Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation Awards More Than $7 Million to Expand Access to Dental Care

<span class="legendSpanClass">DDCOF announces contribution of $4.4 million in grants and $2.7 million in low-interest capital loans to improve oral health in historically underserved communities.</span>
Published: Jan. 20, 2022 at 5:56 PM EST

DENVER, Jan. 20, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation (DDCOF) has awarded more than $7 million to 38 organizations across the state as the single largest funder of oral health equity in the state of Colorado. In 2021, the foundation made a fundamental decision to deepen its commitment to oral health by focusing on root-cause solutions to better support the mission of elevating the well-being of all Coloradans by advancing oral health equity.

In support of that shift, the foundation has awarded more than $4.4 million over three years to 37 organizations across the state with the aim of increasing access to oral health services and furthering preventive oral health care for young children and pregnant women. Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation's funding supports the following initiatives: 1) place-based access to quality oral health care in East Metro Denver and the San Luis Valley; 2) oral health prevention in early childhood; 3) increased diversity in the oral health care workforce.

Additionally, DDCOF has provided $2.7 million in low-interest capital loans to Tepeyac Community Health Center, Project Worthmore, and Kids First Health Care—which serve historically underserved communities—to renovate and build out dental clinics. As the only dedicated oral health funder in Colorado, the foundation appreciates the unique role it plays in the safety-net dental delivery system. These loans will help finance oral health–related capital needs to expand access to care in community-based dental providers and clinics.

"We believe every person deserves a healthy mouth regardless of life circumstances," said Adeeb Khan, executive director, Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation. "Each of these organizations will support increased access to oral health care, which demonstrates that together we can address community needs, implement activities to improve oral health, focus on preventive health care, and influence long-term change."

The newly funded organizations and their funded projects include:

1. Focus Area: Mission-related Investments (Low-interest Loans)

  • Tepeyac Community Health Center: Construction of a multi-purpose campus featuring integrated care, low-income housing, nutrition, and recreation. Dental operations will be expanded from one to six operatories.
  • Project Worthmore: Renovation of existing building to add eight dental operatories, four flexible dental/medical spaces, and a future child-care center.
  • Kids First Health Care: Purchase of a building and construction of a new clinic.

2. Focus Area: Place-based Access to Care

East Metro Denver

  • Aurora Health Alliance: To support the Aurora Smiles program, which brings together oral health advocates and providers to understand and meet the needs of the local communities.
  • Center for Immigrants and Immigration Services (CIIS): To support CIIS to bring oral health education and care connection to an African immigrant and refugee community.
  • Tepeyac Community Health Center: To provide general operating support to the organization as it expands oral health services through its capital improvements.
  • CLLARO: To provide general operating support to enable the organization to continue work of the oral health coalition to increase access to oral health care in the Latino community of NE Denver.
  • Denver Health and Hospitals Foundation: To support the Evie Dennis school-based health center to create a community dental health coordinator position.
  • Kids in Need of Dentistry: To support the general operations of Kids in Need of Dentistry Access to Care Program.
  • Vega Collegiate Academy: To provide general operating support in recognition of their Expanding Oral Health Education and Access Initiative.
  • Muslim Youth for Positive Impact: To support building organizational knowledge on oral health care and integrate this knowledge into their operational structure.
  • Project Worthmore: To provide general operating support for the provision of dental care as they embark on a significant clinic expansion that will double the size of the dental clinic.
  • Servicios de La Raza: To provide patient navigation and health literacy and support to the hygienist and dentist to care for an uninsured population.
  • VIVE: To support building organizational knowledge on oral health care and integrate this knowledge into their operational structure.
  • Vuela for Health: To support the general operations.

San Luis Valley

  • La Puente Home, Inc.: To support La Puente in providing their clients with enrollment in Medicaid or CHP+ and help connect clients to a medical and dental home.
  • Colorado Association of School-Based Health Care (CASBHC): To support CASBHC in a community assessment and engagement process to determine interest and feasibility of bringing a school-based health center to the San Luis Valley.

