Rotary club starts dental program for children of Ukrainian refugees, asking dentists to join

Dental program for refugees

The Rotary Club of Penticton Sunrise has donated $2,000 for a dental program for children of Ukrainian refugees, and is asking local dentists to join in.

The initiative, which is in partnership with the Ukraine Nightingale Project, is helping 18 families settle in the Penticton area, half of whose children don’t have dental care.

“One child […] was afraid to have to tell his mother that he had a toothache because he knew it costs money, and they were strapped for money,” said Susan McIver, publicist for the Rotary Club of Penticton Sunrise.

“And so, by the time he made it to the dentist, the dentist pulled the tooth and it was done pro bono because the tooth had to be pulled — it was that bad. “

Experts say that the lack of dental care during the war in Ukraine has led to compounding dental problems among children. As such, the rotary club is asking “dentists to consider providing their services on a pro bono or a reduced fee basis."

The Ukraine Nightingale Project has assisted roughly 50 Ukrainians with resettlement, including assisting with employment and housing.

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