Earlier this month, 11-year-old Nevaeh Thomas was brutally attacked when she stood up to a bully in her neighborhood in Shawnee, Kansas. The attack was heartbreaking on so many levels and has affected many in our community. Nevaeh was hospitalized and among her injuries, she suffered a broken tooth as a result of the attack.
It turns out that Nevaeh is a patient at Adventure Dental in Kansas City, KS. The staff at Adventure had seen Nevaeh’s story on the news. When Mom called the Adventure Dental office to schedule an appointment to have her tooth fixed, the staff knew they wanted to do something extra special for this brave little girl. They sprung into action making a plan to roll out the red carpet for her in hopes of easing some of the pain that she has endured.
“We had all seen Nevaeh’s story on the news and we knew we had to do something to help her heal and restore her faith in the good in people.” said Tanya Ahrens, Practice Leader at Adventure Dental and Vision in Kansas City. “No child should have to suffer this kind of trauma. We wanted her know that the world is filled with people who care about her.”
Last Friday, she came to Adventure Dental for her appointment. When Nevaeh arrived at the practice, like most kids, she wasn’t thrilled to be at the dentist. But when the team came back to the treatment room to present Nevaeh with an Honorary Hero award in recognition of her strength and bravery all her nerves just melted away. The team presented Nevaeh with a superhero certificate and a bag of goodies including a stuffed animal, superhero cape and other treats. The teammates were all wearing t-shirts that said “Stop The Hate #NevaehStrong” made especially for the occasion and presented one to Nevaeh and her Mom as well. Nevaeh’s eyes lit up when she saw this expression of support and she especially loved seeing her name on a t-shirt! There is no doubt that the team brought some joy to Nevaeh and her family today.
“The team at Adventure Dental and Vision in Kansas City stepped up, not just to address the urgent dental needs of this patient, but to heal the pain this child was experiencing in her soul. She was greeted with a safe space and an entire team that pulled together to comfort her. What Nevaeh and her family experienced is present everywhere at Hero supported practices – compassion, love, kindness, and a team dedicated to letting her know she is valued.” said Joshua Gwinn, CEO of Hero Practice Services.
This is a painful time for our country, but the love and compassion that this team showed Nevaeh is a story that should be shared with our community. It is in our power everyday to lift those around us, and at Adventure we know that it is our responsibility to do everything we can to care for the children that come through our doors with extra tenderness. Especially now.