Our very own global Bollywood queen, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, popped in at a Number 10 Downing Street reception last week, showing her dedication to support an international children’s cause.
Aishwarya, the goodwill ambassador for the worldwide organisation ‘Smile Train’, which helps children suffering from cleft lip and cleft palate concerns, says she is firmly committed to lending her name to the charity.
For the last 15 years, Smile Train has focused on providing the millions of children around the world born with clefts the same opportunities as a child born without a cleft by providing 100 per cent free cleft lip and palate repair surgeries
Their collective aim for the charity is to continue training and funding doctors in over 85 countries across the world to bring new smiles and hope for the future for children with such cleft conditions.
The reception hosted by the Prime Minister’s wife - Samantha Cameron was in recognition of the charity’s milestone one millionth surgery.
Speaking at this very important juncture of completing one million cleft surgeries, Aishwarya said: “There are so many of us who lead such blessed lives.
“I truly believe it's time to share our blessings.
“Working with Smile Train, if I can make a difference in families' lives, it will certainly make me feel honoured and blessed.
“There are a lot of children with clefts around the world who so desperately need help, but can’t receive timely care because their families cannot afford this surgery or are ill-educated about this condition. It's time we smiled together in our lifetime - healthy and happy!”
Also present at the reception was Smile Train’s CEO, Susannah Schaefer. She commented: “The work Smile Train does is dependent on donations through corporate partners, fundraisers, independent donors and sponsors, and we are privileged to have some of the people who have supported Smile Train over the years with us today.
“Although we have helped more than one million children, there are still millions more with unrepaired clefts in the developing world who need our help.
“It is Smile Train’s mission to provide each one of these children with free cleft repair surgery and related treatment so every child can experience the true power of a smile.”
Millions of children in developing countries with unrepaired clefts live in shame, but more importantly, have difficulty eating, breathing and speaking.