Worksop: Town health club helps put a smile on charity’s face

Bannatyne's founder Duncan Bannatyne (left) with Operation Smile founder Dr Wiliam Magee
Bannatyne's founder Duncan Bannatyne (left) with Operation Smile founder Dr Wiliam Magee

A Worksop health club has raised more than £400 towards a national cause.

Bannatyne’s on Retford Road raised the sum as part of the Bannatyne’s Group’s national scheme to support Operation Smile which aims to help hundreds of children in the developing world have life-changing operations.

Bannatyne Health Clubs across the UK held a host of fun events to help raise the money.

The Worksop club’s contribution helped the whole Bannatyne Group raise more than £139,000 overall.

Bannatyne’s founder and star of the BBC’s Dragon’s Den programme Duncan Bannatyne, who is an ambassador of the charity, has recently visited Vietnam with Operation Smile, following previous trips to Mexico to see for himself the life-changing work being carried out by the charity.

Mr Bannatyne, said he found the experience “humbling and deeply moving”, when he travelled to Guadalajara in Mexico in 2013 with a team of volunteers from Operation Smile, who provided life-changing, safe and effective reconstructive surgery to 118 children born with this severe and debilitating condition.

On his visits to Mexico, Mr Bannatyne witnessed some of the operations first-hand and got to know many of the parents and children who the charity is helping.

Operation Smile is an international children’s medical charity with a presence in more than 60 countries, whose network of more than 5,400 medical volunteers from over 80 countries is dedicated to helping improve the health and lives of children.

Since its founding in 1982, Operation Smile has provided more than 240,000 free surgeries for children and young adults born with cleft lip, cleft palate and other facial deformities.

“The support and events put on by Bannatyne members and staff over Smile Week has been quite simply phenomenal,” said Scott Snyder, executive director of Operation Smile UK.

“The hundreds of people who took part in the many different events across the UK have helped to change countless children’s lives, for which we are incredibly grateful.

“We’d like to congratulate everyone who took part on raising such an amazing sum.”