Communities In Schools Houston, Inc. Project MOVE (Mobile Operations Vehicle for Everyone) Dental

Organization Information:

Organization Name:
Communities In Schools Houston, Inc.
City & State:
Organization Website:
Organization's Mission Statement

The mission of Communities In Schools Houston, Inc. (CIS) is to provide and to coordinate student assistance services at the school campus in order to best meet the physical and emotional needs of at-risk students and to empower these students to remain in school.

Submission Information

Impact Essay

CIS Project Mobile Operations Vehicle for Everyone (Project MOVE) provides a variety of preventive, restorative, and educational services to improve the oral health of Houston’s underserved children. Kayla is a second grade CIS student attending Landis Elementary School. CIS Project MOVE Dental mobile van visited Landis Elementary to provide basic dental care to the school’s many uninsured children. Kayla and her family evacuated from New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina and have a host of pressing psycho-social problems as a result. While being examined, Kayla winced whenever a tooth on the upper right side was touched. She stated that she had not been able to eat because she felt intense pain every time she chewed. Upon an further exam and x-rays, it clearly showed that Kayla had a serious infection in her mouth and needed immediate help. CIS staff immediately contacted her mom Angela to discuss her daughter’s dental needs. Angela stated her family had been struggling since arriving in Houston in 2005, and they have been living out of boxes in a small apartment and everyday posed a serious challenge for survival. As a result, their basic needs for food, clothing, and shelter took precedence over the need for her children’s dental care. Dr. Godwin, from the University of Texas Health Science Center—Dental Branch, devised a treatment plan and gave Kayla and her mother antibiotics to clear up her infection. Shortly after through Project MOVE, Kayla had her infected tooth extracted and received follow-up care. As a result, Kayla’s teachers and mother report she is able to focus on her school work and progress in school at a much higher level than before. Kayla is doing great and has been promoted to the third grade. CIS could not provide the level of services to over 37,000 at-risk Houston children each year without Microsoft products. CIS uses Microsoft Word 2007 for all the organization’s written documents, including grant requests and fundraising, marketing, and communications materials to name a few. Microsoft Word allows CIS to solicit donors and supporters and spread the word about our services in the community in an effective and cost-efficient way. CIS fundraising is tracked through Microsoft Excel, and Excel is also utilized for the organization’s financial documents and budgets. Outlook is the basis for all internal and external communications, including e-mail newsletters to current and potential supporters. PowerPoint allows the organization to create compelling fundraising and marketing materials to inform our Board of Directors and supporters in the community of the organization’s activities and successes. The agency also utilizes Microsoft Publisher to create brochures on our programs to inform our constituents and the community of our services. CIS recently purchased a Exchange Server 2007 Standard Edition and a Windows Server 2008 Standard Edition 32-Bit/x64 from TechSoup to improve the agency’s communication and manage Project E!, CIS’ e-mentoring program for high school students. As a result of Microsoft products, the CIS administrative office and field operations run smoothly and successfully. CIS is committed to providing and coordinating social services to improve the lives and education of Houston’s children, and a donation from Microsoft would increase the organization’s capacity to reach those in need of our services. A donation would improve CIS’ ability to get the word out on our programming and ultimately increase the number of at-risk children reached by our services. Our goals for the future with Microsoft technology include increasing our organizational ability to more effectively reach children with much-needed services necessary for academic and future success.

CIS reaches students who are at the greatest risk of dropping out of school by coordinating community partnerships directly on the school campus and offering Six Core Services including individual and group supportive guidance, academic support, career awareness, cultural enrichment, parental involvement, and information about and referrals to social services providers. CIS also provides several special and emergency service programs, including Project MOVE (Mobile Operations Vehicle for Everybody) Dental, Intervention Support Services, the CIS Summer Youth and Employment Program, the emergency needs program, and holiday gift giving.During the 2007/2008 school year, more than 37,000 students received over 400,000 hours of direct services from CIS staff, with an annual average cost per student of about $228. An additional 50,000 hours of services were provided in event settings such as career fairs, red ribbon (drug awareness) activities, college days and other large group activities. Of the 6,391 students who received intensive services through case management, including an in-depth needs assessment and action plan, 79 percent demonstrated measurable improvement in the areas of academics, attendance and/or behavior, 82 percent of case managed seniors graduated, and 98 percent of case managed students in grades seven thru 12 stayed in school.

Submission Category
Transformations to Maximize Impact