Volunteer Spotlight: Elissa Fladell
This year the Ben Massell Dental Clinic celebrates its 100th year of service to the Atlanta community. The dedicated corps of clinic staff and volunteer dentists have provided dental care to thousands of individuals in need at no cost. The clinic is state-of-the-art, providing the most advanced technology available so that clients are able to receive the very best care possible. In addition to all of these wonderful things, the Ben Massell Dental Clinic is yet another great place for our JF&CS volunteers to make an impact.
Elissa Fladell has been volunteering at the clinic for close to a year and a half now and has been a fantastic asset to the clinic’s staff. Elissa helps the staff with many of their administrative duties, such as filing, scheduling and confirmation of appointments, and reception. Because the staff of the clinic is often so busy providing dental care to so many individuals, Elissa is happy to be there to help them, as she puts it, “do those things that they just do not always have time to do.”
Elissa has been a loyal and dedicated member of the JF&CS community for over 15 years and an active volunteer. She served on the Interact Board a few years ago, and she is a proud former PAL. She says that she and her little PAL, who is now in law school, still talk one or two times each week. So, when some weekly time became available to her, she says, “I called up JF&CS. It was my first thought.”
Elissa’s time at the Ben Massell Dental Clinic has been eye-opening for her. “Helping at the clinic has shown me that it doesn’t matter what your name is. Anyone can fall on hard times, and it absolutely amazes me to see the kindness and care that happens there every day,” she says. “I feel like I’ve gained so much perspective,” she adds. Elissa watches each day she is there as the clinic staff and volunteer dentists care for those who need it most. She is able to observe so much of what goes on from her position at the front of the clinic, and she notes how grateful the patients are for the dental care and how equally happy the staff and dentists are to provide it for them.
It is easy to tell from Elissa’s long relationship with JF&CS and her year and a half of dedication to the BMDC that she is motivated by a desire to do good. She speaks so fondly of her experiences and says, “I would encourage others to seek out ways to volunteer at the clinic. It has been amazing.”