Fresh Start Surgical Gifts is Now Accepting Applications to Transform Lives in San Antonio Area

Updated on March 14, 2023

Children in Texas will soon have the opportunity to receive free, life-changing reconstructive surgery. National nonprofit Fresh Start Surgical Gifts has expanded to San Antonio, Texas and has partnered with University Health, and the organization is now ready to help an ever-growing need for medical care for children who are underserved. Fresh Start is now accepting applications for their upcoming Surgery Weekend on June 24 and 25 at University Health in San Antonio. This surgery weekend is for children who are in need of cosmetic and reconstructive surgery and related medical care and meet the requirements. 

Fresh Start Surgical Gifts transforms the lives of disadvantaged infants, children and teens with physical and cosmetic deformities by providing reconstructive and plastic surgery at no cost to patients or their families. World-renowned surgeons donate their time and expertise to offer them the medical care they need, and a fresh start in life. 

“We are excited to accept as many new applicants as we can to help the children of San Antonio through our new expansion and partnership with University Health,” says Shari Brasher, Chief Executive Officer of Fresh Start Surgical Gifts. “This will allow us to serve so many children in San Antonio through the expertise of our wonderful doctors, volunteers, and team members at University Health.” 

Award-winning University Health in San Antonio is committed to addressing the needs of children through the Fresh Start Surgery Weekend Program, which provides comprehensive care to children across the United States and around the world. Fresh Start Surgical Gifts has a strong history of treating difficult cases that require a team of doctors with exceptional skills to perform surgery or related treatments, including any additional surgeries.  

Fresh Start Surgical Gifts is hoping to help five to seven new patients with free surgery at University Health, led by Surgeon in Chief of Pediatrics Dr. Ian Mitchell. Fresh Start and Dr. Mitchell welcome applications from all patients, with any type of case, from their heads to their toes.  

“There are children out there who need surgeries and procedures that don’t have the right insurance, or live in the wrong place, or they don’t have the resources to get them,” Mitchell said. “Fresh Start and University Health can help make profound changes in children’s lives by getting them the care they need here in San Antonio. With the right start in life, their potential could be limitless.” 

These can include surgeries like cleft lip and palate, eye and soft tissue surgeries, and also laser procedures for scarring or skin conditions such as port wine stains and birthmarks, and even interventional radiology procedures for vascular malformations. 

“Volunteers among physicians and staff are lining up to make Surgery Weekend a success for our patients,” said Brasher. “We are excited about being able to offer these services and have a range of specialties we can bring in, depending on the needs of the patients who apply.” 

Since 1991, Fresh Start Surgical Gifts has helped 8,818 children and has expanded into multiple regions throughout the US, headquartered in San Diego, with locations in Chicago and San Antonio. The organization has also partnered with Sanford Health, a healthcare system that is the only children’s hospital in South Dakota with one goal of making screenings, healthcare and treatments available and accessible for as many children as possible.  

Fresh Start Surgical Gifts remains committed to helping improve the lives of children and families across the U.S., partnering with organizations like University Health that share their mission and vision. 

For more information on Fresh Start Surgical Gifts, visit To apply to be a volunteer for this upcoming Surgery Weekend, please click here. For media inquiries, contact [email protected].   


Fresh Start Surgical Gifts transforms the lives of disadvantaged infants, children and teens who have physical and cosmetic deformities through their gift of reconstructive surgery. Providing reconstructive, plastic and neurosurgeries for children across the U.S., Fresh Start’s commitment to children extends far beyond medical care. The organization ensures their children will leave feeling more empowered than before. Every child receives the highest quality medical care and the families never see a bill for the services provided. 100% of contributions go directly to medical programs. To learn more, visit  


University Health is the only locally owned health system in San Antonio. For more than 100 years, University Health has been here to heal, to improve health, to train the next generation of medical professionals and to ensure the people of San Antonio, Bexar County and South Texas have access to primary and advanced specialty care close to home. Specialized services include the region’s only Level I trauma center for both adults and children, and maternal and neonatal intensive care centers designated at the highest levels by the State of Texas. As the region’s only academic health system, University Health is a hub of innovation and discovery, committed to delivering patient-centered, culturally competent, high quality and compassionate care, based on a strong foundation of outcomes‐based research and innovative teaching. Learn more at Follow us on Twitter and Facebook

The Editorial Team at Healthcare Business Today is made up of skilled healthcare writers and experts, led by our managing editor, Daniel Casciato, who has over 25 years of experience in healthcare writing. Since 1998, we have produced compelling and informative content for numerous publications, establishing ourselves as a trusted resource for health and wellness information. We offer readers access to fresh health, medicine, science, and technology developments and the latest in patient news, emphasizing how these developments affect our lives.