The Oral Health Project

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Kylie Schmidt
London Brinkman
Daniel Ginn
Jack Werner
Emmett Galla
Wenjing Wei
Michael Sharp


Record ID: 315

Award(s): Excellence in Research Mentoring; Excellence in Research Communication

Student Major: Political Science

Project Advisor: Michael Sharp

Abstract: Village Life’s Oral Health Project is meant to improve the lack of oral health education throughout the Nyambogo, Buere, and Roche villages of the Rorya district in Tanzania. Currently, residents brush their teeth according to tradition, which includes the use of sticks and coal ash. Oftentimes, individuals share sticks and brush for long periods of time, thus increasing their risk of tooth decay. When attempting to explain healthier oral health habits, Village Life is faced with a language barrier that could prevent effective communication and understanding among village residents. In addition, the lack of dental hygiene resources, like dentists, within the Rorya district requires the implementation of sustainable solutions to help residents improve their oral health. Over the course of the Spring 2023 semester, we created several templates for sustainable marketing materials meant to inform villagers of proper oral health care in their common language, Swahili. These were later used during Village Life's Summer 2023 trip to Tanzania. Even further, we worked in collaboration with Village Life and their Tanzanian partners to ensure these marketing materials reflect cultural intelligence and the information provided is understandable and relatable. Our work accumulates into an effort to alleviate prevalent tooth decay and gum disease among villagers.


Article Details

Category: Social Services, Healthcare, & Education
Author Biography

Kylie Schmidt

Major: Political Science