LWB Community Blog

2018 Cleft Medical Exchange: Transformations and Thank Yous

Two weeks ago, our 2018 Cleft Medical Exchange wrapped up a very successful trip to Lanzhou, China. Fifty-two children were able to receive life-changing cleft repair surgery!






LWB’s Managing Director of China Programs, Brandi Davis, described her thoughts on the Cleft Exchange: The team worked really well together. Most of the medical team have been working together for a while, so they already have a good established working relationship. The new members were welcomed, and by the second day of the trip you couldn’t tell they were new members or experienced ones. The collaboration between the Chinese and US medical teams was evident in each interaction.

Between the children and their families, the Chinese hospital staff and medical personnel, and the US team members, there were so many people on the wards during this busy week. This particular part of the hospital wasn’t very big, but it never felt crowded. Everyone existed together as one larger family there for a common goal: to heal children.

We helped 52 children the week of the exchange. Over the next couple of weeks, the Chinese team will be completing a few more surgeries. Several children were ill while we were there and couldn’t have surgery, but the Chinese physicians will do their repairs once the children are well again.

Thank you to everyone in Lanzhou for welcoming up so warmly to Gansu Provincial Hospital.  And thank you to the US medical team for their willingness to travel halfway around the world to help heal orphaned and rural children living in China.

2018 LWB Cleft Medical Exchange Team:
Dr. Chris Tolan
Dr. Travis Tollefson
Dr. Kathy Clinch
Dr. Neil Derechin
Dr. Tsung-yen Hsieh
Lori Trumbo
Sandy McDonald
Nancy Maxeiner
Claire Donohue
Aimee Jensen
Claire Tolan
Amy Lin
Brandi Davis
Jean Gabarra
Lana Collett-Klingenberg
Yi Hui Cong
Chen Rong Zhi
Lu Li Jing
Guo Hong
Zhang Ming
Wu Xiao Jing

To everyone who donated to fund a surgery, who gave bibs and toys and medical supplies, or who lifted up the children having their operations – we say thank you.  Fifty-two beautiful children found healing because we all came together in LOVE.


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