Summer 2014 Alliance Highlights


Dining for Smiles Events
Trip Report: Anshun, China
Trip Report: Lagos, Nigeria
Laure Lisk Wins Community Service Award
Upcoming Missions
Volunteer Testimonial
Save the Date!

Dining for Smiles Events

Alliance for Smiles supporters have been busy in the last few months holding many fundraisers! These volunteers have held creative, out of the box events with huge successes. 

Dining for Smiles is the most popular type of event that our volunteers hold. The volunteers prepare a meal or party and ask their guests for donations to Alliance for Smiles. Ten-time volunteer dental hygienist Dorothy Ferreira held her annual barbeque event, which raised over $4,600. Dorothy passed out a unique favor to her guests - a sample of the card she gives to each of her patients. Each card has a unique photo of that patient. For many children, this is the first photograph they have seen of themselves; for all, it is the last with an unrepaired cleft.

Laure Lisk, a recovery room nurse who has been on five missions, held a crawfish boil. The table was set with Mardi Gras decorations and guests enjoyed an authentic taste of New Orleans in Colorado. Laure's event raised over $4,000!

Board member Tina Hollcroft was once again extraordinarily successful with her wine fundraiser that has become a signature event in her Georgia community. This year her fundraising efforts brought in over $10,000.

The Rotaract Club of CSU Sacramento held a very special event: a giant teeter-totter-a-thon! The club built an 85 foot teeter-totter on campus and asked for donations to Alliance for Smiles in exchange for a ride. Not only did the club raise money for AfS, but also broke the Guinness World Record for longest teeter-totter in the process!

Dorothy's Dining for Smiles
Happy diners at Dorothy's BBQ
Laure's Dining for Smiles
Revelers at Laure's crawfish boil
Teeter Totter
The world's largest teeter-totter!
Trip Report: Anshun, China
Mission Pictures The second mission to China during 2014 took place in Anshun, a prefecture level city in the Guizhou province. The team completed 79 surgeries on 67 patients. In addition, the dental component consisting of a dentist, dental hygienist and dental assistant, performed 181 dental procedures on 69 patients. This mission also included a teaching team which visited our treatment centers in Zunyi and Guiyang. The Anshun mission was funded by a generous Rotary Global Grant facilitated through the Rotary Club of Kingspark, Hong Kong.

This mission was the last for Dr. Fred Tomlinson, a surgeon who has participated in medical missions for thirty years, including four missions over six years with AfS. We will miss Dr. Tomlinson's skill and dedication to his patients.

As on many other missions, the team met extraordinary patients they will never forget. Team photographer Don Wentz writes of one child:


Eighteen month old Chen Tong Hai lives on a farm with his parents and six other family members. His father and uncle work in a toy factory to support the whole family, but they often struggle to meet their basic needs. Many meals consist of rice grown on their farm. Before his surgery, Tong Hai had a hard time talking because of his cleft lip. This hasn't stopped him from becoming a lively toddler who loves entertaining others. Even though he is very young, Hai likes leading his blind grandmother down the street and helping his parents take care of her. His compassion shows his great potential for the future.


Alliance for Smiles will be returning to the Guizhou province for a mission in September.

Tong Hai
Chen Tong Hai - Before & After Surgery
dental team
The Dental Team: Dr. Pat O'Flaherty,
Mary Jensen & Karen Jablonski
Trip Report: Lagos, Nigeria
In June Alliance for Smiles completed a two week medical mission to Lagos, Nigeria. This is AfS' first mission to Africa this year, and our second trip to Nigeria overall. The AfS team, led by Barbara Fisher, worked closely with local staff in order to provide 62 surgeries to 48 patients.

Unlike other missions, the majority of cases on this trip were palate repairs. Palate repairs are extremely important for the development of a child's speech, hearing and eating. These surgeries take longer than lip repairs but are necessary for a child to grow up normally.

