Keith joined Watsi on November 5th, 2014. Eight years ago, Keith joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Keith's most recent donation traveled 1,900 miles to support Myrcayela, a beautiful 9 year old girl from Haiti, to fund heart surgery.
Keith has funded healthcare for 107 patients in 12 countries.
Keith has funded healthcare for 107 patients in 12 countries.
Myrcayela, a nine year old fifth grader, lives with her parents and five siblings in a suburb of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Myrcayela was born with a condition called patent ductus arteriosus. In the womb, a ductus arteriosus is a normal part of a baby's blood flow system. If it doesn't close shortly after birth, however, a hole remains between the two major blood vessels leading from the heart. This is what happened with Myrcayela, resulting in oxygen poor blood circulating through her body, leaving her weak and short of breath. Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is seeking $1,500 to cover the costs of the surgery that will correct Myrcayela's condition. This life changing procedure, during which doctors will plug the hole with a device to prevent leakage, is scheduled to take place on February 1st, at Clinica Corominas. Myrcayela's mother said: "Our family will pray every day for all the people who are helping our daughter!"
Esther is a young girl from Kenya. She likes reading books and enjoys going to school. Her family lives in a rural village, and she is the youngest in her family. Esther's mother is a business woman, while her father is a laborer on construction sites. Esther's right foot is affected by clubfoot, a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. She was born with hemiplegic CP, which means the right side of her body is weakened. Her condition has greatly impacted Esther and has made it difficult for her to engage with her peers at school. Earlier Esther was taken to a hospital, where she was given an orthosis to help correct her condition without surgery, however, she hasn't received treatment since then. Fortunately, Esther now traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on January 16th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund Esther's surgery. After treatment, she will be able to walk more easily and proceed with her studies uninterrupted. Esther’s mother says, “I am appealing for your financial help so that my daughter can walk well like other girls.”
Sai is a six-year-old kindergarten student. He lives with his parents and siblings (a 12-year-old brother who is in grade four and a 11-month-old sister) at Mae Sot District, Tak Province in Thailand. His father is a daily worker and works as a blacksmith. Sai’s mother is a homemaker who looks after the children at home. Sai was born with a healthy delivery however just after his sixth birthday, his mother noticed that Sai’s left eye was red. He told her that it was not painful, so they did not worry about it. In June 2022 though, his mother saw that there was a white dot in the pupil of Sai’s eye. When his mother covered Sai’s right eye and asked if he could see, he answered that he did not see clearly. Sai had his eyes checked at Mae Tao Clinic and the medic suspected that he had a cataract. He was sent to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. He was referred to the ophthalmology department which later the doctor diagnosed him with mature left eye cataract. Currently, Sai’s vision in his left eye is blurry and he has trouble seeing the board when he is in the classroom. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Sai. On December 9th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Sai's natural lens and replace it with an intraocular lens implant. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Sai’s mother said, “We cannot afford to take a loan (for the surgery) because we would have to pay the interest. There is less work during the pandemic and so it makes things very hard to have such a large loan. My words cannot express the thanks that I feel. It is so lucky for us to have the assistance from BCMF and donors.”
Su is 10-year-old girl who lives in Thailand. Both of her parents work for a community based organization helping others in their area. In her free time, Su likes to draw pictures and play with her friends. Su was born with clubfeet and a dislocated hip. She received corrective surgery in Chiang Mai with the help of our medical partner BCMF after she was born. During her last visit to the hospital when she was young, the doctor told her mother that they only had to return to the hospital when she outgrew her clubfeet correction shoes. However, her parents could never bring her back. In additional to financial constraints, their legal documents expired, and later when they had legal documents, they could not go to Chiang Mai due to covid-19 travel restrictions. In June 2022, Su started to experience pain in her right foot whenever she walked more than 10 minutes. She also experienced pain in her right hip for the first time when she walked. The doctor at Mae Sot Hospital diagnosed her with a dislocated hip and referred her to the larger hospital Chiang Mai for further treatment. In October an MRI was performed for Su and it was determined that she may need two surgeries: one for hrt hip and another for her clubfeet condition. The first surgery is for a hip replacement and the doctor scheduled her for surgery on November 25th so she can be out of pain as quickly as possible. Her family needs $1500 for her hip replacement surgery. Su's father said, "I am hopeful for my daughter to receive surgery soon. After surgery, I hope that she will be able to walk like other children and she will not be shy when she grows up. Now, when she goes to school, some of her friends tease her that she cannot walk properly like other children."
