Caron & Jones Grants YMCA $6,000 for Scholarships


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Caron and Jones Dental Care is celebrating its 20th birthday, but the dentistry is also giving the gifts.
Last week, Dr. Jeffrey Bennett and Dr. Katheryn Jones presented the YMCA with a check for $6,000 as part of the Double Your Smile grant the pair established to provide scholarships to youth. Bennett said he knows how big of an impact the Y made on him as a boy, and he hopes to help give that opportunity to youth who come behind him.

“For many of us, our first social and active moments begin at a YMCA, no matter where you live in the United States. I grew up in Montgomery, Ala., and at 6 years old, I remember the Indian Trail program, my first YMCA program. The YMCA and I didn’t stop there. At every age and every level of activity, the YMCA continues to serve my family and me,” said Bennett. “We want every child to have their own Y story.”

The scholarships are bestowed on area children facing financial challenges, allowing them to partake in YMCA programs, such as youth sports, swim lessons, day camps, and wellness programs. All donations made through Nov. 1 from first-time donors will be matched $2 for every $1, and any increase in giving from returning 2016 donors will be matched dollar for dollar up to $6,000 total for the Double Your Smile grant.

“We want to ensure continued success to all children in Howard County, and the Kokomo Family YMCA offers opportunities to our next generation improving spiritual, physical, mental health. At Bennett & Jones, we say ‘Committed to your care and our community’ and feel this grant matches that sentiment perfectly,” said Jones.

This year, the YMCA will have far exceeded any other year in terms of the number of scholarships given out at more than 1,300. Going back two years alone, 139 families were on scholarships in Howard County. Bryan Soper, director of the YMCA, said a big reason for that increase is the generous giving through the Y’s annual campaign. “These dollars are very heavily used with our swim program, our summer camp program, and our after-school programming, so donations like this are very generous and very needed. We greatly appreciate it,” said Soper.

Over the dentistry’s 20 years, it has given back locally, statewide, and globally. Through Project Access’ Dentists Delivering Smiles program, Bennett & Jones Dental Care has donated $273,209 worth of free dental work since records started being kept in 2005, and the dentists also have made three trips to Haiti and Honduras to do charity dental work, to name a few. Bennett thanked the community for its continued support. “Thank you for this honor, 20 remarkable years of warmth, friendship, and support. We couldn’t have done it without you, nor can we take the next steps without your help. We will continue to work to high standards and keep your smile and your health at the forefront of why we practice dentistry,” said Bennett.