Mother’s Day is a special occasion to honor and celebrate the courage, triumphs, and unconditional love of mothers. For many mothers, their greatest joy is to see their children smile and have a bright future.
However, for some mothers, this joy is not easy to achieve, as their children suffer from cleft lip and palate, a congenital condition that affects their appearance, speech, nutrition, and self-esteem. Their unwavering love became the driving force that propelled them toward a path of transformation and hope.
A mother’s plight to achieve great joy
Take the case of Lina, a mother of four from Negros Oriental, who faced this difficult reality when her youngest daughter, Mary Joy, was born with a cleft lip and palate. She was saddened when she saw her daughter’s condition and blamed herself, wondering what she did wrong during her pregnancy. Upon learning of her daughter's diagnosis, Lina’s heart was filled with both love and concern and wanted to give her the best care possible.
Lina searched for possible help and found out about Watsons and Operation Smile’s initiative in their province. She contacted Operation Smile and registered Mary Joy for free surgery. She was delighted when she received the confirmation that Mary Joy was scheduled for surgery in October 2017.
Lina and Mary Joy traveled to Dumaguete City, where they met other mothers and children who were also waiting for their surgeries. They received pre-operative care and counseling from Watsons and Operation Smile medical volunteers. Lina felt supported and hopeful as she saw the compassion and expertise of the doctors and nurses.
On the day of the surgery, Lina hugged Mary Joy and kissed her goodbye temporarily. She waited nervously outside the operating room for an hour. When the door opened, she saw Mary Joy being wheeled out on a stretcher. She was still asleep, but Lina could see her new smile. She burst into tears of joy and gratitude.
Lina thanked Watsons and Operation Smile for giving her daughter a new chance at life. She said that this was the best gift she could ever ask for and looked forward to seeing Mary Joy grow up healthy and happy. Mary Joy is now 9 years old and thriving. She attends school, plays with her friends, and speaks confidently. She loves to sing and dreams of becoming a musician. Lina is proud of her daughter and her achievements, saying that Mary Joy is her inspiration and motivation to keep working hard and overcome any challenges.
Empowering smiles, giving inspiration
Lina's story serves as an inspiration to others, demonstrating the strength, resilience, and boundless love that all mothers possess. It stands as a testament to the power of believing in a brighter future for their children. The partnership between Watsons and Operation Smile plays a crucial role in making dreams come true by providing resources, expertise, and support to families in need.
Watsons and Operation Smile have been teaming up for a decade in helping children born with cleft conditions through free surgeries. Since then, the partnership has changed the lives of numerous children from all over the Philippines who were born with cleft lip and palate conditions through free surgeries. This noble endeavor is in line with A.S Watson’s global commitment to bring 10,000 perfect smiles. Watsons has been firm in its commitment to helping uplift the health and wellness of the community and putting a smile on customers' faces. With the continuous support of Johnson & Johnson, Watsons, and Operation Smile continue to make a lasting impact, bringing hope and transformation to these children and their families.