have never been to a dentist, who do not have dental insurance, or who have Medicaid but cannot find a provider who accepts that type of insurance.

Where does the program take place?

The Give Kids a Smile Dental Program takes place on a dental bus that travels directly to schools in Rock Island, Scott, and Clinton Counties. Licensed dental staff members provide exams in the mobile clinic. An additional 94 general dentists and specialists provide follow-up care in their offices.

What does my child receive while in the program?

Children who qualify for this program receive the following dental services on the dental busĀ free of charge:

  • Cleaning
  • Examination
  • Sealants (if eligible)
  • Fluoride treatment
  • Education to help improve oral health
Dentists or specialists and Community Health Care provide follow up care. These services may include:
  • Fillings
  • Extractions
  • Root Canals

How are referrals handled for this program?

School nurses send out a parent letter and consent form to children at their school. The completed forms are returned to the school nurse, who then gives them to the Program Supervisor. The forms are reviewed for eligibility and whether a child meets the requirements for the program.

Program Outcomes

The Give Kids a Smile Dental Program has been very successful since its inception in 2003.

  • Over 11,200 kids have received oral health care.
  • Over $2,100,000 of free services have been donated by the dentists and their staff.
  • Over 39% of the children screened return to the dentist for restorative work.
  • 5% to 10% of the children have had eight or more cavities to be fixed.

Contact Information

Evena Wash
Program Supervisor
(309) 736-6616
ewash@bethany-qc.org

Mary Ann McLeod
Division Director
Community Services
(309) 736-6645
mmcleod@bethany-qc.org

 

 

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