The Day of Giving for Veterans is an annual event that has been a truly rewarding experience for the volunteers who participate. Over thirty providers and support staff gathered at the Bright Now! Dental office in Olympia, Washington to host the 2018 Olympia Day of Giving this past weekend. Director of Market Operations, Nicole Witherbee, celebrated her birthday by helping deliver Smiles to veterans, and Dr. Brittany Nichols and her team drove three and a half hours to volunteer at this special event. This dedication and enthusiasm from the Olympia team helped provide dental care to 90 individuals, delivering nearly $70,000 in donated dentistry.
“Thank you, I am very appreciative of everything that was provided and all of the work and they did an amazing job,” says patient Jessica D. “I had a lot that needed to be done and I recently lost my job and put my kids’ needs first so this really helped me a lot.”
The Smiles for Everyone Foundation partnered with many different Veteran Outreach associations to refer veterans and their dependents to this free dental day. Celia Stephens was one of the individuals who heard about the event through these various networks. She says, “Thank you for giving to people who don’t have dental care… You will be blessed in return! I can’t thank you enough! It was very generous of all of you to sacrifice your weekend day for people in need. Especially for veterans and their spouses (which is me). It was my first time at your company. I don’t have a dentist and would like to come back because the staff helped me feel at ease.”
Many other individuals expressed their sincerest gratitude for the services provided. Michael and Arline Tabola live on a fixed income. When their granddaughter was struggling to pay for college, the couple decided to give up their dental insurance to help her pay for school. Michael heard about the Olympia Day of Giving through his veterans network, and the couple had also attended the event last year. Michael and Arline were so appreciative for the services provided that this year, they brought jars of homemade organic raspberry jam for all of the volunteers, along with a lovely note to thank the team.
David Stocks and his son, Eli, also attended the Day of Giving last year. David was in the Army for eight and a half years and fought for our country in Afghanistan. Now, his focus is on taking care of his son, and that includes getting his son the proper dental care that he needs. The volunteers loved Eli and his sweet personality!
The team looks forward to this event every year, but it is not the only time that they serve those in need. Later this year, Dr. Nichols will be traveling to Africa on a dental mission trip to serve individuals in some of the most disadvantaged communities. Through the Share Our Smiles program, the Smiles for Everyone Foundation has provided a grant of dental supplies to support Dr. Nichols on her mission. The Foundation looks forward to sharing more about her outreach.
The next Day of Giving will be hosted by Bright Now! Dental in Burbank, CA on May 6, 2018. Please visit www.smilesforeveryone.org for more information.