FEDERAL WAY, Wash. - Federal Way Police say a crook stole about $35k worth of goods from a nonprofit that provides free dental services and supplies to children in need.
Smile Partners is a nonprofit organization that provides oral health services to low-income children in the Puget Sound area. The organization brings these services directly to schools in the area.
Early Tuesday morning, Federal Way Police say a thief broke into Smile Partners' office and got away with supplies and the nonprofit’s van.
“It was devastating. It was heartbreaking to us,” said Alona Horner.
Horner is the executive director of Smile Partners. She says she got a call Tuesday morning that the nonprofit’s van was missing from the parking lot.
“My heart sank, it sank, sometimes when it rains it pours,” said Horner.
Horner says the crook got away with several items the nonprofit needs to provide their service to the community. She says the thief stole five air/water compressors, which cost about $2,000.
Now, they only have one fully functioning compressor left.
“There is going to be a huge impact of children who will not receive services this year,” said Horner. “Families are relying on our services annually,” she added.
Horner says the goal this year was to provide service to, a record, ten thousand kids. She says now, they’ll be lucky if they can even do half of that.
She says the nonprofit was already dealing with financial issues, and now with this added loss, they’re not sure what they’ll be able to do.
"We’re really at the mercy of the community,” said Horner
They’re hoping with donations from the community they’ll still be able to help 10 thousand kids this school year.
The nonprofit is using GoFundMe to help raise money to make up the loss.
Federal Way Police ask anyone with information to contact them.