Jessica joined Watsi on November 27th, 2014. Seven years ago, Jessica joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Jessica's most recent donation supported Mar, a 56-year-old woman residing in a refugee camp from Thailand, to fund hernia repair surgery.
Jessica has funded healthcare for 87 patients in 13 countries.
Jessica has funded healthcare for 87 patients in 13 countries.
Mar is a 56-year-old woman who lives with her family in a refugee camp located on the Thai-Burma border. They sell vegetables to earn income. During her free time, Mar enjoys reading religious books. Since late August, Mar has had an incisional hernia at the side of her previous caesarean section scar. The scar bulged from her abdomen, and was accompanied by significant pain and vomiting. This hernia causes pain and discomfort in her abdomen which worsens with physical activity. It hinders her ability to work to support her family. Fortunately, she will be able to undergo hernia repair surgery at Mae Sot General Hospital, our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Mar's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on September 21 and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. Mar said, “I just want to return to a normal life, free from worries brought on by this condition. After surgery, I will be able to work more and contribute more money to my family's income. Thank you.”
Siek Meng is a 15-year-old who resides in the Prey Veng province of Cambodia with her parents and two younger brothers. Her parents make a living as rice farmers, and when Siek Meng returns home from school, she helps care for her siblings. During her free time, she enjoys learning English by watching English-language films and television shows. She aspires to pursue higher education in the capital of Phnom Penh and study medicine in the future. Around the age of 6, Siek Meng and her parents noticed something concerning about her back. However, they postponed seeking treatment until two years later due to the high cost of treatment and not considering it essential at that time. Unfortunately, the condition has since deteriorated, and she has been diagnosed with scoliosis, a deformity of the spine. In the past year, Siek Meng has experienced increased difficulty breathing as her rib cage presses on her lungs. Additionally, she occasionally feels numbness in her legs caused by her vertebrae compressing nerves. Thankfully, Siek Meng and her father undertook a challenging journey of two and a half hours to reach our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), seeking assistance for her disability. The medical team at CSC plans to perform a spinal fusion with implants on August 2nd, which requires financial support as the operation costs $1500. This amount will cover radiology, medications, surgery, and post-operative physiotherapy care. CSC is requesting $1500 to help fund this procedure for Siek Meng. Siek Meng shared, "I am feeling embarrassed about my back and I want to not have chest pain anymore. I hope after surgery I can go back to school and be able to walk around my village more easily."
Madelyn is a loving wife and grandmother from the Philippines. She currently lives with her husband and five-year-old grandchild. Ten years ago, Madelyn discovered a lump on her breasts. She had it examined by a healthcare professional and was informed that it appeared to be a fluid-like cyst with a chance to be resolved on its own. Unaware of the potential severity of her condition, she opted to discontinue follow-up checkups. As the years passed, she experienced intermittent, yet tolerable pain. This past March, the pain intensified significantly, accompanied by a palpable mass. These changes alarmed Madelyn to seek medical attention once again. She underwent a thorough assessment and diagnostic tests and was ultimately diagnosed with breast cancer. Without treatment, the cancer may spread to other organs. A mastectomy, a surgery to remove breast tissue, has been suggested to rid her body of breast cancer and to prevent the cancer from metastasizing. Fortunately, our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP), is helping Madelyn receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a mastectomy on May 31st at Our Lady of Peace Hospital. A portion of the cost of her treatment is being supported by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and WSFP is raising $1058 to cover the remaining cost. After treatment, Madelyn will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. "We are just relying on my husband's income as a driver, which is barely enough to sustain our needs. On our own, we will not be able to afford my needed treatment", Madelyn shared. "I'll be eternally grateful to Watsi and World Surgical Foundation Philippines for helping me!"
Ashley is a 1-year-old baby girl that lives in Santa Cruz, a city in eastern Bolivia, with her mother. Ashley's mother is still in high school and does not have an income at the moment, so Ashley and her mother live with Ashley's parents. Ashley was born with a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect (VSD). As a child with VSD, Ashley was born with a hole in the heart wall, called the septum, that separates the left and right lower chambers, called the ventricles. The hole allows blood to be pumped into the lungs, making the heart work harder than normal. Over time, this extra strain on the heart may lead to congestive heart failure. Ashley's current symptoms include feeling weak and constantly short of breath. Fortunately, Ashley's family was able to meet with our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA) at their care center, the Hospital del Niño Dr. Ovidio Aliaga Uría. A surgeon was able to diagnose Ashley's condition and scheduled her for surgery on May 31st to fix the hole in her heart. HCA is requesting $1,500 to help fund this procedure. Ashley's mother commented, "Our family is very happy to know we can have this opportunity to heal my daughter's heart!"
