A baby following cleft palate surgery
Student Becky Devaraj has made a documentary film of her trip to Africa with Interface Uganda, a UK-based charity which provides reconstructive surgery.
For six weeks during her university gap year, Devon student Becky Devaraj filmed the work of volunteers with a charity which provides plastic and reconstructive surgery to thousands of people in Uganda.
Becky, from Exeter, was already well acquainted with the work of Interface Uganda - her father, Vikram, is a surgeon and goes to Africa every couple of years with the charity, and her mother, Karen, works as an administrator.
Becky with friend Heather and a silverback gorilla
But the trip was an eye-opener for Becky, who witnessed at first hand the sheer number of people needing help and the volume of work carried out by the charity's surgeons.
"It was overwhelming for me," said Becky.
"There were long queues of people waiting patiently in line for treatment. The surgery would open and it would be working all day, from 8am to 8pm.
"The surgeons just wanted to help as many people as they possibly could."
The team travelled around the cities and countryside of Uganda - and everywhere they went, there was plenty of work for them.
Many of the patients required surgery for cleft lips and treatment for burns.
Queues of patients waiting for treatment
The work could cost as little as £100, and it changes the patients' lives forever as they are no longer ostracised for the way they look.
Becky, who is studying to be a journalist, had 20 hours of footage to edit down for her completed film of 20 minutes.
You can watch a short section of the film by clicking onto the video link above, or watch a 13-minute film using the video link on the top right of this page.
last updated: 12/08/2009 at 12:16