UnidosUS Affiliate Sea Mar Community Health Centers brings care to rural communities thanks to Red Nose Day USA

Red Nose Day is all about making it fun to come together to raise money and awareness for children who need our help most, in America and around the world. Red Nose Day’s mission is to end child poverty—one nose at a time. This year, Red Nose Day is on May 24.

Red Nose Day 2018

Sea Mar Community Health Centers—an Affiliate of UnidosUS—helps the kids of migrant and farmworker families be healthy and ready for the future by providing necessary dental care. And children like Ricardo* show why support from Red Nose Day is so important.

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Ricardo is 13 years old and lives in Snohomish County, Washington with his aunt and uncle. As they’ve moved to various migrant camps, Ricardo has not received dental care.

Ricardo is shy, and when we met him, he was also afraid, and in pain. He had an infection in three of his teeth—which he would lose—if he didn’t receive necessary care.

Red Nose Day 2018

He is also far from home, and only speaks Canjoval, an indigenous Guatemalan language. Being away from home, and in pain, compounds the element of fear.

In today’s political and economic climate, many hardworking families are afraid to venture into the city to obtain necessary care. It can be difficult for these families to trust medical professionals, especially when language barriers complicate critical conversations.

Additionally, sometimes the line is long for those who wait to be seen by the Sea Mar Outreach team. On the day we met Ricardo, another patient gave up his place in line, so Ricardo could be seen first.

While on location at a migrant camp, the Sea Mar Outreach team addressed Ricardo’s dental infection with the limited resources on hand. While they were able to address the infection, they were unable to address every dental issue in the limited surroundings.

Red Nose Day 2018

However, because a culturally and linguistically competent outreach worker was on hand, they were able to help Ricardo’s family trust the Sea Mar team enough to bring him to one of our dental clinics for follow-up care. His teeth and his trust were restored.

If it weren’t for the support of UnidosUS and Red Nose Day, there may not have been an outreach team at the migrant camp that day.

Your support of Red Nose Day provides opportunities for health care teams to venture out into rural settings and provide care for those most in need. Purchase a Red Nose for $1 at Walgreens Pharmacy to help kids just like Ricardo.

You can learn more about Red Nose Day by visiting rednoseday.org—and don’t forget to tune in to the Red Nose Day Special, live on NBC on May 24 at 8:00 p.m. ET.

*Name has been changed to protect privacy.

By Jennifer Vigil, Dental Program Manager, Sea Mar Community Health Centers




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