Dental therapist Sarah Childs: Helping those in Msambweni, Kenya who need it most
“I’m passionate about oral health education and empowering patients to take control of their oral health,” says dental therapist Sarah Childs who has visited Msambweni in Kenya for the past two years to help both improve inhabitants’ oral health and educate them about an effective oral healthcare regime. This is her story of her most recent visit...
“My recent 10-day trip to Msambweni was part of a culture and wildlife educational trip with Hereford Cathedral School, organised by my partner in collaboration with UK charity, Etatu.”
Etatu was founded in 2012 by Jacquie Lindgren to help improve the life-chances and standard of living of the inhabitants of Msambweni, through raising achievement in school, building confidence and developing useful skills.
Sarah continues: “During my first trip I was able to achieve a great deal, but I’m pleased to say I accomplished a lot more this time round, even with the challenges we faced. While we were there Kenya was holding a re-election, which meant that all the schools and hospitals were closed.
“Indeed, because Kenyans have to vote where they are born, re-election is considered to be a national holiday. This meant we were unable to visit everyone we would liked to see, because some locals had to travel to the area they where were born.
“Luckily, however, the school that we had arranged to visit opened for a couple of hours despite the upheaval, so I was still able to see the children as planned. During my trip I also visited an orphanage, a children’s home, and provided bespoke advice to smaller groups of people at the local community centre – including adolescents, adults and a mother and baby group.
“To assist with the learning I handed out goody bags containing a toothbrush, interdental brushes and leaflets, and used fun, educational props such as large teeth and a giant toothbrush. In total, I handed out 1,000 manual toothbrushes, obtained through a combination of fundraising and a generous donation from leading oral healthcare experts, Curaprox.
“The ultra-soft but highly effective CS 5460 toothbrushes are ideal for achieving excellent oral health outcomes, so I’m very pleased to have secured a donation for the second year in a row. All in all, the trip was very positive, and I’m extremely happy that I was able to educate the community on a complete oral healthcare regime, not just toothbrushing.”
Looking ahead to 2018, Sarah hopes to set up a pop-up clinic where she can provide treatments as well as education. With the support of companies like Curaprox and ongoing hard work, individuals like Sarah will help make a difference in communities where it matters the most.
For more information about Curaprox products visit www.curaprox.co.uk.