Grant Program to Replace Water Fountains at Tennessee Schools

Dentistry Today


To commemorate its 55thanniversary, Delta Dental of Tennessee has launched a grant program to replace existing water fountains at 55 elementary schools across the state with Elkay bottle-filling stations.

Providing access to drinking water throughout the school day gives students a healthy alternative to sugary beverages, the company says. Also, water can combat obesity, increase energy levels, improve cognitive functions, and, if fluoridated, help prevent cavities. 

“Our mission at Delta Dental is very simple: ensuring healthy smiles. And that starts with educating children about the importance of taking care of their teeth at a young age,” said Phil Wenk, DDS, CEO and president of Delta Dental of Tennessee. 

“Drinking more water, especially fluoridated water, is good for your teeth and good for your overall health, and using a refillable water bottle is good for the environment,” said Wenk.

All Tennessee elementary schools are encouraged to apply for these grants ahead of their April 17 deadline. To apply, interested schools should visit the Delta Dental of Tennessee website for more information and to begin the application process, which includes:

  • Creating a short video highlighting how water is good for your health and teeth, why the school needs the bottle filling station, or what makes a healthy smile
  • Sharing that video on social media with the hashtag #WatersCoolTN and including a link with their grant application
  • Including photographs of the current water fountain they would like to replace, which will help inform the installation process for selected schools

The 55 selected schools will receive a water bottle filling station, including installation, and toothbrushes for all students. Ten schools also will win a pep rally with Delta Dental’s Ambassador of Smiles, Marshall Molar, and water bottles for every student and staff member.

Grant winners will be announced during National Drinking Water Week, May 3 to May 9. The water bottle filling stations will be installed over summer break at all 55 winning schools, and the pep rallies at the 10 winning schools will be scheduled when school resumes in the fall.

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