18 Illinois organizations will receive community grants in 2021
The Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation, the 501(c)(3) charitable arm of Delta Dental of Illinois, has awarded nearly $245,000 to 18 nonprofit and community organizations through its annual Community Grants program. Each organization shares the foundation’s mission to improve the oral health of children throughout Illinois.
Persistent inequalities, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, are making it difficult for many Illinois children to obtain the oral health care they need. The annual Community Grants program continues to help break down barriers to oral health care by working hand-in-hand with organizations across the state to ensure children in Illinois have access to quality health care.
Since 2012, the Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation’s Community Grants Program has provided nearly $1.5 million to organizations that help improve access to oral health care and education. The following organizations are recipients of the Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation Community Grants Program 2021:
CASA Kane County, Geneva
CASA Kane County ensures that Illinois children have access to dental and medical care in cases of abuse, neglect and private guardianship within the juvenile court system. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, nearly 35 percent of children and adolescents with significant dental and oral health problems end up in foster care. Grant funding will help CASA Kane County continue its work to reduce this statistic.
Chicago Family Health Center (CFHC), Chicago
The Chicago Family Health Center offers dental services at four of its six locations: Chicago Lawn, South Chicago, Pullman, and East Side. The grant will help provide oral health services to 1,400 children.
Erie Family Health Foundation, Chicago
The Erie Family Health Foundation is aiming to match its patient volume from birth to age 18 before the COVID-19 pandemic, adding 500 more patients this year than last year. Erie will use his grant to provide oral health services to more than 10,000 Illinois children at his clinics in Chicago, Waukegan and Evanston.
Southern Illinois Foster Care Resource Center, Carbondale
The Foster Family Resource Center of Southern Illinois plans to use its grant for a program that allows Illinois children in foster care to receive basic dental care like fillings, extractions and cleanings at dental offices that don’t accept Medicaid. There are currently 1,471 children in Illinois in foster care, family groups, group homes or facilities within the 22-county service area of the Foster Family Resource Center, and the program will serve as many of these children as possible with the grant funds.
Girls in the Game, Chicago and Bloomington
Girls in the Game will use its grant to support After School, one of its largest programs, serving over 1,300 girls annually through weekly programs and one-day events. Participants learn traditional sports like basketball and fitness activities like yoga. In addition to lesson plans on smart eating and physical health, girls participate in personal hygiene rotations that specifically focus on oral health.
Howard Area Community Center, Chicago
The Howard Area Community Center (HACC) Eleanor Wester Dental Clinic provides preventive, therapeutic and emergency dental care, as well as bilingual oral health education for families who are uninsured or underinsured. The grant funds will be used to expand HACC’s oral screening and education program at its early childhood centers, reaching 250 children over the next year.
Howard Brown Health, Chicago
The grant funding will support outreach to families living in the 60620 and 60621 Chicago zip codes to ensure they have access to the dental care they need. In addition to dental care, Howard Brown Health will connect families with community services, support for basic needs, and primary health care to ensure each family’s holistic needs are met.
Infant Welfare Society of Chicago, Chicago
The Infant Welfare Society (IWS) of Chicago provides oral health services to children from underrepresented groups. With the grant, IWS will provide more than 4,000 children ages 17 and younger with access to equitable oral health care, education, prevention and treatment.
Milestone Dental Clinic, Rockford
Milestone Dental Clinic works to develop an individual dental treatment plan for each patient with special health needs treated at the clinic. The grant covers expenses for an oral exam, cleaning, and fluoride treatment that are not covered by insurance or Medicaid, or for patients without a source of funding.
Mobile Nursing Chicago, Chicago
Mobile Care Chicago Dental Clinic operates in Chicago and Waukegan, where the need for dentists offering comprehensive pediatric oral health care is high. With grants, Mobile Care Chicago plans to care for 4,500 children.
Oak Park River Forest Infant Welfare Society, Oak Park
The grant will support the Oak Park River Forest Infant Welfare Society’s (IWS) Portable Dentistry Program, which provides preventative dental care—oral exams, cleanings, fluoride treatments and tooth sealants—in schools during the school year for over 2,000 children annually. Students in urgent need of care are referred to IWS Children’s Hospital for restorative care, a unique aspect of the program that allows for a seamless flow from diagnosis to treatment.
Pillars Community Health, LaGrange
Pillars Community Health will continue to prioritize the health and safety of its patients and employees while promoting commitment to the necessary preventive and restorative oral health services and oral health education. The grant funds will be used as operational support to support the provision of dental services to children and adolescent patients.
Promise Healthcare, campaign
SmileHealthy is a program at Promise Healthcare’s Frances Nelson Health Center that provides oral health education during healthy child and pregnancy appointments and introduces patients to the on-site dental center. The grants will go towards this project, which will help 500 children through Well Child Clinics and 250 pregnant women – preparing them to care for their baby’s oral health. The program will also provide oral health education to children at Head Start, preschools, schools and health fairs, and will reach 3,000 educational contacts in 2022.
Riverbend Head Start and Family Services, Alton
Riverbend Head Start and Family Services will use its grant for the 2021-2022 Oral Health Education and Access Project, which will serve 759 participants enrolled in its Head Start and Early Head Start programs, including children ages 5 and up underneath. The funding will also help provide oral health care and education for expectant mothers to have a healthy pregnancy and baby.
St. Coletta of Illinois, Tinley Park
St. Coletta’s of Illinois will use its grant to provide oral health education to over 80 students at St. Coletta’s Kennedy School through a counselor and oral health professional. The Kennedy School serves students in the southern and southwestern suburbs of Chicago who have been diagnosed with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
University of Illinois Board of Trustees, UIC Department of Pediatric Dentistry, Chicago
The grant will support the Treating Our Toddlers (TOT) Infant Oral Health program, a multidisciplinary effort focused on establishing a dental home for children from birth to age 3 years. This program uses a holistic approach that addresses the dental, medical, nutritional, psychosocial, and developmental needs of patients. Approximately 300 children in Illinois will be supported with the help of this grant.
Well Children’s Centre, Elgin
The Well Child Center Pediatric Dental Clinic and First Tooth Visit Program provide preventative and restorative dental care for children at little or no cost. The grant will provide greater access to comprehensive oral health care by allowing the clinic to extend its opening hours to include evenings and Saturdays.
Zion-Benton Children’s Ministry, Zion
Zion-Benton Children’s Service (ZBCS) provides preventive and restorative dental care in a welcoming and accessible environment. They incorporate dental health education into every visit to help patients develop good dental hygiene habits that last a lifetime. With this grant, ZBCS wants to help 400 children between the ages of 3 and 18.
The next application cycle for the Community Grants program is expected to begin in fall 2022. For more information about the Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation Community Grants program and/or to support the Foundation, visit deltadentalil.com/community-grants.