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All aboard the Smile Train!

Vandana KatyalBOSS News, Uncategorised


Smile Train


I was touched to receive a letter this week thanking the BOSS team for its recent donation of AUD $7,000 to the charity Smile Train, whose mission it is to build a sustainable solution to cleft care around the world.

The truth is, the thanks is actually not only for BOSS, but for every dentist that has attended a BOSS course, because as part of its partnership with Smile Train, a portion of every BOSS course enrolment fee is donated to help deliver free corrective surgery for a child born with cleft lip and palate in a developing country.

All aboard the Smile Train!

The letter stated that BOSS’s recent donation will help support nearly 20 cleft repair surgeries for children globally. As a number, that’s great – but as a fact it’s actually quite incredible. When I thought about how a life can be transformed by even a slight smile improvement, it was almost overwhelming to consider the vast difference that correcting a cleft could have on these underprivileged children’s lives.

Smile Train’s ultimate goal is to give every child in the world born with a cleft the opportunity to live a full and productive life. By funding cleft repair surgeries and comprehensive cleft care, they can restore not only a child’s face, but also their fate, because, left untreated, these kids will face a lifetime of hurdles in terms of education (because of the way it affects speech), employment, and social acceptance. Smile Train can do for these children what their impoverished parents cannot.

One of the things that most impresses me about Smile Train is its policy of training local medical professionals and providing funding for equipment and financial aid, so these partners can administer free cleft surgery and comprehensive cleft care every day. So far, over 2,100 medical professionals around the globe have been given training and resources. This is a safe and sustainable way of providing quality cleft treatment for a fraction of what it would cost a mission group. It’s a wonderful example of ‘teach a man to fish’.

In the past 12 months, thanks to donations, Smile Train provided a free cleft surgery every five minutes. In fact, since its inception, it has given over a million children across more than 85 countries the opportunity to live healthy and productive lives by enabling them to eat, breathe and speak ‘normally’.

Through my work as an educator with BOSS and as a practicing orthodontist, my life is dedicated to helping more people to smile the smile they dream of, and supporting SmileTrain is a natural extension of this. I am proud to be able to share my knowledge with all of our BOSS course attendees, and for us to be able to help the world’s less fortunate at the same time.

I would like to thank everyone who has attended a BOSS course, and to let you know that you have personally contributed to making these kids’ lives better. Now that’s definitely something to smile about!

If you wish to make a donation, please send us a message with the amount you’d like to donate here.

What People Are Saying

  • I started this course unsure of how much I would benefit. The in-person lectures were fantastic (although the course is now 100% online) where I made good friends and learned a lot. The online resources are extensive and second to none, accessible at your convenience. The webinars were great – usually with the right mix of teaching, cases demonstrated and the attendees’ cases being discussed. I was also invited to deliver a webinar on intra-oral scanners, 3D printers and in house aligner manufacturing (from a dentist’s point of view) – which I enjoyed.
    Most of all the course gave significantly more confidence what can be done with aligners, how plan the setup efficiently with the end in mind and how to make the processes to get there smoother. As a result, a MUCH larger chunk of my work is now aligner based. My conversion rate for aligner treatments has definitely increased along with my confidence. The course has easily paid for itself. Full disclosure: I was invited to deliver a webinar on intra-oral scanners, 3D printers and in house aligner manufacture to my BOSS batch mates, which I also thoroughly enjoyed doing. I declined any remuneration for this, although it was offered.
    Dr Shammi Moopen, Dentist, VIC
  • Having always steered away from clear aligners and only stuck with fixed braces, I’ve finally decided to give aligners a go this year. BOSS is extremely practical, informative and backed up by heaps of research. Dr. V is a great mentor, she’s always helpful and truthful. The team at BOSS and CCC smiles are just amazing, always there to help you whenever you need, even if it was a question that’s been repetitively asked many many times. I would highly recommend BOSS to anyone who wishes to start their journey in digital orthodontics. With Dr. V and her team behind me, my confidence level is soooo much higher and I feel like I am delivering my treatment to a higher standard and overall making me a better clinician. Thank you Dr. V!!

    Dr Claire Chiu, Dentist QLD
  • I joined BOSS in 2018 for the full year, and the wealth of knowledge that Vandana shares is immeasurable! This course is perfect for absolute beginners and also those with more experience, and Vandana caters it perfectly for the whole group. All her information is evidence based and very relatable for general dentists, giving you information that those “generic” 1-3 day clear aligner courses cannot give you. BOSS is a very comprehensive course. I highly recommend it, I plan to join BOSS again!

    Dr Michelle Sujenie, Dentist VIC
  • Since I have joined the postgraduate diploma in orthodontics I have noticed all the applied practical learning/knowledge on my patients and I am only half way through the year. Dr Vandana is a genuine educator. She goes way beyond to simplify every lecture and I really like her evidence based information and that is available for us 24/7. Her webinars helped a lot for busy dentists and loved the feedback we get in the one on one sessions with our cases. It make us think every step of the way. But the best thing I like is to see she is giving back to the community and her association with Smile Train in helping children with cleft palate is just beyond words. Thank you so much for being nice and approachable.

    Dr Claudia Braybon, Dentist
  • Received my Diploma in Digital Orthodontics from BOSS and couldn’t be more stoked! Huge shout out to Dr Vandana Katyal and the BOSS team for a wonderful year. I would recommend BOSS to every dentist no matter their level of experience with Orthodontics and clear aligners. Starting off with barely any orthodontic experience, I have commenced about 9 cases in the matter of months and BOSS gave me the confidence to predictably deliver results for my patients through clear aligners which are the future of modern orthodontics.
    Dr Sarang Sathe, Dentist NSW
  • Dr Katyal shares so much of her own protocol and is extremely generous not only with her time but with the well thought out information she provides along with the course such as inventory lists, marketing material and case presentation templates. She tailors her advice to your own experience and helps with appropriate case selection, points out possible pitfalls and helps you understand how to overcome them. The course is also up-to-date using the latest technologies in orthodontics and is heavily evidence-based.

    I would recommend it to anyone wanting to start doing some orthodontic treatment or looking for a more comprehensive course to assist in some ortho they are already doing.

    Dr Becky Dudman, Melbourne

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