Winter 2012 Newsletter

Winter 2012 Newsletter

A Message from the Chairman of the Board

Dear Friends and Supporters of Alliance for Smiles:

As the new Chairman of the Board, I want to personally thank you for the support you are giving to our work. As a plastic surgeon, I have experienced medical missions as an active participant and realize how important our work is for the future of so many children. I know that all of our mission volunteers experience the magic of being able to use their skills to improve the fate of so many patients.

I also know that without the financial support of our donors we would not be able to send our teams and provide the highest quality of surgery. As the year draws to a close, I am asking all of you to consider donating to our work.

AfS calculates the actual value of your donation when paired with the value of the donated medical services. When added together, your dollar is matched at least three times by the value of the donated work of the medical volunteers on the mission. We calculate what the services of our medical professionals — from plastic surgeons, to anesthesiologists, to pediatricians, to nurses, to dentists and dental hygienists — would be worth in dollars and cents. What is donated by you allows us to send a team that provides medical services valued at $250,000 to $400,000 per mission. And that does not even bring into the equation the value of the non-medical volunteers.

Therefore, please consider becoming a part of the AfS Team by donating and giving a child a chance for a normal life.

With warmest wishes for a happy holiday season,
Karl Wustrack, MD
Chairman of the Board

New Developments in China

Alliance for Smiles has a long history in China. Since our first mission to Jiujiang in April of 2005, we have conducted 28 missions to this country. One of our most consistent partners has been the China Population Welfare Foundation, a Beijing based NGO.

As time has progressed, the relationship between our two organizations has become stronger and more defined. In this last year VP for China Affairs, Dr. Colin Wong worked on negotiating a long term plan for AfS. In the past, although many of the sites in China had multiple visits, and we have established three Treatment Centers, we had never concentrated on one province at a time. We are now doing just that.

Beginning in 2012, AfS, CPWF, and the Family Planning Commission will be working to make a huge impact in the Guizhou Province of China. The goal is to take care of a backlog of 1200 patients over a three year period, and to eventually establish two Treatment Centers.

To that end AfS conducted three medical missions in the Guizhou province in 2012: two in Zunyi and one in Bijie. Four missions to the Guizhou province are planned for 2013. During the November 2012 mission to Zunyi initial steps were taken to establish a Treatment Center.

During each of these missions CPWF and AfS have worked very closely with the local and regional Family Planning Commissions, the hosting hospitals and the local government to facilitate the missions and recruit potential patients. The combined effort of these groups also extends to funding: each organization contributes to cover the expenses of a mission. In this way China is taking an active part in partnering with AfS to make significant changes in the way these children can receive treatment.

Ongoing AfS Fundraisers

If you have a car that you no longer want, consider donating it! Donate for Charity is a national organization that will pick up the car, running or not, and give the proceeds of the sale to us! For more information simply call 866-392-4483.

If you live in the Bay Area, Community Thrift in San Francisco is another way to help out while cleaning out your closet. Simply take your used clothes and household goods to the store, located at 623 Valencia Street in San Francisco’s Mission District, and tell them you want the proceeds of the sales to go to Alliance for Smiles. You can also bring items to the Alliance for Smiles office.

Do you have a birthday, wedding, or housewarming coming up but don’t know what to give as a gift?Purchase some wine! Mark Gendron of JK Estates has promised to donate $50 from every case of wine sold to our supporters. You can even have a custom label designed for your event! Cases range from $110 to $128, and wine can also be purchased by the bottle. For more information and to order, please visit:

If you’re looking for a way to help Alliance for Smiles in a fun and personalized way, consider holding a Dining for Smiles event! Past events have included a wine tasting, an African-themed dinner, a scarecrow stuffing party and the ever-popular Superbowl party. Contact the Alliance for Smiles office at (415) 647-4481 or for more information. We will be more than happy to send you printed materials, posters, banners and more!

Need a last minute gift for a friend or family member? Donate to Alliance for Smiles in their honor! The recipient will receive a card from AfS, personalized with your message, and you will receive a tax deduction. For more information please contact or call (415) 647-4481.

What We Can Accomplish with Your Donation

$50: Provides healing antibiotics for one child and helps heal their broken smile.

$200: Provides needed suture for one surgery and brings a child one step closer to healing.

$400: Allows you to become a part of the chain of goodwill by covering the land costs of a medical team member.

$1000: By donating the cost of a surgery, you can give the miracle of life to a child in need.

$2000: Even if you are not able to participate in a mission yourself, you can provide transportation for one of our medical team volunteers who donates their skills.

$5000: You can provide all the required medication for an entire mission, and bring smiles to dozens of children who would never have access to treatment otherwise.

Any Amount: Any donation that you give to AfS will help to continue the work of bringing hope and opportunity to under-served children and their families.

Sponsor an Entire Mission: Your organization, company or club can sponsor or co-sponsor an entire medical mission. This contribution would qualify your group to participate in the medical mission. AfS will partner with you to provide public relations that recognize your organization’s generosity. Please contact the office for more details.


Thanks for Volunteering!

Alliance for Smiles would like to thank Milicent Furrer and the ladies of the Open Door Community Church in Shingletown, California for volunteering to make hundreds of No-Nos for our upcoming missions.

No-Nos are an important part of the post-surgery recovery phase. It is imperative that babies are not given anything to suck on after their surgery, including their own fingers. The No-Nos wrap around the children’s arms and prevent them from bending their elbow to suck on their fingers. If No-Nos are not available, often used cardboard or other makeshift materials are used, but this is not necessarily the most comfortable option.

Mark Your Calendars!

Winter Holiday Party
On December 5th, AfS will host an open house Holiday Party! This evening is free and open to all our supporters and friends. Hors d’oeuvres and wine will be served. You will also have a chance to do some gift shopping, with the proceeds benefiting Alliance for Smiles! The open house will be held on Wednesday, December 5th, from 5pm to 8pm, at the Alliance for Smiles office in San Francisco. Bring your friends and family and come celebrate all we have accomplished this year!

Volunteer Appreciation Gala
Alliance for Smiles will be holdings its 8th Annual Volunteer Appreciation Gala on Saturday, January 26th at the W Hotel in San Francisco. As in past years, there will be dinner, dancing, a live and silent auction, and awards to honor our outstanding volunteers. This year’s honorees are: Barbara Fisher for the Distinguished Service Award; Tina Hollcroft for the Volunteer of the Year Award; and Burt Berry for the John Uth Memorial Award. If you would like to receive a formal invitation, please contact with your mailing address. If you would like to receive information via email, please sign up for email blasts at