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What CATCH Kids is About


CATCH Kids is a local nonprofit organization with a 501(c)(3) status. We are a member of the CREATE Foundation and the CDF (Community Development Foundation), as well as a Community Partner in the United Way of NE Mississippi.

Mission Statement:

The mission of CATCH Kids is to make comprehensive, high-quality medical and dental care accessible and available to disadvantaged children, from birth through 18 years, by removing barriers to care. We focus on prevention and wellness, as well as the treatment of acute and chronic illnesses.

Our Goals:

  • Remove barriers to care for children.
  • Establish a “medical home” for each child we see.
  • Establish a “dental home” for each child we see.
  • Pay for any prescriptions written in our clinics.
  • Refer children with severe dental problems or emergencies to one of our participating local dentists. Pay for emergency dental treatment and some restorative dental treatment.
  • Provide health information and guidance on many subjects, including, but not limited to oral health, heart health, fitness, nutrition, and obesity.
  • Provide preventive oral healthcare products to each child seen in one of our clinics and to students where we have school oral health education programs.


Executive Director: Carol Black, RDH
Program Assistant/ Clinician: Valerie Long, FNP
Administrative Assistant: Kathryn Cobb

Board of Directors:

Sarah Barowka, MD

Barbara Curry

Amy Fagan, RN, PhD

Julie L. Henry

M. Ed Ivancic, MD – Board President

Renee Creely

Liz Dawson, MSHA, FACHE

Victor Harris

Sarah McMillan

Vernon Rayford, MD

Stella Smith

Tiffany Stone

Phil Sullivan

Mike Tapscott, Esq.

Chrystal Tate, MD




Counties served:

Lee, Pontotoc, and Chickasaw

Number of Children Served:

In the year 2019, we served over 450 children in our clinics, including 9 children who we referred to participating dentists for emergency and/or restorative treatment.

During school year 2019-2020, CATCH Kids provided oral health education to over 1,200 students. 


  • 1996:

    A task force was formed to determine why a local free health clinic was under-used by pediatric patients. A CATCH Planning Grant was received and used to explore the issues involved. The task force noted a gap in accessibility and delivery of quality healthcare for many low-income children, particularly in rural NE Mississippi. Some problems discovered included: lack of health insurance; high insurance deductibles; no, or unreliable transportation; and the inability of parents to leave their workplace.

  • 1997:

    A nonprofit organization, CATCH Kids, Inc., was formed and a board of directors was selected.

  • 1998:

    CATCH Kids opened its first school-based clinic.

  • Today:

    CATCH Kids has 4 community clinics located in 3 counties — Lee (Tupelo), Pontotoc (Pontotoc), and Chickasaw (Okolona). These operate in the evenings only, on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays. CATCH Kids also has some school-based clinics in Tupelo and in some Lee county schools.

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