DCKH’s 2020 Annual Report is now available in German. The English version will become available soon. 2020 was a very unusual year. Thanks to your support, we were able to make 4,634 operations possible for children with cleft lip and palate in 2020. A very positive result given the worldwide lockdowns and new, more difficult working conditions due to the measures our partners had to take to protect their patients and their staff.
We are deeply impressed by the great commitment that we have seen from our many friends, sponsors and donors over the past year. For every donation you have made to help children with cleft lip and palate around the world, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts – on behalf of our little patients, their families and our local partners.
The Coronavirus pandemic was a disaster that we will all remember. It also hit Deutsche Cleft Kinderhilfe hard: Corona was a huge, completely new challenge for us and our partners worldwide. There was no well-rehearsed catalog of measures to help us out of the crisis, no wealth of experience to fall back on. When the world suddenly ground to a halt in the spring of last year, our worry was that we would no longer be able to continue helping children with cleft lip and palate.
While many organizations who rely on foreign teams had to stop their work due to travel restrictions, our local partners were able to continue to be there for the cleft children. It is the result of many years of development work. Our long-standing strategy of building sustainable, local structures is again paying off. Since Deutsche Cleft Kinderhilfe was founded in 2002, we have built up an international aid network. Doctors, therapists and project staff as well as sponsors and donors are committed to our little patients. With the common goal of building a better future to children who would otherwise have little chance in life.
Most of the families of our children with cleft lip and palate live in great poverty. The help they receive from our teams gives them hope in these difficult times. At 48 locations in nine countries, our local teams mastered the new challenges and continued our help for cleft children. New hygiene and protection measures were put into place, which increased the cost of a surgery by an average of 50 euros, increasing it to 300 Euros. In India and Bangladesh, in addition to our help for cleft children, we provided financial support to Covid-19 emergency programs.
In our 2020 annual report you will find detailed figures, colorful impressions and touching stories from our cleft children. You will learn more about the new projects that we were able to start last year: a training program for two young surgeons in Bangladesh, the establishment of an interdisciplinary cleft center in Pakistan and the construction of a hospital with a cleft center at our new project location in Puntland (Somalia).