In Brazil, kids have their own special day when everyone celebrates childhood—on Children’s Day, October 12.
The little ones get presents, and opportunities to play on the inflatables and trampolines set up in public parks. They are given candy and can watch kid-friendly movies broadcasted by TV stations throughout the week.
Amanda Mattos, a dentist who volunteers for a social project in the countryside of Bahia, met Ryan in September on one of her many trips to these poor areas. She was moved by the drastic condition of the boy’s teeth—he had none on his upper arch and only a few in the lower.
His family, located in the town of Guajeru, said he lost the teeth after suffering from a disease when he was three-years-old.
Mattos, whose specialty is orthodontics, asked the boy about his dreams. He told her his greatest wish was to have teeth like his friends did.
Using her own personal material and supplies, Mattos gave Ryan a sparkling smile that will last forever.
“At times, I didn’t think it would be possible to do it, but this smile and gain on self esteem,” she recalled. “I guess this was the most rewarding dental work I ever did.”
Smile! Click To Share – Photo by Amanda Mattos