Jack Von Bulow of Pasadena, CA isn’t a big fan of ballet. But he’s pledged to wear a tutu and even have pies thrown in his face to raise money for children’s charities.
Von Bulow, known by his patients as “Dr. V”, is the owner of Temple City Dental Care in Temple City, CA. For the last 17 years he and his staff have participated in Smiles for Life, an annual charity event organized by the Crown Council that runs from March through June. Since its inception in 1998 Smiles for Life program has has raised over $34,500,000 for seriously ill, disabled and disadvantaged children.
Greg Anderson, director of the Crown Council says, “Smiles For Life allows a person to help children in need by doing something that benefits them as well. Our doctors donate their time and expertise, while Ultradent generously provides all Opalescence whitening products. You receive a brighter smile, and, best of all, provide children with a brighter future.”
During the 4-month event, participating dentists reduce the costs of their teeth whitening services, typically by half, and donate all the proceeds to charity – 50% to the Smiles for Life Foundation, 50% to a charity of the dentist’s choice. In 2015 donations totaled $1.5 million and the Crown Council hopes to exceed $36 million mark for total collections during their 2015 campaign.
Von Bulow expects to be a big part of that effort. Last year Dr. V raised $7000 for City of Hope in Duarte, CA and will continue to support them in 2015. His hope is that adding humorous incentives for their fundraising goal will help them raise even more money.
“A bigger dry cleaning bill is a small price to pay to raise awareness and help such a great institution,” says Von Bulow. “Everyone loves to have a good laugh and in this case I don’t mind if it’s all at my expense.”
More than his dry cleaning bill, Von Bulow is even willing to put his alma mater’s pride on the line in the name of charity. A die-hard fan of the University of Southern California Trojans, if their practice significantly exceed their fundraising goals, Von Bulow has pledged to wear, from head to toe, the fan clothing of their rivals the University of California Los Angeles Bruins.
Given the upswing in charitable giving since 2008, Von Bulow may want to get his UCLA blue and gold in order. According to a 2013 study by Giving USA, charitable donations declined 15% since the beginning of the recession in 2008. But 2013 data indicates that donations are increasing. Blackbaud, an online donation processor, saw overall donations grow by 4.9% in 2013. A recent survey by the Nonprofit Research Collaborative showed 62% of charities reported an increase of donations in 2013 over 2012, much of the gains coming from online appeals and special fundraising events.
To learn more about Dr. Von Bulow’s fundraising efforts and Smiles for Life, go to www.drvsmiles.com/smilesforlife.