In a time when many Flint residents are unable to drink their tap water — which provides critical fluoride for healthy teeth — preventive dental care is more important than ever.
So last year, the MSU College of Human Medicine, in partnership with the Flint Community Based Organization Partners and others, hosted the Flint Oral Health Fair, which provided free oral health screenings and education to 125 individuals. They repeated the program in August of this year.
It happened thanks to 43 donors, who gave $3,260 through MSU’s CrowdPower platform to fund the event.
The effort was spearheaded by Woody Neighbors (C.S. Mott Endowed Professor of Public Health, Spartan Proud) and his team at the College of Human Medicine’s Flint campus. He and his colleagues were some of the first to give to the project, and they all helped spread the word.
“It was so cool to see the helmet logo fill up as more and more people got on and donated,” Neighbors said. “We gave early, to get a little green in the bottom of it, and then sat back and watched it grow.”
Neighbors has devoted his career to studying how race affects the way individuals manage their health and deal with illness, especially in difficult-to-reach population groups. And promoting dental health is just a small piece of the larger picture of community-based intervention.
The money raised through CrowdPower went toward facility rental, brochures, and marketing materials, and clinical supplies for the dentists who volunteered their time at the fair.
“Giving to MSU through the CrowdPower platform feels personal,” Neighbors said. “It feels like you’re directly helping MSU to do the kind of community service projects MSU is known for.”
Discover more MSU CrowdPower projects to support.