A cleft is not a disability!

A cleft lip-palate is when the lip and/or roof of a child’s mouth has not formed properly during pregnancy. It is a common birth defect worldwide, but in low-resource countries, children often do not receive the necessary surgery to repair it. Many families believe Cambodian children with a cleft are "disabled" or have learning difficulties. A cleft is not a “disability.”  Cleft surgery training is crucial in Cambodia to improve healthcare, provide better care for cleft patients, and reduce the social and economic burden. Thanks to the ongoing and generous support of Smile Train, two of CSC’s surgeons, Dr. Davy and Dr. Bunvath, are attending a Cleft Workshop in Taiwan.  This not only brings expertise to Cambodia but also fosters international relationships and knowledge exchange.  THANK YOU, Smile Train for supporting our surgeons to provide quality care to Cambodians. Children suffering from congenital deformities, especially cleft palates and lips can receive free reconstructive surgery at CSC. If you know a child who needs this surgery, please visit CSC.

Author: Ellen Interlandi

Ellen, a registered nurse, and her husband Brian, an anesthesiologist, have been active volunteers at CSC since 2008. Ellen has undergraduate degrees in both Nursing and Spanish Literature, and a graduate degree in Health Management. Since 2020, Ellen has volunteered in the role of Stakeholder Relations, connecting with our generous supporters, interacting with visiting surgeons and students, and disseminating updates on Children's Surgical Centre.

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