Smilefaith Foundation visits children in Breathitt County
Can a new smile, bring a new outlook on life? That's a question volunteers with the Smilefaith Foundation are finding it easy to say 'YES' to.
The Smilefaith group is a non-profit organization dentists throughout America volunteer to work with, visiting areas of the country that need dental service most.
Friday, Saturday and Sunday, they'll be at the Happy Church on Quicksand, providing their services for free.
Generators buzzed in the Happy Church parking lot this weekend. "This is a perfect place to hold this because our ministry is primarily to poor children in Appalachia," John Jacobson, Administrative Pastor of the Happy Church said.
Kids stepped into the state of the art Smilefaith RV, not only to receive dental care, but to learn about taking care of their teeth.
"Lots of the kids aren't really educated that they need to be brushing their teeth twice a day, and a lot of the things they're eating and drinking aren't really healthy," said Dina Lunken, a Pediatric Dentist and volunteer from central Illinois.
One child even swore off Mountain Dew as the dentists cheered for the decision.
Tricia Sours, a Smilefaith clinic administrator believes a sparkling smile can go a long way, especially in poor areas of the United States.
"If your teeth are, you know, not in good shape, a lot of times your heart is not in good shape, your disposition is not in good shape," Sours said.
When the visits were finished, kids stepped off the van, and their smiles were reflected back at them by anxiously awaiting parents and grandparents.
"The grandmas and the moms that are able to get their kids teeth cleaned, and just the look on their faces... That's the special part of this ministry," Jacobson said.
They'll leave with life-long lessons, gleaming grins, and most importantly, confidence.
Smilefaith will be leaving Jackson on Sunday at 11, but they'll be back to the mountains soon. Click
to see their summer calendar so far.