Helping Hands Series (3): Operation SMILE
As we all know, May 1 is International Workers’ Day (also known as May Day and Labor Day). So I thought I should dedicate this week’s posts to the countless people who have committed their labours so selflessly for change, who have extended a helping hand to this ailing world. When we watch the news, we often just see the bad that happens around the world, so I thought I’d highlight a tiny sample of the good that happens everyday in every corner of the world.
I have chosen to symbolize these efforts as a hand, a ‘helping hand’ and the design changes everyday depending on the field where help and good is being extended.
|Operation Smile’s Helping Hands
-making a difference in the world one smile at a time-
Thermal Camera collage by Paulina Constancia
Today I salute Operation Smile and its medical volunteers for making a difference in the world- one smile at a time.
I remember a friend of mine in my home town of Cebu who had gone from birth till university with a cleft palate. She had just finished university when Operation Smile came to town. With much excitement, she shared the news with her parents; try to guess how they responded. “No, you can’t have that operation because the family’s “good luck” will disappear.” She still went ahead with the operation even without her parents’ blessings. And I am glad she did, it was the best decision she’s made and it changed her life for the better in many ways. Thank you operation smile for giving my friend and countless other children and adults their “dream smile”.
Operation Smile is an international children’s medical charity that heals children’s smiles, forever changing their lives.
As a children’s charity, we measure ourselves by the joy we see on all of the faces we help. At Operation Smile, we’re more than a charity. More than an NGO. We’re a mobilized force of medical professionals and caring hearts who provide safe, effective reconstructive surgery for children born with facial deformities such as cleft lip and cleft palate.
Every three minutes a child is born with a cleft — often unable to eat, speak, socialize or smile. In some places these children are shunned and rejected. And in too many cases, their parents can’t afford to give them the surgeries they need to live a normal life.
That’s where we come in as an international charity providing much needed surgical services. Since 1982, Operation Smile — through the help of dedicated medical volunteers — has provided more than 2 million patient evaluations and over 200,000 free surgeries for children and young adults born with cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities.
As one of the most prominent children’s charities in the world and with a presence in over 60 countries, we are able to heal children’s smiles and bring hope for a better future.
Nearly every 3 minutes a child somewhere in the world is born with a cleft lip or cleft palate. 1 in 10 children born with a cleft condition will die before they reach their first birthday.