olivia joined Watsi on July 12th, 2014. Six years ago, olivia joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. olivia's most recent donation traveled 9,000 miles to support Kofia, a young farmer from Malawi, to fund hernia repair surgery.
olivia has funded healthcare for 28 patients in 10 countries.
olivia has funded healthcare for 28 patients in 10 countries.
Kofia is a 25-year-old man from the Central Region of Malawi. He lives with his wife and two young children. He works as a farmer and spends his days tending to his crops and selling his vegetables in the village market. When Kofia is not busy with his farm work, he likes to spend time with his family and go to church. Since June of last year, Kofia has been experiencing pain and discomfort related to an inguinal hernia. A hernia occurs when part of the intestine protrudes through weakened muscle and tissue. This can cause pain and obstruct blood flow. Kofia's hernia has kept him from eating properly and working normally. Our medical partner, World Altering Medicine, has agreed to repair Kofia's hernia. His operation has been scheduled for April 6 and will cost $334. Once his operation is complete, Kofia is expected to make a full recovery, allowing him to take care of his farm and family.
Ten-year-old Victor was born with a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect. A hole exists between the two lower chambers of his heart. Blood leaks through this hole without first passing through the lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving him fatigued. Victor lives in a small town in central Dominican Republic with his parents, five sisters, and two brothers. He is in the fourth grade, and his favorite subjects are mathematics and social studies. Although Victor is not Haitian, our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is collaborating with their partners in the Dominican Republic to offer treatment to Dominican children. He will undergo cardiac surgery at our medical partner's care center. First, Victor will undergo a full cardiac assessment on February 15. This assessment will include physical exams, labs, and an overnight stay at the hospital. Haiti Cardiac Alliance is requesting $1,500 to fund these procedures. Funding for Victor also covers the cost of medications and social support for him and him family. Gift of Life International is contributing $7,000 to cover additional costs associated with Victor's surgical care. "I am excited to learn how to play soccer after my surgery," says Victor. "I have always been too weak to play."
Ath is a 34-year-old construction worker who is married with one son. He likes to listen to music, watch boxing on TV, and help his wife around the house in his free time. Ath sustained an electrical burn on both wrists in January 2016. Ath traveled for five hours with his brother to reach our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), for treatment. Ath first came to CSC on January 16, and surgeons performed a [tenolysis procedure](https://watsi.org/profile/a302973cd91a-ath) to help his tendons heal. He returns to CSC because now the tendons of his left hand seem to be stuck to scar tissue. Surgeons at CSC will perform a tendon procedure on Ath's left hand as a continuation of his treatment to help him use his hand more easily. His surgery is scheduled for May 30. Ath's treatment will cost $450, which his family cannot afford. Therefore, CSC is requesting that amount to help fund his surgery. After surgery, Ath will be able to use both of his hands freely again, and he will be able to go back to working in construction.
Mary is a 77-year-old woman from Kenya who loves reading. She has 13 children, all of whom have families. She is a student at an adult education school, and she wants to learn how to read the Bible and write her own signature. About two years ago, Mary discovered a lump in her left breast. After having several tests done, doctors concluded that the lump is cancerous and recommended a mastectomy. On April 18, Mary's doctors at our medical partner will perform a mastectomy to remove the cancer. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $816 to fund the procedure. Mary shares, “I want to see my grandchildren grow and to continue with my education.”
Meet Julia, a stay-at-home mother of nine children from Port-au-Prince, Haiti. After the birth of her ninth child, Julia noticed that a large mass had developed in her left breast and formed a ball under her armpit. Julia experienced extreme pain, resulting in loss of sleep and limited function of her left arm. After a consultation at a local hospital, Julia was diagnosed with breast cancer. Julia was referred to our medical partner's care center, St. Luc Family Hospital, where she received four sessions of chemotherapy. On February 15, Julia will undergo a mastectomy to remove all the breast tissue and cancerous cells. Our medical partner, Innovating Health International, is asking for $1,085 to fund Julia's surgery. Julia says that her husband is her biggest supporter and that their family encourages her to keep fighting.
Avila is a 13-month-old girl from rural Guatemala. Both her parents work very hard to provide for their family and want the best for their young daughter. Avila is currently experiencing the detrimental effects of malnutrition, which include stunted growth and a weakened immune system. Her malnutrition is the result of a diet low in protein, calories, and nutrients. In the long term, she could face increased risk of chronic diseases, a low IQ, and a higher likelihood of dropping out of school. Fortunately, this condition can be easily treated with growth monitoring, micronutrients, and food supplementation. On January 19, young Avila will begin treatment at our medical partner's care center, Clinic Tecpán. Our medical partner, Wuqu’ Kawoq, is requesting $437 to fund her treatment. Treatment will give Avila the opportunity to grow at the same rate as her peers, play freely, and enjoy her time with her family. Most importantly, it will give her the chance to live a full, healthy life.
