The Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office 7 has partnered with Operations Smile Philippines Foundation, Inc., which will help families of children with cleft lip and cleft palate who will undergo surgery.

From left: OSP Cebu Patient Coordinator Zarah Alithea Luison, OSP Medical Education Manager Janis Vasquez, DSWD 7 Assistant Regional Director Juanito C. Cantero, OSP Executive Director Emiliano Romano, DSWD 7 Regional Director Shalaine Marie S. Lucero, OSP Cebu Operations Manager Bryan Caniedo, and DSWD 7 PWD Sector Focal Person Magie D. Pinton during the MOA Signing.

Regional Director Shalaine Marie S. Lucero signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with Operation Smile Executive Director Emiliano Romano on April 12, 2024, at the DSWD Field Office 7.

Operation Smile Philippines is a non-government organization accredited by DSWD, whose mission is to provide life-saving reconstructive cleft surgeries through various surgical programs across the country.

Their soon to be launched Cebu Center of Excellence (CCE) is a state-of-the-art facility inside the Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC). As a medical hub and patient services facility, CCE provides free consultations, reconstructive surgery, comprehensive treatment, and other related healthcare services to children with cleft lip and palate.

The Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations (AICS) program of DSWD 7 will extend medical and other forms of assistance to families of children who will have surgery, such as fare, food expenses, and expenses on laboratory tests and medicines during pre and post-operations.

Director Lucero said during the MOA Signing that the Department welcomes these initiatives. “Together with Operation Smile Philippines, we are excited to embark on a journey that will soon bring beautiful smiles to children with cleft lip and palate and hope for their lives to change forever,” she said.

She also committed that this life-changing partnership will bridge Operation Smile Philippines to the community by collaborating with partner local social welfare and development offices in the region so that more children will have access to this program, especially beneficiaries of DSWD’s programs and services.

Moreover, the Department encourages everyone to promote the services of Operation Smile.

For more information and pre-assessment for patient recruitment, contact Zarah Luison at 0956 614 82 89  or email zarah.luison@operationsmile.org.

They may also visit the facility at the Cebu Medical Center in Brgy. Pahina Central, Cebu City. ###

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