About “Smiles for Central America”

Twice a year, teams of dental and medical professionals and other volunteers are formed to travel to Central America to participate in “Smiles for Central America” expeditions. 

Our primary focus is to provide dental and medical services for young men and women in Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Panama, and Nicaragua to help prepare them to serve full-time LDS missions.

To get a taste of a Smiles for Central America expedition, we invite you to watch this video:  Learn more by visiting our website:

We are pleased to announce our next dental and medical expedition to Central America!



November 10 through November 20, 2016

Click here to fill out your application!

We anticipate helping approximately 700 young men and women prepare to serve LDS missions by providing assistance in filling out missionary papers, haircuts, missionary photos, blood and urine tests, missionary medical exams, dental hygiene, hygiene training, comprehensive restorative dentistry, endodontics, and oral surgery.

We will also be participating in various community service projects while we are in Nicaragua, including projects for orphanages, a children’s cancer hospital, a maternity hospital, a service project for the families in a local LDS ward, and several visits to families in need.

Volunteer Team

Our team will be made up of approximately 120 volunteers. The estimated numbers of medical and dental professionals and volunteers needed are:

  • 23 general dentists
  • 5 endodontists
  • 6 oral and maxillofacial surgeons
  • 5 physicians
  • 1 prosthodontist, orthodontist, or dental lab technician (to make replacement teeth)
  • 2 nurses
  • 3-4 dental hygienists
  • 1-2 medical lab technicians
  • 31 dental and oral surgical assistants (including pre-dental students)
  • 2-3 volunteers to give haircuts
  • Other volunteers to staff the dental and medical clinic areas

Dental and medical professionals are encouraged (but not required) to bring a trained assistant and/or family members to assist in the clinic.


The full cost of this trip will be between $2700 to $2800, and will be announced as soon as possible. The cost includes airfare from and returning to
Salt Lake City (may be different for those departing from and returning to other airports), hotels, meals, and ground transportation. In addition to the 4 1/2 day medical/dental clinic in Managua, we will take a three night vacation at the end of the trip on the beautiful island of Roatan in Honduras. Everyone, including tour leaders, pays his/her own way.

Applications will be reviewed as soon as possible. You will be contacted for a phone interview within a few weeks.

Space on this expedition is limited and we anticipate receiving more applications than we will be able to accommodate. If the spots for your position are filled, we will put your name on a list for consideration for future trips.

Experience has shown that this type of service expedition is not suited for young children or babies, and that teenagers 16 and over are best able to participate in the long work days. As space is limited, we will be accepting only a limited number of minors on this expedition. No minors will be accepted without at least one parent accompanying them, and minors must be supervised by a parent throughout the trip.

Click here for more information

We hope you will plan to join us!


David Sheets
Director, Smiles for Central America