October 8, 2015 (St. Paul, MN) – A $60,000 grant from the Patterson Foundation is helping America’s Dentists Care Foundation (ADCF) fulfill its mission to provide dental care to the underserved. The funding helped to outfit a 45-chair trailer to transport equipment and other items to assist Mission of Mercy (MOM) dental clinics around the country. The ADCF’s “Mini MOM” trailer, added this year, enables MOM to host smaller-scale events in areas unable to support the usual 100-chair clinics due to venue size, funding or other factors.
“The recent Fairbanks (Alaska) and Chicago 45-chair clinics could only happen with a fully stocked, ready-to-roll trailer arriving at the event location,” said ADCF Executive Director Bill Blasing. “The Patterson Foundation grant allows us to make that happen with the necessary funding to round out our inventory and logistical needs.”
ADCF, which facilitates the delivery of charitable dental care, owns, maintains and delivers the dental equipment and expertise needed to help states hold dental clinics. Leaders in the dental profession coordinate the MOM events and volunteerism in their communities, with primarily local and regional dental professionals providing dental services. At the Fairbanks clinic, 880 patients received donated services valued at $850,000. The number of MOM events has steadily grown over the years; to date, 23 clinics are scheduled for 2016.
Patterson Foundation President Gary Johnson said, “The Foundation shares ADCF’s heartfelt desire and commitment to help those struggling to access and afford dental care. These patients represent diverse age groups and income levels, from the homeless and working poor, to middle class patients who don’t have employer-provided dental insurance.”
“Lack of affordable, accessible dental care is far too prevalent in America,” Blasing stated. He added that ADCF also hopes to be a catalyst for informing the public of the necessity of proper oral health in preventing potential disease in other parts of the body. “‘Thank you’” doesn’t quite seem to suffice in expressing ADCF’s appreciation for the Patterson Foundation and those involved in approving our grant request,” he said. “These folks truly understand our mission to help others and we are very grateful.”
At its September board meeting, the Patterson Foundation approved nearly $163,000 in grants to nonprofit organizations that operate charitable programs.