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An estimated 300 youth in need of dental care from Cleveland's John Raper and Scranton Elementary Schools, and a Cleveland Boys & Girls Club, will receive free dental care at the seventh annual Give Kids A Smile (GKAS) program in Cleveland on Friday, Feb. 6, 2009. This day-long event will be held at the Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine dental clinic. In addition, 40 children from a Cleveland HeadStart program will receive free restorative care in the Tapper Pediatric Dental Center in Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital.
Before the dental care starts at 10 a.m., the Ohio Dental Association will commemorate Ohio's GKAS programs with a special program hosted by the university and dental school. Speakers include Dr. Alvin Jackson, director of the Ohio Department of Health; Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson; president of Case Western Reserve University, Barbara Snyder, and others. Other special guests include Ohio legislators, educators and deputy administrators within the Cleveland School district, representatives from GKAS national sponsors Henry Schein Dental and Colgate, and the Colgate Bright Smiles Bright Futures mobile dental van and team.
Nearly 100 GKAS events will be held in Ohio this day, some in private dental offices, many in partnership with Ohio dental schools, dental auxiliary programs and dental clinics throughout the state. Over 1,600 volunteers are expected to provide free dental services to an estimated 20,000 underserved Ohio children with an anticipated dollar value in excess of $1.1 million. Many events are ongoing throughout the school year.