Dental care remains a challenge for kababayans in remote communities. Clearly, this is a problem, which if not addressed, would lead to minor inconveniences such as losing sleep and more serious consequences including loss of productivity.

And this is a concern for one of the residents in the coastal municipality of Paluan in Occidental Mindoro.

Working in Sitio Hinugasan, Brgy. Harrison Day Care Center by the day, Richelle Tañala is a busy mom of three children aged 10, 8, and 2. Her husband, in order to support their family, maintains a mini variety store in their home.

When Richelle heard that Operation Blessing, in coordination with the local government of Harrison and the military, will conduct a medical and dental mission in their municipality, she did not second guess to travel 45 minutes under the sun to get her tooth extracted.

“I believe this opportunity should not be missed, especially now that my toothache is causing me excruciating pain, affecting both my duties as a mother and as a day care worker,” admits Richelle. She mentioned that the pain gets worse when exposed to cold temperatures. “It’s like the pain increases day by day and I wanted to see a dentist, but I have inadequate money to pay the dental service needed,” Richelle said, stressing that the ₱1,000 ($19) fee is hard to earn for low-income families like them.

Together with our volunteer dentists and the 76th Infantry Battalion AFP, PA, our Operation Blessing team conducted a medical brigade for hundreds of kababayans in Paluan, Occidental Mindoro. All the patients who benefitted from the mission, including Richelle, were glad to receive the free services. “Thank you so much, Operation Blessing! We appreciate you all for coming here despite the difficult road you had to take just to get to our place. Now the pain is all gone!” expressed Richelle.

There are several gaps today in promoting and ensuring the dental health of every Filipino. Would you help bridge that gap? Give at

DSWD-SB-SP-000061-2021-Nationwide. Valid until Nov 23, 2022