CLAPA’s Patrons are celebrities who have a strong connection to the work we do and help us to raise awareness of cleft lip and palate in the UK. We are deeply grateful to both of our wonderful patrons for their support!
YolanDa Brown OBE DL is a double MOBO-Award-winning artist. She was awarded an OBE for services to music, music education, and broadcasting in the 2023 New Year Honours List by His Majesty the King. In July 2022, YolanDa was appointed Chair of BPI – the representative voice for UK record labels and organises The BRIT Awards & Mercury Prize.
A champion for the importance of music education and the Music Week Women in Music Award Winner, YolanDa is Chair of Youth Music, sits on the Arts Council National Council, is a trustee of the PRS Foundation, an ambassador for the Prince’s Trust and London Music Fund. A BAFTA-nominated broadcaster, her eponymous series for CBeebies, “YolanDa’s Band Jam, ” won the RTSNW Best Children’s Programme award. She’s a presenter on Songs of Praise and BBC Young Jazz Musician of the Year. Over on the airways, she hosts YolanDa Brown on Saturday on Jazz FM, classical music every Sunday on Scala Radio, Radio 4’s ‘Loose Ends’ with Clive Anderson, and across many shows on Radio 2 and Magic FM.
YolanDa is also a mother of two daughters, the younger of whom was born with a cleft of the soft palate. She said, “On World Smile Day, a day that celebrates the joy and beauty of a simple smile, I am profoundly honoured to be announced as a patron for CLAPA.
“The journey of my younger daughter, born with a cleft of the soft palate, has taught me the strength behind every smile and the stories they hold. Together, we’ll ensure that every smile, every story, and every family touched by cleft is met with understanding, love, resource, and unwavering support.
“Together, we’ll ensure no one affected by cleft lip and palate goes their journey alone’.”
Carol Vorderman got involved with CLAPA because her older brother, Anton, was born with a cleft lip and palate. He went through years of treatment at Alder Hay hospital in Merseyside and life was not always easy for him or his family. He is the first to acknowledge that it was his family that carried him through all the difficult times and he is now a successful businessman based in Holland. He retains strong links with his home town, Prestatyn, in North Wales.
Carol lightheatedly tells us that her mother, Jean, is always saying that the real star in the family is Anton as he had so much to cope with when he was young and has gone on to lead a very successful and happy life.
“My brother was born with the severest degree of a bilateral cleft lip and palate so I feel a great deal of empathy with members of the Association. There are so many problems which may accompany the condition and a good country-wide support system is needed for the families. I am very happy to support the aims of CLAPA.”
Carol Vorderman, Patron
Carol has appeared on numerous game shows as a celebrity guest to win funds for CLAPA, most notably back in 2005 where she and her family came out on top in Ant and Dec’s Gameshow Marathon (see top photo), winning CLAPA £60,000!