SmileOnU Win’s August’s Amber Grant!
After announcing our finalists late last week. We’re happy to finally be able to announce this months Amber Grant winner. Meet BB, founder of the non-profit organization, SmileOnU.
Read on to learn more about her organization’s mission to create healthy and beautiful smiles.
BB Maboby Bahadarakhann
WN: What gave you the idea for SmileOnU?
BB: Born into a refugee camp in Thailand during the Khmer Regime, I always wanted to give back to the community for saving my family from a dismal situation. I was 10-months-old when my Pakistani and Cambodian parents and family were relocated from the Thailand to Chicago, IL through the aid of the United States government. Even with nothing, my parents were both very giving people. As a young child, I saw the radiant energy they received by giving and it was contagious! It was the way I wanted to live my life. It was the most beautiful thing.” After graduating college in 2009 and I worked in oral surgery sales, where I often coordinated the interaction between dentists, clients, laboratories and implant companies to assure surgeries went smoothly. I noticed the cost of these procedures was out of reach for those who needed them the most and realized something needed to bridge this glaring gap. My vision in the creation of the non- profit organization, “SmileOnU” was a way to change this and bring hope to people who have limited means for such extensive dental procedures.
WN: How many patients do you take on in a year?
BB: SmileOnU works to give the gift of smile! We are currently taking on 1 Hardship case a month. Our goal is to give 100 smiles a year to those in greatest need.
WN: How are individuals chosen to receive dental help, are they nominated or do they have to apply?
BB: We work with the local foster homes and different resource centers. We also have an open application online.
SMILEONU TARGETED POPULATIONS:
- Foster Youth
- Former Foster Youth
- Low-income College-age youths and adults with physical disabilities
- Young adults, 18-25 years old, who have been raised in the child welfare system and are responsible for their own financial support
- Adults, ages 25 or older, with dependents in their family unit
WN: Do you run specifically off of donations, or fund raise all of the expenses?
BB: We run solely on donations and contributions.
WN: Are you planning on expanding your business in the near future?
BB: We are currently establishing a network of volunteer dental professional across the United States in hopes to give the gift of smile
Thank you for reading! Remember we award an Amber Grant every month – if interested here’s the link to apply! We hope you all have a great day!