The Smile Train PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 22 October 2010 11:33

Ever heard about this charitable organization? Unlike many charities that undertake various projects, the SmileTrain is focused on solving a single problem: cleft lip and palate.

It considers clefts as a major problem in developing countries where there are millions of children who are suffering with unrepaired clefts. Consequently, most of them cannot eat or speak properly and aren't allowed to attend school. They face difficult lives that is filled with shame, isolation, pain and heartache.

Organized and supported by well-known philantrophists, businessmen, and Hollywood stars lke Brian Mullaney, Charles Wang, Candice Bergen, Ravi Kant, Warren Buffet, Sir Ben Kingsley, Colin Powell, Tom Brokaw, Lionel Richie, Carly Simon and many more, this organization has decided to make it their mission to help eradicate cleft lip and palate by providing free cleft surgery for millions of poor and indigent children in developing countries. The total cost of surgery per child is estimated at $250 that takes as little as 45 minutes.

The organization will also provide free cleft-related training for doctors and medical professionals later on.

The organization has assured that it will not stop and relentlesly pursue their avowed mission until there are no more children who need their help and the problem of cleft lip and palate is completely eradicated.

In relation to this, our city is blessed because in the pursuit of their mission, it has chosen approved Ciudad Medical de Zamboanga as a recipient of a Treatment Partnership Grant in the amount of $24,000 USD. Dr. Antonio "Bonjing" Feliciano has been chosen as the person to implement this program.

By the way, Dr. Feliciano has been perorming cleft lip and palate surgeries in Zamboanga City, the surrounding provinces in Region 9 and as far as Surigao. A month ago, he was performing cleft lip and palate surgeries in Leyte. These surgeries were all for free and funded by the Jerome Foundation. And for his charitable work, he was chosen to receive the covetous Rotary International Award two years ago.

With the additional entry of SmileTrain, many will undoubtedly be benefitted. Those who want to avail of this worthy project for free may contact Dr. Antonio Feliciano at Ciudad Medical de Zamboanga, Tel. No. (062) 992 7330 local 2222 or Juvee local 1123.

Also chosen as the recognized registration center is the Office of the 2nd Congressional District of Congressman Erico Basilio A. Fabian at Tel No. (062) 984 1600.

Not only parents of children having this kind of problem but also concerned citizens are earnestly requested to help in the pursuit of this mission by reporting and enlisting the names of prospective child patients for their prompt and free surgeries.

PONDER THIS: What is real happiness? It is when you feel fine even if there's nothing left in your pocket; it is when you enjoy life inspite of the problems you have; and most of all, when you still know how to smile and thank God for His blessings even if you are the poorest person and has the least important job in the world. Finally, it is appreciating for everything done by God, from the little ones to great things.

By Roslan Baha