Dr. Terry Yemen has been working with The Virginia Children’s Connection (VCC), a non-profit medical volunteer organization based in Charlottesville Virginia, since 2000. Periodically, other UVA faculty, residents or students accompany him on the trip. VCC was started to meet the vast need for facial and reconstructive surgery in rural India, due to cleft lip and cleft palate birth defect rates. VCC has been going to Giridih, India since 1989.

Originally the majority of patients have needed cleft lip and cleft palate repair. Over the past 20 years patients have expanded to include the release of severe burn contractures on necks and arms. Currently there is no other realistic option for these patients for this debilitating consequence of a horrible burn to the skin. Additional procedures include: scar and skin lesions, syndactyly repair and microtia.