This Giving Tuesday, Give Smiles for Native Americans

   By Helen Oliff

Every year brings Thanksgiving, then Black Friday and then #GivingTuesday – the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving. Started in 2012, Giving Tuesday is a global day of “doing good” for individuals and organizations. At the very heart of this day is the generosity to unlock social equity and hope around the world, especially in the so often-forgotten Indigenous communities. On this Giving Tuesday, Nov. 29th, PWNA’s focus is on dental care for Native American children and Elders.

Save the date for Giving Tuesday, November 29, 2022

So many children under the age of 5 need dental care, and yet few resources exist in Indian Country to support them. In a 2018 survey by the National Indian Health Board, 79% of Tribal leaders, Health and Dental directors said there was a shortage of oral health providers in their community, and 61% said the average wait time for a dental appointment was one to three months.

Native children suffer the most. Did you know tooth decay is the most common health problem among American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) children? Or that AIAN children in preschool to kindergarten are four times more likely to have untreated tooth decay than Whites?

Who will remember these children?

An oral hygiene study is long overdue for Tribal communities, but we know Elders and adults struggle with oral hygiene too. The last report shows 43% of adults with untreated tooth decay and gum disease that can lead to loss of permanent teeth. The rate is even higher for Pine Ridge.

PWNA’s goal this Giving Tuesday is to provide dental hygiene kits with toothbrushes, toothpaste, dental floss and mouthwash for 8,000 Native Americans at $15 per kit, for children and Elders alike. 

Will you #GiveSmiles with #PWNA4hope this #GivingTuesday and spread the word? If you do, for every gift made up to $10,000, PWNA’s president and CEO Josh Arce will make a matching gift. Learn more on our landing page.

Don’t miss your chance to donate in the biggest giving day of the year – save the date for #GivingTuesday on Nov. 29th!

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