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Help for cleft children in

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Facts about Peru
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With around 600,000 births in 2019, more than 1,000 new cases of cleft lip and palate can be expected in Peru every year.
Our Bolivian surgeon Dr. Alberto Bardales has operated more than 7,000 cleft children in his long career. Not only the children he treats benefit from his experience, but also young colleagues to whom he passes on his knowledge.
We have been helping children with cleft lip and palate in Peru for 15 years. In addition to surgery, we offer our patients with speech therapy and orthodontics important follow-up treatments for optimal long-term therapy success.
After two diffiult years due to the global pandemic we were able to double the number of surgeries provided in 2022 compared to the previous year: our two surgeons performed a total of 137 cleft surgeries. Since the start of our work in Peru and with the help of our two surgeons we have provided more than 4,800 surgeries.
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Our work in Peru

We have been working to help cleft children in Peru since 2006. Our help is based around two permanent project locations: one in the capital Lima and another in the Andean city of Cusco. Operations in the more remote surrounding areas ensure that patients there also receive high-quality treatment with surgery and follow-up therapies. Even in regions where hardly any help would be available otherwise.

The size of the country and the bad roads in the rural regions make it difficult to reach those who most need help. Our local partners maintain a network of contacts, through which the regular relief missions are communicated to the public. Our staff keep in touch with the affected families to make appointments for follow-up treatment after a surgical intervention.


“I have been treating cleft children in Peru for almost 30 years. Cleft children suffer a lot from their condition. It is particularly bad for children with a cleft palate. They cannot eat and drink properly, speak poorly. I am glad that we can now offer a comprehensive therapy to these children in Peru, and that the parents trust us and bring their children back again for the necessary follow-up treatments. So that my little patients have the best chance to lead a normal life.”
Dr. Alberto Bardales, senior surgeon in Peru

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Our partners in Peru

Long-term partner of our work to help cleft children in Peru is Dr. Alberto Bardales. In 2006 he founded the organization Qorito in Lima and has been working to help cleft children in Peru ever since. The “Casa Qorito” was opened in May 2018: Under one roof, patients are offered holistic care with speech therapy and functional therapy, a dentist / orthodontist and a psychologist. There is a garden for children to play in, and parents can exchange ideas and network in a cozy waiting area. From the beginning, Qorito has set itself the goal of not only helping patients from the city, but also creating contact points for cleft children that are accessible to families from the difficult-to-reach Andean  regions. Dr. Bardales regularly organizes missions to these regions, for example to Puno, Cajamarca, Huánuco, Arequipa. He also has his interdisciplinary team at his side for these missions.


A network of helpers

Our project in neighboring Bolivia also benefits from the experience of the Qorito team. Dr. Bardales promotes the exchange of knowledge between the two teams and is involved in the training and further education of surgeons.

At our second project site in Cusco, a city in the Peruvian Andes and once the capital of the Inca Empire, Dr. Mario Cornejo runs another small cleft project. In his private clinic, he operates about 20 to 30 cleft patients annually.

Sylvia Luedkte Haas manages our two South American projects pro bono and is the contact person for project coordination and exchange between the project partners in Peru and Bolivia.

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Members of the Qorito team with Alberto Bardales (left) and Sylvia Luedtke Haas (2nd from right)
Alberto Bardales (left) working
Dr. Mario Cornejo with Dr. Ulrike Lamlé
Project manager Sylvia Luedke Haas during a mission in Azangaró
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Your donation for cleft children in Peru

In many remote regions of the Andes, people do not have access to qualified medical care. With your donation we can help cleft children in regions of Peru where otherwise no help would be available.

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Country portrait: Peru

There has fortunately been a great decline in poverty in recent years in Peru thanks to steady economic growth. However, there are strong regional inequalities in the country. As in Bolivia, poverty is particularly pronounced in the rural regions of the Andean highlands and especially among the indigenous population.

Peru is in the west of South America. The country borders Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia and Chile. It is bordered in the west by the Pacific. The Andes mountain range runs through the country from north to south.
1,285,220 km²
Official language
Predominant religion
New Sol