Namibia
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Miss Namibia supports children with clefts

MISS Namibia 2023, Jameela Uiras, has teamed up with other Miss Universe country title holders to highlight the plight of children born with cleft palates.

Last month, Uiras spent time with these children during her visit at Integrate Learning Solutions to raise awareness on the cleft awareness month.

July is National Cleft and Craniofacial Awareness and Prevention Month – a time to raise awareness and improve understanding of orofacial clefts (clefts of the lip and palate) and other conditions of the head and face.

Miss Namibia Organisation chief executive Umbi Karuaihe-Upi, said the innovative campaign was initiated by the Miss Universe Organisation, to support the Smile Train initiative – the world’s largest cleft charity.

Smile Train is an international children’s charity with a sustainable approach to a single, solvable problem: cleft lip and palate. Millions of children in developing countries with unrepaired clefts live in shame, but more importantly, have difficulty eating, breathing and speaking. Smile Train is the largest cleft-focused organisation with a model of true sustainability – providing training, funding and resources to empower local medical professionals in 70+ countries to provide 100% free cleft surgery and other forms of essential cleft care in their own communities.

Miss Universe Organisation and Smile Train in 2016 announced a charitable partnership to help raise awareness on the issues children living with unrepaired clefts in the developing world face. The new relationship provides opportunities for the reigning Miss Universe and international title holders to get involved with Smile Train’s global initiatives in the countries where the charity helps children. The partnership amplifies a shared set of core values, centred on the organisations’ global reach and commitment to empowering children to lead full, productive lives.

“I support the largest cleft organisation in the world. Every few minutes a baby is born with a cleft. Untreated clefts can make it difficult for children to eat, breathe, hear or communicate, but with treatment they can thrive as every child deserves,” Uiras said.