This year marks ReSurge's 45th anniversary of providing life-changing reconstructive surgery around the world. We invite you to celebrate with us throughout the year as we reflect on our history and the thousands of lives that have been transformed thanks to our international medical partners, volunteers and supporters like you.
Founded in 1969, ReSurge began with one man and his vision to help people with no access to surgery. Dr. Donald Laub, a plastic surgeon at Stanford University, repaired the cleft lip and palate of a young boy from Mexico, who lived in isolation and was unable to attend school because of his condition. Dr. Laub was moved by the almost instantaneous changes in the boy’s life as a result of the surgery. Inspired to help others like this boy, he established the first organization of its kind dedicated to providing reconstructive surgery for people living with disabilities and deformities in developing countries. He called it Interplast (later renamed ReSurge International).
Over the years, ReSurge expanded. More and more medical volunteers learned about our work and offered to donate their time and skills. By 1979, more than 4,000 surgeries had been provided around the world. Other organizations would eventually form with similar missions, but ReSurge remained a pioneer in the field, garnering a global reputation for quality, safety and its commitment to sustainability.
Building off the success of the earlier years, we saw an opportunity to expand our impact even further by partnering with trusted, local medical professionals—a bold strategy at the time. In 1999, we established our first Surgical Outreach Program in Nepal, allowing us to provide quality surgical treatment year-round.
Today, ReSurge maintains 10 permanent Surgical Outreach Programs in eight countries, and we have provided nearly 105,000 surgeries for children and adults around the world. More than 80 percent of the procedures we provide are performed by local surgeons with ReSurge oversight, training and support. Our efforts to train and empower local medical professionals are only strengthening as we continue to pave the way for increased access to reconstructive surgery.
As we look back on decades of growth and global impact, we thank our partners and volunteers for their tireless dedication and invaluable skills. We also thank our friends and supporters who believe in what we do, and we look forward to transforming exponentially more lives in the next 45 years!