Clara was born with a severe cleft lip and cleft palate. Her mother didn’t dare to breastfeed her. She even refused to acknowledge Clara as her own child.

In their tiny village in the highlands of Madagascar, their neighbours would quietly gossip about Clara and her condition. Clara’s father, Dede, who accepted and loved Clara unconditionally, was determined to find a solution for his daughter.

When Clara was eight years old, Dede saw a poster advertising free cleft surgeries at an upcoming Operation Smile medical mission. He was delighted to have finally found potential treatment for Clara.

At the medical mission, and after a thorough health evaluation, Clara was scheduled for surgery. Dede was nervous about the outcome, but when he saw his daughter’s new smile after surgery his face glowed with pure happiness.


It takes only 45 minutes and as little as €180 to give a new smile to a child, but your gift is more than a surgery. All of our supporters give renewed hope to children like Clara around the world.

Smiling girl with repaired cleft lip and cleft palate holding a photo of herself before surgery

Clara after cleft surgery