Donatello BiancoUNIVERSAL FUND MEMBER
Donatello's Story

Donatello joined Watsi on November 5th, 2015. Three years ago, Donatello joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Donatello's most recent donation traveled 4,100 miles to support Chisuka, a widowed flour seller from Malawi, to fund hysterectomy surgery.

Impact

Donatello has funded healthcare for 42 patients in 12 countries.

Patients funded by Donatello

Chisuka is a widow who lost her husband in February 2023. Chisuka has never had a child of her own but has been keeping three orphans aged 15, 10, and 6 years old for her late sister who passed on 5 years ago. Her husband had lost his first wife 30 years ago who left a 6-year-old son who has been brought up by Chisuka until now. He is a soldier who is married with one child. Chisuka and her late husband loved these orphans and brought them up like their own before death separated them. Chisuka shared that a month after losing her husband, she was chased out of her main house and most of her belongings were taken by her in-laws. Chisuka is now in the boys’ quarter together with her children while the main house is rented but the money is not shared with her. Her stepson withdrew his support after the death of his father. Chisuka started selling groundnut flour for a living. She likes praying and encouraging her children to work hard at school since life has changed for the worse. Chisuka was well until three years ago when she started experiencing cramping abdominal pains and felt a hard mass on the left side of her abdomen. Chisuka has been to different hospitals without much improvement. Of late Chisuka has had overwhelming abdominal pains, bleeding tendencies, loss of appetite leading to loss of weight, a lot of discomforts leading to more stress, weakness, and general body pain. On 24th January, Chisuka was booked and seen by the gynecologist at our medical partner's care center PIH who confirmed the diagnosis of multiple uterine fibroids through an ultrasound scan. She was notified about the need for a surgical intervention called total abdominal hysterectomy (TAH) which is the removal of the uterus, including the cervix. Chisuka was then referred to the Watsi program due to her financial status. She is contributing what she can and needs help raising $1,363 to fund her surgery. Fibroids are abnormal growths that develop in a woman's uterus. Fibroids might become quite large leading to severe abdominal pain and heavy bleeding. If left untreated, fibroids continue to grow, both in size and number worsening the symptoms; the heavy bleeding may become worse causing anemia which may be fatal. After the surgery, it is expected that Chisuka will stop having unbearable abdominal pains and heavy bleeding and will continue taking care of her late sister’s children and living a more comfortable life. Chisuka, with tears in her eyes, said, “Please help me, I have faced more than I could, and now I need a breather and a comfortable life to let me render support to my children.”

$830raised
$533to go

Samuel is a toddler from Ethiopia. He is the second child and loves playing with his older brother. He also loves to take milk and Plumpy Nuts, a nutritional treatment donated by the government for malnourishment, as many children in Samuel’s area experience malnutrition. Samuel’s parents separated, and he, along with his siblings, is being cared for by his mother. She works in the community market, which is a community-organized venture that operates one day a week. On the other days, his mother buys and sells bread from bread makers for a profit. Due to the area’s high poverty levels and rocky topography, drought and water shortages limit food production, so many families receive food donations of maize and wheat from the government, which also helps Samuel’s mom support her family. Samuel was born with hypospadias, a congenital abnormality that causes urinary dysfunction. His mom brought him to a local health center, where he was referred to the hospital. Unfortunately, before treatment could begin, war broke out and forced Samuel and his mother to return home without any treatment. Samuel’s mom has been deeply concerned about his health. However, she was filled with hope after meeting with a social worker from our medical partner’s care center and learning that Samuel’s condition is treatable. With that hope, she traveled three days to the care center for Samuel's surgery. Samuel is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on December 12th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility. Samuel’s mom said, “I hope I will see my child healed and pass urine just like other children.”

$1,264raised
$29to go

Four year old Neserian lives with his family in a village in the Manyara region of Tanzania. The family has long depended upon agriculture and livestock keeping to sustain them. However, climate change has shadowed their agricultural activities, rendering them increasingly unreliable. Consequently, Neserian’s father has turned to selling cattle to support his household. But drought has led to the cattle being unable to feed properly, so that they fetch considerably less money at the market. Neserian's father works hard to meet the needs of his family. In October 2022, Neserian was alone at home, when he ventured too close to an open flame. His clothing caught fire, and he suffered burns to his right elbow and wrist. The neighbors came to his aid, and when his mother returned home, she brought him to a local hospital for care. Neserian remained at the hospital for a month. Despite the care that he received, Neserian has only a limited range of motion of his right arm. Sadly, the local hospital lacks the resources to address this. Neserian and his father traveled for nine hours to consult with doctors from our medical partner's care center the Plaster House NGO. After a thorough assessment, it was determined that Neserian would need to undergo a Z-plasty procedure, to release his right axilla and elbow, along with a full thickness skin graft on his right hand. The pinky on his right hand will need to be amputated. The surgical procedures are set for August 15th but the cost of treatment is beyond the means of Neserian's family, prompting them to appeal for your assistance in covering the $1,088 needed for Neserian's care. After he has healed completely, Neserian will be able to use his hand, and lead a full life, free from disability. Neserian’s father says: “We wish for him to be able to use his hand because he is about to start school, and we are worried it will be hard for him as his right hand is the one affected.”

$1,088raised
Fully funded