Southern Oregon

KOBI Spirit of Community Moment: Happy Smiles

This year OCF is celebrating its 50th anniversary by sharing stories about the spirit of generosity in Oregon. This is Part II from KOBI TV’s “Oregon Community Foundation: Spirit of Community” series featuring La Clinica’s Happy Smiles programView the series.


There are many children in our communities who don't get proper dental care, some kids don't even have toothbrushes. La Clinica's Happy Smiles program helps improve their dental health. Dental professionals set up in schools and offer students checkups and teach them proper dental hygiene. Here's another Spirit of Community moment.

Happy Smiles is a remarkable program here in Jackson County. We provide oral health education, screening, fluoride treatments and sealants for thousands of kids in our community every year.

We'll come to the schools, usually a couple of days and let them know that today we're going to be doing a short dental screening.

So, our approach, along with the tremendous support from Oregon Community Foundation through the Reed and Carolee Walker Fund, we have made significant strides in relieving suffering for kids in our community and teaching them how to really care for themselves for their future.

So, there are some kids that come in and they don't have toothbrushes, they may have never been informed about proper oral hygiene habits.

Our Happy Smiles team even incorporates the tooth fairy – dress-up in costume and engage the right level of kids to talk about how taking care of ourselves not just in our mouth but in other way. It can be fun, and it can establish those kinds of beliefs really early in a child's life.

We have an opportunity to re-educate and remind and provide the skills that often many of these children don't necessarily receive at home.

If you’d like to help make Southern Oregon a better place to live visit Oregon Community Foundation at https://oregoncf.org/50.