Welcome to our Australasian Operation Smile Blog Hop.
Today we will be sharing some inspiration using the "You're the Bomb" C sized stamp set which is featured on the back page of our Seasonal Expressions Idea Book. For each “You’re the Bomb” stamp set sold CTMH will donate $3USD directly to Operation Smile.
Here is my project:
White daisy card base, white shimmer trim, Heart Strings paper pack, slate ink, hollyhock ink, cherry pink ShinHan marker, honeycomb embossing folder, You're the bomb stamp set.
The blog hop is a loop with about 10 participants so follow along and you will end up right back here. If you have hopped through from Mandy's Hall of Indulgence you are in the right place. If you get lost there is a list of participants on Mandy's Blog here.
To learn more about Operation Smile and the involvement Close to my Heart has with this important work keep reading below, otherwise, pop over and see Vandra's has created in her Virtual CTMH Craftroom.
So what does operation Smile do?
Throughout the world Operation Smile Volunteers repair childhood facial deformities while building public and private partnerships that advocate for sustainable healthcare systems for children and families.
In more visual terms - this is what they do:
This is Thanh and Ngan. You can read their full stories on the Operation Smile Australia site.
In developing countries approximately 1 in 500 children are born with a facial deformity. These children often have difficulty breathing, drinking, eating and speaking and as a result many suffer from malnutrition, medical and psychological problems.
It only takes a surgeon 45 minutes and donations of $300 to change a child's life forever.
During the Brisbane convention last year Brian Holman (CTMH Chief Operating Officer) shared his experience with Operation Smile with us. He had gone on an international mission to the Phillipines -
Operation Smile conducts more than 25 of these international medical missions a year. Volunteer surgeons, anesthetists, nurses, dentists, speech pathologists and other medical professionals travel with non-medical volunteers to Operation Smile partner countries to treat children during a 2 week period.
Brian showed us photos of the hundreds of children and parents waiting and hoping that they would be accepted into the program. Many families had walked a long way to get there, some children had even come on their own and all of them sat waiting in the hot sun hoping....
On a typical mission 300-500 children will receive full medical evaluations but only 100-150 children will be surgically treated.
Despite being queasy at the sight of blood, Brian developed a bond with many of the children in the program and was able to give them moral and emotional support through their treatments.
This is what I love about our relationship with Operation Smile - it is embedded in the roots of our company. The very people who grow our company and are the heart of Close to my Heart are involved with our Operation Smile Mission at the most devoted level.
Jeanette Lynton (CTMH CEO) several years ago also served on an international medical mission to Mexico. She said of this experience "..it truly changed my life as I wept with joyous parents or bonded with these sweet, beautiful children. I will never forget that experience and it has made me a lifelong advocate for Operation Smile."
In 2012 Jeanette was asked: why operation smile over other charitable organisations? You can read her answer on her blog here.
CTMH raises money for this worthy cause in many ways. We donate a portion of profit from all stamp sets sold, as consultants we run events to raise funds, our customers can make donations at any time which we pass directly onto Operation Smile, we raise awareness and as consultants we are very generous. At our convention in Brisbane last year we could choose to purchase a custom made piece of jewellery with the profit going to Operation Smile. Then we held an auction of artwork with page layouts and cards being auctioned off for as much as $500! The final auction item was a complete Sticky Boy stamp set (very rare indeed), from memory there were 5 of these sets and each set was sold for $500. After convention the auctioned artworks and sticky boys continued to raise money through workshops, sets of instructions available for consultant purchase and sticky boys stamped on cards sold for Operation Smile donations.
This photo was included in an email to Jeanette in 2010 - from the children of Rwanda some of whom are just post surgery and others awaiting their big day. An excerpt from the email reads: Thank you so much for your extraordinary support. Once again and despite the economic downturn, you and the fabulous team at Close To My Heart seem to find a way to rise to the occasion and exceed your goals. With great pleasure, we wanted to share this tribute message with you in hopes of reminding you just how special you are to so many, especially the children around the world!
I am so proud to be part of a company changing lives of children around the world and I hope you have gained some insight into Operation Smile via this blog.
Thanks for joining me on this journey, the “You’re the Bomb” stamp set is only available until the 31st of March 2015 from your CTMH consultant and $3USD from every purchase will go directly to Operation Smile. You can also choose to make a donation of any size directly to your consultant, donations over $2 are tax deductible.
To continue your journey, hop over to see what Vandra has crerated in her Virtual CTMH Craftroom