Monday, December 31, 2012

Asiatic Aesthetic Series 150:Smiles for nothing,checks for free :-)

2013..smiles for all

time to look at other nations in need of cleft lip and palate charity programmes
thanks to all of you for the successful smile programmes in Sana'a

2008 March Sana'a...we danced, sang,played all we could play ....

result:thousands smiled again for the first time in their lives

"Thanks for the smiles....yeah,crazeee..  but it worked"

2010-2012..hundreds(over 850) smile again with 

Other nations in need of trainings,help...time to move on and show others how to do it...

Monday, December 17, 2012

Asiatic Aesthetic Series 151:Ten Years After...time to move on to other things

pic: Yemeni cleft children in Sadah province in 2003 after free cleft surgeries

Most cleft lip and palate children in the Republic of Yemen live with their deformities for life.
Yemen Smile was started in an informal manner in June 2003 by Bona and some expat friends to help cleft children smile again.(pic 2005- leaders of Yemen Smile Charity HMA Frances Guy,UK Res Trish Gifford and HMA Mike Gifford,GM DNO Colin Kramer, Total France E&P Manager, Andre Lamy, and Bona ,Founder Plastic Surgeon)

In addition, other poor plastic surgery patients were operated for free across the nation.
Over a period of ten years,over 2000 cleft lip and palate  and several hundred other plastic surgery patients from across the nation were operated successfully.This includes the most recent 841 cleft children, supported  over 210  operating days by the Smile Train, 41 Madison Avenue New York since January 2010.
pics: Smile Train US New York 

We are thankful that we could offer some help to  an impoverished nation in need of expat medical support for the period.
Prior to that,the author had also operated several thousand other patients for various deformities,bringing the number of beneficiaries to over 5,800 patients in Yemen ,which included dozens of UNHCR Somalian and other East African refugees , over 4000 in parts of India and some in China during previous mission assignments. Over 9700 patients were helped with free surgery over a period of twenty years across these nations.Because of the vast experience, I could introduce many newer and improved plastic surgery techniques as well as several useful changes in cleft lip and palate surgery methods .Several papers were written during the time.In 2008 the mission had the world's largest number of scientific papers at the Taipei October Asia Pacific Surgical Simulation and  Craniofacial conference at the Grand Hotel Taipei(7 abstracts and one major presentation).The same papers were also accepted by the Euro Plastic Conf in Athens during the period.
pic.Asia Pacific Craniofacial Conf papers received

I am thankful to God for enabling me to help patients who were in need during my time as a volunteer consultant medic to poor patients in these countries.
As I look back to the last ten years in Yemen,traveling across the nation and conducting charity mission camps, I realise that such missions are necessary in some poor nations so that patients can be made whole again.The task is huge and the challenges are great because of the dangers in some of these countries where some locals may not take kindly to expats helping their poor people.

 Over a thousand  poor Yemeni families benefited as a result of this act of kindness shown by good folks .(pic: US Amb Stephen Seche @An Occasion to Smile in  aid of cleft kids)

The work was successful and lauded by many across the universe. Our work was successfully implemented over a period of over ten years and many locals have been trained.
I am glad I had an opportunity to pioneer this plastic surgery mission in the nation and as I move on, I have a sense of fulfilment,and am encouraged that there are some good people around who continue the work for poor people.
Hopefully they will continue to support each other and make positive changes in their own country in the future.

pic:  Familial Tessier craniofacial cleft children from Taiz Yemen..the list of deformities is endless