The pandemic has caused worldwide disruption to almost every aspect of life, but the impact has been especially hard for children living in low-income homes. Organizations that provide services for these children have faced numerous obstacles to ensure kids stay healthy and continue learning. At the height of the shutdown, millions of kids living in communities with limited access to dental care – some of whom had already been awaiting treatment for a year or more – faced more delays as safety net dental clinics were forced to close their doors.
“We wrapped up our fiscal year in June of 2020 wondering how many of our program members would survive the shutdown,” said Jill Malmgren of America’s ToothFairy, a Foundation that contributes support for their Dental Resource Program (DRP) members, nonprofit dental clinics providing access to care and preventive services to children with restricted access. Once they were allowed to reopen, many of the clinics were overwhelmed with patient backlogs, reduced staff and increased costs, and limited access to the PPE and other equipment needed to provide care to the families that needed help the most.
Despite these obstacles, within a year the DRP members reported serving 20% more kids than in a typical year. 50 program members provided dental treatment and/or education to more than 600,000 children – a new record for America’s ToothFairy – and oral health instruction to nearly 325,000 caregivers.
“We all had to get creative and do more with less,” Malmgren added, “but we were thrilled about what our members accomplished during an exceptionally challenging time.”
No one was more pleased than TSC EcoSolutions President, Dick Sanders. A longstanding supporter of America’s ToothFairy, TSC had increased their support to be Title Sponsors of the Dental Resource Program just months before the pandemic hit.
“Having served on the Board of America’s ToothFairy over the last two years I have seen first-hand how this team has rallied to help our members through this difficult trial,” Sanders said. “They listen to the needs of our member clinics and work with our corporate partners to fill those needs.” Over the last year, America’s ToothFairy distributed more than $665,000 in grants and donated dental supplies and equipment.
“Without the donated dental materials received from America's ToothFairy and its partners, our school-based sealant program would not be possible,” said Laura Borud, Executive Director at Just Kids Dental, a program member located in Two Harbors, Minnesota. “The cost of goods has drastically increased as a result of COVID-19. Receiving donated dental materials helps ensure that we have the resources needed to provide school-based dental services to every child in need, all of which are provided at no cost to families.”
TSC EcoSolutions LLC is a national company with services throughout the United States. TSC delivers timely, trustworthy, and transparent service for dental practices seeking to recycle removed dental crowns through its division, CrownBuyers. Learn more at CrownBuyers.com.