The Smile Foundation’s team for East London’s Ironman 70.3 raised enough money to pay for the surgeries of nine children with facial anomalies, team organiser Tanya Jackson said this week.
She said there were 19 athletes who took part in the Ironman 70.8 competition held in East London last month under the banner of the Smile Foundation. “Together they raised R138 000 for the Smile Foundation. The athletes were from Cape Town, Johannesburg, Bloemfontein and Port Elizabeth,” Jackson said.
Smile Foundation team members were Marilyn Bull, Lizette Owen, Amanda Shaw, Ari Zadikov, Chantal Grobbler, Claire van der Nest, Colin Rust, Susan Duckitt, Gary Serebro, Johan Mouton, Letitia Strauss, Lionel Kroon, Marc Davidowitz, Marolien Schmidt, Mike Gatenby, Stephanie Damalis, Steven Buhr, Nick Goldberg and Johan Herselman.
The Smile Foundation is a South African NGO that helps children in need of surgery for treatable facial anomalies such as cleft lip, cleft palate, nose and ear conditions, facial paralysis (Moebius Syndrome), burns and other facial conditions.
Several children have received life-changing surgeries in Port Elizabeth during the annual Smile Week in the city.
Jackson, who is also the coordinator for the Smile Foundation in Port Elizabeth, said the average price of an operation is R15 000.
“This means that nine children will receive life changing operations because of the generosity of the Smile Foundation Ironman 70.3 supporters,” she said.