Dick joined Watsi on August 14th, 2015. Seven years ago, Dick joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Dick's most recent donation supported Primer, a 50-year-old farmer from Haiti, to fund cardiac surgery to replace his damaged heart valve.
Dick has funded healthcare for 94 patients in 11 countries.
Dick has funded healthcare for 94 patients in 11 countries.
Primer is a father of three from Haiti. He lives in a small village in southwestern Haiti with his wife and three children; he is a farmer and sells produce in the local market. Primer has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation. One of the four valves of his heart is severely damaged as the result of a rheumatic infection he suffered a number of years ago, and cannot adequately pump blood through his heart and body. The surgery that Primer needs is not available anywhere in the country so he will fly to Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On September 13th, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will remove the damaged valve and implant an artificial replacement. Haiti Cardiac Alliance is contributing $9000 to pay for surgery. Primer's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also covers travel expenses for the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Primer's family overseas, as well as the cost of obtaining Prince's passport. Prince says: "I am very grateful to be having this surgery so I can take care of my family and see my children grow up."
San is a retired rice farmer with three daughters, six sons, and fifteen grandchildren. San shared that her husband passed away a long time ago, and now she lives next door to one of her daughters. San loves listening to the monks pray on the radio. Two years ago, San developed a cataract in her right eye, causing her tearing and blurry vision. As a result, she has difficulty seeing things clearly, including colors and faces, and is worried about falling when walking, so she doesn't go many places on her own anymore. When San learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), she traveled for three and a half hours seeking treatment. On April 21st, doctors will perform cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in her right eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. CSC is requesting $253 to help fund this procedure. San says, "After surgery, I hope my vision improves so I can visit the pagoda by myself."
Kidus is a five-month-old baby from Ethiopia who is his parents' first child. Some of his favorite activities include breast feeding and playing with his mother. His parents are both students and farmers. They earn their income by selling fruits from their farm; however, the weather in their area is very sunny and their land is dry, which makes their harvest limited. Kidus was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital condition that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. He needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. Kidus recently underwent a colostomy, an intestinal procedure that inserts a colostomy bag. His parents share that paying for this surgery was very difficult. They had to borrow the money from individual loaners, and it has been difficult for them to repay it. In the middle of these challenging times, they heard about our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, and their care center, BethanyKids Myungsung Christian Medical Centre. Kidus's parents decided to seek financial assistance so he could complete the series of surgeries he needs. Kidus is now scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on August 17th. Our medical partner is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Kidus's procedure and care. After his recovery, Kidus will no longer experience bowel dysfunction and will be able to live more comfortably and confidently. Kidus's dad says, “We were happy that we got this opportunity. We hope that our child will get the treatment and make stool just like other people.”
Dina is a 31-year-old woman. She has four siblings and lives with her mother, who is a rice farmer and the sole supporter of the family. Due to a physical disability, Dina is unable to attend school and helps her family in the rice field. In February, Dina fell out of her wheelchair and broke her left arm. Her mother took her to a local clinic, but Dina's arm is still tender and in pain, so the doctors referred her to our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) for treatment. On April 4th, Dina will undergo a fracture repair procedure to eliminate her pain and allow her to regain full use of her arm again. CSC is requesting $465 to fund this procedure. Dina's mother shared her hope that her daughter's left elbow will heal and that she is no longer in pain.
Mi is a 58-year-old mother from Thailand. She lives with her husband and her three daughters. She supports her family by working as a homemaker. Her husband does not work because he is ill. Her eldest daughter is an accountant, her second eldest daughter is a homemaker, and her youngest daughter does not work because she is attending school. Some of Mi's favorite activities include cleaning her house and growing vegetables in her garden. In February, Mi started experiencing pain in her left breast. After examining the area, she noticed a small mass. Over time, the mass increased in size and the pain worsened. She currently still experiences pain in her left breast. Although she takes medication, it only alleviates her pain temporarily. Because of this, she cannot cook or clean, and her daughter has had to take over the household chores. Fortunately, Mi sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. She is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on July 12th. She is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Mi shares, “I want to get better soon. Then my second eldest daughter can find work so that we can pay back our debt. I want to live happily with my family for the rest of my life.”
Him is a 40-year-old woman who used to work in the market near her home. She is married to a rice farmer and has two sons and one daughter. Her sons are 15 and 12 years old, her daughter is 6 years old. Him enjoys cooking for her family, walking her daughter to and from school, and watching Khmer movies. She was a clothes seller at the market, but stopped after her injury. Last August, Him was in a traffic accident and fractured the bone in her right upper arm. She went to a government hospital for surgery to repair the bone. She left soon after the operation because they couldn't afford the cost to stay, even though her fracture had not yet healed well. Now she has an open wound, feels poorly, and cannot use her arm. A neighbor suggested Him visit Children's Surgical Centre for further treatment. She and her family traveled two hours to the hospital, where surgeons diagnosed a Volkmann contracture, which occurs when there is a lack of blood flow to the forearm. There is increased pressure due to swelling, a condition called compartment syndrome. Surgeons have determined they are not able to save her arm and plan to do an above-the-elbow amputation. The total cost of his procedure is $446, which covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. The procedure is scheduled for March 10th and Him needs help to pay for this procedure. Him shared, "I hope after surgery I won't have pain or infection anymore. This treatment will help me in the future to work to support my family."