Obadiah is a 26-year-old man from Kenya. He is the youngest in his family of three children. His mother passed away seven years ago due to cancer. Obadiah lives with his father and works as a casual laborer to support his father, who is in his old age. However, since Obadiah’s injury, it has been painful for him to work, and they have had a relative come and stay with them. Obadiah needs surgery to heal and is requesting assistance with his medical costs. Obadiah fell and sustained a fracture to his arm last year. At the time, he went to a hospital, received a splint, and underwent a plate fixation procedure. He has continued to experience persistent pain for the last year and cannot use his hand. Obadiah recently received an X-ray, which revealed that the fracture has not united and one of the screws has moved out of place so that the plate is no longer holding the fracture correctly. To finally heal, Obadiah must undergo a three-part procedure to align his bone and return it to a normal position. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On April 25th, Obadiah will undergo a fracture repair procedure called an open reduction and internal fixation. Upon recovery, Obadiah’s fracture will be healed, he will no longer be in pain, and he will be able to work. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,145 to fund this procedure. Obadiah shared: “I feel so sad when I depend on people to provide everything for me. I am sadder when I remember that my father is alone without a helper. I am so hopeful that one-day things will get back to normal, and I will be able to work and earn something. Kindly help me so that my father may no longer suffer.”
39-year-old Sopheap lives with his wife and two young children in rural Pailin province in Cambodia. Both Sopheap and his wife farm potatoes, and sometimes rice, for extra income. In his free time, Sopheap likes to play volleyball in the village. In early March, Sopheap was in a motorbike accident and suffered an injury to his back. X-rays showed a C6-7 dislocation of the spine. Since the accident, Sopheap has not been able to work, experiences numbness in his arm, and is unable to sleep comfortably through the night due to his pain. Fortunately, our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre (CSC), is helping Sopheap to receive treatment. On April 6th, doctors at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre will perform spinal surgery with implants to stabilize the spinal column. Now, Sopheap and his family need your help to raise $1,500 to fund the procedure and care. The money will cover the cost of hospitalization, surgery, implants, physical therapy, and medication. After recovery, Sopheap's condition should improve significantly, and he should have full mobility after four to eight weeks. Sopheap shared: "I want to be able to go back to work and support my family."
Sai Laung, who is 18 years old, lives with her parents and her younger sister in Shan State in Burma. Sai Laung used to be an agriculture day laborer, but she stopped working in July 2022 due to her illness. In her free time, Sai Laung likes to read Buddhist books and study English online. During the first week of July 2022, Sai Laung began to feel very tired and she developed a fever. At first, she thought it was because she was working a lot, but when she had difficulty breathing a few days later, her mother brought her to the hospital. She was told she might have a congenital heart condition, and the doctor recommended that she have an echocardiogram to confirm the diagnosis. Sai Laung had an echocardiogram at another hospital, confirming that she has a ventricular septal defect, or a hole in her heart. The doctor advised her to go to the Pun Hlaing Hospital in Yangon to see a cardiologist, which Sai Laung did towards the end of November 2022. During that visit, the doctor also diagnosed her with aortic valve regurgitation, and told her that she needs surgery. Currently, Sai Laung has difficulty breathing and is only able to walk short distances before experiencing fatigue. Performing ordinary household chores like cooking or cleaning is exhausting for her. Her lips turn blue, and she has sharp chest pain, fever, and difficulty sleeping. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, has stepped in to assist Sai Laung access the care that she needs. On March 7th, she will undergo surgery to repair her heart at Pun Hlaing Hospital. Now Sai Laung and her family need your help to raise the $1,500 to fund this life-saving procedure. “I have felt so sad since I was diagnosed with this [heart disease]. I need surgery and we have no money. I look at my parents and I pity them because they work so hard to help me get treatment. I want to recover quickly and go back to work so I can help my parents with the extra income. When I learned that there are donors who will help pay for my treatment cost, I felt so happy," said Sai Luang.