Ma Nyein lives in the village in Burma where she was born. She is 42, and she lives with her 18-year-old son and her seven-year-old nephew. Her daughter has worked in a food shop in Bangkok for seven years. Eight months ago, Ma Nyein had an accident inside of her house. She stepped on a loose plank in the floor, which made the piece of wood swing up and hit the left side of her head. Soon after, her left eye became swollen, bruised, and numb. When her condition did not improve, Ma Nyein visited our medical partner's care center. She underwent a CT scan, the results of which revealed a benign brain tumor. Before surgery can take place, Ma Nyein's doctor wants to perform an MRI to clarify the mass. This $814 scan is scheduled for November 24. "I would like to recover soon," says Ma Nyein. "Then, I can open my own shop at home to sell dried food and the clothes that I made."
George is a 71-year-old man who lives in Uganda with his 12-year-old daughter. George supports his daughter and himself by growing crops and selling charcoal. Unfortunately, George is not always able to work due to pain caused by his inguinal hernia. A hernia occurs when an organ bulges through weakened muscle and tissue. This condition causes pain, and it can lead to obstruction of blood flow or damage to the surrounding area. George has been living with his hernia for over five years. Recently, the pain has grown severe. On January 5, physicians at our medical partner's care center, Bwindi Community Hospital, will perform surgery to repair the weakened muscle and tissue. Our medical partner, The Kellermann Foundation, is requesting $229 to fund George's procedure. After recovery, George will be able to return to work. “I praise God to bless the donors’ hands so they can keep helping others,” says George.
John is a 54-year-old rice farmer from a small village in Malawi. He has five children and two grandchildren. Five years ago, John began to experience troubling urinary symptoms. The discomfort and pain he felt prevented him from working on his farm. Fortunately, he underwent prostate surgery on November 24. John needs help to fund this $726 procedure. He was thrilled when he learned about Watsi. "I am very thankful," he says.
Dexter is a 20-month-old boy from the Philippines. He loves to play hide-and-seek with other children. Dexter lives with his parents and siblings in a small house made of scrap materials and bamboo. His father, a driver, has difficulty providing enough for the family. For this reason, Dexter is malnourished, weighing less than other children his age. Dexter will be treated by International Care Ministries (ICM), a Watsi medical partner. One out of five children under 5 in ICM communities is either severely or moderately acutely malnourished. Worldwide, poor nutrition is associated with nearly half of all deaths in young children. In remote communities and urban slums of the Philippines, the lack of clean water and unclean environments add risk to potentially fatal childhood diseases. ICM’s Home-Based Feeding program provides nutrient-enriched food packs to ensure malnourished children get additional food to regain normal weight and achieve optimum physical and mental development. After identifying a child as malnourished, staff and community volunteers make weekly visits to monitor this child’s progress. To help sustain the health of the child, ICM's professional staff educate the mother, guardian, or other family members about proper nutrition, sanitation, hygiene, and organic vegetable gardening. "I hope that he can recover from malnutrition and become strong and healthy so that we can send him to school," says Dexter's mother.
Meet 30-year-old Sarom from Cambodia. “Sarom is married without children and she works as a farmer,” shares our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre (CSC). “Sarom spends her time cleaning her house and taking care of her parents at home.” Sarom has a cholesteatoma in her right ear -- a non-cancerous skin cyst that has the potential to increase in size, and destroy the surrounding delicate bones of the ear. “When Sarom was two years old, she began have right ear discharge every day, and she never received treatment beyond occasional antibiotics,” reports CSC. “This causes her pain, hearing loss, and tinnitus (ringing in the ears).” For $809, Sarom can receive a mastoidectomy to surgically remove cells in the spaces behind her ear, relieving her persistent pain and unpleasant symptoms. CSC continues, “After a mastoidectomy, Sarom will be able to regain her hearing ability, and the discharge will stop.” Sarom is eager to heal properly and return to daily life, and her husband remains hopeful that her pain will soon come to an end. She shares, “I hope the ear discharge will stop, and I’ll have good hearing.”
Meet 23-month-old Olga from Guatemala, the youngest of five siblings. “Olga is an energetic little girl that loves to jump and dance when she hears music. She imitates her mom’s singing voice and pretends to cook with little plates and cups while her mom prepares meals for the family,” shares our medical partner, Wuqu’ Kawoq (WK). Olga has acute malnutrition, causing her to be far below the average height and weight for her age. “Her immune system is weakening, and she is showing signs of developmental delays. At almost two years old, she is only speaking 12 words, whereas children on a normal developmental trajectory speak approximately 50 words at that age,” reports WK. “We worry that without intervention, Olga will continue to fall away from the growth curve, and her immune system will continue to weaken, putting her at risk of acute illness,” continues WK. “Furthermore, without medical intervention and parental education, Olga will have a higher risk of suffering from the long term effects of malnutrition.” With $535 in funding, Olga can receive comprehensive treatment for malnutrition, which includes growth monitoring, medication, micronutrient, and food supplementation. Her mother will also receive nutrient education that will improve the health of their entire family. This treatment will allow Olga to recoup the height and weight, strengthen her immune system, and reduce the risk of long term effects strongly associated with malnutrition, such as diabetes and complications during pregnancy. “We are so happy to be a part of this program," shares Olga's mother. "Thank God for allowing you to find us and for wanting to help our Olga. We hope she will recuperate soon.”