United States • Born on September 18th
Works at Blackbaud
Brandon joined Watsi on April 7th, 2014. Nine years ago, Brandon joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Brandon's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Janet, a 6-year-old girl from Tanzania, fund surgery to fix her knees and allow her to run and play.
Brandon has funded healthcare for 114 patients in 13 countries.
Brandon has funded healthcare for 114 patients in 13 countries.
Janet is a 6-year-old girl from Tanzania. She is a bright-eyed, curious girl living in a remote village called Manyus, Tanzania. She is the second youngest of five children, raised by her hardworking parents, who do everything possible to provide for their family. Her father is a farmer and cattle breeder; however, due to the fluctuating prices of crops and cows, he struggles to make enough money to provide for his family. From a young age, Janet's legs started bowing, making it difficult to walk, run, or play like other children her age. Janet was able to reach our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), where she was diagnosed with bilateral genu varus. Her legs bow outward so that her knees do not touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, often stemming from contaminated drinking water. AMH is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Janet. The procedure is scheduled to take place on April 17th. Treatment will hopefully restore Janet's mobility, allow her to participate in various activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Janet’s mother says, “We are concerned about her future. I hope my daughter will be better after this treatment.”
Yoeun is a 70-year-old farmer from Kompong Cham province. She is a widow with no children, as her husband passed away during the Khmer Rouge regime forty years ago. She lives with her disabled brother and supports their living by growing vegetables and bananas to sell at the local market. When she has time, she enjoys joining ceremonies at the village pagoda. About ten years ago, Yoeun developed a pterygium in her right eye, causing her irritation, pain, redness. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. When Yoeun learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three and half hours seeking treatment. Yoeun needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent recurrence. The total cost of her procedure is $225. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for December 13th. She said: "I hope after surgery my eye will see well again, my eye will feel comfortable. I want to plant crops around my home and go outside."
Kidus is a cute and playful little boy. He loves playing with toys and football with other children. His favorite food is Shiro (Ethiopian staple food) and meat. He also loves watching cartoons and is good at observing and imitating some characters from cartoon shows. He is the only child in the family. His dad is a tailor, employed at a local tailor shop. His father uses the little income to provide food for their family and pay rent. Kidus was born with a congenital anomaly called bladder exstrophy and he underwent surgery at BethanyKids with Watsi's support in 2021 to heal this condition. He was also born with a congenital anomaly called epispadias and has an inguinal hernia. Now he is scheduled for epispadias and right inguinal hernia repair. Epispadias impacts his ability to urinate and puts him at risk of future complications. Kidus is now much more playful than beforeand his family can see how intelligent he is. His family also shared how very much better psychologically they feel after his first treatment. But they are still worried about his urinary condition. He is now scheduled for the two surgeries that will take place simultaneously, and his family needs financial support. Kidus' father said, “Kidus means the world to me. To see him completely well will bring me so much joy. I want him to have a great personality with a kind heart; just like the amazing people helping him recover and become healthy. I really hope that he becomes a doctor in the future and helps those who are in need.”
Bunsey is a 22-year-old garment factory worker from Cambodia. His father is a rice farmer and his mother is also a garment factory worker. He has one brother and two sisters. Bunsey's older brother and older sister are both married, while his younger sister is a 10th grade student. In June 2022, Bunsey was in a motor vehicle accident that caused paralysis of his right shoulder. He has been diagnosed with a brachial plexus injury on his right side. The brachial plexus is a nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Injuries to this nerve network can result in loss of function and sensation. He is unable to lift his arm and he cannot work. Fortunately, our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is helping Bunsey receive treatment. He traveled to CSC's care center, which is the only center in Cambodia where this treatment is available. On November 17th, he will undergo brachial plexus repair surgery. After recovery, he will be able to use his right arm again. Now, he needs help raising $709 to fund his procedure and care. Bunsey shared, "after surgery, I hope I can use my right arm again so I can return to work and support my family."
Josephina is a young woman from Tanzania. She is the last-born child in a family of seven children, and lives with most of her siblings and both parents. Her parents are small-scale farmers who depend on agriculture to meet their basic needs. Though times have been hard, they are trying to manage. Josephina is hard-working and enjoys helping her mother with home chores like cooking, cleaning dishes, and washing clothes. She completed her primary school education, but unfortunately, she has not been able to continue with further studies because of financial challenges. In 2011, as she was helping her mother in the kitchen, her dress caught fire, burning her around the thighs. She was taken to the hospital where she received treatment for the open wounds. All the wounds healed, leaving her pain free for some time. She has now developed contractures and has pain and discomfort. Josephina came to our health center seeking treatment, but her parents cannot afford to pay for it. They appeal for support. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Josephina receive treatment. On October 19th, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery to help her be pain free and live a comfortable life. Now, her family needs help to fund this $874 procedure. Josephina’s mother says, “My child has had to endure pain for a while because we did not know that her condition can be treated. We hope that she won’t have any pain after this.”
