Best Friend Teens Are Selling Handmade Bracelets To Help Heal Cleft Lip & Palate

LifeStyleInspirationPublished: August 22, 2017
Published: August 22, 2017

Lifelong friends Sanjana and Nandini are raising money for children with cleft lip and palate by selling handmade charm bracelets for $5 and donating 100% of their proceeds to Smile Train. Thanks to these two teenagers and the charity business they created called Side By Side Smiles, more children are getting their smiles back.

Smile Train is an international children's charity that implements the sustainable resources and training that developing countries need in order to solve the problem of cleft lip and palate. With over 170,000 babies born with cleft lip and palate each year, millions of children in developing countries cannot speak, eat, breathe, or hear properly. Cleft surgery is a simple, solvable strategy and makes an immediate difference in the lives of these children.

Born with a cleft lip, Sanjana decided she wanted to help the children of developing countries who can't afford the $250 cleft lip surgery. Since she and her best friend each come from families who make jewelry, Sanjana and Nandini decided they would make handmade charm bracelets and sell them to raise money and awareness for this solvable problem. Both their moms are also involved in the business, offering support and business help only when needed. "Right from the get-go this has been their project," starts Vijaya (Sanjana's mom), "It's them running the show and we're in the background for support when and if they need us," finishes Maha (Nandini's mom).

Each charm bracelet contains charms that signify a greater meaning, as they all come with a heart, key, and an arrow (or feather depending on the bracelet). The heart represents the love and awareness they're trying to spread, the key shows how every person holds a key to a child's smile, and the arrow (or feather) shows how easy it is to make a difference since they are so light and graceful.

So far, the girls have made over 500 bracelets and are on their way of reaching their goal to raise $5,000 by the end of the year. Join in their bigger goal to raise $100,000 for curing children with cleft lip and palate by visiting their website Side By Side Smiles and making a donation.

This HooplaHa original video was produced by Tracy Chevrier, shot by Elliot Rosen, and edited by Kellie Sieban.

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