Category Archives: Smile Network

Smile Network International is a Minnesota-based global non-profit, humanitarian organization that specializes in providing free surgeries for impoverished children in developing countries who are born with cleft lips and palates.

The charity was founded in 2003 by Minneapolis attorney David Valentini and his wife according to Minnesota Monthl magazine.

Because of all the details and components that go into the support for these surgical trips they are called missions. The charity reports that the cost for all of the logistics behind the missions that include airfare, supplies, accommodations, local transportation and meals work out to an average cost for each surgery of about $500.

The success of Smile Network International has been credited to the broad base of volunteers from the medical and business communities. A typical mission team consists of surgeons, anesthesiologists, nursing staff for the operating room, recovery and the wards together with support staff for medical record keeping, photography and mission coordination.

The organization has performed surgical mission trips in Mexico to Guerrero, Querétaro, Aguascalientes and San Luis Potosí. The charity has travelled to Armenia and has missions scheduled to Ecuador and India. Destinations for missions in Peru include Lima and Cusco.

Funding for the organization comes from a number of grass-root fundraising events that include school service projects, private events, community group fundraising, donations from other charitable foundations and Smile Network also hosts a gala fundraiser that, according to posted reports at www.startribune.com, raised over $550,000 in 2007. An amazing 75% of all monies raised by Smile Network comes directly from the friends of David and his wife.

Smile Network International has a Board of Directors composed of business and community leaders from a broad cross section of disciplines. The Advisory Board is weighted with a number of medical professionals because of the importance of medical guidance for the focus of the organization.

Guatemala Tourism Smile Network Charity Fashion Show

Smile Network Charity Fashion Show Continue reading

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