Jean Paul Laurent

Jean Paul Laurent - 2019 Nominee
Position: Founder & CEO
Organization: Unspoken Smiles Foundation
Current Location: United States
Masters in Public Administration from Columbia SIPA/ Executive MPA
Additional Degrees and Certifications:
Bachelor Science - Health Service Administration
AAS - Dental Hygiene
Awards Received:
  • Award:
    Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters
    Awarding Organization:
    CICA International University
    Date Awarded:
    December 18, 2019
  • Award:
    40 Under 40 Rising Stars
    Awarding Organization:
    Date Awarded:
    January 15, 2018
  • Award:
    NYU Chamgemaker of The Year
    Awarding Organization:
    New York University
    Date Awarded:
    June 24, 2018
75 Public Votes Reached!
As the founder of Unspoken Smiles Foundation, Jean Paul has created an innovative model to solve one of the most overlooked health issues in the world, starting with the most remote communities of Haiti and spreading to communities in India, Iraq. – Nominator
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

I believe family planning is one of the greatest public health achievements of the 20th century. Though my work revolves around oral health care, my efforts indirectly aid family planning. I teach unemployed, inner-city young women the skills to become successful in life. This is the heart of what we do at the Unspoken Smiles Foundation. USF’s fellowship program trains and supports motivated young women between the ages of 18 and 35 in helping them build the professional and technical skills needed to be community oral health workers. This serves as a bridge from poverty to sustainable employment. As of 2018, through the efforts of our fellowship program, Unspoken Smiles Foundation has served nearly 7,000 children in 8 countries across 4 continents.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

In my travels abroad to help children with their oral health in Haiti, I couldn’t help but notice the several educated, but unemployed women who could not afford to look after their child’s health and well-being or simply were unsatisfied with gender stereotypes that kept them in these communities out of the workforce. The touching stories of young mothers sparked my desire to take action. Now, with USF's help, these young women will positively impact their individual lives and futures.

Give one or two examples of how you display leadership in your family planning work.:

FPW - Parents

“As a parent, I want the best for my child, both in terms of education and health.”

Pain Points:
“It’s hard to provide adequate healthcare to my child when it remains so expensive. I am also always looking for ways to broaden my child’s horizons
through care and education.”

How We Helped:
We equip young women with professional skills to provide free or low-cost dental care to improve student health, incentivize school attendance, and improve student performance.

If you are named a winner of 120 under 40, how will you use this new platform and the $1000 grant to advance your work? :

I believe that winning the 120 under 40 title will not just be an exceptional achievement, but also a community where I can collaborate with like-minded, accomplished family planning leaders who will challenge my perspective on how I see and solve related problems. This would be integral to shaping my fellowship program for future years. Meanwhile, the grant will be used to purchase three portable mobile dental clinics to increase our reach in Haiti and create more healthy smiles.

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