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A Single, Solvable Problem: Cleft Lip and Palate

Many children around the world are living with untreated clefts.
Most have difficulties eating, breathing, hearing, and speaking.

What is Cleft?

  • 32

    children born with a cleft lip/palate annually in Africa.

  • 250

    can cover the cost of surgery.

  • 45

    minutes can change a child’s life forever.

One Goal: To Give Every Child the Chance to Smile

Smile Train is an international children’s charity that supports 100%-free cleft repair surgery and comprehensive cleft care for children globally. Our sustainable model empowers local medical professionals to provide cleft care in their own communities.

Learn About Our Model

Comprehensive Care

Every child with a cleft needs more than just surgery — they may also need orthodontics, speech therapy, or nutritional support. Where these services are available, we aim to provide them to our patients.

Sustainable Model

We use the ‘teach a man to fish’ model focusing on training and empowering local doctors to provide comprehensive cleft care in their own communities.

Our Impact

As a result of our efficiency, Smile Train has supported more than 1.5 million cleft surgeries since 1999. Every 5 Minutes Smile Train-supported cleft treatment helps a child in need.

News & Stories

Dr. Grégoire Akakpo-Numado : Smile Train’s Model is Life or Death for My Patients

I earned my bachelor’s degree with high honors, then went home still not really knowing what I wanted to do. This made my father angry — he couldn’t understand how I could go to...

Innovinity Gives Children With Clefts Their Big Breaks

Eagerly, she took her new son from the doctor, and her heart plummeted. She began to cry; she could hardly look at him. Mohamed had a cleft.

Dalia and Abd AlRahman had no...

Cleft Nutrition is Saving Lives in Tanzania

Each one of these deaths was preventable. With our model of empowering local medical professionals around the world to provide the full spectrum of cleft treatment in their own...

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