Jason and Brittany Neel, Leaders in Houston Cleft Community, Register For Cleft Smiles 5K
The latest registrants for the 2015 Cleft Smiles 5K may be new to 5Ks, but they are familiar smiles within the Houston cleft lip and palate community.
Brittany and Jason Neel have been ardent and active supporters for new parents with cleft-kids in the Houston area, sharing the experiences that they went through when their own daughter Adley was born with a bilateral cleft lip and palate.
“She doesn’t let any of that slow her down,” mom Brittany says. “She is very outgoing and adventurous anyway!”
After having danced through the difficult, but rewarding, experience of having a cleft-kid of their own, Brittany and Jason have made an effort to help share love and support with other parents who are going through the same thing.
According to Cleft Smiles 5K race director Leah Yeglin, Brittany is indispensable within the Houston cleft community.
“She somehow finds a way to connect with local families, sometimes even before their first doctor’s appointment,” Yeglin said. “When I told (my son) Jacob’s doctor that I had spoken with her, and that she had recommended him, his response was “Does she talk to EVERYONE?”
Brittany is an administrator for both the Houston Cleft Moms Facebook group and the nationwide Cleft Mom Support Facebook group, and also has a blog about her own experiences at adleycleft.blogspot.com.
Brittany and her husband Jason, who works for oil and natural gas manufacturing company NRG in Houston, first met and dated briefly in high school in Northwest Houston.
“We never thought we would be married with two girls one day back then,” Brittany joked. The two reconnected as adults, and their fortuitous reconnection has been a gift to parents around the world who have children with cleft lips and palates.
Jason has run one 5K in his life, during which time Brittany was quite pregnant and relegated to cheerleader duty. On March 7th, they will both be on the trails at Rob Fleming Park along with both Adley and the newest addition to the family: daughter Jaycee.