"We Love What We Do And We Continue To Change The Lives Of Others With Life’s Precious Gift Of A Smile!"
Michael Oliver Talking To Sky News About Dental Mavericks
Strip Off For Smiles
"Michael Oliver Talking to Sun FM About Dental Mavericks"
Dental Mavericks: Morocco Trip 2012
Just imagine, living with your family in an isolated fishing village with no dentists , a high sugar diet , no toothbrushes and no fluoride tooth paste. You don't need to be a dentist to imagine the consequences, but the dental neglect shocks even the most experienced of this group of national dentists and their team. Abscesses, pain and distress, parents of these children in Morocco are no different to any other around the world, they want their children helping.
Maybe a little pebble in a big pond but three years ago a group of dentists from around the UK came together to form the Dental Maverick charity to provide dental care in remote areas of the world
Expanding significantly in 2012,the Mavericks numbered a team of 15, including 8 clinicians and their support staff of dental nurses and admin staff. Excited at the prospect of providing restorative fillings for the first time to complement the inevitable extraction work load the Mavericks met up in Southern Spain for the ferry journey to Morocco. Laden with a tremendous range of clinical equipment donated by incredible dental company generosity and public donation, dental care we take for granted headed for a North Africa desperate for the services of this western team.
Leaving behind a Western lifestyle in Tarifa, Southern Spain, a forty minute ferry journey took the team to a land that in places felt two hundred years behind us. The most richly scenic of countries, in the countryside the primitive Berber tribes folk of the Rif mountains can be seen tending their fields with animals, quite a culture shock for this i pad generation of dentists.
Bizarrely the teams plans were severely hindered on arrival in Morocco as the border agents refused to sanction the entry of previously cleared dental equipment. With a full team of dentists finding their trip in jeopardy, three days of official negotiations spread across the country , finally saw the team reunited with their supplies. The relief was enormous as the team were well aware of the children in the village and their reliance on our annual visit.
The trip started with a two day trek around the Rif mountains as they rise from the city of Tetuan. The joy of the trek being the integration the team felt with the local people including an overnight stay in the home of a Moroccan family who kindly allowed 15 of us to sleep in their living room. Feeding us traditional Moroccan food cooked beautifully in a Tagine is a memory that will live long with those of us privileged enough to be there. Moroccans living a simple existence offering tremendous kindness to their Western visitors. I can't imagine many families in Sunderland giving up their front rooms to 15 Moroccans knocking on their door !
The highlight of this trip like others before came as the team were welcome like long lost friends as we pulled up into the village. A remarkable show of affection for the dental team from some of the village seniors including ex mayor Reduan, the school headmaster Mustaffa and the owner of our base the three days we were in town.
I will let the photographs tell the story of the uplifting experience felt by the whole team as we set about helping nearly 200 children with their dental pain. Nothing I do in my career comes close to the emotion I feel being part of this UK team helping children in genuine distress who rely on us as a sole source of dental care.
Such lovely children , they lifted the whole team. The gratitude of the parents made it all worthwhile.
The whole school came out to say goodbye to a Mavericks team delighted to have overcome all the problems of the border and a team feeling justifiably proud of themselves. A job well done for another year.
After such an intense few days the team had earned themselves a couple of days of R and R as they travelled back through the Rif mts with its stunning views to the beautiful city of Chefchaouen , the blue city in the mountains. A scary, and I mean scary, land rover journey up to 2500 m saw some of the team reunited with the legendary Abdul, host of the Hotel Azilane, a trekkers paradise in the high Rif.
Onwards with a trip back to The Moroccan border and that short ferry journey back to normality and a final night of celebration in Tarifa that will live long. It's the nearest I will ever get to experiencing what it is like to be Doctor Who with a step back in time so engaging it leaves a mark on all of us fortunate enough to be part of Mavericks 2012.
Mali , Central Africa next year , maybe just maybe.
Watch this space but for now its back to being a dentist in Sunderland, offering emergency dentist services back home will never seem the same again.
Special thanks for making this trip such a huge success....
Chris Woolley of Henry Schein and his company itself who donated phenomenal amounts of equipment at no charge and helped us ship hundreds of pounds worth of supplies to Spain.
My business manager at Olivers Dental Studio , Joanne Barella, who gave up endless amounts of her time in fund raising and organisation. a special person indeed.
The four new Mavericks this year, Mike, Amy, Gillian and dentist David who were inspirational, caring and above all became great friends of the team. Top people.
