My Favorite Smiles

The email inboxes here at Dillon International are blessed with many photos of smiling faces.

Photos of families celebrating their child’s arrival home. Photos of holidays, birthdays and graduations. Photos sent to say “hello” or “look how he’s grown!” We treasure these pictures and the beautiful stories behind every single one.

But every now and then, a photo comes along that takes our  breath away, reaches straight to the heart of why we’re here and compels us to action. We received one of those recently.

It was a picture of a little sweetheart in a pink jacket. She was 6 ½ years old and lived in an orphanage in China. I wish you could’ve seen her! (Confidentiality requirements prevent us from publishing her photo.) Her dark brown eyes absolutely radiated an inner joy that defied her outward circumstances.

She was born with cleft lip and palate—a condition that made daily life in the orphanage a challenge and, combined with her status as an “older child,” reduced the likelihood she would be adopted.

We were honored to have the opportunity to advocate for her through our Waiting Child program, but this little girl’s circumstances cried out for us to stretch beyond the routine measures.

She needed surgery for her cleft lip…could we pay for it?

Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we could!

And now, there’s a little angel in China who is thrilled with her new look. We’re praying one day soon she will get to share her beautiful new smile with a forever family.

Those are my favorite smiles. The ones from children who positively shine when they learn they will receive things many of us take for granted. Vital things like healthcare, a nutritious meal, an opportunity to go to school, a family.

Your donations make these life-transforming necessities—and those beautiful smiles—possible.

Please consider making a tax-deductible gift to Dillon today to help children keep smiling.

By Steffanie Bonner, Dillon International development director

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