The national campaign “Dentist – friend of children” was initiated by the dental surgeon Dumitru Sirbu. As he is connected to his home village, first meeting took place in his home community of Taraclia, from Causeni district, with 60 pupils. 10 other schools throughout Moldova followed, with 2,000 children involved.
“In most cases, children begin to cry when they see the dentist, they don’t want to open their mouths, they’re afraid, they don’t know what proper dental hygiene means and how important nutrition is,” notes Dr. Dumitru Sirbu.
His 25 years of experience motivated him to launch a national campaign to provide oral health education for children outside the dental room, in a child-friendly environment. Dumitru has taken in his “caravan” students and residents from the faculty of dentistry, as well as colleagues from the dental clinic he manages.
Dumitru Sirbu advanced through hard work, from doctor to professor and Ph.D. in medical sciences, and recently was awarded at one of the most prestigious events of field innovations for South-Eastern Europe.
Dumitru Sirbu is still connected to his native village, following its progress, donating his time and experience to contribute to the prosperity of the community.
“I want us to have healthy generations. I organized this lesson for more than 60 children from vulnerable families in my native village. I want these children to understand that proper tooth brushing, proper dental care and avoidance of certain food and beverages will keep the dentist away. Also, we should note that it is a real financial challenge for the parents to cover a dentist visit for the children,” the dentist says.
After discussions with dentists, all children received leaflets on good oral hygiene, decals, a calendar for recording the frequency of tooth brushing, toothpaste, notebooks, spray, dental floss and certificates of participation.
Dumitru Sirbu says that social good reflects his vocation as a doctor and motivates him in everything he is doing: “I believe that everyone should be involved in charity, social good and volunteering to the extent possible, especially for the people of his home village. A smile on someone’s face or a good word at the right time, I think, is the greatest achievement. The desire to do good is part of my soul, and since I was a child, I have been where others felt it was not necessary, perhaps this led to the desire to become a doctor,” he notes.
This is not the first time when Dumitru Sirbu gets involved at local level. He donated for the purchase of mattresses for the freestyle wrestling section in the village, contributed to the purchase of clothing for the local folk ensemble, and so on.
“The reaction of fellow villagers melted me into tears. They conducted a local meeting that impressed me – people collected information about me, made a presentation and congratulated me for my involvement,” Dumitru says.
Volunteering for local development, donating time and experience for the local community can make a difference. This has been demonstrated by the UNDP Moldova’s “Migration and Local Development’ project, funded by the Government of Switzerland.
So, during 2015-2018, over 10,000 Moldovans transferred online more than 257,000 US dollars for 55 infrastructure and socio-cultural projects implemented in 38 partner communities of the UNDP project “Migration and Local Development”.
“Volunteer for home community” campaign celebrates generosity and dedication of migrants who contribute to the development of communities in Moldova. It is launched on the occasion of International Volunteer Day, which is celebrated every year on the 5th of December.