Homeless communities, people on low incomes go without dental care after burglars trash Revive a Smile trailer

Homeless communities and those on low incomes from the Far North to Waikato will now go without the dental care they need after burglars trashed a popular charity's mobile dentist trailer.   

The Revive a Smile Charity is pleading for the public's help to locate thousands of dollars' worth of dental instruments, drills, an x-ray sensor, medication, an AED defibrillator and laptops all stolen between April 8 and 10. 

Their Hamilton-based trailer was parked inside school grounds on Bankwood Rd, Fairfield when police said burglars broke in and wiped it out.   

"It's hard not to cry about it, I know it's just material things but it's hit us where it hurts. This is a place where we come to serve people, to help people," said founder Assil Russell.   

The endodontist and her team offer care from Kaeo in the Far North to Hamilton and everywhere in between.  

"We see homeless people, we see refugees who don't speak English, we see people from women's refuge and shelters, people from all walks of life. This... just meant we have to stop now, we can't work," said Dr Russell.  

CCTV is now being poured over. Anyone who saw suspicious activity on or near Bankwood Rd between April 8 and 10, or has any information that may assist, is urged to contact the police. 

"Stealing the items not only targets the charity but those the charity works to serve," said Det Sgt Matthew Lee.  

Revive A Smile doubts the thieves will be able to sell the equipment on the black market. "These items are worthless on the black market but will take us weeks if not months to repurchase and restock. We just want our equipment back.  

"We won't ask questions."  

Dr Russell is urging whoever is behind the heist to do the right thing and drop off the stolen items to any dentist in Hamilton.    

"No one is going to buy secondhand dentist drills or x-ray sensors but for us, they mean a lot and it's going to cost tens of thousands of dollars if we have to buy them again - so please just return them."