Dental volunteers for Israel honors Henry Schein`s Steve Kess at 30th anniversary Gala
Dental Volunteers for Israel (DVI), which is celebrating 30 years of providing oral health care services to underserved families in Jerusalem, regardless of background, honored four people who have helped support the organization, at their New York gala held this week at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York City.
The honorees were Steve Kess, Vice President of Global Professional Relations for Henry Schein, Inc.; Dr. Allen Helfer, President of the American Friends of DVI; Ran Tuttnauer, CEO of Tuttnauer Ltd. and a member of the DVI Board; and Dr. Nedal Alayyan, named 'DVI Volunteer of the Year.'
Among the speakers at the 30th Anniversary gala event were Ambassador Meron Reuben, Israel's Ambassador to the United Nations and to Columbia, and Stanley M. Bergman, Henry Schein's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, who delivered the evening's keynote address.
In remembering the late Trudi Birger, founder of DVI, Mr. Bergman said, 'Trudi was a humanitarian, a visionary and an entrepreneur. She realized that a healthy smile enables a child to eat, sleep, study and grow up without the distraction of pain associated with poor oral health. Now in its 30th year, the energy of the DVI program continues to grow, as evidenced by the letters of praise and support the organization receives every day from volunteers of all walks of life, in every dental specialty, and from all over the world. The dedication of over 4,500 volunteer dentists who have helped countless children in Jerusalem speaks volumes about Trudi, her continuing legacy and the transformative impact that her spirit continues to have on others.'
DVI's Trudi Birger Dental Clinic is the only free facility of its kind in Jerusalem--without it thousands of children would have no access to dental care. Children in need from all religious and ethnic groups are treated at the Clinic, and every child who comes to the Clinic participates in an oral health education session with their family to promote improved oral hygiene for life. Since its founding, the Clinic has treated more than 20,000 children. In 2009, the Clinic provided 13,411 treatments for 3,353 children with the help of its staff and 141 volunteer dentists.
Historically, 95 percent of DVI's budget has been paid for by charitable donations. In addition to Mr. Bergman's commitment, Henry Schein's financial, product and marketing support of DVI for the past 13 years has been driven by Mr. Kess through Henry Schein Cares, the Company's global corporate social responsibility program.
The evening's program concluded with the presentation of DVI Volunteer of the Year to Dr. Nedal Alayyan, an Arab dentist. During his moving address, Dr. Alayyan recounted his experience as a child growing up in Jerusalem and being treated at the DVI clinic. Inspired by that early experience, Dr. Alayyan became a dentist himself and now gives back to today's children of Jerusalem through DVI. Dr. Alayyan's complete remarks are available on the DVI website http://americanfriendsofdvi.org/index.php.
About Dental Volunteers for Israel
Since its founding in 1980, Dental Volunteers for Israel has been providing free dental care to Jerusalem's most underprivileged children. At the state-of-the-art Trudi Birger Dental Clinic, children of all faiths referred by the Department of Social Welfare are treated by dentists from around the world. Volunteering services range from routine to complex dental procedures. DVI also runs a comprehensive preventative dental care program to help young patients develop good, long-term oral health habits. This worldwide work is made possible not only by the dentists who come to Israel and donate their time and expertise, but also by businesses and individuals who donate supplies, equipment, and financial resources for DVI's operating budget.
Although oral care is a key contributor to overall health, it is often considered an unaffordable luxury to underserved people who have little choice but to do without it. The situation is dire in Israel. Right now there are over 50,000 children living in poverty in Jerusalem and the numbers are continuing to rise. DVI treats thousands of these children each month at the clinic, yet there are still thousands more who need help.
There is no other organization that provides comprehensive free dental care and education to disadvantaged children in Israel. DVI has won awards from the Mayor of Jerusalem, the Israel Ministry of Health, and the Movement for a Better Israel, which notably lauded DVI for encouraging brotherhood and tolerance between Jews and Arabs. For more information, visit http://americanfriendsofdvi.org/index.php, or contact the 30th Anniversary Gala Chairman, Dr. Michael Goldberg at 212-928-1000 or Dr.G@Manhattandentalhealth.com.
About Henry Schein Cares
Activities supported by Henry Schein Cares focus on advancing wellness, building capacity in the delivery of health care services, and enhancing emergency preparedness and relief. Firmly rooted in a deep commitment to social responsibility and the concept of enlightened self-interest championed by Benjamin Franklin, the philosophy behind Henry Schein Cares is a vision of 'doing well by doing good.' By 'helping health happen' through the work of Henry Schein Cares, the Company firmly believes that it is furthering its long-term success. Henry Schein Cares annually donates more than $4 million in product, in-kind and cash contributions.
About Henry Schein
Henry Schein, Inc. (Nasdaq: HSIC), the largest distributor of health care products and services to office-based practitioners, is a Fortune 500 company and a member of the NASDAQ 100 Index. Recognized for its excellent customer service and highly competitive prices, the Company's five businesses - North American Dental, North American Medical, North American Animal Health, International and Technology - serve more than 700,000 customers worldwide, including dental practitioners and laboratories, physician practices and animal health clinics, as well as government and other institutions.
The Company operates through a centralized and automated distribution network, which provides customers in more than 200 countries with a comprehensive selection of more than 90,000 national and Henry Schein private-brand products in stock, as well as more than 100,000 additional products available as special-order items. Henry Schein also provides exclusive, innovative technology offerings for dental, medical and veterinary professionals, including value-added practice management software and electronic health record solutions. Headquartered in Melville, N.Y., Henry Schein employs more than 13,500 people and has operations or affiliates in 24 countries. The Company's net sales reached a record $6.5 billion in 2009. For more information, visit the Henry Schein website at www.henryschein.com.