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After surgery for a cleft lip, 13-year-old Antonio was finally permitted to attend school in Mexico. His success and the almost instantaneous changes in his life gave our founder, Dr. Donald Laub, the inspiration to help others through reconstructive plastic surgery.

In the 1960s, plastic surgery was still evolving. For the first time ever, it was believed that plastic surgery could rehabilitate and reintegrate those who were outcasts because of deformities and disabilities. One man, Dr. Donald Laub of Stanford University, pioneered the idea that reconstructive plastic surgery could renew lives and restore hope. With that vision, Interplast (now ReSurge International) was born in 1969. It was the first organization of its kind.

Thousands of volunteers traveled overseas to help children. By 1979, 4,000 surgeries had been provided. Medical volunteers transformed lives by dedicating their time to ReSurge, providing surgeries and training local doctors so that they could perform the surgeries on their own.

As the developing world changed with the Internet and better infrastructure, ReSurge forged a bold new course. In 1999, we established the first permanent Surgical Outreach Program, where local surgeons provide year-round care. By building surgical capacity and supporting local surgeons, twice as many patients are now receiving care annually.

Now more than 80 percent of our surgeries are performed by developing world surgeons with ReSurge oversight, training and support; it is our most efficient and cost-effective way to provide life-changing surgery. ReSurge also continually improves the quality of health care through education programs. Together with your help, we’ve provided more than 100,000 surgeries and look forward to pioneering the way for generations to come.

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