HEALTHY AND READY FOR THE FUTURE


All children deserve to have the basic building blocks they need to lead healthy lives, including access to a consistent source of health care.

UnidosUS’s Healthy and Ready for the Future (HRF) program provides timely and equitable oral and behavioral health care services for Latino children, especially those from migrant and seasonal farmworker families, across rural America. In partnership with eight UnidosUS Affiliates—local Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) and community-based organizations with Migrant and Seasonal Head Start (MSHS) programs—UnidosUS supports local efforts to link Latino children to a medical/dental home in 110 rural communities across six states.

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Since 2016, 60,247 Latino children have received essential health care services and 2.5 million Latinos have been reached with program messages around the importance of a medical and dental home and preventive oral health care services via news and social media.

This program is made possible thanks to support from the Red Nose Day Fund at Comic Relief, Inc.


WHAT WE DO

  • Support Affiliate partners in linking rural, Latino children to a primary health care provider and increasing access to timely oral and behavioral health care services.
  • Increase awareness about the importance of early preventive oral health care and regularly seeing a dentist through a culturally responsive bilingual outreach and education campaign.
  • Collaborate with key national and regional partners to highlight the importance of and investment in early oral health care, especially among agricultural communities.

WHY THIS WORK IS IMPORTANT

Approximately 60% of children will have had a cavity by the age of five. Untreated cavities can impact children’s health, development, and learning which can result in higher school absenteeism and lower self-esteem.

Having a consistent source of health care for children of migrant farmworkers is a challenge, due to the transient nature of moving harvest to harvest within or across state lines, following crop seasons. Additionally, children of migrant and seasonal farmworkers (of which 76% are Latino) live below the federal poverty line at twice the national rate and present more tooth decay than the overall U.S. school children population. Latino children in the U.S., regardless of immigrant status, are also at high risk for behavioral health issues stemming from poverty, exposure to trauma, assimilation stressors, and discrimination.

Though seemingly unrelated, positive social and emotional skills and good oral health are intertwined and crucial to setting children on a healthy path. Children who are more self-conscious about their teeth are less likely to smile and less confident to fully socialize with others. By addressing oral and behavioral health this program serves children more holistically, putting them on a path to a bright future.


HEALTHY AND READY FOR THE FUTURE COVERAGE

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See how your support for Red Nose Day brings dental health to Latino children.


HOW TO GET INVOLVED | RED NOSE DAY 2020

Red Nose Day is an annual campaign with the mission to end child poverty by funding programs that keep children safe, healthy, and educated. COVID-19 is affecting everyone, but no one as much as children in poverty.

Let's come together for the children who need us most. At UnidosUS, that means supporting children of migrant and seasonal farmworkers, who are on the front lines of this pandemic, ensuring we all have a steady supply of food in our grocery stores and at home.

Samuel
Support the Red Nose Day campaign to help children like Samuel in Immokalee, FL, get their smile back.
Red Nose Day girl
Download free Red Nose Day in School (and at home) lesson plans and resources to help children build empathy, strengthen their social-emotional skills, and realize their power to help others.



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CONTACT US

Elizabeth Carrillo
Program Manager, Health
ecarrillo@unidosus.org 
Phone: (202) 785-1670