We aim to provide long-term, sustainable ways to bridge the gap in cleft care and knowledge in the UK and overseas

Kirstie's story

Kirstie has had a number of operations to mend her unilateral cleft lip and palate.


Author: Melanie Baldwin

Speech therapy: together we go far

One of our primary aims is to focus on multidisciplinary and comprehensive care for all children, young people and adults affected by cleft. Speech and Language Therapists play a vital role in the delivery of multidisciplinary care and enable patients to achieve their potential. One of CLEFT's trustees and recently retired speech therapist, Marie Pinkstone, shares why working with colleagues overseas has played such an important part in helping to build a stronger multidisciplinary team.


Author: Melanie Baldwin

Using eye-tracking to measure success in surgery

Repair of a cleft of the lip leaves a scar, and nearly always some visible difference in appearance of the lip such as asymmetry. Such differences in appearance can cause significant distress so it is important that surgery results in the ‘best’ outcome possible. This research project being carried out by a team in Newcastle looks at how success can be measured using eye-tracking.


Author: Melanie Baldwin

Virtual CLEFT Quiz Night

Our annual quiz night fundraiser is happening again on Thursday 7th December 2023. Get a team together and join our fantastic quiz master, Anthony Cordey, for an evening of great fun, prizes and entertainment.




Tickets: From £10.00

Author: Melanie Baldwin

Location: Online

Our impact

1 in 700

children is born with a cleft palate.


the cost of a cleft operation on a baby in a low-income country.


cost to give treatment over a lifetime.

Make a donation

Please select a donation amount (required)
Set up a regular payment Donate

Breakthroughs in cleft research

  • Development of an automatic scoring software tool

    This pioneering research using artificial intelligence is an exciting new project currently being undertaken at the Birmingham Children's Hospital. Read more

  • FOXF2 gene discovery

    A genetic defect has been identified in a family from Egypt with a type of palate abnormality and speech disorder apparently not previously described. The FOXF2 research is one of the many projects currently funded by CLEFT, paid for with money raised by our donors and fundraisers. Read more

  • MRI Speech Assessment

    This important research looked at using MRI to assess whether further surgery could improve speech for people with repaired clefts. Read more

  • New paper published in the Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal

    Research that CLEFT funded shows how a pioneering surgical technique results in a very low rate of secondary speech surgery and very good speech outcomes in children aged 5 years of age, with less need for speech therapy. Read more