Oo is a 52-year-old man from Burma, living with his wife and daughter. Oo's wife is a day laborer, while his daughter works as a salesperson in a store. Oo is unemployed because of health issues, but he enjoys growing vegetables, and guarding the entrance gate of the village. In the midst of the rainy season in July, Oo placed his belongings on a friend's bullock cart, and went to climb on top of the cart to ride. As he was preparing to climb onto the cart, it suddenly jerked forward, throwing Oo to the ground, and injuring his right arm. After a week had gone by, Oo, who was experiencing significant pain in his arm, traveled to a local free clinic, where he was given a shot to ease the discomfort. He was told that he would need to have the injury investigated further at a hospital in Yangon. In October, Oo's arm was X-rayed at the Karen Baptist Convention Hospital in Yangon, and it was determined that the bone in his arm had been broken, and had never healed properly. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Oo will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones on October 25th, at Karen Baptist Convention Hospital. This surgery will promote the complete and correct healing of the fracture, enabling Oo to lift his arm without pain, and to return to work. Oo needs your help to raise the $885 for this procedure. Oo said: “I am very worried that the doctor will not be able to treat me because I sought treatment so late. It is so difficult to go to Yangon because I live in a conflict area and there are a lot of travel restrictions."
Abraham is a 27-year-old farmer from Kenya. He is a happy and joyful man who loves smiling. Abraham is married with two sons aged six and three years. He also does construction work when he can find jobs on local building projects. His wife sells secondhand clothes at the local markets around. Abraham and his family live in a rental house which has two rooms. He works hard but it has been difficult to earn a living and pay his monthly bills. Earlier last year, Abraham was among the people who got sponsorship from the county to study in technical training institutes. He is almost done with his studies and will soon be able to work toward a better job. Abraham arrived at the hospital on Saturday afternoon with right lower limb pain. On physical examination, his lower limb had bruises and it was swollen to the knee. After the examination, the clinician recommended an x-ray and the results revealed that Abraham had sustained a fracture of the upper end of tibia and fibula. The Orthopedic surgeon met him and recommends that he undergo surgery. Abraham has no medical insurance coverage, and he is now appealing to all well-wishers to help him in order to get his surgery. Abraham shared that he was hit by a tree while cutting it down. He cannot walk easily and more and has a lot of pain and swelling. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On September 27th, Abraham will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. After surgery Abraham will be able to continue with his studies, and he will no longer have pain. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1145 to fund this procedure. Abraham says, “I cannot walk without support. I am really worried because of my family. Kindly help me so that I may be able to get back to them and offer them my support.”
Thomas is a sweet three-week-old baby from Kenya. He is the youngest in a family of four children. His father works as a luggage carrier, and his mother does laundry and other house chores for people to help provide for their family. Thomas was born at a hospital near their home. At birth, he was diagnosed with spina bifida, as well as clubfoot. Spina bifida is a type of neural tube condition in which the spine does not properly close around the spinal cord. Without treatment, Thomas is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,151 to cover the cost of Thomas's spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on August 31st. This procedure will hopefully spare Thomas from the risks associated with his condition, instead allowing him to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Thomas’s father says, “Currently, we are very stressed because of our child’s condition. We are requesting for any help to see him become well.”
