UNIVERSAL FUND MEMBERHi! Have a good day,
United States • Born on August 11th
Mike joined Watsi on February 12th, 2015. Eight years ago, Mike joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Mike's most recent donation traveled 8,300 miles to support Ma Win, an 18-year-old girl from Burma, to fund life-saving heart surgery.
Mike has funded healthcare for 96 patients in 11 countries.
Mike has funded healthcare for 96 patients in 11 countries.
Ma Win is an 18-year-old girl who lives with her parents, sister and brother-in-law in Yangon, Burma. Ma Win’s sister works at a clothing factory, while her brother-in-law works as a day laborer. Her parents are homemakers. Before Ma Win's current illness, she also worked at a factory. When Ma Win was four years old, she experienced a bout of high fever, and was brought to the local clinic. She received an injection, and the doctor informed her parents that she was born with a heart problem. However, she was too young at the time for corrective surgery. Instead, she was sent home with medication, and appeared to be doing well until this past year. In April, Ma Win began experiencing chest pains, high fever and difficulty breathing. She went to a clinic, and received an x-ray and an echocardiogram. After the doctor checked her results, she was diagnosed with an opening between two major blood vessels leading from the heart. The doctor told her and her family that she would need to have surgery. When Ma Win explained to the doctor that her family could not afford to pay for the surgery, she was referred to the abbot of a local monastery, who provided the family with information about our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. Now Ma Win is scheduled for cardiac surgery on October 23rd at Pun Hlaing Hospital. After she has recovered, she should no longer experience chest pains or difficulty breathing, and she won't have to worry any longer about her condition. She will also be able to return to work, which will help ease her family's financial burdens. Now she needs your help to raise $1,500 to cover the cost of her procedure. Ma Win said: “I am scared to receive surgery, but my mother tries to encourage me. However, I am very happy that I will be able to receive treatment with your help. I would like to say thank you so much to all the donors.”
Steevenson is a 21-year-old, living in a small farming village in southwest Haiti, with his parents and three younger siblings. Steevenson helps his parents tend to their farm, although he is hoping to be able to complete high school, once his health has improved. As a child, Steevenson suffered from a case of rheumatic fever, which left his heart severely damaged. As a result, one of his four heart valves cannot pump sufficient blood through his body, which leaves Steevenson weak and short of breath. Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is helping Steevenson to finally receive the treatment that he needs. Steevenson will fly to the Dominican Republic, where on September 26th, surgeons at Hospital CEDIMAT will attempt to repair his damaged valve. If this isn't possible, an artificial valve will be implanted. Haiti Cardiac Alliance is contributing $8,000 to pay for Steevenson's surgery. But Steevenson's family also needs your help to secure $1,500 to fund the cost of labs, medicines and follow up appointments, as well as for the passports and the social workers who will accompany the family to the Dominican Republic. Steevenson shared, "I have been praying for this surgery since I was a child, and I hope that when it is over I can be fully healthy and will have more energy."
Vit is a 35-year-old taxi driver from Cambodia who currently lives with and helps support his elderly parents. During his free time, he enjoys playing volleyball and watching the news on his phone. One month ago, Vit developed a chalazion in his right eye, causing him to experience eye swelling, itchiness, and chronic irritation. A chalazion is an inflamed cyst in a patient's tear gland. As a result of his condition, it is difficult for him to see clearly and drive. Vit traveled for three and a half hours to seek treatment from our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. On August 11th, surgeons will remove the cyst through a chalazion excision procedure. After recovery, Vit's symptoms should improve. He now needs help raising $210 to fund this procedure. Vit says, "I hope after surgery my eyelid will not be swollen and I can go back to driving a taxi to support my parents."
Jackson is a loving 4-year-old child. His father is a small-scale farmer who grows mainly food crops for his family to eat. His income is very limited because he must work on other people's farms in addition to growing his own crops. Jackson was diagnosed with windswept deformity. He learned to stand and walk at the age of one year. He was walking and playing without any challenges. But after a few months, his parents noticed his left leg was slightly bent inwards at the knee. Over a few months, his left leg became worse making him walk with a limp. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, Jackson has pain when he walks even for a short distance, making him not want to walk at all in fear of the pain. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Jackson. The procedure is scheduled to take place on July 8th. Treatment will hopefully restore Jackson's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Jackson’s mother says, “At the dispensary, they told us to feed him with foods containing calcium, but it never helped him. He was suffering but I could not afford to take him to a bigger hospital.”
Christmaelle is a beautiful toddler from Haiti. She lives with her parents, grandparents, and three older siblings in a small fishing village in southwest Haiti. The adults in her family all fish and raise livestock for a living. Christmaelle has a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect. A hole exists between the two lower chambers of her heart; blood leaks through this hole without first passing through her lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving her weak and short of breath. The surgery Christmaelle needs is not available in Haiti, so she will fly to Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On June 28th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will close the hole in her heart with a patch so that blood can no longer leak through it. Haiti Cardiac Alliance is contributing $7,000 to pay for her surgery. Christmaelle's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep and followup. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports the cost of getting passports and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Christmaelle's family overseas. Christmaelle's mother said: "Our family is praying for everyone who is helping our daughter to become healthy again!"
Alma is a 46-year-old woman, living with her sister and daughter in the Philippines. Their basic needs are sustained by her sister’s small business. In 2020, Alma developed a sore on the inside of her right cheek. The sore kept increasing in size, until her face became highly swollen. Because her family had insufficient financial resources, Alma was unable to seek help for her condition. Fortunately, Alma was referred to our partner care facility, the Our Lady of Peace Hospital. There, she was assessed, and diagnosed with a Buccal Mass. This condition begins when the cells that make up the inner cheek have abnormal growth, and form lesions or tumors. Alma needs to undergo surgery to remove the mass. Our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, is helping Alma to access the care that she needs. She is scheduled to undergo an excision of the mass on September 10th, at Our Lady of Peace Hospital. World Surgical Foundation Philippines is asking for your help to fund this procedure, for which they need $1,452. Alma shared: “I’ve lost my confidence since the lump is very visible on my face. This surgery is the answer to my prayers. Thank you so much WATSI and World Surgical Foundation Philippines for helping me!”
