Programs & Services
The Dental Care Foundation is actively involved in developing sustainable infrastructure focused on improving oral health for all in each county.
The Santa Barbara County Children’s Oral Health Collaborative is supported by over 30 agencies in Santa Barbara County. The Santa Barbara-Ventura Counties Dental Care Foundation is a founding member of this group and the Foundation’s Executive Director is the co-chair of the Executive Committee. This organization seeks to coordinate the efforts to address the unmet dental needs of Santa Barbara County’s children. Their vision is that “every child will have access to quality oral health services to prevent and treat dental disease and advance their overall health and development.”
The Collaborative functions through three Dental Access Resource Teams (DART) that focus on geographical areas of Santa Barbara County (North, Mid and South). DARTs are composed of representatives of the SB-VC Dental Care Foundation, Public Health Dept., School districts, County Education Office, Direct Relief International, Community Action Commission, Community Health Centers of the Central Coast, Neighborhood Clinics, First 5 Santa Barbara County and more. The DentalCare Foundation actively supports this collaborative which is generously funded by the Santa Barbara Foundation, the Orfalea Family Foundation, and the Cottage Health System·
Oral Health Collaborative of Ventura County. The Dental Care Foundation has taken the lead in developing a countywide infrastructure focused on improving oral health in Ventura County. Currently, organizations working on this process include First 5 Ventura County, United Way of Ventura County, Ventura County Public Health Dept., Ventura County Office of Education, and Children’s Development Resources.
Current programs focus on prevention of dental disease but also provide some basic restorative care. Not a “hand-out”, these program provide a “hand-up” by giving many young families the information and tools they need to prevent future dental disease and start their children on the path to a lifetime of healthy smiles.
The Maternal, Infant and Child program provides screening, preventive, diagnostic, and basic dental treatment services for children ages 0-5 and oral health education for parents.
Oral health education programs are held at Neighborhood for Learning sites, preschools and Head Start facilities. All parents and children are provided a dental kit that includes a toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss and educational material. Needed basic dental treatment (both preventive and restorative) is provided in the Foundation’s Mobile Dental Clinic, by licensed dentists. This program is supported by a generous grant from First 5 Ventura County.
Some of the youngest children cannot be be treated at the Mobile Dental Clinic and are referred to Pediatric dentists for comprehensive care. This treatment is partially funded by the Dental Care Foundation.
The Family Smiles program is a companion piece to the Maternal, Infant and Child program. Screening, preventive, diagnostic, and basic dental treatment services are provided the parents and siblings ages 6-18 of children eligible for dental treatment under the Maternal, Infant and Child program. This program provides for dental care for the entire family. We are grateful to the generous sponsorship for this program by United Way Ventura County.
Early Start for Oral Health Project in conjunction with the Women, Infant and Child (WIC) program provides preventive and basic restorative services for low-income pregnant women, very young children, and women with young children 0-5 years of age who lack access to dental care. The Foundation’s Mobile Dental Clinic provides services at WIC sites in Ventura County. Sponsorship of this program has been through a generous grant from the California Dental Association.
Free Dental Clinics are sponsored in various cities throughout Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties. Thanks to the generosity of local dentists who volunteer their time and expertise to increase the number of elementary school children receiving oral health preventive services. Dental hygienists and dental assistants also volunteer for these clinics. February (Children’s Dental Health Month) and March are the favored times for these clinics. Clinics have been held at the Eastside Family Dental Clinic in Santa Barbara, the Simi Valley Free Clinic, and at the Mobile Dental Clinic at many elementary schools. Sealant clinics are held each year at the Oxnard Community College Dental Hygiene Program facility in Oxnard, California and the Allan Hancock College Dental Assisting Program facility in Santa Maria, California. This program is generously funded by Oral Health America through their Smiles Across America program.