Julie Vehrenkamp BerryhillMONTHLY DONOR
Julie's Story

Julie joined Watsi on March 12th, 2013. Eight years ago, Julie joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Julie's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Night, a 5 year old girl from Kenya, to fund a craniotomy so she can grow up healthy.

Impact

Julie has funded healthcare for 101 patients in 13 countries.

patients you have funded

Meet Night, a jovial and playful five year old girl. Night lives with her parents and two younger siblings in a traditional home in Kenya. Her father works selling second hand clothing, while her mother stays home to take care of the children. Shortly after she was born, Night's parents realized that something seemed wrong. They brought Night to a health facility in Turkana County where they lived, and were referred on to BethanyKids Hospital. There she was diagnosed with hydrocephalus, which meant that fluid was collecting in her head. Surgery was performed, and a shunt was placed to continuously drain the fluid from Night's head. A year later, however, Night's head began to increase in size, and she developed weakness on the right side of her body. The doctors at the local health facility urged Night's parents to take her back to BethanyKids Hospital for additional treatment, but Night's parents didn't have enough money to do this. With the help of our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, Night is now scheduled to undergo a craniotomy on January 5th at BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital, when surgeons will drain excess fluids from Night's brain. Night's father is providing as much of a co-pay as possible for this procedure, but the family needs your help to raise the remaining $1,500 required to cover all of the costs of Night's surgery and care. Night’s father said: “Night is not able to communicate well because of her condition. This surgery will help her to be able to speak.”

51%funded
$771raised
$729to go

Nchambi is a bright and creative 8-year-old student. She is the fifth born in a family of seven children from her mother. She is currently in class six, but she unfortunately had to stop her studies to seek treatment for her condition. Some of her favorite subjects in school are arts and crafts, social studies, and mathematics. Nchambi was diagnosed with left genu varus, meaning her left leg is bent at the knee, making it difficult to walk. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, she struggles with walking to school and carrying out her daily life activities, such as helping her mother with small home chores like cleaning cloths, washing plates, and sweeping. They shared that fetching water is now something she cannot do at all due to her leg condition. Recently, every morning before school, Nchambi has had to wake up extra early to prepare because it takes her a long time to make the one-kilometer walk to her school. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Nchambi. The procedure is scheduled to take place on July 5th. Treatment will hopefully restore Nchambi's mobility, allowing her to participate in a variety of activities and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Nchambi shares, “I can’t catch up with my friends when walking to school because I am slow. I can’t walk as fast as them because of my leg.”

$880raised
Fully funded

Victor is a sweet and quiet three-year-old boy from Kenya. He is the secondborn in a family of three children. Victor's mother was recently diagnosed with arthritis and can no longer keep her previous job doing laundry for people. She is currently looking for another job. Victor's father makes and sells mandazi, a form of fried bread, by the roadside to help support their family. When Victor was two weeks old, his mother noticed that both testes were undescended. She took him to the hospital, where he was examined and diagnosed with bilateral undescended testes. He was referred to another facility in Nairobi for treatment. On arrival, he was examined and booked for a clinic. Victor attended clinics for a few weeks. Fortunately, all worked out well for him. In one of the clinic reviews, the testes were found to have descended, and his parents stopped going to the clinics.  However, when he was two years old, his mother noticed that one testis was not detectable. After seeking medical attention, Victor was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles remains undescended. If left untreated, Victor has an increased risk of developing testicular cancer and fertility problems in the future. Due to his condition, he is also at risk for hernias. At his appointment, it was found that he has already developed a right inguinal hernia. Fortunately, he is scheduled to undergo surgery to rectify both of the conditions. Victor will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). He is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on July 25th. AMHF is requesting $646 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Victor’s mother says, “I feel bad that I cannot raise the required amount of money to cater for my son’s treatment.”

$646raised
Fully funded

Martin is a playful and friendly young boy and the last-born in a family of six children. Martin has not started going to school yet, but his father plans to enroll him in two years. Martin's father says life has been tough for him and his family since he fell sick for most of 2020, something that he says made life for his family tough. Prior to falling ill, Martin's father was a hardworking man practicing small-scale farming to provide food for his family and was also a catechist at their local catholic church. For over a year Martin's father was moved from one hospital to another seeking treatment. Martin's parents were forced to sell most of their property to cover the resulting medical bills. In 2021, Martin's father's health returned and he was able to grow his strength back. Martin's father moved their family to another village for a fresh start. They are now slowly rebuilding their life with the hope of restoring their livelihood once more. Since then, Martin has been diagnosed with Left Genu Varus meaning his leg is bent at the knee so that they do not touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, it is difficult for him to walk. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is raising $880 to fund corrective surgery for Martin. The procedure is scheduled to take place on July 5th. Treatment will hopefully restore Martin's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Martin’s father says, “Because of the long period I was sick I was not able to provide for my family. My son now needs treatment, but I still can’t afford the cost.”

$880raised
Fully funded

Daw Aye is a 49-year-old woman who lives with her three sons, daughter-in-law, and a grandson in Burma. Two of her sons works as carpenters, while one works in a factory. Her daughter-in-law is a homemaker and her grandson is too young to go to school. Daw Aye was working as a vegetable seller, but recently stopped due to her injury. In February, Daw Aye and her grandson walked to her sister’s village for a visit. When her grandson tripped along the way, Daw Aye tried to catch him and fell herself. She injured her right knee, right elbow, hit her head and lost consciousness. Her elbow remained swollen and painful, and she sought treatment from a traditional healer. The healer suggested stretching exercises, but unfortunately, her condition did not improve. She visited a hospital where an x-ray and physical exam indicated a closed fracture of her elbow. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), is helping Daw Aye access the treatment she needs to heal. On March 26th, she will undergo internal fixation surgery at BCMF's care center. Hopefully, the procedure will help her regain use of her right arm and alleviate her pain. Now, she needs help raising $885 to fund her procedure and care. Daw Aye shared, "when the doctor told me about the cost of the surgery, I started to cry because I do not want to burden my children. My children are very kind to me and they are all good. When they heard that the surgery will be expensive, they told me that my only option was to pawn the house to come up with money to pay for the surgery. When the monk told me not to worry about the cost and that donors may be able to help pay for it, my children told me they would kneel down in front of the donors [in respect] if they ever had the chance to meet them in person."

$885raised
Fully funded