Byron joined Watsi on September 2nd, 2015. Six years ago, Byron joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Byron's most recent donation traveled 1,900 miles to support Abigail, a three-year-old girl from Haiti, to fund surgery to repair a birth defect in her heart.
Byron has funded healthcare for 96 patients in 13 countries.
Byron has funded healthcare for 96 patients in 13 countries.
Abigail is a bright three-year-old girl. She lives with her parents and one older brother in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince, which is the capital of Haiti. Abigail was born with a condition called patent ductus arteriosus. The deformity causes blood to leak through a hole between two major blood vessels near the heart. That makes it difficult for her small heart to function properly and can lead to tiredness, shortness of breath and restricted growth as she gets older. Fortunately, the condition is highly treatable with surgery. Our medical partner Haiti Cardiac Alliance has arranged for Abigail, her family and an escort to travel to the Dominican Republic, where doctors will use a catheter to plug the hole near her heart. Abigail should then be able to go on to live a full, healthy life. Another charity, Gift of Life International, is also contributing $5,000 toward the procedure, which is scheduled to take place on May 24th. This $1,500 will help fund Abigail's life-changing surgery and related care. Abigail's mother says, "We would like to say thank you to everyone who is helping to heal our daughter's heart!"
Angelica is a hard-working young mom with a three-year-old son. She and her partner work in construction, earning just enough to support their daily needs. Angelica was diagnosed with external hemorrhoids. Because of her financial situation, even though she experiences pain, she is not able to get the medical care she needs to heal. Fortunately, Angelica is scheduled to undergo surgery to treat her condition on March 5th. Our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, is requesting $1,163 to cover the total cost of Angelica's procedure and care. After her recovery, Angelica will no longer experience severe pain and other complications in the future. "I want to be able to take care of my child without worrying about my condition," Angelica explained. "I am fortunate to have been referred for surgery with World Surgical Foundation Philippines and Watsi; without them, I'm not sure where we would be able to get help for my treatment."
Misael is a smiley nine-month-old baby boy from Venezuela. His family moved to Medellín in Colombia after he was born, where his father works in construction and his mother is caring for Misael and dedicated to giving him all of her love. His smile is contagious and his energy is endless! Misael has clubfoot on his left foot. Clubfoot is a congenital musculoskeletal condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and wearing shoes. Misael and his family traveled to visit our medical partner, Clínica Noel, where they can offer him the life-changing treatment he needs. Fortunately, on March 14th, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery to correct his foot. Our medical partner is raising $1,422 to help fund Misael's surgery. After treatment, he will be able to walk and wear shoes as he grows up and eventually run around and play with his friends! His mother said, "Thank you so much for everything you are doing, being in Medellín and finding you has been a blessing."
Mercy is a hardworking laborer and a widow. Her husband died 17 years ago when she was pregnant with her only child. The same year she gave birth to her son prematurely. She has worked hard to raise her son alone and he is currently in secondary school. Mercy doesn’t have a stable job, but engages in casual jobs within her village where she does cleaning to provide for her son. She likes being in the company of her son and they live in a small rented room in their small town. Around 17 years ago, Mercy began to experience troubling symptoms, including a neck swelling that developed when she gave birth to her son. She has had a difficult journey looking for treatment for her condition and has been to different hospitals where doctors have recommended surgery. She has never gotten the chance to have the surgery due to a lack of finances. Mercy has muscle weakness and gets fatigued easily. She was diagnosed with a multinodular goiter for which she reported to Kapsowar Hospital seeking support. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Mercy receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on January 12th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $936, and she and her family need help raising money. Mercy says, "I have lost weight, I am weak and cannot work like before. My hope in life is to get treated and continue supporting my son. He is the only family I got.”
Edwin is a young boy from Tanzania and the youngest in his family of three children. He is a friendly and playful boy. Edwin’s parents are small-scale farmers who mainly grow food crops like maize, potatoes, and vegetables. Edwin was diagnosed with genu varus, where his legs bow outward at the knee. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he has difficulty walking and running with his agemates. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Edwin. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 4th. Treatment will hopefully restore Edwin's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Edwin’s mother says “We don't like seeing his legs this way and the struggle he has in walking. It is because of financial challenges that we haven’t been able to seek treatment for him.”
Jayden is a quiet, shy two-year-old boy. He is the youngest in a family of three children. His mother works as a waitress in a local hotel while his father recently took on a new job as an uber driver. Jayden was born with hypospadias, a congenital condition that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and be at risk of infertility. Jayden's parents learned about our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), through a local television station. When Jayden turned two, his parents brought him to AMH's care center for examination. On November 8th, Jayden will undergo corrective surgery. AHM is requesting $847 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Jayden’s mother shared, “As a family, we are really looking forward to Jayden being able to have treatment.”