Berlando is a 4-month-old baby boy from Haiti. He is the only child of a single young mother. Berlando has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Berlando has been experiencing Increasing head circumference. Without treatment, Berlando will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, Project Medishare, is requesting $897 to cover the cost of surgery for Berlando at Hospital Bernard Mevs that will treat his hydrocephalus. This is the only site in the country where this care is currently available and the procedure is scheduled to take place on January 26th. This critical treatment will drain the excess fluid from Berlando's brain to reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Berlando will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. His mother is looking forward to him being able to go to school and play with other children as he grows older.
Gareth, who is four years old, lives with his parents and three siblings in central Bolivia. His parents are shopkeepers and have so much love for their family. Gareth was born with ventricular septal defect, a heart condition that creates a hole between the two lower chambers of the heart. Blood, which should circulate through his lungs to obtain oxygen, simply leaks out through the hole, leaving Gareth weak and short of breath. In addition to his heart condition, Gareth was born with Down syndrome. Doctors at our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, are scheduled to operate on Gareth on January 19th, at Hospital del Niño Dr. Ovidio Aliaga Uria. During the procedure, surgeons will sew a patch over the hole in Gareth's heart, so that his blood will flow normally. Gareth's family needs your help to fund the $1,500 to cover the costs of his care. Gareth's mother said: "Our family is very grateful to everyone who is making it possible for Gareth to have this surgery."
Festus is a cheerful boy who always has a friendly smile and a joyful, resilient spirit. The fifth born of six children, he is a third grader at a nearby primary school. His parents are small scale farmers who plant maize and beans for consumption and sale. Two of his siblings are in high school and the others are in primary school. His parents sell their farm produce in order to pay their school fees and manage their daily needs. Festus has had a long stay in hospital with an infected wound and multiple surgeries, two debridement surgeries and nerve repair after he sustained a deep cut in his left hand. He now needs a skin graft to cover the damaged area. The decision to perform the skin graft was recommended by his doctors because his wound has not healed after a long time. After undergoing three surgeries, Festus feels traumatized when he enters the operation theatre. His mother is worries that he might lose his hand if not treated. Their family has had to undergo counselling to promote resilience and assurance that everything will be okay, and that Festus will be able to use his hand again. After all this, the family is looking forward to the results of the surgery with excitement. His family is asking any well-wisher to support them in this time of need, as they need $1,089 to fund the skin graft. Festus's mother says, “It’s been a long journey for my son. For the last one week I haven’t slept well just thinking of his health. I hope he gets treated and will be well again.”
Ivan is an 11-month-old baby who is very energetic. He is now at the crawling stage, and from the moment he arrived at our medical partner's care centre, Ivan has not stopped crawling from one point to another. Ivan lives with both his parents. His father is a small-scale farmer, and the sole provider for the family, while his mother stays at home taking care of household chores. He is very close to his mother, but also not afraid to meet new people. His mother enjoys watching him move around. She has struggled to find treatment for him since he was a newborn baby. When Ivan was born, his parents tried their best to pay for his treatment, but halfway through the treatment plan, they could not afford to pay anymore. Ivan has clubfoot of his right foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and wearing shoes as he grows. Fortunately, Ivan's family came to our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on November 8th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Ivan's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily when he grows up. Ivan’s mother says, “my biggest wish is to see my son learn how to stand and eventually start walking.”
Teresiah is a quiet but social mother of three children, who lives with her family in Kenya. She is a small-scale farmer while her husband works as a casual laborer. Teresiah's children are all in school and she has big hopes for their future. Teresiah started experiencing severe epigastric pains intermittently. She has visited many hospitals without much success. Finally, at Nazareth Hospital, an ultrasound scan examination was done, and it showed that Teresiah has Cholelithiasis - gall stones. In addition to the severe pain she is experiencing, Teresiah might also develop complications like inflammation of the pancreas, gall bladder, or gall bladder obstruction. The surgeons advised that she needs to undergo surgery to treat her condition. Teresiah is not in a position to fund her treatment and she therefore requests for help. She needs $788 to fund her surgery. Teresiah says, "Having kids in school and not being able to take care of them is very difficult. I humbly ask for assistance and medical attention. I want to take care of my family and return to my regular life."