As a part of the campaign, Smile Train will roll out a series of testimonial videos that highlight a few of the organization's passionate supporters. In the unscripted videos, each supporter gives viewers insight into their personal connection with cleft and what ultimately inspires them to give smiles.
"We are so excited to celebrate Giving Tuesday and launch our new Give Smiles campaign," said Susannah Schaefer, CEO of Smile Train. "Our hope is to raise awareness and inspire giving to help children with untreated clefts around the world receive life-saving cleft surgery."
As a part of Giving Tuesday and the season of giving, a number of Smile Train supporters from around the world will be joining in the celebration. Below, please find an overview of key activities:
- Miss Universe Organization (November 21): To kick-off Giving Tuesday, Smile Train hosted an event with the Miss Universe Organization titleholders in Las Vegas. The Miss Universe contestants joined Smile Train in spreading smiles across the world by helping children living with untreated clefts in the developing world see their new smiles for the first time. The contestants participated in an activity where they decorated handheld mirrors for Smile Train's patients who have undergone cleft repair surgery. The mirrors will be given to the patients so that they can see their own beautiful smiles for the first time post surgery.
- Journey of Smiles to India (November 28): Smile Train is hosting a cocktail event at their headquarters. The event will showcase the organization's new 360° virtual reality experience to India where viewers will see the journeys of Nisha and Vikas firsthand as they make their way to new smiles.
- Devin Thorpe's 'Streamathon' (November 28): Smile Train's CEO, Susannah Schaefer will be participating in a livestream on Giving Tuesday hosted by Devin Thorpe. The 'streamathon' will be live for 24 hours on Giving Tuesday, and Susannah will be live at 11:45am EST where she will be talking about Smile Train's unique model, and the organization's plans for Giving Tuesday. Devin Thorpe is a journalist, author, professional speaker, and founder of the Your Mark on the World Center, a mission-driven business working to solve the world's biggest problems.
- Chef Katsuji (November 28): Smile Train is partnering with BRAVO's Top Chef Contestant, Chef Katsuji, to raise awareness and funds for children with untreated clefts. Chef Katsuji will donate 20% of the proceeds from his restaurants on Giving Tuesday to Smile Train. Restaurants include: Mexikosher-NYC and Mexikosher-LA.
- Celebrity Culinary Event (November 28): In partnership with Glad, and their Glad-to-Give holiday campaign, Smile Train Philippines will be hosting a celebrity cooking event with Filippino TV personality, Danica Sotto-Pingris. Dubbed "Spread Smiles This Holiday", the afternoon cooking affair aims to teach the participants fun and exciting dishes they could easily prepare for their different reunions with their loved ones. Proceeds from the class will benefit Smile Train's local programs in the Philippines.
- Marian Rivera and Kultura (November 28): TV personality, actress, and Smile Train Ambassador, Marian Rivera, has partnered with Kultura, a chain of stores that specializes in locally-made products (from decors to jewelry, from clothes to souvenir items) as their new Brand Ambassador. As a part of her partnership, Kultura will give a portion of the proceeds made on Giving Tuesday to Smile Train.
To learn more about Smile Train or to make a donation and "Give Smiles" during this holiday season, visit: smiletrain.org/givesmiles. Follow Smile Train on Twitter and Instagram @SmileTrain for new updates throughout the year.
About Smile Train
Smile Train provides free cleft surgery and comprehensive cleft care to children in developing countries. Through training local doctors and empowering partner hospitals around the world, we advance a sustainable solution and scalable model to treat clefts, drastically improving children's lives, including their ability to eat, breathe, and speak over time. To learn more about how Smile Train's sustainable approach means donations have both an immediate and long-term impact, please visit smiletrain.org.
CONTACT: Smile Train, Nijha Diggs, Director of Public Relations, 646.751.3231, NDiggs@smiletrain.org; Edelman, Lauren Hare, Senior Account Supervisor, 212.704.4493, Lauren.Hare@edelman.com