Edrian is an active and talkative 4-year-old boy. He is the youngest in a family of three children. Both of his parents work as teachers, and one of his parents secured a new job recently which they are feeling optimistic about. A few months after Edrian was born, his mother noticed a birth condition. She consulted with his father, and they decided to raise funds to take Edrian to a local hospital. After examination, Edrian was diagnosed with left undescended testes, and surgery was done to address this condition. However, his surgery was unsuccessful and the doctors referred their family to our medical partner’s care center, BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital (BKKH) for additional care. At BKKH, Edrian was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles remains undescended. If left untreated, Edrian has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. Fortunately, Edrian will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), and will undergo corrective surgery on November 1st. AMHF is requesting $646 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Edrian’s mother shared, “It has been a long and stressful journey for us since he was diagnosed with the condition, but we are still hopeful that all will be well.”
Peter is a 42-year-old father who lives in Kenya but hails from the neighboring country Uganda. With no formal education, Peter works as a casual laborer, mostly working in people's farms to meet his daily needs. He is a father of three children, aged between 4 to 13 years old. He lives with his family here in Kenya in a rented single room in Chesoi village. Peter works hard but shared that his family struggles financially. None of his children are able to attend school, and his eldest son always accompanies him to the farm to help his father meet the needs of his younger siblings during these difficult times. On September 21st, Peter presented to the hospital late at night with complaints of abdominal pain and left inguino-scrotal swelling. Initially, the swelling was improving but has since worsened, becoming very painful. When Peter arrived at the hospital, he was walking in a stooping posture due to abdominal pain he has. An ultrasound confirmed irreducible inguinal hernia and was told that he needed to undergo an urgent herniorrhaphy. Because he had no money for the surgery, Peter considered postponing this urgent surgery, which doctors told him would be a dangerous move. Fortunately, the hospital enrolled him with Watsi and he slept at the hospital awaiting his treatment. On September 22nd, he'll undergo his much-needed surgery. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMH), is requesting $631 to fund Peter's surgery. Peter says, “My hope is to get treated. I want to be well and continue supporting my family.”
Naw Dah is a 40-year-old woman who lives with her husband, four daughters and three sons in a refugee camp in Northern Thailand. Six of her children attend school in the camp, while Naw Dah looks after her youngest daughter at home. Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, her husband has had difficulty finding work outside of the camp for the past few months. The family survives on money they receive through a food card each month from an organization called The Border Consortium. Since 2016, Naw Dah has suffered from frequent, painful urinary tract infections. After she received an x-ray at a local hospital in April 2020, she was referred for further treatment and diagnosed with kidney stones. She received treatment in September 2020, but at follow-up appointments, the doctor told her that she still had fragments of the kidney stone, and she returned for multiple x-rays and oral medications. During her most recent follow-up in August 2021, the doctor told her that the stones are now 6mm in size and scheduled her for another ureteroscopy. She is unable to pay for surgery and was referred our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), for assistance accessing treatment. On September 3rd, she will undergo a ureteroscopy and now, she needs help raising $1,500 to fund her procedure and care. Naw Dah shared, "I am a bit scared as I already underwent treatment twice, but I really want to get better. So I put my trust in God and I will go through this pain again so that I will be free from this pain in the future."
Samuel is a 25-year-old motorbike taxi driver from Kenya. His father is a carpenter and his mother runs a greengrocery in their hometown. On May 8th, Samuel was in a traffic accident that caused a serious fracture to his left ankle. Samuel is unable to walk on his own and is currently using crutches. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help. On June 8th, Samuel will undergo a fracture repair procedure called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him walk easily again. Now, AMH is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Samuel shared, “I am in pain and cannot walk without the help of the crutches. The doctor said if I don’t get the surgery my leg will not be okay and can't work.”
Jackline is a nine-year-old student who does well in school and enjoys helping with household chores. Her favorite subject in school is Kiswahili. Jackline's mother is a housewife, while her father is a casual laborer who works at construction sites. Three years ago, Jackline was playing at home with friends when she fell and injured her left leg. She was taken to a nearby hospital where her leg was casted, but since then, she has been limping and experiences pain in her hip. She is unable to walk well or play with her friends, and the pain has affected her schooling. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Jackline to receive treatment. She visited AMH's care center for an orthopedic consultation and is scheduled to undergo an osteotomy on July 15th. The procedure will improve Jackline's mobility. Now, AMH is requesting $1,224 to fund Jackline's procedure. Jackline's mother shared, “I would like to see my daughter walking and continue with her normal life."
Brian was born last night and is the first born in his family. His father works in a newly opened bakery and shared that he earns very little money, while his mother makes and sells pots to earn a living. After Brian was born, he was examined by the pediatric surgery team and diagnosed with anorectal malformations. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH) is helping Brian to receive treatment. On June 2nd, at AMH's care center, he is scheduled to undergo a colostomy surgery to enable him to pass stool. Now, AMH is requesting $592 to fund Brian's surgery. Brian’s father shared, “we are hoping and praying that our son will get treated despite the fact that we are not financially stable to afford the surgery.”