Maverick Chris Branfield who pulled the clinical side together for us, a tremendous feat in our field clinic in Africa. Brilliant effort Chris , it all worked seamlessly.
Mohammed our mountain guide for taking us into parts of the world few would ever have the privilege of seeing.
Domien, a Belgian who seems to know everyone in Spain, Africa and most of Europe come to think of it. A brilliant organiser, guide, translator and bunny rabbit. A wonderful man.
Finally, thanks to Tony and Cally Gedge. They sowed the seed of the Mavericks, drove it on when many would have lost the energy and pulled the rest of us out of our little boxes of dental life. Amazing people , generous and kind, driving us to experiences in life we would never have seen. The Mavericks salute you.
Olivers Cycle For The
Sunderland Foundation of Light
As a proud Sunderland lad , the boss at Olivers was delighted to join up with some of his football favourites on the recent Dublin to Sunderland charity bike ride.
Emphasising the strong links between Sunderland football club and our friends over the Irish Sea, Sunderlands excellent Foundation of Light planned a 375 mile bike ride from Eire to cross the line at the Stadium of Light after a grueling 5 day pedal.
Supporting this big charity challenge from mile one was Sunderland legend Marco Gabbiadini and twenty dedicated cyclists with an affinity for our great city.
Michael , the boss at Sunderland dentists Oliver's Dental Studio joined former players Michael Gray and Chris Makin for the final leg of 65 miles from the borders down to the Stadium of Light.
The chance to raise funds justified being squeezed into a Lycra cycle top that may have fitted Michael as a 16 year old. He was quoted as saying he has every sympathy for any ladies going out on a Saturday night with their Spanx on.
Standing as he did next to Messrs Gray and Makin was a bonus for those boys as he emphasised their still highly tuned torsos. Marco of course has learnt how to enjoy the finer things in life.
The final 65 mls for the ageing dentist seemed manageable even with his two hours of training as a howling gale allowed for more sailing than cycling on the six hour cycle home.
|Michael and Harry Hall (Reds)||The two Michaels, one as fit as a butchers dog, one likes his Guinness|
Michael was delighted that his efforts, including auction bids, brilliantly supported by family, friends and patients of the studio neared £3000 to the brilliant foundation who do so much good work in the local community.
The idea for the ride came from keen Sunderland cyclists Susan and Harry Hall of Reds Hair and Beauty and with excellent support from Grafton , cycleworld amongst others, should see the Foundation raise some valuable funding.
Michael is still delighted to accept sponsorship for his efforts on behalf of the foundation via his Just Giving page at http://www.justgiving.com/Michael-Oliver2 and can be contacted at the Dental Studio as well.
"Crossing the finish in the Champs de Sunderland with
Marco, Micky and Chris leading the way"
Spotlight on Sunderland with SunFM
I remember when I was at school there would always be a dental nurse come into school and Olivers dental are trying to keep this going. They are giving something back to the community and trying to help kids get into the habit of looking after their teeth.
They have a full session on the best ways to brush as well as showing the kids the types of tools that the dentist might use. It all helps get them into good habits as well as make them less nervous about visiting the dentist. The star of the show is Ollie the Lion, who seems to have become a bit of a celeb,the kids love him.
It's nice to see a local business giving something back and being part of the community while promoting something that we all know we should do properly. You can see that the team genuinely have fun doing this and get all over promoting healthy teeth.
No Pain Dentistry for Moroccan Children
by Dental Mavericks
1st November 2011
Thank you very, very much for helping Moroccan kids smile more.
Charities are suffering at the moment, so thank for your generosity!
Dental Mavericks worked hard over the last two years to treat over 200 kids from the El Jebah region of the Rif Mountains, North East Morocco but there are still four hundred and fifty kids from the same school who waiting for pain free dentistry.
Hopefully, with support from donors like you, and a little luck, we can keep up the good work and achieve our dream of treating the remaining four hundred and fifty kids.
Please be assured that the donation YOU have made is going to make a real difference. Our aim now is to raise 10K pounds to purchase restorative equipment and a smile ambulance.
From behalf of Dental Mavericks many thanks again for helping us deliver No Pain Dentistry for Moroccan Children.
All the best,
Tony and Cally Gedge
Dental Mavericks 83 Gamble Hill Drive, LS13 4JL 0845 0531515 www.DentalMavericks.org
We Are Givers Of Hands On Help Across Our Local Community. We Reach Out To Give Back Smiles And Spread Our Love Throughout The City Of Sunderland
What started as a visit to a local school to bring dental help and education for young children, turned into a lifelong award winning “healthy teeth for life programme” for the City of Sunderland.
