Steamboat Springs Knowing the power of a good smile and finding themselves at a point in their careers where they felt like giving back, Drs. Jim and Wendy McCreight have started The McCreight Smile Foundation.
The Smile Foundation was set up to assist victims of domestic abuse with dental care.
"We created the target of adults," Jim said. "We wanted to give these people who've gone through so much a self-esteem a boost. The power of cosmetic dentistry is amazing."
Prior to starting the foundation, the couple had always been active in national dental foundations, but they were concerned that little, if any, of the money made it back to Routt and Moffat counties.
As part of a presentation the McCreight's will give this Tuesday through Saturday to a group of dentists from around the nation, Jim said they'd wave their honorarium and put it toward the foundation.
The Foundation was formed after the McCreight's saw there wasn't a local foundation that helped adults with dental care. Although the Northwest Dental Coalition in Craig helps youths afford dental care, the McCreight's felt there was a need for some way to help adults.
After talking with Dianne Moore, the executive director for Advocates Against Battering and Abuse, Moore indicated a huge need for dental services for victims of domestic violence.
With the guidance of Linda Haltom, director of the Yampa Valley Community Foundation, as well as Moore, The Smile Foundation was born.
"I like to focus efforts where I live at," said Jim, who runs McCreight Progressive Dentistry with his wife. "That's why we started our own foundation."
The Foundation features an advisory board of several people from the community and dentists from around the nation.
While still in its infancy, Jim said The McCreight Smile Foundation is already making headway.
All of the proceeds from this week's dental meeting will go to the Smile Foundation. Also a percentage of all the McCreight's future dental lectures and teaching courses will go to the foundation.
Jim also said most of the dentists in town this week will give to the charity.
"I want to raise as much money as I can at next week's meeting," Jim said.
The foundation will help defray lab and dental material costs, while the McCreight's will donate all of the dental services to the victims.
"I'm hoping if we give someone a fake tooth, and it makes them smile and might help them out," Jim said, "that maybe 10 or 15 years down the road they don't pay us back but pay the charity back."
To give to The McCreight Smile Foundation, please visit www.mccreightsmilefoundation.org or call the Yampa Valley Community Foundation at 879-8632.
- To reach Luke Graham, call 871-4229
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