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Twenty-Eight children to experience the true wonder of Smile Week

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When asked to share his thoughts on children with physical abnormalities, professional
German footballer, Mesut Özil, commented: “So many children are excluded from our society due to physical deformation. They should be helped to have a happier future.” Mesut Özil, is a generous sponsor of BigShoe® – a non-profit, worldwide growing network of football and sports fans, helping poor children with life-changing medical operations and more. Through the upcoming Smile Week, which is sponsored by BigShoe®, Smile Foundation will be able to bring Özil’s wish to life.

Among the 28 children undergoing life-changing surgery, is little 2 year old, Chadlin. Chadlin was born with Craniosynostosis – a birth defect in which the bones of a baby’s skull join together too early, before the brain is fully formed. This condition causes pressure on the developing brain, leaving little room for it to grow, and can lead to the detrimental disruption of their intellectual development, chronic headaches, increased irritability and poor feeding. Because of the deformity of an abnormal head shape that Craniosynostosis causes, children who are not able to undergo corrective surgery become extremely self-conscious about their physical differences, later on in life.

A little while after Chadlin was born his grandmother began noticing physical differences compared to other children his age. His four year-old brother was diagnosed with the same condition. Despite his condition, Chadlin is still a very playful, joyful and busy toddler. Although the older kids in the street make fun of him, his family and friends love, accept and support him unconditionally. His young life has been trying so far, having to go through tests, scans and various consultations from just 4-months. His mom is most relieved that his operation will be taking place during this Smile Week and has a great appreciation for all the love, guidance and support of Smile Foundation, Big Shoe and the wonderful medical staff of Tygerberg Hospital.

“The sad reality is that people tend to avoid what looks different from the norm. Because of this, children with physical differences are often made to feel isolated from other children as well as their communities. With the corrective lifechanging surgeries that will take place during this Smile Week – all thanks to the incredible financial support of BigShoe® Foundation, and the dedicated team of surgeons, medical professionals and hospital staff of Tygerberg Hospital – we are honoured to be playing a part in uplifting families and re-writing futures – one child at a time,” shares Kim Robertson-Smith, CEO of Smile Foundation. Dr Matodzi Mukosi, CEO of Tygerberg Hospital says: “Many children with facial deformities get their smiles (literally and figuratively) because of the surgical operations performed yearly here at Tygerberg Hospital during Smile Week. Thank you to Smile Foundation and BigShoe® for partnering with us in making a difference to the lives of so many children and their families.”

Coordinated by Smile Foundation, Smile Week is a full working week, during which surgeons, their assisting surgical teams, other medical professionals and hospital staff open their hearts and clear their schedules to perform reconstructive surgery on disadvantaged children suffering from physical anomalies and the emotional pain of such conditions. To pledge your support for this initiative, click here

To keep up with all of the life-changing work that Smile Foundation is making possible, follow them on your preferred social media platforms:

Source: Smile Foundation

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