GREATJOY Ndlovu with his painting Kiss Me Fondly, which will be auctioned via the Operation Smile SA Facebook page. All proceeds will go to providing free reconstructive cleft lip and palate surgery to vulnerable children and adults.
GREATJOY Ndlovu with his painting Kiss Me Fondly, which will be auctioned via the Operation Smile SA Facebook page. All proceeds will go to providing free reconstructive cleft lip and palate surgery to vulnerable children and adults.

Art auction to raise funds for cleft lip and palate reconstructive surgery

By Shakirah Thebus Time of article published Jul 2, 2020

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Cape Town - July is National Cleft and Craniofacial Awareness and Prevention Month, and to mark the occasion, a Johannesburg artist has partnered with NGO Operation Smile SA to raise funds for cleft lip and palate reconstructive surgery for vulnerable children and adults.

Greatjoy Ndlovu, a Zimbabwean-born artist based in Johannesburg, will auction his artwork, titled Kiss Me Fondly, via the Operation Smile SA Facebook page.

Bidding will start today and run for two weeks. All proceeds from the sale will go towards providing free cleft lip and cleft palate reconstructive surgeries to the vulnerable.

Ndlovu said he had been painting professionally for more than seven years.

The artwork depicts a young child silently embraced by an adult woman, both with their eyes shut.

On his artwork, Ndlovu said: “The first figure is being carved out as an abundant source of love; the second figure is epitomising a recipient of love graciously shared. No other figures fit the profile more than a passion-filled encounter between an affectionate ‘mother’ figure and a distraught child in need of her attention and comfort.

“This piece is an expression of profound love conveyed to those who need it the most; love not relayed in words, but conferred in tender-hearted, life-transforming actions.”

Nlovu has been working with Operation Smile since 2018 and the SOS Children’s Village since last year.

He said: “The improved self-esteem and the bolstered confidence exhibited by these children post-surgery are my favourite outcomes in this project. I am a firm believer that intelligence leads nowhere if one lacks confidence. It’s a blessing to see them regain this powerful attribute.”

Operation Smile SA country manager Lauren Bright said globally, every three minutes, a child was born with a cleft lip, cleft palate or both.

“Two-thirds of these children will be born in a low- or middle-income country. This statistic doesn’t change, even during a global pandemic,” she said.

“We believe that access to safe, timeous and effective surgery is a basic human right. Over many years, Operation Smile SA has worked directly in the communities we serve to build up vital surgical infrastructure.

“This allowed our teams of medical volunteers to help children and communities cope with the lack of access to basic surgery needed to repair their clefts.”

Silent bidding will take place via direct message on the Facebook account non-operational, or bids can be placed via email to Ronel Visagie: [email protected]

@TheCapeArgus

[email protected]

Cape Argus

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