Image Credit: Saskatchewan Polytechnic
Image Credit: Saskatchewan Polytechnic

Sask Polytech celebrates five years of Dental Day with the addition of special dental hygiene programming

Program supports community while providing students with valuable applied learning opportunities

May 6, 2016 - This Saturday, May 7, the community will be all smiles at the fifth annual Dental Day. The event sees dental hygiene and dental assisting students from Saskatchewan Polytechnic's Regina campus partnering with the Regina Food Bank and the Regina Open Door Society, to open a dental clinic to those in the community who need a checkup and other dental work.

"Many individuals in Regina and surrounding municipalities experience barriers to oral health care. Dental Day at Sask Polytech strives to break down these barriers," says Kaelyn Oberle, co-coordinator of the event. "Throughout the process of organizing this project, we have had a number of unique opportunities, such as running workshops and information sessions with community members, which have enhanced our educational experience."

Oberle, along with Alyssa Reimer, are second year dental hygiene students and have been coordinating Dental Day together as part of their ongoing education. But it's more than just school work for the two, it's an event they believe in. This year, the program has been enhanced by the addition of a dental hygiene clinic, developed by students Leah Bedard and Lauren Ellis, to provide dental cleaning services to those in need.

"We are passionate about this event because it enables collaboration between dental professionals and Sask Polytech's Dental Hygiene program, while allowing volunteers to give back to the community," says Reimer. "This year, we have been overwhelmed with the volunteer response from dental professionals around the province."

The entire day will see dentists, dental therapists, denturists, dental assistants, dental hygienists and more than 80 student, faculty and staff volunteers, come together to provide care to invited individuals. By providing services on the weekend, free bus and taxi vouchers and a volunteer daycare centre for patients, more individuals are provided easy access to quality oral health care.

"Dental Day provides our clients with much needed health care services. It's a program many look forward to and rely on each year," says Laura Murray, community giving coordinator at the Regina Food Bank. "By sharing resources with Saskatchewan Polytechnic, we are able to support our community and help it thrive."

The Henry Schein Cares Foundation is donating all the dental supplies required for the dental treatment, and Sinclair and Patterson Dental are donating supplies that will be used to provide dental hygiene care. The Saskatchewan Oral Health Professions (SOHP) and Saskatchewan Dental Hygienists Association are sponsoring lunch for all participants, and Costco, Starbucks, and Safeway are providing in-kind support to the event.

Media are welcome to attend.

Event: Sask Polytech Dental Day
Date: Saturday, May 7, 2016
Time: 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Dental Clinic, 5th Floor
Saskatchewan Polytechnic, Regina Campus
4500 Wascana Parkway
Regina SK

Saskatchewan Polytechnic serves 27,000 distinct students through applied learning opportunities at campuses in Moose Jaw, Prince Albert, Regina and Saskatoon, and through extensive distance education opportunities. Programs serve every economic and public service sector. As a polytechnic, the organization provides the depth of learning appropriate to employer and student need, including certificate, diploma and degree programs, and apprenticeship training. Saskatchewan Polytechnic engages in applied research, drawing on faculty expertise to support innovation by employers, and providing students the opportunity to develop critical thinking skills.