Changing children's lives doesn't begin and end with medical volunteers. The compassion, energy and selfless service of students are also making an impact on the world, one smile at a time. Many young people are concerned about world issues and want to make a difference.
More than 900 Operation Smile Student Clubs and associations around the globe build awareness, raise funds and educate students about our core values of commitment, leadership and volunteerism. When students help children in need, they learn first-hand how they can make an impact on the world and help heal humanity.
"I witnessed how a group of people with so much good in their hearts can take kids who have never smiled and give them a new start, a new life they deserve. That day changed my entire perception on life. I made one of the most important decisions of my life. I decided to become a doctor. My dream is to volunteer and help give those kids a new chance.”
- Jonathan Amarilla, Student Volunteer, Paraguay. Today, Amarilla is in his third year of medical school.
"I was born with a cleft lip and cleft palate, which in a way has made my first trip with Operation Smile to Mexico a sort of safe haven — a place where everyone understands. It was here that I met 10-year-old Rosio. She was staring. When she walked toward me, I lowered myself to her level. I could see her tiny scar above her lip, too. She pointed at my scar and motioned to her own scar. She smiled and said in Spanish, ‘Que linda’ — you’re beautiful.”
- Brooke Wayne, Student Volunteer, United States
"Operation Smile is so unique because it gives students the chance to be leaders. They put so much trust and faith in us that we can’t help but to feel a sense of trust and faith in ourselves. Operation Smile shows us that we are capable of making a difference in someone’s life."