Khu is a two-year-old toddler from Burma who lives with her parents and younger sister. She and her sister are both too young to attend school yet. To support their family, her father is a subsistence farmer, and her mother is a homemaker. They also raise chickens and pigs, and they forage for vegetables in the jungle. Two months ago, Khu's family noticed discharge in her right eye. Her right pupil eventually began to turn white, but she fortunately did not express that she was having trouble seeing. Worried about her, Khu’s father took her to the free clinic near their village. The medic at the clinic suspected that she was suffering from a congenital cataract and told Khu’s father that they could not treat her at their clinic. Instead, they recommended that she go to a hospital for further investigation. Doctors want Khu to undergo an MRI, an imaging procedure that uses magnetic fields and radio waves to produce images of bodily organs. This scan will hopefully help doctors diagnose her condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $968 to cover the cost of Khu's MRI and care, which is scheduled to take place on August 4th. Her grandfather shares, “Khu is my beloved granddaughter. When I see her suffering from this condition, I feel very sad. I also worry about her future. I don’t want to see her in this condition. I want her to have good vision and have a beautiful life when she grows up. I want her to get treatment and have her vision restored.”
Meet Sok Kieng, a 21-year-old man with one brother and two sisters. Their parents are both rice farmers. In his free time, Sok Kieng enjoys playing football, fishing at the lake, listening to music, and helping his family at home. On June 1st, Sok Kieng was in an accident at work, where sharp metal cut his Achilles tendon. After the accident, he went to a local health center for first aid. While there, he was referred to our medical partner Children's Surgical Centre for more extensive treatment, as he had an infected open wound on his right heel, swelling, pain, and difficulty walking. On June 13th, surgeons at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre will debride the wound, and reconstruct his Achilles tendon. Children's Surgical Centre is seeking $991 to fund this procedure, which should enable Sok Kieng to resume working, and to doing all of the things which bring him pleasure, free from pain. Sok Kieng says: "I hope after surgery my right foot is healed and I am able to walk without pain."
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.”
Ruth is a two-year-old girl who lives with her parents in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince, which is the capital of the Caribbean island nation of Haiti. She is her parent's first child. Ruth was born with a condition called patent ductus arteriosus, which causes blood to leak through a hole between two major blood vessels near her heart. The condition makes it difficult for Ruth's small heart to fully function. Fortunately, her condition is highly treatable with surgery. The care she needs is not available in Haiti, so our medical partner Haiti Cardiac Alliance has arranged to take Ruth and her mother to the Dominican Republic, where doctors will use a catheter to plug the hole near her heart. The treatment, scheduled for May 25th, will stop blood from leaking into her blood vessels and should allow her to live a full life ahead. Another organization, Gift of Life International, is contributing $5,000 toward the surgery cost. Her family is raising $1,500 to help cover the rest of her treatment and related care, including travel for Ruth and her mother. Her mother shared, "Our family is very hopeful that after the surgery, our daughter will have more energy and a better appetite."
Cornelius is four-month-old baby boy. He is the youngest in a family of eight children. Cornelius's older siblings are still school ranging from high school to primary school. Cornelius's parents are laborers on a tea farm making enough to meet the essential needs of the family. Without medical insurance, Cornelius's family cannot afford the cost of necessary medical treatments. Cornelius has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of this condition, Cornelius has experienced swelling in his head. Cornelius's parents took him to a hospital where he was examined and sent for a brain scan. Cornelius's parents could not afford the scan at that time, but soon after, friends of the family referred them to BenthanyKids Hospital. It was there Cornelius was was examined and scheduled to undergo a shunt insertion. This treatment will decompress the excess pressure in Cornelius's head, alleviate the swelling, and give Cornelius a chance at a better life. Without treatment, Cornelius will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Cornelius and his family raise $720 to cover the cost of the surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on March 31st and is expected to greatly improve Cornelius's quality of life. With proper treatment, Cornelius will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Cornelius’ mother says, “We have faith that Cornelius will be healed.”