“One of the most amazing experiences I’ll remember from my time at dental school,” is how Michelle Hsiao, DDS Class of 2016, described her recent experience caring for the underserved at Project Homeless Connect (PHC) in San Francisco.
Michelle was just one of the many volunteer students, faculty and staff who donated their time and skills over spring break to care for people in need. Their efforts make an impressive display of philanthropy, humanism, leadership, collaboration and other core values we hold high at the Dugoni School.
For a decade, our school has been a lead dental provider at Project Homeless Connect. On March 23, more than 25 school volunteers and alumni conducted free dental screenings, provided basic oral healthcare, and shared oral health information to nearly 150 working poor and homeless individuals. Thirty people were brought back to the dental school’s Oral Surgery clinic for additional same-day care provided by a team of volunteers. Michelle is right – it’s an amazing experience for all involved. Read more and see pictures here.
Our community involvement over spring break spanned all the way to Fiji. During four days in Moala Village, 22 students, seven dentists, and an additional spouse/volunteer cared for more than 300 individuals, treated and/or restored almost 1,100 tooth surfaces, extracted 259 teeth, performed one root canal, instructed hundreds of people in brushing and flossing, and educated Fijians on caries management by risk assessment (CAMBRA). Students creatively raised their own funds to help pay for the trip by selling baked goods, Dugoni School bow-ties, hot dogs and snacks during lunchtime fundraisers.
Looking ahead, many of our alumni in Southern California will be joining the contingent of Dugoni School volunteers at the California Dental Association’s “CDA Cares” event in Ventura, April 16-17. We look forward to another opportunity to partner with the CDA on these events that make a difference in the lives of so many people in local communities. Click here to learn more about volunteering.
Thank you to all of the members of the Dugoni School family, including many of you, who give of your time, talents and other resources. This spirit of community involvement and our impact on thousands of underserved people each year makes the Dugoni School a remarkable force for good in the world. If you’re ever interested in joining or financially supporting one of our volunteer “expeditions” in a local community, or around the world, please stay in touch!