One grateful mother sent the following message to one of our team members:

Your adorable words, efforts, and ingenuity over the short time spent here, specifically on my son and other beneficiaries of cleft repairs have given us strength. Your group is a beacon of hope inspiring us all. Leading and showing the way by God's mercies. Putting new songs into our hearts and giving us newdreams, radiating love, spreading joy and happiness. Helping us to remold our future, so that this only world will be a better place for us. A place of abode for peaceful co-existence and tolerance for all. To you, lovely Ruth, and your team, as you are bestriding the medical world like a colossus, your shadow shall never grow less, your sojourn on earth shall be more fruitful and impactful with sound health. God shall abundantly reward your labour of love and sacrifices. We thank you for your pristine love, adorable sacrifices, hilarious inventiveness, incredibly contagious smile and to have successfully touched lives and carried out humanitarian service worthy of emulation and accolades.


We are hopeful that the hospital in Lagos may be developed as an AfS treatment center!


Yipi and Bill
OR Nurse Yipi Yang & Surgeon Dr. Bill Deshazo with a patient
Lagos Team
The AfS Team in Nigeria
Majo Joseph
Pediatrician Dr. Majo Joseph
Lagos Parents
Hopeful parents at Opening Clinic
Laure Lisk Wins Community Service Award
Laure Lisk, five-time Alliance for Smiles volunteer nurse, has won the David Lawrence Community Service Award from Kaiser Permanente. Laure was honored in the international service category for her many trips with AfS, as well as work with other organizations in Tajikistan and Ukraine. Laure has a Master's degree from the University of Colorado School of Nursing and has over 30 years experience in the field. She has been on AfS missions to Tanzania, Nigeria, the Philippines and China. Laure designated her $10,000 prize to go to Alliance for Smiles to benefit future missions. Join us in congratulating Laure for her lifetime of service and achievement! Laure Lisk

Upcoming Missions
Bijie, China: September 6-21, 2014
Yangon, Myanmar: October 4-18, 2014
Wenzhou, China: November 1-15, 2014

Our 2015 mission schedule comes out soon!

Volunteer Testimonial
Connor Riordan "This is Connor, the Quartermaster from the Anshun team. I just wanted to thank everyone for giving me a 2-week memory I will never forget. For the first time being out of the country and participating in a medical mission, I was exposed to something words cannot describe. Not only has this mission changed my perspective on life, it has confirmed my decision to pursue a career in the medical field. Of the many highlights, I watched a full operation on a young child and continued to wait in the recovery room until the individual awoke. I cannot explain what I felt, but I now know why every doctor and nurse volunteers for these missions. You have all exemplified true compassion when it comes to the children, and not only will I cherish this 2-week memory, but I will continue to be inspired by my experience. Additionally, I personally want to thank Dr. Fang, my lovely mother, and all my other supporters for giving me this opportunity and believing in me. Thank you." - Connor Riordan

Save the Date!

2014 Winter Holiday Party
On Thursday, December 4th, 2014 AfS will host our annual Holiday party! This complimentary evening is open to all with no RSVP necessary. Hors d'oeuvres and wine will be served. You will also have a chance to purchase unique holiday gifts from around the world. The party is from 5pm to 8pm at our office at 2565 Third Street, Suite 237, in San Francisco. Come celebrate everything you have achieved with us this year!

2015 Gala Celebrating our 10th Birthday!
Alliance for Smiles will be holding its 10th Annual Volunteer Appreciation Gala at the Intercontinental Hotel in downtown San Francisco. The date is set for April 11th, 2015. This special milestone event will honor everyone who helped us achieve so much in the past ten years. If you would like to receive a hard copy invitation to the Gala, or would like to donate an item for the live or silent auction, please email Tables of 10 seats purchased before February 13th, 2015 will be discounted. Please consider sponsoring a table for your company, family, or friends.

Volunteer Training
On Sunday April 12th, 2015 (the day after the Gala) we are holding our annual Volunteer Training session. We will be covering both medical and non medical positions. More information to follow.

Before & After Pics

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We would like to thank the following:
Globus Relief, JHP Pharmaceuticals, Medshare, Skypark, Americares, Covidien
MAP, Care-Action Macau, Bank of China - Macau Branch, Medline, JK Cellars,
Shen Wei USA Inc, Mobile Instrument Service & Repair, and Cor-O-Van.

All photos in this issue have been uploaded by Irving Stowers to our Flickr Account.