3. Focus Area: Prevention

  • A Kidz Clinic: To support provision of dental services to children aged 0–6. (Delta County)
  • Bright by Text: To support oral health messaging across Colorado. (Statewide)
  • Children's Campaign of Colorado: To support the general operations. (Statewide)
  • Children's Hospital Colorado Foundation: To support Children's Hospital Colorado Oral Health Program in N/NW Aurora. (Adams, Arapahoe counties)
  • Community Health Services: To develop proof of concept for a teleORALhealth model. (Garfield, Eagle, Pitkin counties)
  • Community Partnership for Child Development: To support the oral health program. (El Paso County)
  • Doctors Care: To support Healthy Pregnancy and Children Initiative Care Compact Program. (Adams, Arapahoe, Denver, Douglas, El Paso, Elbert, Jefferson counties)
  • Early Learning Ventures: To support the Oral Health Initiative for Early Head Start — Child Care Sites. (Adams, Arapahoe, Garfield, Mesa, Morgan, Pueblo counties)
  • EUREKA! McConnell Science Museum: To support the oral health expansion component of the AmiGOs! program. (Mesa County)
  • Every Child Pediatrics: To support the Integrated Health Care Services program. (Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Denver, Jefferson counties)
  • Grand Beginnings: To support Grand Beginnings Meeting Milestones Initiative. (Grand, Jackson counties)
  • Mountain Resource Center: To support the provision of oral health services to children aged 0–6 and their families. (Jefferson, Park counties)
  • Northwest Colorado Health: To support the Rural Oral Health Services for Women and Children program. (Jackson, Moffat, Rio Grande, Routt counties)
  • Baby Bear Hugs: To support the oral health prevention initiative through home visitation. (Elbert, Lincoln, Logan, Morgan, Phillips, Sedgwick, Washington counties)
  • Soul 2 Soul: To support programming for 100–200 expectant mothers/birthing people across Colorado's Black Community to receive oral health education and connection to a culturally appropriate, culturally competent, and trauma-informed dental home. (Statewide)
  • Special Olympics Colorado: To support the provision of an oral health initiative in the Young Athletes program. (Adams County)
  • Tennyson Center for Children: To support the provision of oral health education in Child First. (Statewide)
  • The Family Center/La Familia: To support the oral health programming and provision of services at The Family Center/La Familia. (Larimer County)
  • Thriving Families: To support oral health programming for pregnant mothers. (Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Denver, Douglas, Jefferson counties)

4. Focus Area: Workforce

  • Colorado Community Health Network: To assess and identify gaps and opportunities of the dental workforce to broadly benefit all Community Health Centers. (Statewide)
  • Colorado Dental Hygiene Association: To support an enhanced focus on data collection, equity training, and policy. (Statewide)
  • Denver Scholarship Foundation (DSF): Support DSF's efforts in connecting DPS students and DSF scholars to workforce exposure, exploration, and development opportunities, with special focus on providing professional development for DSF advisors focused on careers in the dental industry and oral health equity. (Denver)
  • University of Colorado School of Dental Medicine: To create a pipeline of diverse dental providers to serve underserved Colorado populations. (Statewide)

About Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation
Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation believes every person can have a healthy mouth regardless of life circumstances. By partnering with communities, the foundation works to re-imagine how all of our neighbors access, benefit from, and value the importance of oral health care. As a 501(c)(3) organization funded by the nonprofit Delta Dental of Colorado, the foundation intends to advance oral health equity throughout local communities across Colorado by implementing transformative programs and initiatives. To learn more about Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation, visit www.deltadentalcofoundation.org.

View original content:

SOURCE Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation

The above press release was provided courtesy of PRNewswire. The views, opinions and statements in the press release are not endorsed by Gray Media Group nor do they necessarily state or reflect those of Gray Media Group, Inc.