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Mosiah Antonio Reyes Lorenzo, after, male, 18 months at Operation Smile’s mission in Guatemala City, Guatemala at Hospital Juan Pablo II in December 2021.

On October 6th, Operation Smile is proudly joining the global commemoration of World Smile Day – an annual celebration since 1999. On this day, people hold events and activities – big, small, and many unseen – with the sole purpose of creating more smiles!

This year, the theme and call to action of World Smile Day is “Do an act of kindness. Help one person smile!” Operation Smile can certainly get behind this theme – delivering smiles is what we do every day.

This year, we’re focusing our attention on our generous and compassionate partners who made it possible for us to provide comprehensive care, including cleft surgery, to 36,397 patients in 19 countries this fiscal year. Our 2023 Impact Report, brimming with good news and new smiles, tells the story and impact of our partners – and is guaranteed to bring a smile to your face too.

The ways to celebrate World Smile Day are endless! Since we’re in the “business” of creating smiles, we’re sharing our team’s favourite ways to make someone smile – all of which you can do today!

Deborah Female, 4 years old. BCL after, approved. 2011 number was 118. Operation Smile medical team Ghana.
Deborah Female, 4 years old

How to Celebrate World Smile Day

Participating in World Smile Day is as simple as doing something kind for a loved one or stranger. Even a small act of kindness can have a lasting impact.

  1. Write an encouraging letter. There’s something special about receiving an unexpected, handwritten letter in the mail that brings an extra wide smile to your face. It’s one thing to receive a card on your birthday or anniversary, but a “just because” note can be just what you need to keep going. Is there someone that could use encouraging words today?
  2. Spend quality time with a loved one. When is the last time you put your phone down and fully focused on a loved one? Zig Ziglar, an author and motivational speaker, once said, “To a child, love is spelled T-I-M-E.” In this digital age, the same can be said for many adults. You can make a loved one smile by adding a special touch to your normal routine. Add candles to the dinner table. Think of a question about your day that the whole family can take turn answering. Turn on your loved one’s favorite music while you fold laundry together. Even a little change can spark joy.
  3. Do a random act of kindness for a complete stranger. Pay for the coffee of the person in line behind you. Put a few stickers in your pocket to pass to a child and their parents. Help someone in your community finish their yard work. You never know what the people around you are facing, and your act of kindness could affect their entire day!
  4. Transform a child’s smile. While there are many ways to make someone smile today, you can gift a new smile to a child born with a cleft condition and change their life forever. Left untreated, cleft conditions can be fatal. It takes as little as 45 minutes to provide a child with a new smile – and every gift, no matter the amount, leads to a smile and so much more. If you’d like to give the ultimate gift on World Smile Day, you can Give securely on our website!
Tae Lai, Girl, UCL, Before, 5 years old, 10 hours by bus, from Burma
Tae Lai, 5 years old

Creating Smiles on World Smile Day and Beyond

Operation Smile is committed to helping a million more patients with cleft conditions in low- and middle-income countries. And this journey we are on together has just begun in 2023 when we launched The Next Decade of Love & Leadership.

CEO and Chief Smile Officer of Operation Smile Canada, Mark Climie-Elliott shares, “In order to reach this ambitious goal, we will deliver surgery and care closer to where our patients live. This will be done by investing in and strengthening local hospitals, while educating and training medical professionals to our high standards of care.”

On World Smile Day, and every day, we work with partners like you and our 6,000+ global medical volunteers to deliver new smiles to precious children.
Enjoy making someone smile today!

Donors and Volunteers made this story possible. Thank you.