Bupa Dental Care’s recent ‘Super Saturday’ initiative has raised £7,500 for Dentaid, enabling the dental charity to establish a pilot oral health education scheme in Toowa Primary School, Lugazi, Uganda.
'Super Saturday' took place earlier in 2022 and saw practices across the UK and the Republic of Ireland open their doors for a special day of community engagement, fun, and quality dental care.
Thanks to the donation, the pilot scheme is the next step in developing the school’s oral health education programme, which ultimately will form a major part of Dentaid’s Ugandan dental health care activity.
The scheme has already seen Ugandan public dental health officers visiting the school to screen all the children for any dental issues and establish an oral health programme, supported by Dentaid volunteers.
Children at the school now clean their teeth at the start and end of each school day with toothbrushes and toothpaste provided by Dentaid, with training on proper brushing provided to children and teachers by volunteers. Children identified as having dental issues have received the necessary treatment, ranging from a simple scale to fillings and extractions.
To support the initiative in the long term, Dentaid will replenish supplies of toothbrushes and toothpaste every three months. Public dental health officers and Dentaid volunteers will return to the school in September and December to rescreen the children for any further treatments needed, as well as to quantify the improvement in dental health.
Dentaid’s fundraising manager, Peter Burch said, “Thanks to Bupa Dental Care’s 'Super Saturday' initiative, we will be able to fund an array of overseas projects that really will change lives. This includes the oral health programme at Toowa Primary School, where children will learn about the importance of routinely brushing their teeth twice a day. Access to dental services in their community is very difficult so it is important we get this right from the outset to help mitigate problems in the future. Helping us to provide dental equipment and support for our Ugandan associates will enable them to reach more people who struggle to access safe, sustainable dental care.”
Involved in the project, Veronica Marsh, regional operations director at Bupa Dental Care said, “Earlier this year, across the UK, our dental practices threw open their doors and, working in partnership with their local communities, got involved with a whole range of fun filled activities from bike rides to raffles to raise funds for this worthy cause. This powerful community spirit has reached around the globe and touched the lives of children in the Toowa Primary School by improving education and standards in oral health.”