Meet Maripet, a 9 year-old-girl, living with her parents and two siblings. Her father is a farmer, while her mother stays home to look after the children. In August of last year, Maripet began experiencing persistent, severe headaches. Her parents brought her to a local hospital, where she was prescribed medication, and sent home. When her headaches didn't improve, her parents brought her to a second hospital, where she was given additional medication and sent home, once again. Her family tried traditional medicine, but nothing worked. When Maripet's headaches continued, her parents brought her back to the first hospital they had visited, and this time, brain scans were performed. Maripet's family was immediately referred to our BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital, but without funds for her care they had to delay for visit for one month. During that time, Maripet lost her ability to walk and to move her head, and she also lost her eyesight for a few days. She is now in a wheelchair. When she arrived to BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital, Maripet was examined and booked for immediate surgery to remove a brain tumor. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is here to help make sure she can finally access the treatment she needs. They are seeking $1,500 to fund Maripet's surgery and medical care. Maripet’s mother says: “I’m very much worried about my daughter's condition. I just pray and hope that she will be fine.”
Doreen is a 29-year-old farmer from Southwestern Uganda. She is married and a mother to two children, including a daughter and a son who are both in primary school. She and her husband both work as farmers for a living, and supplement their farming income by working on other people's farms. The family lives in a room in Doreen's father-in-law's home. Eight months ago, Doreen developed a painful mass on her chest. She feels a sense of heaviness, and often tires quickly. She also experiences pain and has difficulty sleeping. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Doreen receive treatment. On March 1st, surgeons at AMH's care center will remove the mass. Now, Doreen needs help raising $188 to fund her procedure and care. Doreen shared, "I hope when I get a chance to undergo the surgery under your support, this mass will be removed and my life will get back to normal."
Meet Jonah, a 31-year-old quiet man. Jonah is the 2nd eldest in a family of three. His siblings and him were raised by a single mother who makes a modest living as a farmer. Earlier, Jonah left secondary school studies to find work to help support his family. Jonah has a history of a growing cheek mass that has recently increased in size. Jonah's condition is uncomfortable and often causes people to stare, which Jonah finds upsetting and is impacting his self esteem. Jonah received a scan of his cheek at AIC Kapsowar Hospital and was subsequently diagnosed with a submandibular tumor. Doctors recommended that the mass be removed and the procedure is scheduled for February 14th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare is helping Jonah raise the $1,196 he needs to undergo this life altering surgery. Jonah shared, “I have waited for this moment in my life for so long. My mother has tried to take me to so many hospitals but we lacked means because they requested too much from us.”
Askaw is a 47-year-old woman who lives with her father, husband, two sons and her daughter-in-law. Her husband is currently unemployed while her oldest son and her daughter-in-law are farmers. Her youngest son is a day labourer, finding work whenever he can. Askaw is a homemaker and looks after her father who is retired. In her free time, she loves to read, sing, and go to church every Sunday. Toward the end of 2018, Askaw noticed that the vision in both her eyes was blurred. In early 2019, unable to afford seeking treatment at a hospital or a clinic, she purchased eyeglasses for herself at a shop. Although the eyeglasses helped her see better at first, a year later her vision worsened and she could no longer see even with the eyeglasses. She purchased a new pair of glasses, but her vision worsened again. Finally in December she was able to go to an ophthalmologist's clinic with the help and financial support of her brother. After the ophthalmologist examined her eyes, she was told to go to a hospital for further investigation because she likely needed surgery. Askaw's brother knew of our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) which could help make her care possible even though it was out of reach financially for their family. Currently, Askaw can see very little in her left eye and she can only perceive light with her right eye. She cannot read anymore, and finds it difficult to pay for items when shopping since she cannot see the money. When she cooks, she will often mix-up the ingredients. She shared that sometimes, when she is alone, she will cry and feels sad about her symptoms. She said, “When I cook, I will mix-up the ingredients because I cannot see clearly. Now I am no longer able to cook and I have also stopped cleaning as it is so hard to clean with my poor vision."
Grace is a bright and hardworking student who is ready to sit for her government-mandated national exams for high school students in just two days. She is the youngest in her family of four. Grace's family came to Kenya as refugees from Rwanda to escape the 1994 genocide. Her parents started a small cereal shop after they settled. They don’t have medical insurance so are requesting help for Grace. She has had many ear infections that have now caused difficulty for her to hear and she strains to pick up voices. This has been affecting her classwork and she's even worried she may not be able to hear during her final exams on Monday. Grace urgently needs hearing aids on both ears and our medical partner African Mission Healthcare (AMH) is helping her receive this treatment and care. AMH is raising $1,171 to fund the full cost. Grace father shared, "Grace has been struggling with her studies because of her hearing. She is now supposed to sit for her final exams in two days and will need the hearing aids so as not to miss the instructions during the exams.”
Jovin is an adorable three-year-old boy. He's the only child of a single mother whom he loves very dearly. Jovin’s mother is a small-scale farmer of maize and vegetables. Jovin and his mother live with her parents who help watch Jovin while his mother is working. Jovin was diagnosed with Bilateral Genu Valgus that cause his legs to bow inward making it difficult for Jovin to walk. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, often a result of contaminated drinking water. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Jovin's mother raise $880 to fund corrective surgery for Jovin. The procedure is scheduled to take place on February 10th and will hopefully restore Jovin's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Jovin’s mother says, “I have given him calcium medication, but it hasn’t helped. The cost of surgery is too high for me to afford.”