In November of this year, I will be participating in an Alliance for Smiles medical mission to Aswan, Egypt, helping to repair cleft lips and palates. This will be the very first AfS mission in Egypt, and we are hoping that this will become a site that we can visit repeatedly. Unfortunately, the upcoming mission has experienced some financial set-backs, so I am reaching out to my friends and family to see if YOU can help Alliance for Smiles make it to Egypt!
In many developing nations children born with cleft lip and palate anomalies suffer both physically and emotionally. They experience health issues such as upper respiratory problems, infections, undernourishment, hearing loss, and speech & dental difficulties. They also commonly endure isolation and ridicule; sometimes they are abused, abandoned, or in extreme cases even killed.
Alliance for Smiles provides free surgery and comprehensive treatment for children (and adults) with clefts. What makes AfS different from many other cleft organizations is that we repair lips and palates (which aren’t visible, but which cause many more health problems); we provide dental treatment and education; and – where the infrastructure permits – develop long-term treatment centers where children can receive ongoing care, such as supplemental surgeries, speech therapy, and orthodontia. As I mentioned, we have high hopes that this location in Egypt will be a site that we can visit repeatedly, and maybe even develop into a treatment center for long-term care.
Part of the Alliance for Smiles mission statement is “To create international understanding and goodwill by building bridges of friendship among all people.” I’m so happy to be part of an organization that is doing something like this in the world! If you can afford to help bring both healthcare and goodwill to Egypt, PLEASE GIVE TODAY!