Smile Train, the world’s leading cleft charity, continues to provide comprehensive cleft care services for individuals in need in the Philippines and in 90+ countries around the world. With the help of their Global Ambassador, Catriona Gray, Smile Train launched a Public Service Announcement (PSA) in recognition of National Cleft Awareness Month.
With a baby born with a cleft every three minutes, even during a pandemic, it is Smile Train’s hope that more patients and their families will know that Smile Train is here to help them.
Catriona Gray first worked with Smile Train during her reign as Miss Universe. “When I met children and their parents, I saw how grateful they were for the help they received. I felt an incredible motivation to continue raising awareness for Smile Train,” said Ms. Gray. In March of this year, Ms Gray was in La Union during a screening for cleft patients hosted by the provincial government. Recently, she participated in a public online discussion with Smile Train on speech therapy where viewers learned about the challenges to produce sounds and words for children born with a cleft.
“Working with Smile Train has given me a great avenue to use my voice and make a difference in the lives of children born with a cleft. Can you believe that there were more than 1,000 Filipino babies born with a cleft since community quarantine began in the Philippines? Through this PSA I hope that parents will know that Smile Train is there for them,” adds Ms. Gray.
Smile Train continues to provide comprehensive cleft care services around the country even as community quarantine is in place. “While services are limited, we have partner hospitals who provide surgeries and virtual consultations. Since April, we have started to provide one-on-one speech therapy telehealth sessions, as well as online discussions on breastfeeding, nutrition, oral health, orthodontics, speech therapy and psychosocial services. We hope that this isa good way to provide information and
guidance for parents during this time,” explains Smile Train’s Area Director for South East Asia, Kimmy C. Flaviano. She adds, “Smile Train has always been here for them. We are grateful to Catriona for her commitment in helping more patients in need.”
For more information about Smile Train Philippines’ local efforts and to refer a patient in need, visit smiletrain.ph/get-help. Follow Smile Train Philippines on Twitter and Instagram @SmileTrainPh, and like them on Facebook at @SmileTrainPhilippines.###