Since the pandemic, we had seen a sharp increase in the number of clients contacting us because they were experiencing dental issues and could not find medical support. As an organisation providing support to refugees and asylum seekers who are already disadvantaged, not being able to signpost them to a dental service was disheartening. After many phone calls to dental surgeries, and after several rejections, we had no solution for those who were in excruciating pain. We even had clients complaining about their dental issues, and how it was impacting their mental health from the constant pain and no relief in sight.
In November we saw some light at the end of the tunnel, when Precision Dental Clinic got in touch with MRSN to provide free dental care for our clients. The idea being for a new project, the ‘Time To Smile Foundation’, to assist those who are struggling to access what should be an easily accessible service. Sharing this news at our team meeting was a very exciting moment for all staff members at MRSN, and a list of client’s waiting for dental care was quickly compiled and sent over to the practice.
On the 11th of December, the team carried out their first free dental session for refugees and asylum seekers. With 100% attendance, 10 grateful patients were seen to. All of which having full examinations, removal of all dental disease, permanent fillings and root canal fillings provided, removed painful and unfixable teeth, and planned future cosmetic solutions to increase some patient’s confidence. In addition to this incredible dental treatment, the team at Precision Dental Clinic, in Stockport, provided oral hygiene instructions, teaching the children how to best look after their teeth, and also supported patients by providing food and transport services. There has since been three more sessions helping MRSN clients with dental care.
We cannot thank the team at Precision Dental Clinic enough for the work they have done, it has been such a relief to finally have a solution for our desperate clients. We look forward to the future of the Time to Smile Foundation.
If you are interested in volunteering your professional services to refugees and asylum seekers, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with some introductory details, and we will follow up with you if it would be a help to our clients.