Our efforts were recognised when we scooped the “Sunderland Care In The Community Award 2011” with our local newspaper “The Sunderland Echo”.
More recently, the Studio have extended their care into the community helping to set up a soup kitchen for the homeless.
In addition, the studio ran a gift of a smile competition to give the people of Sunderland an opportunity to win a £10,000 smile. Hundreds of entries were received from Sunderland people who told us just how much winning a smile would change their lives.
Our work in the community gives us a meaningful purpose and enriches the life’s of others without monetary intervention.
Sunderland Dentist Appears On ITV
in Morocco Mission of Mercy
Leaving no regrets on their death beds, a dental delegation of eleven UK dentists, and nurses undertook a journey to the remote Rif Mountains region, in North Eastern Morocco.
They saw, and treated 150 kids for severe dental decay!
The destination: a remote school in a fishing village, with 650 children and a high intake of honey, sweet mint tea. And no dental health service that contributes to extreme dental decay.
Dr Michael Oliver, one of the co founders and trustees of Dental Mavericks is usually found treating patients in his comfortable practice in Sunderland surrounded by modern day dental equipment, running water, and fabulous support team. Everything he could ever need.
Michael and his dental nurse Jo Barella, raised thousands of pounds, which bought a much needed mobile field chair supplied by Dentaid.
“Pain Free Dentistry is at the heart of all we do”, explains Michael Oliver. And he further said, “This year the kids were entertained by games, colouring books and Dental Maverick’s Mascot; Roger the Rabbit! It was such a great dental distraction, that the kids were even asking for more extractions.”
Michael Oliver and Jo recently appeared on ITV spreading the Mavericks cause...
Dental Nurse Jo Barella Also Financed Her Own Trip.
She Held Car Boot Sales, Dance-Athons And Cycled
With A Silly Wig And Bucket.
Jo said, “This was the most overwhelming experience of my dental career and a charity expedition I will never forget.”
Jo’s fundraising video diary http://dentalmavericks.org/support-our-work/fundraising-stories-2011
Cally Gedge from the award winning Dental Mavericks organisation, who organised the annual expedition said, “This is our second year and this Moroccan community now relies on UK dentists to rid them from the daily pain of decayed teeth. There is no free or easy to access dental care.”
In particular, Henry Schein donated eighty percent of the supplies needed. With toothbrush and toothpaste donations made by Verena Tunn-Salihoglu, Oldmachar Dental; Jas Sandhu, High Street Dental, East Grinstead. Dentaid donated visual oral health aids, and made the three mobile field chairs.
Finally, Michael Oliver has a long-term goal too, and a simple one. To buy a Dental Ambulance to get into the more remote villages. A laptop and computer software is now needed to transfer the index cards over. Also, plans are under way to train school teachers to educate children on tooth decay prevention, and bring in a dentist every three months from the nearest town Chefchaouen, two and a half hours away, treating kids in pain.
If you’d like to view pictures of the beautiful Moroccan children, Roger the Rabbit, the mobile field chairs being presented to the local clinic and HD video, make any donations, or sponsor the ‘Moroccan Kids Teeth for Life’ programme, please visit www.dentalmavericks.org or please request HD photos of the ones you like.
Our "Healthy Teeth for Life Campaign”
We are passionate to keep little mouth's healthy and the studio is aware that not all children have access to dental care. Our "Healthy Teeth for Life Campaign” reached out to the children of Sunderland to deliver the message of the importance of healthy teeth for life.
Taking this message out on location around the city, the studio have visited schools, hospitals, the SAFC children’s foundation and the Sunderland Air show.
“Healthy Teeth for life has involved a lot of time and dedication from the business to produce and deliver an oral health strategy aimed at children. We also stage children’s open days within the studio which add a fun innovative element to “healthy teeth for life”.Dental nurse from Olivers Dental practice, Catherine White along with Ollie the Lion visit children of St Annes school to talk about healthy teeth and dental hygiene.
“Youngsters Had Something To Smile About When Their Teeth Got The Once Over"
The children from St Anne’s Primary School, in Sunderland, enjoyed a visit by a dental team, to talk to them about keeping their teeth and mouths in tip-top shape.
A school spokeswoman said: “The children really enjoyed the talk and learned a lot about the importance of looking after their teeth. It was a really good visit.
