My brother, who came to live with us when he was six months old, and was subsequently adopted into our family, was also born with a cleft palate and a hare lip (what it was called way back in 1966). Two of his three children have the same thing, although the oldest was so slight that no one knew it until his third child was born with the full defect and they checked to first two for it. What is seen in the pictures of these youngest children is just a beginning. The 17 year old, with her many, many surgeries is pretty much the full story of what awaits a child born with this birth defect. For those who may not fully understand the situation, the cleft is a hole in the roof of the mouth. It usually cannot safely be fully corrected until the child's head and mouth have stopped growing, so it is generally done in stages over many years' time. There are other problems that can occur as well. Tooth buds are sometimes misplaced in the mouth and orthodonture and even surgery are needed to straighten sometimes badly misplaced teeth. In the case of my brother, because it went so long without treatment (for lack of a better word), his eardrums were all but destroyed by infection caused by the air and baby formula going up through the roof of his mouth and through his ears. So, secondary problems are common. I'm sorry to go on about this, and if it is deemed inappropriate for the thread, I apologize. But, I did want to emphasize just how much time and money it takes to fully fix something that may initially sound simple.
Having said that, I've got a question or two. Does the San Jorge Children's Foundation continue with the surgeries until everything is completely corrected, or does it just do this first surgery or two? And, does it run an orphanage as part of the organization?
"I just don't, ya know, I mean, I just don't dance. Ya know. - - I don't get it. - - It's not my thing." -- Johnny Depp ("It Came From Baltimore" on the "Cry Baby" DVD)
Captain Jack: "Well . . There is a chest."
Norrington: "Oh Dear."