Gedion is a happy and talkative 16-year-old from Kenya who is currently a student in standard eight. He is the thirdborn in a family of six. Since their mother left them a few years ago, he and his siblings live with their father in their rural home on a small piece of land. Gedion's father works as a casual laborer and burns charcoal for sale to provide for their family's basic needs, as well as to pay for the children's school fees. His family also plants maize and beans on their small piece of land to feed themselves. During holidays and on the weekends, Gedion and his siblings usually work on other people's farms to provide additional income. He shares that life for his family has been very difficult, but they have been working hard in order to fight poverty together. This past Saturday, Gedion was brought into our medical partner's care center, AIC Kapsowar Hospital, via an ambulance from a facility near his home after being involved in a road traffic accident. While Gedion was on his way home from a nearby shopping center, a tractor passed by. He hopped onto it in order to reach home faster since he was still far from home and it was already beginning to become dark. There were some people already on the tractor, so they continued with their journey together. While they were on their way, the tractor lost control and fell down. The people riding were all rushed to a nearby facility. While those with minor injuries were able to be treated at the local facility, three of the riders, including Gedion, had to be referred to our medical partner's care center. During the accident, he sustained a fracture of his right femur and is currently experiencing a lot of pain. He is also unable to use his leg. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On August 12th, Gedion will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which is called an open reduction and internal fixation. After treatment, he will be able to use his leg again, attend school, and help out at home. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,145 to fund this procedure. Gedion shares, "This state has really pulled me down. I don’t know what to do. Kindly help me so that I may be able to pursue my dreams and change the state of my family.”
Hannah is an elderly woman from a small village in southwestern Kenya. She is a widow and is currently living with one of her daughters since her fall. Before then, she was able to stay on her own and do a bit of farming in her shamba to sustain herself. Hannah recently had a fall and sustained a closed fracture of the femur of her right leg. The fracture was repaired three weeks ago, but the plate in her leg was dislodged after she tried to walk. Now it is difficult for her to walk and she is in severe pain. The surgeon recommended a repeat ORIF (open reduction and internal fixation) procedure to help her heal. Hannah's family is not in a position to raise money for this treatment, and the insurance coverage which paid for her first surgery will not pay for the care she now needs. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On July 7th, Hannah will undergo an ORIF procedure. This procedure will help reduce her pain and she will be able to walk easily once she recovers. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,049 to fund her procedure and medical care. “I used to stay on my own but now I am depending on my children, who are also busy with their families. I kindly request for help so that I can eventually be independent again,” said Hannah.
Baraka is a teenager and the oldest in his family of four. He currently studies in class six. Bakara's mother practices small-scale farming of maize, sorghum, and millet to provide food for the family. Baraka and his mother both experience epilepsy, and Bakara had a seizure that led to an accident. He suffered severe burns to his right leg and is unable to straighten his leg at the knee due to the burn contractures. Bakara can only walk with the use of a walking stick. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Baraka receive treatment. On June 7th, surgeons will perform a burn contracture release surgery to help him walk easily. AMH is requesting $874 to help fund this procedure. Baraka says, “I would be so happy if I can have a chance to walk normally.”
Dorcas is a 3-year-old girl and the last-born in a family of four children. Her father is a casual laborer getting jobs whenever he can while her mother is a housewife. They work hard, but are having a difficult time making ends meet. Dorcas was diagnosed with genu valgus. Her legs bow inward so that her knees 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, she has pain and difficulty in walking. Through Watsi funding, Dorcas had her first stage surgery which helped to correct her legs, but given how severely they were impacted, she has now been scheduled for a final surgery. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Dorcas. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 10th. Treatment will hopefully restore Dorcas's full mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Dorcas’s father says: “Thank you for helping my daughter have her first surgery, it helped correct her legs and now she needs one more surgery."
Joy is a curious, active, and happy six-year-old girl. Joy's father works at a construction site, and her mother is unwell and unable to work. She also has a twin sister, and both girls attend school. The family lives in their ancestral home. Joy has been diagnosed with severe to profound bilateral hearing loss and needs to be fitted for a hearing aid so that she can hear well. She is currently unable to speak and while she is able to attend school, she is unable to sit for exams due to her hearing loss. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Joy to get treatment and fitted for hearing aids. On April 8th, she will undergo the fitting and afterwards, her hearing should improve. Now, she and her family need help raising $1,171 to fund her care. Joy's mother shared, "our baby is so curious and anxious to go to school. Although she is unable to hear, she insists on accompanying her twin to school."
Nor Moo is a 40-year-old woman who lives with her husband in Chiang Mai Province in Thailand. She used to be a day labourer but since her condition has started, she stopped working because of the often pain. She is now a homemaker and takes care of household chores like cooking, washing clothes, and doing cleaning at her apartment. A few months ago, she started feeling unwell and thought she might be pregnant. However, she did not go to the hospital as she does not have money for testing. She experienced pain in her right lower abdominal and later she felt something a bump. When her pain worsened, she talked with her friend asking for her help. Her friend referred her to our medical partner Burma Children Children Medical Fund who is now helping Nor Moo receive treatment. Doctors have recommended a surgery to remove a growth and her fallopian tube on the right side. She is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Nor Moo's husband said, "I feel sorry that I cannot help my wife. Thank you to all the donors and organization for supporting my wife's treatment cost. We are very grateful."