“They also got a bigger view of teeth with a super-size model of the mouth, while Ollie the Lion, mascot for Olivers Dental Studio, Durham Road, went along to meet them”.
Our Visit To Sunderland Royal Hospital.
F63 ward is filled with sick children, all being treated for minor and life threatening illness.
Our first contact with this ward was to request a visit over the Christmas period by our Studio mascot Ollie the Lion and Katherine, our tooth fairy, to take gifts for the children donated by our team.
Our request was greatly welcomed by Elaine who is a matron on the ward, however we were shocked to hear from Elaine that ward F63 was desperate for Dental Help.
Elaine explained that this ward was actually utilised for day case dental extractions of children. There was no means of oral health education and prevention due to government cut backs. Elaine asked for our help.
Upon visiting the ward we were shocked to find that dental neglect was right here in the City Of Sunderland.
Children as young a four years old were admitted to a ward with seriously ill children for multiple dental extractions…… Just crazy!
There was a definite need for help here and we were able to work hands on with the children prior to their visit to theatre.
We stayed with the children and their parents throughout their stay. We were able to engage and really home down on the importance of good dental health.
Ollie the Lion and Katherine the tooth fairy brought smiles not only to the children but the young at heart patients and Hospital staff. Further visits have been arranged to continue our magic!
SAFC Children’s Foundation
The Studio has become involved in setting up an oral health project with the SAFC Children’s Foundation.
No other dental practice has offered this type of service and the project was so successful that they are to hold further workshops in the future.
Studio owner Michael Oliver and patient co-ordinator Beverley Mason gave up their time to engage with teenagers who have been eliminated from school and who have behavioural problems. Their message was to educate on harmful effects of smoking linked with poor oral hygiene.
SAFC Foundation Projects Pitstop, Goal and Going for Goals had a visit from a local Dentist - Michael Oliver from Oliver’s Dental Practice in East Herrington who is a dentist to many of our players, past and present.
The group was advised on taking care of their teeth and answered questions about sugar content of foods that they eat regularly. Pupils then investigated foods in their packed lunches and were scored on their sugar/acid levels and how good the foods were for their teeth. The dentist then held a mini quiz for the pupils which they thoroughly enjoyed.
The pupils were given toothbrushes and toothpaste and were advised on how regularly they should brush their teeth. The session ended with a question and answer time with the pupils coming up with some good questions for Mr. Oliver.
The learners in the projects range from year 3- year 11 and are all pupils who may be disengaging from mainstream learning or have disengaged. Pit stop staff work with these young people to try and not only re-engage their enthusiasm for learning but on social issues such as health, behaviour and social skills.
The pupils had some excellent feedback about the visit and all rushed off to brush their teeth after Mr Oliver left. A few of the young people even came back after lunch with Diet Coke instead of Coke or energy drinks. The staff who visited were very at ease with the young people and staff were impressed with their approach and honesty with the young people. SAFC Foundation hope to work with Mr Oliver on a more regular basis in the future.
Teestimonial From Craig Martin, Pit stop Behaviour, SAFC Foundation Co-ordinator
Dental Maverick Adventure Charity Expedition
September The Moroccan Kids Smile 2010
This founding expedition is to help to bring the worlds attention to the ongoing plight of the Moroccan Kids Smile. The North Eastern Coast of Morocco is being messed up by a vast road network (to get tourists to the Rif Mountains).
This is a stunning part of the world and sadly the modern world is interfering and once again the Moroccan children are suffering.
Did you know that in El Jebah 50,000 Moroccans have only one dentist !
If You Would Like To Make A Donation To Help The Children Of North Africa please click here www.dentalmavericks.org
Children’s Open Days
We target parents across the city through Schools, libraries, GP surgeries advertising our children’s open days. We are able to encourage parents to bring along their children if they do not have a dentist. The children can expect a really FUN visit, with competitions Ollie the Lion and even our very own Disney Princess!
Sunderland Air Show
The Sunderland Air Show receives thousands of visitors each year and it was the perfect opportunity to take Ollie The Lion out on location. Ollie gave out toothpaste and toothbrushes to the children of Sunderland and of course he raised a few smiles!!
Gift Of A Smile Competition
Hundreds of entries were received from so many people who were unable to afford smile treatments. Each entrant told us just how life changing winning a smile would be.
St Mary’s Soup Kitchen Sunderland
The Studio has recently become involved in the setup of a soup kitchen which is in the very early stages of development. The team at Olivers have donated items to the kitchen and presented a food parcel during the Christmas Period.