NEW YORK, Sept. 4, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Every year, students in the United States miss more than 51 million hours of school instruction due to dental-related illness.1 To empower young students to maintain a healthy smile and excel in the classroom, Colgate Bright Smiles, Bright Futures® has launched Smile for Picture Day™ – a new back-to-school campaign that uses the tradition of picture day to promote healthy brushing routines.
In partnership with Teach for America, a national non-profit dedicated to expanding educational opportunities for children facing the challenges of poverty, more than 2,000 educators from across the country will champion Smile for Picture Day™ in Kindergarten through grade 3 classrooms by sharing Colgate's award winning Bright Smiles, Bright Futures® curriculum. Additionally, Colgate's fleet of mobile dental vans will travel to more than 150 elementary schools in September and October to provide Smile for Picture Day™ information and free dental screenings to children in need.
"Picture day is an iconic tradition that marks a new year of learning and special milestones. That moment should be captured with a healthy smile," said Dr. Marsha Butler, Vice President of Global Oral Health and Professional Relations, a dentist who oversees the Colgate Bright Smiles, Bright Futures® global program. "Poor oral health can significantly impact a child's ability to eat, speak and learn. By showing children how to care for their smiles, we can help them to feel good about themselves and the school year ahead."
"A bright smile reflects a child's developing self-esteem and the promise of a healthy, successful school year," said Whitney Petersmeyer, Senior Vice President of National Development at Teach for America. "Our teachers have seen first-hand the impact poor oral health can have on a child's learning experience. We're proud to team up with Colgate Bright Smiles, Bright Futures® to provide underserved students the skills they need to take care of their smiles – for picture day and every day."
Colgate Bright Smiles, Bright Futures® is among the most far-reaching, successful children's oral health initiatives in the world. With long-standing partnerships with governments, schools and communities, Colgate Bright Smiles, Bright Futures® has reached more than half a billion children across 80 countries with free dental screenings and oral health education.
To champion Smile for Picture Day™ at home with your child or at your local school, please visit www.ColgateBSBF.com to download and share Colgate's free oral health education materials, videos and more.
Colgate-Palmolive is a leading global consumer products company, tightly focused on Oral Care, Personal Care, Home Care and Pet Nutrition. Colgate-Palmolive sells its products in over 200 countries and territories around the world under such internationally recognized brand names as Colgate, Palmolive, Mennen, Softsoap, Irish Spring, Protex, Sorriso, Kolynos, Elmex, Tom's of Maine, Sanex, Ajax, Axion, Soupline, and Suavitel, as well as Hill's Science Diet and Hill's Prescription Diet. For more information about Colgate-Palmolive's global business, visit the Company's web site at www.Colgate.com. To learn more about Colgate Bright Smiles, Bright Futures®, Colgate's global oral health education program, please visit http://www.colgatebsbf.com. CL-C
About Teach for America
Teach For America works in partnership with communities to expand educational opportunity for children facing the challenges of poverty. Founded in 1990, Teach For America recruits and develops a diverse corps of outstanding individuals of all academic disciplines to commit two years to teach in high-need schools and become lifelong leaders in the movement to end educational inequity. This fall, 11,000 corps members will teach in 48 urban and rural regions across the country, while 32,000 alumni will work across sectors to ensure that all children have access to an excellent education. For more information, visit www.teachforamerica.org and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
 US Department of Health and Human Services. Oral Health in America: A Report of the Surgeon General-- Executive Summary. Rockville, MD: US Department of Health and Human Services, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, National Institutes of Health, 2000.