Grantee Blog 2020

Good Health is a Reason to Smile

It has been noted that good dental health influences overall health. Poor dental hygiene and unchecked infections can lead to more serious health conditions like diabetes and cardiovascular conditions. And yet, dentist visits are overlooked or out of reach for those who struggle with insurance or consistent medical care.

At GRACE we affirm the food choices that promote good dental health such such fiber-rich fruits and vegetables and dairy products. We provide fluoride enriched toothpaste, floss, and toothbrushes. Still, we know that’s only a small part of a strong preventative care plan and good over dental health.

Thanks to KinderSmile, the children of GRACE and their expectant mothers received through care each month prior to COVID. Since March 2020 we had to rely on promotional materials and donations of toiletries to spread the message of the importance of oral care. Fund dried up and many practitioners could not do the field work they once had.

We can now rejoice. KinderSmile and Overlook Dental have joined forces to provide a full service, bi-monthly dental clinic for all members of the GRACE community. KinderSmile takes care of the children. Overlook tends to the adults.

Dorrie Gagnon from KinderSmile explains, “Every visit can see anywhere from 15-20 kids. Our patients are newborns to age 18. We can see patients to age 21 depending on the need. Intervening at at the infant level and educating the young mother and father is extremely important so toddlers don’t end up with baby bottle decay. We show the patients the farm fresh food they get at GRACE and how it helps cut down on decay and educate them on on proper nutrition.

At each visit we provide cleanings, screenings, oral health education, toothbrushes, and toothpaste. Kindersmile and GRACE both help underserved communities. I donate all my time and love helping my own hometown. It was a no brainer to help Summit and GRACE.”

About the Grantee


GRACE stands for Giving and Receiving Assistance for our Community’s Essentials. While essentials can mean nutrient-dense food, we also aspire to enable the security, stabilization and success for all our community’s households.