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Operation Smile Ball 2012

Heidi, Lonneke & Antoniette

Heidi, Lonneke & Antoniette

 

Operation Smile Logo

Yesterday OYL contributor & Singer/songwriter Antoniette Costa and myself joined the Trump & Hearst family to support Operation Smile at their 10 year anniversary event at Cipriani Downtown, NYC. My lovely agents Peter & Emerson from IMG arranged a few beautiful dresses I could pick from, I asked my Instagram/Twitter followers which one to pick, and the most votes went for the golden dress by Kaufman Franco. I felt like old Hollywood glamour wearing it!

 

dresses

The dresses that were sent to me and I could choose from....

dress Operation Smile

.... And the dress I chose to wear by Kaufman Franco!

Lonneke Red Carpet

..and working it on the red carpet!

 

Operation Smile is a great foundation that has one particular focus: helping kids around the world with facial deformities by giving them proper medical care, so they can function normally physically as well as have a normal social life. Deformities include cleft lip and a cleft palate. This does not only affect a child’s appearance, and how other children interact with them, but can cause other health problems such as hearing disabilities, having issues with breathing, swallowing and chewing. Every 3 minutes somewhere in the world a baby is born with a cleft. It is a serious widespread problem. While the Western world has the resources to help affected children,  in many underprivileged countries there is simply no medical help available. The doctors of Operation Smile go to these countries and bring their medical expertise to help as many patients as possible. Usually a child with a cleft requires multiple surgeries, as one mother explained to the full room of 500+ guests during this night, but the results are great with a relatively small amount of money. $240 is good for one child’s surgery. That’s why I like this charity, as it focuses on one problem that is quite easy to take care of. It does not cost a lot of money and it really helps one child with a very low chance of succeeding in life, to start dreaming again like every child should be able to.

 

Operation Smile

The dinner table at Operation Smile

 
We enjoyed a nice dinner, musical performance, and John Salley was the funny host of the night. Guests included Donald Trump, who brought his whole family (his son Donald Trump and his wife Vanessa are on the Board of Operation Smile), Including Ivanka, Eric and Melania Trump. Of course there were a lot of beautiful women like Miss Universe Leila Lopes, Miss USA Alyssa Campanella & Miss Teen USA Danielle Doty, (Donald Trump is the owner of these pageants), IMG Models Heidy de la Rosa & Mackenzie, Lydia Hearst (who gave a nice speech about her recent trip to Panama for Operation Smile, Katie Lee & more.
What got me most was when they showed a video of a little girl in South America, who was hiding first behind a stuffed animal to hide her cleft, then she got surgery. They filmed her when she got to see her face for the first time. Her reaction was worth a million bucks, she was so happy!
It was a really nice night to celebrate with all nice people who donated so much to this charity, all the successful operations Operation Smile has done. Kudos to them!
Ambiance Operation Smile

Ambiance Operation Smile

For more information on Operation Smile, go HERE>.
To DONATE directly, go HERE>
 Love, Lonneke

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