With the closing of the border between Thailand and Myanmar on March 25, 2020 due to COVID-19, all in-person cleft support activities have been suspended. 

Undaunted, the Northern Women’s Development Foundation (NWDF) continues to support families in the border regions of Laos and Myanmar. Thanks to its dedicated team of social workers, many families are able to receive speech therapy and counselling remotely via Facebook group chat and personal phone and video contact. 

Healthcare workers like Nang Ei-Ei Phu continue to go above and beyond to support their community by making, along with family and friends, over 1,500 masks which were subsequently donated to Tachileik Hospital in Myanmar.

Plans to resume in-person services such as surgery, dental and orthodontic care at Overbrook Hospital are underway for patients who do not need to cross the border, as the NWDF team works to address a heartbreaking backlog of cases. 

TF is proud of the resilience of its partners and healthcare workers, who continue to provide care remotely while planning for a future with greater demands on in-person services.