More than 30 members of the University of Louisville’s Student National Dental Association (SNDA) gave 20 local underserved children an opportunity to shop for gifts, take part in holiday festivities and create relationships with future dental professionals.
Dental student SNDA member Darius Sanford says ‘Shop with a Dentist’ gives kids a fun experience, along with information about budgeting and proper oral hygiene.
“We hope this short-term mentorship experience helped lessen the fear some children have of going to the dentist. It provides us a way to give back to our community and provides a meaningful holiday experience for children in need,” Sanford said.
The students hosted a brief morning program this week at the Novak Center for Children’s Health that included breakfast, coloring and budgeting activities and oral hygiene instruction.
Following the program, each child and UofL School of Dentistry student mentor traveled by bus to a local retailer for a holiday shopping experience.
The Wheatley Elementary School children were selected for the program by a family engagement specialist based on need. UofL School of Dentistry students held school-wide fundraisers to support the Shop with a Dentist program.