It Starts with a Child

We believe every child born with a cleft lip or cleft palate deserves exceptional surgical care.

We dream of a world where no child suffers from lack of access to safe surgery.

Daniel Ryan Soares Cavalcante, 1 year, 2 months

Operation Smile is a volunteer-based global medical charity that provides free surgery to repair cleft lip, cleft palate and other facial differences in children and young adults. We are active in over 60 countries around the world.

Annually, over 6,000 volunteer medical professionals including credentialed surgeons, pediatricians, doctors, nurses, child-life specialists and many others, selflessly give their expertise to help patients and ensure the highest standard of care in all that we do.

However, surgery is just the start of what we do and the impact we have on children, families, communities, and countries around the world.

Each Day, Operation Smile:


corrective cleft surgery to children and young adults through international and local surgical programs. 

Plastic Surgeon Dr David Ore, Dr Abdurezak, Jimma University Specialized Hospital


communities through local comprehensive Care Centres that provide a range of medical programs, from surgery and dental care to nutrition programs and psychological support to patients and their families.


and trains medical residents, surgeons, and other healthcare professionals in best-practice cleft lip and cleft palate surgery, and pre- and post-operative care.


long-term, systemic change and improvement to deal with the overwhelming need for cleft surgery in populous countries, and safe surgery worldwide.


with over 300 local and international NGOs, hospitals and governmental organizations to break down barriers to accessing healthcare, and ensure that children around the world get the safe surgery and ongoing care they deserve.

Surgeons Talking with one another
Daniel Ryan Soares Cavalcante After Surgery

Our work starts with a child… and leads to a smile… and so much more!

We Work in 60+ Countries

Our Model of Surgical Care

Safe, Effective and Timely (SET) surgery means you provide a child the right treatment with the right team at the right time, no matter where in the world they are.

Plastic Surgeon Dr David Ore, Dr Abdurezak, Jimma University Specialized Hospital


Top-notch safety procedures, health examinations, equipment, supplies and monitoring ensure that no patient is exposed to risk while in our care.

Home visit to patient Ngan, Female, 11 years old


Operation Smile meets or exceeds global medical standards, guaranteeing outstanding patient outcomes on a world-class level.

Ken Wilson screening 25th anniversary WJOS Cambodia


Patients need cleft surgery as soon as they are healthy and old enough—as babies and toddlers if possible. Thanks to you, more children can be scheduled for surgery at the optimal time.