I had the great fortune of being able to volunteer with FTS last April in Guatemala and found it to be tremendously rewarding. I learned so much from the caring and talented volunteers who came from all over the country to assist this organization in treating the immensely deserving and grateful people of Guatemala. I know that we were signing up to help the underprivileged people of Guatemala to receive the dental care and cleft palate surgeries that they needed so desperately, but I came away from the experience with so much as well. I plan to continue supporting Free to Smile for many years to come.
I just went on a cleft lip/palate trip to Guatemala with Free to Smile, and was amazed at the work done by this incredible group of people. My role was photographer for the group, and I saw first-hand the joy on the parents' faces when they saw their child after surgery. To see them thanking the volunteers and telling them tearfully that they have changed their child's life and they can now have a future - it was an amazing sight to behold. As a mama of a cleft lip and palate child myself, I am so happy to see the dedication and love that goes into and pours forth from Free to Smile. So many thanks to all the volunteers for all that they do!
I learned of Free to Smile after I met the co-founders at our son's school. I will never forget how impressed I was to hear of their travels and works. Throughout the last five years, I've attended fundraisers and donated money to support their efforts. Last fall, I had the opportunity to travel to Ethiopia on a mission as the administrative role. It's difficult to find the words to explain how the trip changed my life. The group of people that run FTS and those that attend FTS trips are so selfless, compassionate, generous and loving. I realize there are much larger organizations that fund cleft lip and palette surgeries, but FTS is different. The volunteers pay their own way willingly and don't expect any financial support from the FTS fundraising. If you're looking to help children have a new life by correcting their cleft lip or palette, this is the organization to donate to. Every dollar you give truly changes a life.
I have had the pleasure of volunteering on multiple medical missions with Free To Smile. I look forward to every one of them. These medical missions are what keep me going through the year at my job back home. The board members, who participate on and organize the medical missions, truly care about and have a passion for what they are doing and that translates to all of the volunteers. Whether you're a new volunteer or seasoned, everyone is friendly and welcoming. Stacy is amazing! EVERY trip is well-organized and she makes sure everything runs smoothly and we have what we need to take care of all the children. I have volunteered on medical missions with other organizations and none have topped the quality and caring I have seen with Free To Smile. I am proud to be a part of such a wonderful cause with a fantastic Foundation.
I have gone on three mission trips with Free to Smile in the past year. This organization has truly changed my life along with the hundreds of children they help every year. Every trip has run smoothly and is adequately staffed. Free to smile truly puts forth its resources to make sure every child they serve has top notch care throughout the perioprative process. I can't say enough about Free to Smile. They are a cut above the rest!
I volunteered ,for the first time,with FTS this past September and cannot wait go with this organization again. They were organized with our transportation accommodation and meals. And more so, the organization on the ground with the hospital and Tess UnLimited was flawless. It made the work us volunteers had to do so much smoother and easier.
I am a registered nurse and I have traveled to Guatemala with Free to Smile for the last 7 years. This is an extraordinary group of talented and caring individuals who come together a week at a time to change lives. The work they do, and the caring they show to each person they come in contact with is cherished by those they touch. They do more than surgery. They give children a future.
I love Free to Smile! I am a high schooler who loves the work FTS does to help children in third world countries. I can't go on a mission trip, but I still try to help with mailings and local fundraisers.
I volunteer regularly with Free to Smile Foundation. They are the best. Everything on a mission runs smoothly and the environment is always positive and fun. The work done by FTS is amazing. To be able to be there personally to see the changes that are being made in the lives of those in need and to see the look on parents faces when their baby is finally repaired is an experience I will always treasure.
The work that Free to Smile does is life-changing and incredible. I have traveled 3 times with FTS and have seen the faces of the parents and children of Guatemala and experienced with them the joy of finally having a cleft lip or palate fixed. Free to Smile Foundation and it’s Founders, Byron and Stacy Henry, put their whole hearts into this foundation and the work they do. Traveling with FTS is easy because they are so well-organized. The planning and execution of trips is nearly flawless, so that everyone is able to focus on the purpose of the trip and accomplishing our goal of helping those in need in severely under served regions. I plan to return to Guatemala with FTS in February and I can't wait!
I have been a volunteer surgeon with FTS for 3 years and multiple missions. Every time my respect and admiration of this organization, and the people behind it, continues to grow.
Nearly 3 years ago I wrote:
Many nonprofit charity groups are worthy of recognition, but Free To Smile stands apart from the rest. The people associated with this organization at every level exemplify selflessness and compassion, and it is evident in their work. They are focused and caring individuals who are driven to serve humanity on a global scale. I have participated as a surgeon on other mission trips, but my experience with Free To Smile has surpassed them all. I am proud of my association with this wonderful group of people, and look forward to many more opportunities to be a part of the Free To Smile team.
Those words are more true today than they were when I wrote them.