FREE Dental Care for La Cruz Elementary Students

January 30, 2023

The 2023 Amigos de La Cruz & Ensign Academy of Dentistry (formerly named Academy of LDS Dentists) completed their 19th year in the Puerto Vallarta area. Boise, Idaho area dentists Dr Gordon Croft and Dr Don Cook, are a miracle team to behold. A team compromised of family and friends have come to the La Cruz for the past 15 years.


This year the team arrived January 13 and departed January 21. The clinic itself was held Jan 16-19. Doctors brought family members and staff to serve as assistants, sterile technicians, and interpreters. Each year they include local dentists from the La Cruz area to work at the clinic. This year 4 local dentists assisted part-time with the team: David, MariCruz, Lupe and Carlos.


The portable clinic consists of 4-5 Adec units for the doctors and two hygiene units. Some of the equipment and supplies left from the last visit are in storage in PV. The airport National Guard assisted safe passage through Customs. La Cruz volunteers


The primary school children in La Cruz (gr 1-6) are invited to come for free dental care. Amigos of La Cruz organizes the screenings, appointments and transportation from the primaria to the Kids Club. The children are pre-screened by local dentists and placed in categories for their visit. The doctors and hygienists work at the Amigos Kids Club from 8-5 pm each day from Monday – Thursday. They try to make sure all kids receive a cleaning, toothbrush, floss, and leave with a healthy smile. The treatments performed include fillings, extractions, pulpotomies, and cleanings. The kids and parents are always very appreciative and kind.


The 2024 trip may be moved to the last week in April. This would allow BYU Pre-dental students to come on the trip.
A special Thank You to volunteers: David Bailey (videographer); Izzy Simon (front desk intake and organizer); Marlin Simon (trouble-shooter and transportation); Sandi & Kent Nelson and Marilyn DiDuca (lunches for the Team and Volunteers), Carmen Tapia and Dunia Guiterrez and Annabelle Halloran for screenings and acting as interpreters; Mayra, Alejandra and Lilly to entertain children as they waited and to act as interpreters and cleaning; Susan Parter for file organization. It truly takes a village – apologies if anyone was not included.


Return to News Main Page