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From the Executive Director

Happy New Year -- 2017! 

Whether you make resolutions or not, it seems that the New Year with its reset of the calendar and the tradition of staying awake until midnight to see the New Year come in, gives us a little nudge to begin again. To start over. To re-dedicate ourselves. An energy wipes the slate clean and says, "What are you going to do now? What is your goal?"

Villa Therese Catholic Clinic also feels that change and the challenges that come with the New Year. Though our goal and mission is constant -- to serve the underserved with quality health care in a responsible manner -- we look to 2017 and try to anticipate and understand the changing landscape of healthcare in northern New Mexico. Whatever is decided by the powers that be, it is our mission to provide free basic health and dental care to those in need. We will continue to need your help to fulfill our mission.

We are grateful and are honored to receive a grant this year from SC Ministry Foundation for our adult dental program. This will cover costs associated with providing dental exams, cleanings and fillings for cavities. It's a very positive boost for the clinic's dental program. There's more to learn about the dental program, so please read the article below. We have also received the final payment of $1,000 from a New Mexico Children's Foundation grant for medical and dental care for children in need. Thank you!

On behalf of the staff and Board of Directors, I want to offer thanks and good-byes to Dr. Haley Ritchey, our staff dentist who worked for VTCC two days a month. Dr. Ritchey's last day was in December as her practice, Eldorado Dental, has grown. And, I want to welcome Dr. Brandon Cera, from Northside Dental who has replaced Dr. Ritchey and is working two days a month for the clinic. Dr. Cera attended Ohio State University graduating with a Bachelors in Biology and a Doctor of Dental Surgery Degree. Welcome and thank you, Dr. Cera!

In our fundraising efforts, the 3rd Annual Zumbathon(R) Charity Event for Villa Therese Clinic is scheduled for April 28 and the 26th Annual Geranium Sale will begin taking orders in late March. Thanks in advance for supporting both of these efforts!


Friday, April 28, 2017
5:30 to 7:30 pm
Chavez Community Center


Lace up those dancing shoes (sneakers are just fine!) and come to The Genoveva Chavez Community Center on Friday, April 28, 2017, from 5:30 to 7:30 pm and join in the fun at the third annual Zumbathon Charity Event for Villa Therese Clinic. The $10 entry fee offers you two hours of Zumba-ing to the music led by licensed Zumba instructors and co-chairs: Kim Bear, Kristin Chancellor, and Cindy Coulter! Zumba combines all the elements of fitness -- cardio, muscle conditioning, balance and flexibility. Plus, it's fun! 

And, don't forget to bring extra money for the raffle! Win restaurant and store gift certificates, jewelry, personal accessories, certificates for haircuts and personal training. All proceeds from the raffle and your entry fee go directly to VTCC and give the gift of health of the children and families who come for free medical and dental care.

A big thank you to Renee Villarreal, City Councilor for District 1! With Ms. Villarreal's sponsorship, the facility fee at the Chavez Community Center was waived, thereby keeping our expenses low and more event proceeds going to helping our patients. 

Chavez Community Center is located at 3221 Rodeo Road in Santa Fe. Doors open at 5:00 pm for the Zumbathon (R) Charity Event. Give Health!

What's New at the VTCC Dental Clinic?

Volunteers and Smiles Across America

We've introduced to you in previous newsletters our new dental assistant, Claudia Gallegos, left, and new dental hygienist, Mardi Wood but wanted to share their picture so now you can associate names with faces! Both Claudia and Mardi are valuable team members at VTCC sharing in all our efforts to provide quality care for our patients. 

The dental clinic welcomes two new volunteers! Varun Yadav, DMD and Esmael Valdez, DDS have joined our other wonderful volunteer dental providers. The dental clinic is open to both chidren and adults offering dental exams, cleanings, x-rays, fluoride applications and cavity treatments. In addition, there are tooth extraction clinics for adults.

And, just in time for Children's Dental Health Month in February please read the following article to learn more about the importance of oral health especially for children.

Celebrate a Healthy Smile that Lasts a Lifetime

February is Children's Dental Health Month

Every February is National Children’s Dental Health Month, which is a month-long national health observance for raising awareness about the importance of oral health and providing free oral health care. It also promotes the development of good dental habits at an early age.
We know that attitudes and habits established at an early age are critical in maintaining good oral health throughout life.  Some of these habits include, daily oral hygiene practice; eating nutritious food; limiting sugar consumption and drinking fluoridated water. By participating in the annual celebration of National Children’s Dental Health Month, members of the oral health team, parents, teachers, school nurses and others can help keep children’s smiles beautiful now and for years to come.

Dental health is part of overall health, and healthy teeth—even baby teeth—are important for life-long health. We all know a balanced diet, limited snacks, daily brushing, and regular dental checkups are important for good oral health no matter what age we are. Somehow, it’s become normal to think about our mouths and our teeth as completely separate from the rest of our body. But oral health is very closely related to overall health. Preventive dental visits are an important way to maintain not just a healthy mouth but a healthy body as well.

Preventing tooth decay at an early age will lead to healthy teeth during the teen and adult years.

They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away. The food we eat can have a big impact on our teeth. With healthy food choices, your teeth will thank you. And when you combine a tooth-friendly diet with good oral health habits, your regular dental visits might be only easy exams and prevention procedures such as sealants and fluoride varnish applications. So the next time you’re trying to decide what to snack on or have for your next meal, think about what’s best for your teeth and your body.

We would like to invite you to join us in promoting Children’s Oral Health Month, 2017 by becoming an “oral health champion” and take an active role in promoting children’s oral health.

Parents, the following tips are for you to teach your children:  brush and floss twice a day, eat healthy foods, drink few sugary drinks, drink plenty of fluoridated tap water especially here in Santa Fe, and see a dental provider every six months.

Information from the New Mexico Department of Health.

Project Christmas 2016

Reaching Forty-Seven Families at the Christmas Season!

For many years, the clinic has served as Santa's helper between our patients and the generous donors who wish to make the celebration of Christmas brighter for the children. From the generous parishioners at the Cathederal Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi and Santa Maria de La Paz, the clinc was able to distribute gifts cards to 130 children in 47 families. This year the inmates at the Santa Fe County Detention Center sponsored two families for the Christmas season. On behalf of our patients, we extend a heartfelt thanks.

Special thanks goes to Lucresia Valencia, Cathy Catanach, Margie Montoya and Michele Tuohey for organizing Project Christmas!

Copyright © 2017 Villa Therese Catholic Clinic, All rights reserved.

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