Hi! My name is Brooke Hira. I love to read and do anything related to art! I love to create anything and everything from painting to molding clay to baking. I am also a competitive soccer and tennis player, and I was born with a unilateral cleft lip and palate.
During my process of researching cleft lip and palate and seeking out support, I realized there is a constant, world-wide need for funding of surgeries as well the need to support kids and their families in our local community. I wanted to make a difference so I began baking and selling treats as a way to raise money for different cleft lip and palate organizations. In addition, I began speaking out and raising awareness about cleft lip and palate, a condition that many people may not be aware of but affects 1 in 700 children world-wide each year.
In 2017, I began Just A Smile and my campaigning efforts had grown beyond just baking and selling treats. In the past several years, I have been able to raise thousands of dollars through many activities along with helping others understand and become familiar with cleft lip and palate.
Through my experiences I’ve also discovered that the medical support is only one aspect and that the emotional support was just as important. I’ve recognized the positive impact that kindness and acceptance can have on a person. In addition to educating the public about the medical conditions of cleft lip and palate, I also try to promote compassion, acceptance, kindness and empathy for others who may feel a little different than everyone else. I’ve met some amazing friends and people along the way and I’m looking forward to meeting many more and continuing my efforts! I hope you will join me!