A Mother’s Ignorance Turned Into Smile - Mission Smile

Waisong is a cleft baby from an interior village in Assam. He belongs to a family living in extreme poverty. Most, unfortunately, the community he belongs to blamed his mother for his cleft lip deformity. She was accused of either not following community traditions during her pregnancy or of bringing the curse from her paternal side. Humiliated and heartbroken, the mother was not in a proper mental state for days following his son’s birth. Moreover, ignorance about cleft and low support from family members resulted in the neglect of little Waisong. Soon the baby was showing signs of malnourishment.

When Waisong was five months old, his family heard about cleft surgery for the first time. Though, owing to the high cost involved and their poor economic condition, the future seemed bleak for the little one. The village ASHA workers hearing about the cleft child met his parents. They informed them about free cleft surgery being offered by Mission Smile. Yet, the family wasn’t confident as they didn’t even have the money to travel to Mission Smile’s Guwahati Comprehensive Cleft Care Centre (GC4). ASHA members assured the anxious parents that Mission Smile would bear their transport cost to the Guwahati centre. Finally, the mother was convinced. The family travelled to GC4 with little Waisong.

The mother was surprised to see so many kids with cleft lips waiting in queue to be treated just like her little Waisong. She realised that they’re not cursed, and such cleft occurrences in children are common. Little Waisong received his surgery in due course. The happy family travelled back to their village. When asked how she felt after seeing her son post-surgery, the mother was delighted! She has thanked us with a big smile. She pledged that she would dedicate the rest of her life to motivating mothers she would found giving birth to cleft babies.

We wish her and little Waisong a smiling life ahead.

Mission Smile covers surgery cost and offers free transportation to patients and their families who cannot afford the cost. To continue offering free cleft care in India, we look forward to your donation.

Check out our donation catalogue and send your gift to bring a smile to cleft children.