Wednesday, 18 July 2012
CFO partners with Operation Smile Philippines
The Operation Smile Philippines (OSP) has forged a partnership with the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO) to advance its cause of correcting facial deformities through the latter's Lingkod sa Kapwa Pilipino (LINKAPIL) Program.
A Memorandum of Agreement was signed on 13 July 2012 at the UCPB Makati by the CFO Chairperson, Secretary Imelda M. Nicolas and OSP Chairman, Mr. Joaquin E. Quintos, IV. The signing was witnessed by the OSP President and Executive Director, Mr. Roberto J. Manzano, CFO Project Management Division Head, Ms. Marie del Rosario – Apattad, and other CFO and OSP officers.
The partnership is geared toward addressing some of the targets of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) focusing on the health sector. Oral cleft is among the top 12 congenital defects in the Philippines, with one in every 500 Filipinos being born with either a cleft lip, a cleft palate or both, and afflicts mostly children of poor families. About one in every 10 children born with oral cleft die before their first birthday and more than 12% die under the age of five. These children afflicted with oral cleft who do not receive reconstructive surgery by the age of 10 will have lifelong speech issues that will hamper their ability to acquire a formal education and find gainful employment.
Recognizing the serious medical and social implications of the oral cleft situation in the Philippines, the CFO offered to provide assistance and support to OSP's fundraising activities. The CFO's LINKAPIL program through its visa facility will serve as a venue in raising funds for the OSP's mission in transforming the lives of children born with oral cleft and other facial deformities through reconstructive surgery, post-operative care and parental education.