In-School Dental Care: Raising $80,000 for Mobile Van in Manistee, Benzie Co.
The nearest dentist office can be miles away from some rural areas in northern Michigan. That’s why the Betsie Valley Community Center hopes to help.
Jennifer Kerns travels town-to-town, providing in-school dental care to kids in Manistee and Benzie county schools.
“Transportation is just a huge barrier for families and it’s easier for us to come to them then for them to come to us often times,” Kerns says.
At every school Kerns visits, she has to unload the heavy equipment from her van.
Then setting it up in a classroom on the floor.
“We do the best we can with sanitation, but obviously sitting on the floor isn’t the most prime location,” Kerns says.
That’s why the Betsie Valley Community Center wants to buy a large van and turn it into a mobile dental service.
Allan O’Shea, president of the Betsie Valley Community Center, says, “The mobile dental will be designed to improve the amount of children that we can exam and speed up the process of examination.”
O’Shea says, because clean, strong teeth can help kids focus on graduating.
“We’re taking something that is manageable and that we can really show out abilities and hopefully it will translate to other communities,” O’Shea says.
Betsie Valley Community Center hopes to have the $80,000 raised by March and the van by June.
A link to the GoFundMe page can be found here.