Smile Train Partner GSI Surpasses 1,000 Surgeries

Smile Train partner Grassroots Smile Initiative completes 1,000th free cleft surgery

Kano, Nigeria — In a testament to the continual growth and expansion of Smile Train programs in Africa, one of our partners, Grassroots Smile Initiative (GSI) celebrated the completion of it's 1,000th Smile Train sponsored surgery.

A partner since 2008, GSI serves the poorest of the poor in Nigeria. Nigeria is the most populous nation in Africa, and approximately 84% the population lives off of less than $2 a day. A family with a child born with a cleft would never be able to afford cleft surgery. But thanks to GSI's incredible medical team and Smile Train supporters, they are able to get free cleft surgery.

Primarily based out of Kano, GSI also routinely travels to other hospitals in the poorest parts of the country that do not have cleft teams. These cleft camps allow the team to reach children who would otherwise be unable to make it to a Smile Train partner and provide them with follow up care.

"We have succeeded in bringing smiles and hope to our patients and [their families] by the quality of our cleft services. Our patients [up]on discharge have become our awareness campaign in their local communities. They have voluntarily collected our posters for display in their communities and some have also brought patients from their communities to assess our services. The joy and happiness this project has created for those that have benefited cannot be quantified."
— GSI Executive Director Dr. Adetokunbo Adebola