Grant Programmes

Smile Train funds hundreds of partners and programmes throughout the world that help poor children receive treatment they could otherwise never afford.

A cleft surgeon holds former patient in his arms

Grant Types

Becoming a Partner

All of our partners are united by a common goal: helping children who have no place else to turn. If this is your goal, we’d like to partner with you. Contact us for more information.

Comprehensive Treatment Grants

Smile Train’s vision is to give every child with a cleft the opportunity for a healthy, productive life. Another key to this is the critical follow-up care such as speech therapy and orthodontics that many of our patients require after surgery.

Education and Training Grants

A key to Smile Train empowering local medical professionals is a commitment to education and training. Our funding ensures that doctors in even the poorest countries have access to first-rate educational opportunities, helping to improve proficiency, safety and quality of the care provided.

Equipment Grants

Safety and quality are paramount to Smile Train. Equipment Grants provide funding for everything from cleft sets to pulse oximeters to vans which help transport patients or help medical professional expand their reach. They allow recipients to improve quality and also increase the number of children being helped.

Smile Grants

While Smile Train predominantly focuses on medical treatment, this program targets the poorest of the poor who would never make it to the hospital for treatment without additional financial support to help them with expenses such as food and shelter during their stay, money to cover the costs of traveling to the hospital, or money to help offset a parent’s lost wages during a hospital stay.

Outreach Grants

While local empowerment is at Smile Train’s core, there are high need areas where no qualified surgeons exist. In places like these, we provide funding for Smile Train partners or outside mission groups to travel in to help treat the patients but we require skills transfer in the hope of building a sustainable program down the road.

Awareness Grants

These grants pay for publicity which educates people about clefts and the free cleft surgery programs available to them, reducing the stigma and driving thousands of patients to our partner hospitals.

US/UK Cleft Team Grants

These grants are an initiative to reach underserved cleft patients in our own backyard. This funding generally covers comprehensive care or travel and accommodation costs.

Treatment Partnerships

Smile Train provides financial support for the surgical treatment of clefts, empowering local surgeons in developing countries to treat cleft patients in their own communities who would not otherwise be able to afford this life-changing surgery.

Our Funding Principles

We Do

  • Focus exclusively on programmes related to cleft lip and palate.
  • Focus on the poorest countries with the highest incidence of clefts.
  • Support programmes that provide free treatment for poor children.
  • Support doctors and hospitals that need financial assistance.
  • Leverage our support by cost-sharing with our partners.
  • Foster self-sufficiency in our partners.
  • Closely monitor and manage all of our programs and partners.
  • Require all of our partners to adhere to the highest standards of safety and quality.

We Don't...

  • Pay for treatment for children whose families can afford it.
  • Replace funding, or pay for surgeries that other organizations will pay for (government, insurance, charities, etc.).
  • Support organizations that do not provide safe and high quality treatment.