Around with World With Deepak from Canada

Editor’s note: Our “Around the World” series started with a simple idea: Let’s connect two Operation Smile volunteers from two different countries and learn more about the impact they’ve had through the organization. The powerful stories and deep connections that came from these conversations were so inspiring that we wanted to share our favorite moments here on our blog. Subscribe to the Operation Smile Student Programs YouTube channel to watch this episode and more from this series.

For episode two of “Around the World,” we had the privilege of chatting with undergrad volunteer Deepak Sran of Toronto, Canada. A budding dentist studying at the University of Western Ontario, Deepak shares his unique experience with Operation Smile as a student volunteer with a cleft condition, how he stays involved despite our now-virtual world, and what the organization’s platform means to him. 

Here are some gems from our conversation with the inspirational Deepak:

  • Operation Smile’s impact can be quantified to some degree based on the statistics of surgeries performed, and lives changed, but there are other effects our organization instills in the lives it touches that cannot be quantified. “Operation Smile has impacted my life in more ways than I thought were possible, it has helped me accept who I am, and really become more confident in myself. Before I didn’t really know anyone who was born with cleft lip and palate, and I always felt alone. But, after getting involved with Operation Smile, I found out I wasn’t alone, and I met a lot of amazing people who accept me for exactly the way I am.”
Deepak Sran, at right, speaks with host and fellow student volunteer Brady Hishmeh during Episode 2 of Around the World Wednesday.
  • Throughout the video, Deepak explains the gratitude he feels toward Operation Smile for leading him toward self-acceptance, and eventually pride, in his own cleft condition: “Being born with cleft lip and palate and also getting involved with Operation Smile has been part of the bigger climb for me in my life and will help me contribute to the world in a better way, and to help me become the better and truer version of myself.”
  • Deepak attests his enjoyment for being involved with Operation Smile to the platform he can utilize to provide support to individuals born with cleft conditions like himself. “Getting involved with Operation Smile is one of the best decisions I have made in my life. I believe that it is not just an organization it is more of a community that helps one another, and they provide these amazing surgeries to people all around the world.”