Cleft lip and palates refer to openings in the upper lip or roof of the mouth or both. The condition is one of the most common birth defects and is treated with surgery to correct facial appearance.
The bank’s Public Relations and Communications Manager, Isack Hamata, confirmed it will continue its partnership with Nampharm Foundation, the organisation that raises funds to enable the operation of children with lip and palate deformities.
The commitment was made on Saturday at the Nampharm Foundation’s 10th anniversary celebrations in Windhoek where Hamata also handed over N$200,000 to the foundation’s Founder and Financial Director, Frikkie van der Walt.
At the occasion, Hamata said Standard Bank’s continued support to Nampharm was to restore dignity for both parents and their children who suffer from cleft lip and palate deformities.
“We very well know that if left untreated, these conditions lead to problems with hearing, talking and eating, not to mention anxiety and depression. Children also have difficulties integrating with their peers at school and other social environments,” Hamata said.
He added: “We are happy, as Standard Bank, that we can play our part to continue putting smiles on the faces of our Namibian children and to enable them to one day become productive citizens who will also take care of others in similar situations.”
Nampharm Foundation Manager, Carol Masururwa said over the past 10 years, a total of 125 complete cleft lip and palate operations were completed and a further
38 children are due for operation this year. She also added that a total of N$ 3.1 million was spent on operations since 2009. The operations are at no cost to the families of the children.
Also attending Saturday’s 10th celebrations was Ester Shivute whose one and a half year old son, Shaamena underwent the first stage of the operation and is due for the second phase in the next few weeks. She said she was grateful to both Standard Bank and Nampharm for helping to treat her son.
“I am very happy for what Standard Bank and Nampharm are doing for my son. They must continue doing that for other children as well. I also want to call upon parents who have children with cleft lip and palate deformities to take advantage of these opportunities so that their children can lead a healthy life,” Shivute urged.