The Dr. Borna Meisami Foundation was set up in honor of Dr. Borna Meisami, an orthopedic surgeon and humanitarian who was deeply affected by violence against women. Borna passed away at the age of 40 on July 1, 2007. In his memory we are continuing his work as a compassionate humane doctor with deep concerns about womens’ social issues.
The Foundation administers Project Restoring Smiles, a non-profit charitable program offering free dental and reconstructive services to women who have survived domestic violence. Our clients self-identify as survivors of domestic abuse and all are currently living in shelters or supportive housing. Our clients are not covered by other social assistance dental programs such as Ontario Works or ODSP (which only cover basic emergency dental treatment), and therefore have few options to pursue treatment after sustaining injuries from physical abuse.
The Project’s first goal in providing free treatment is to eliminate pain, restore function and proper speech, and to some degree, alleviate the emotional trauma that arises as a result of domestic violence. When a woman experiences ongoing dental pain as a result of abuse, struggles to chew, speak or sleep due to jaw pain, or avoids social interaction because of missing teeth, the cycle of trauma is perpetuated. We provide dental treatment as a concrete and real way to help end our clients’ experience with domestic violence and to support her recovery process.
Project Restoring Smiles’ second goal is to assist clients in restoring their dental health and overall wellbeing. The Project recognizes that basic dental care such as hygiene is financially inaccessible to many of our clients. Dental neglect in turn leads to the deterioration of oral and overall health. The treatment options provided by Project Restoring Smiles include the best in standard of dental care in North America, from basic services such as hygiene and scaling to long-term restorative treatments such as crown and bridge, dental implants, orthodontic treatment and maxillofacial (jaw) surgery. We also offer non-dental services such as scar revision and pro-bono mental health support.
In sum, Project Restoring Smiles aims to help survivors regain their self-confidence through restoring their smiles and overall health. We thank you for your assistance as we expand and publicize our program so we may realize our goal of helping more women in need.
Professional services are provided by the dental practices of Dr. Tina Meisami, Dr. Maureen Fenn, Dr. Yasmin Mawji, Dr. Renu Varshney, Dr. Shiva Shadmand, Dr. Julie Paris, Dr. Tunde Pal, Dr. Amelia Deliakis, Dr. Leslie Laing, Dr. Susanne Perschbacher, Dr. Josie Marciello, Dr. Suhan Alexander, Dr. Feisel Haji and their teams.