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Stories You Make Possible

Stories You Make Possible

Explore Operation Smile stories from around the world highlighting the courage of patients and their families, the dedication of our volunteers and staff, and the generosity of supporters like you.

Dr. Opoku Ampomah, cleft surgeon with Operation Smile Ghana, sits beside 10-month-old Christiana and her mom the morning after surgery.

Answering The Call: Q&A with Cleft Surgeon Dr. Opoku Ampomah

In this Q&A, Dr. Opoku Ampomah shares the reason behind what has inspired him to keep coming back to Operation Smile Ghana for the last 12 years.
Sitting in white plastic chairs, Dayana wears a yellow top smiling at her mom, Eluvia, who wears wearing a pink shirt and jeans.

After 11 Years, Hope Emerges for a Daughter and Her Mom

VIDEO: For 11 years, Eluvia felt alone as she searched for care for her daughter, Dayana. But those feelings of uncertainty and doubt disappeared after she connected with Operation Smile Guatemala.
During the 2022 Women in Medicine program in the Philippines, volunteer nurse Carola Noren of Sweden looks in on a patient following their cleft surgery.

Women Empowering Women

Throughout 2022, women-led volunteer teams delivered 280 surgeries during our Women in Medicine surgical programs in Morocco, Peru, Malawi and the Philippines.
One-year-old Wesilyn smiles wide months after receiving cleft surgery. Behind him is a bright yellow wall.

Meet Our Patients: Santarem, Brazil

Wesilyn, Lorrane and Jhone’s three separate journeys to care converged at an Operation Smile Brazil surgical program in Santarem. Here are their stories.
Ana, holds her daughter, Zoe, wearing masks in the pre-operative ward during an Operation Smile Honduras surgical program.

Through a Mother’s Eyes: Q&A With Ana

In this special Q&A with a patient’s parent, we hear what Zoe’s mom, Ana, experienced at every stage of her daughter’s cleft care journey.
United States
Fifteen-year-old Willy Sikora plays the violin.

“Every little thing you do is making a difference”

By sharing his story, Willy Sikora creates a ripple effect that spreads determination and hope to others born with cleft conditions.
Wearing the signature lime green T-shirt, Women in Medicine volunteer team takes a team photo in Cebu City, Philippines, before the start of the Oct. 2022 all-women's program.

Expanding Opportunities for Women in Medicine

During our fifth Women in Medicine surgical program, 60 volunteers came together and changed the lives of 55 patients in the same country where Operation Smile began 40 years ago.
Wearing a red shirt, speech pathologist Gloria Vilches hugs 5-year-old Josue during a 2017 Operation Smile Honduras surgical program at San Felipe Hospital in Tegucigalpa.

The Motivation That Moves Her: Q&A with Speech Pathologist Gloria Vilches

In this Q&A, Gloria Vilches explains why her work is vital for patients before and after cleft surgery as well as where her passion to serve others originated from while growing up.
Standing in front of a white wall, nonmedical volunteer and Operation Smile patient Carol Chigona smile wide for the camera.

Carol’s Wish

In her free time between teaching and working toward completing her master’s degree, Carol Chigona serves as an Operation Smile Malawi volunteer. Her wish for children like herself is that they refuse to let anyone tell them that they deserve less out of life.

Make Your Gift


Every three minutes, a child is born with a cleft condition. Your gift today will help transform lives and increase access to essential surgical care.