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'Give Kids a Smile' dental clinic underway

Kids showed up with smiles already on, ready to open wide at Eastern Gateway Community College's annual free dental clinic on Wednesday (WTOV).

Kids showed up with smiles already on, ready to open wide at Eastern Gateway Community College's annual free dental clinic on Wednesday.

Kids like 7-year-old Shaylee Bland and Kacey Kale spent the morning brushing up on their teeth-cleaning techniques. They're just two of more than 50 children benefiting from the 3-day free dental clinic called 'Give Kids a Smile' at EGCC.

Volunteer dentists and hygienists from across the Ohio Valley partner with students at the college to provide care and show kids in need why dental hygiene is so important.

"So they don't get cavities," Shaylee said.


Shaylee knows a lot already, in part because her mother, Emily, is one of the students helping out.

"It's important to be aware of what you need to be doing and passing it on to your kids" Emily said.

Just outside of the dental lab, there is a plaque on the wall in memory of Bernadette M. Green, the woman who started the program 14 years ago, along with the program director (Donna Robinson) at the time, and they've been helping hundreds of area children ever since.

"It is something we need to all fight for tighter and work all together for it," local orthodontist Doyoung Choi said.

It's Choi's first year volunteering, and she brought along her orthodontic assistant, who happens to be a graduate of the EGCC program.

"She's glad to be able to give back to the program, and the community, and I'm glad we could do this as a team," Choi said.

They all have the same goal in mind - creating smiles.

Wednesday is for the general exams, and anyone that needs fillings or further work will go back on Friday.

They still have space if your child is under the age of 12 and needs an appointment. If so, call (740) 266-9690.

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