Aye is a 58-year-old woman from Burma. She lives alone in a village in Burma. She used to work as a day labourer and she would also collect and sell tree leaves used to make roofs. However, she has been unable to work since her condition worsened. In her free time, she likes to go to the village temple, to help cook and clean for the monks and worshippers. Since December 2021, Aye has been experiencing lower abdominal and back pain. She has slight numbness in her left leg, dizziness, and other worrying symptoms. Diagnosed with abnormal uterine bleeding (AUB), Aye has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Aye's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Aye is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on September 12th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience pain. She said, "I would like to say thank you to the donors and the organisation for paying for my surgery.”
Malaika lives on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince in Haiti with her parents and four siblings; she is in the third grade and likes her science and reading classes. She was both with a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect, in which a hole exists between the two lower chambers of her heart. Blood leaks through this hole without passing through her lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving her weak and short of breath. The surgery she needs is not available in Haiti, but fortunately for Malaika, doctors at the Clinica Corominas in the Dominican Republic will be able to perform an interventional heart catherization procedure to fix her condition. During the procedure, doctors will insert a catheter into her heart to plug the hole with a device. Now, her family needs $1,500 to help pay the costs of the procedure and travel. Another organization Gift of Life International is also contributing to her life-saving care. Malaika's mother says: "Our family is very hopeful that our daughter will be healthier and happier after her heart is fixed."
Chom is an 84-year-old retired commune chief who enjoys listening to the news and to monks pray on the radio. He has three daughters, four sons, and 20 grandchildren. Since Chom's wife has unfortunately passed, he now lives with his daughter, who is an assistant to the commune chief. One year ago, Chom developed a cataract in his right eye, causing him to experience eye tearing, itchiness, and blurry vision. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, including colors and faces, and is worried about falling when walking, so he is not able to go places on his own. When Chom learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for three and a half hours seeking treatment. On August 10th, doctors will perform a small incision cataract surgery and place an intraocular lens implant in his right eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $253 procedure. Chom says, "I hope after surgery my eye can see better and I can get around outside easily on my own and visit the pagoda for ceremonies."
Revania is an 8-month-old baby. She is the firstborn and an only child, bringing much joy to her parents. Her parents are trying their best to provide for their baby, but their income is dependent on the unpredictability of agriculture in Tanzania, where they live. Revania has clubfoot of both of her feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Revania's family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on December 2nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Revania's surgery. After treatment, she will be able to grow up healthy and active. Revania’s mother says, “It was scary at first not knowing how to help my daughter, but I wish she will get better.”
Adonai is a one-month-old baby boy and the last-born child in a family of five children. Adonai's parents are small-scale farmers of maize, vegetables, beans, and a bit of tobacco. Through farming, they can get their food while the tobacco is usually sold to get money to pay for daily necessities. Adonai was diagnosed at birth with a congenital disability of the left clubfoot, a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape causing difficulty in walking and wearing shoes. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre, will perform clubfoot repair surgery on July 5th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is raising $935 to fund Adonai's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily and wear shoes when he grows up. Adonai’s father shared, “Things are really tough, and money has become hard to get. I depend on farming which has been very poor this season. Please help treat my son.”
Prince is a 5-year-old and the youngest of three children. His father works at a construction site to help provide income for his family. In early February, Prince was on the school bus when the bus ran into a nearby shop. Prince was trapped between seats and became injured. He was rushed to a nearby health facility for first aid and underwent surgery. Two weeks later, he was referred to our medical partner's care center Kijabe Hospital for review. Prince then underwent a debridement and skin graft procedure in mid-February. Currently, Prince cannot walk and attend school, which is affecting his ability to move up in grades this year. Prince’s first two surgeries were paid for using his parent’s medical coverage, but the medical insurer turned down the current request for the surgery Prince needs to heal. Prince’s family shared that their trips to the hospital have exhausted their savings. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help Prince receive treatment. On May 25th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure. This surgery will address any risks of infection so that Prince’s leg can heal and he can walk again and resume his studies. AMH is requesting $1,185 to help to fund this procedure. Prince’s father said, “Prince has missed school since February. He was supposed to graduate to grade one, but due to the injuries, he did not. He needs this surgery so that he can be able to walk again.”
Zion is an adorable four-month-old baby boy from the Philippines. Despite being so young, Zion loves interacting with people and already responds when his name is called. Zion's mother is a full-time mom, while his father is a contract-of-service worker. Zion's father's income helps to sustain their family's daily needs. In March, Zion's family brought him to the hospital as he has skin tags on his body and they were concerned for his future health and development. This condition can be severe, especially at his age as it may cause discomfort that leads to itching, wounds, and infections. On May 4th, Zion is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition. Our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, is helping Zion's parents raise $1,196 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. After recovery, Zion will no longer have multiple skin tags or be at risk of developing related health complications in the future. "Once this surgery is done, we don't have to worry about his condition, and we can focus on taking care of Zion," his father shared. "Thank you so much World Surgical Foundation Philippines and Watsi for your help. May you help other people in need like us," he added.