Pegah joined Watsi on June 3rd, 2016. Six years ago, Pegah joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Pegah's most recent donation supported Gareth, a very special 4-year-old boy from Bolivia, to fund life-saving heart surgery.
Pegah has funded healthcare for 49 patients in 13 countries.
Pegah has funded healthcare for 49 patients in 13 countries.
Gareth, who is four years old, lives with his parents and three siblings in central Bolivia. His parents are shopkeepers and have so much love for their family. Gareth was born with ventricular septal defect, a heart condition that creates a hole between the two lower chambers of the heart. Blood, which should circulate through his lungs to obtain oxygen, simply leaks out through the hole, leaving Gareth weak and short of breath. In addition to his heart condition, Gareth was born with Down syndrome. Doctors at our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, are scheduled to operate on Gareth on January 19th, at Hospital del Niño Dr. Ovidio Aliaga Uria. During the procedure, surgeons will sew a patch over the hole in Gareth's heart, so that his blood will flow normally. Gareth's family needs your help to fund the $1,500 to cover the costs of his care. Gareth's mother said: "Our family is very grateful to everyone who is making it possible for Gareth to have this surgery."
Festus is a cheerful boy who always has a friendly smile and a joyful, resilient spirit. The fifth born of six children, he is a third grader at a nearby primary school. His parents are small scale farmers who plant maize and beans for consumption and sale. Two of his siblings are in high school and the others are in primary school. His parents sell their farm produce in order to pay their school fees and manage their daily needs. Festus has had a long stay in hospital with an infected wound and multiple surgeries, two debridement surgeries and nerve repair after he sustained a deep cut in his left hand. He now needs a skin graft to cover the damaged area. The decision to perform the skin graft was recommended by his doctors because his wound has not healed after a long time. After undergoing three surgeries, Festus feels traumatized when he enters the operation theatre. His mother is worries that he might lose his hand if not treated. Their family has had to undergo counselling to promote resilience and assurance that everything will be okay, and that Festus will be able to use his hand again. After all this, the family is looking forward to the results of the surgery with excitement. His family is asking any well-wisher to support them in this time of need, as they need $1,089 to fund the skin graft. Festus's mother says, “It’s been a long journey for my son. For the last one week I haven’t slept well just thinking of his health. I hope he gets treated and will be well again.”
Jaebets is a 13-year-old, eighth grade student from Haiti, who aspires to study medicine when he is older. He lives with his parents and two sisters in Port-au-Prince. Jaebets has a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect, which means that a hole exists between the two lower chambers of his heart. Blood leaks through this hole without passing through his lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving him weak and short of breath. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman, is paying for the cardiac surgery that Jaebets needs to correct the defect. However, Jaebets' family also needs to be able to cover the $1,500 that it will cost for pre-surgical preparation, laboratory tests, medicines and follow-up appointments. The money is also needed to pay for the social worker from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Jaebets and his family when they travel to the Cayman Islands for Jaebets' surgery, which is scheduled for November 17th. Jaebets said: "I am excited to have this surgery so that I can focus on school instead of on my heart."
Ibrahim is a new baby from Kenya and the youngest of three children. He lives with his family in their ancestral home. Ibrahim's mother had to stop working to take care of him, and his father makes ends meet by working casual labour jobs in addition to his small income from their farm. Their family does not have medical insurance. Ibrahim was diagnosed with hydrocephalus at birth. His parents took him to six different hospitals, but were not able to get his condition cured. They shared that they ran out of money and stopped going to hospitals for some time. After gathering more funds, Ibrahim's father took him to a private hospital, where the doctor referred him to our medical partner's care center BethanyKids Hospital and gave them money to pay for their travel to BethanyKids. Ibrahim has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Ibrahim has been experiencing an unusually large head. Without treatment, Ibrahim will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $720 to cover the cost of surgery for Ibrahim that will treat his hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on October 19th and will drain the excess fluid from Ibrahim's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Ibrahim will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Meanwhile, Ibrahim and his mother are being housed in our partners’ patient house in Nairobi as they await the surgery date. Ibrahim’s father says, “It has been very hard for us since Ibrahim was born as we have not been able to take care of our other children. We are really looking forward to when he will be treated for us to have some peace of mind.”
Meet Venesa, a beautiful two year old girl. She was born at home with a swelling at the lower part of her back, and with legs that were not straight like other babies their family knew. The day after she was born, Venesa's parents took her to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with spina bifida and clubfoot. The family was advised to wait until Venesa turned nine months old, before having her undergo the surgery that she needs. Although surgery was deemed urgent, when Venesa was finally old enough, her parents couldn't afford to pay for it. Then, about a year ago, Venesa was diagnosed with hydrocephalus. Venesa's mom shared that shortly after this last diagnosis, Venesa's father abandoned the family and is not involved in helping support them any more. Venesa's mother used to work at a salon, but after Venesa's birth, she has been unable to work. They are now living with Venesa's grandmother, who does what she can to help. Without surgery for her spina bifida, Venesa risks paralysis of her lower limbs, infection of the exposed nerve tissue, and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,151 to cover the cost of Venesa's spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on September 14th, at BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital. This procedure will hopefully spare Venesa from the risks associated with her condition, allowing her to experience a strong and healthy life. Venesa’s mother says: “Since she was born, I have no peace knowing that I can’t afford her treatment.”
Faith is a very cheerful and friendly 9-year-old student from Kenya. She is the youngest in her family. Her father works as a casual laborer, and her mother works as a vegetable vendor. Her mother shares that she is limited in seeking more job opportunities due to her daughter's required care. Faith was born with hemiplegic cerebral palsy, a condition that results from damage to the part of the brain that controls muscle movements. She also has clubfoot of her right foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and wearing shoes. Faith is currently unable to stand and walk on her own, but she can sit comfortably. Her parents have visited different hospitals in search of treatment for her without success. Fortunately, Faith recently traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 22nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), is requesting $1,286 to fund Faith's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will hopefully be able to stand and walk without support. Her parents will also be able to seek more job opportunities to further provide for their family. Faith's mother shares, "We are not in a position to raise the estimated hospital bill. We are seeking help from AMHF for my daughter to undergo surgery. God will bless you."
Neylan is a three-year-old girl and the first-born child in a family of two children. She is a charming girl who loves to play with her baby brother. Her father is a teacher at a local college while the mother is a housewife. Despite having a job, it is hard for her father to earn enough to provide and care for his wife and two children. Neylan was diagnosed with bilateral genu varus, her legs bow outward at the knee. 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 difficulty walking and playing. Her baby brother is also in need of treatment, which causes stress and worry for their family. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Neylan. The procedure is scheduled to take place on July 8th. Treatment will hopefully restore Neylan's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Neylan’s mother says, “Please help me, my children's legs are being deformed and we are worried."
Tablut is playful a eight-year-old boy from Burma. In his free time, he enjoys playing football with his friends and hunting with a slingshot in the jungle. He lives with his parents and four sisters in a village near the border in Karen State, Burma. During the day, Tablut and his sisters go to school in the village, while his parents work as agricultural day laborers. They also grow rice for their family to eat, as well as raise chickens and pigs. Together they earn 5,000 baht (approx. 166 USD) per month. The income they earn is just enough to cover their monthly expenses and they cannot afford to pay for other costs that come up including basic health care. On April 26th, Tablut and his friends climbed up a mango tree to pick mangoes, however, Tablut slipped and fell out of the tree, fracturing his right leg. Right away his thigh looked deformed, and he experienced a lot of pain. His friends ran to get his mother who carried him on her back to a nearby clinic where he was admitted for four days. There the medic wrapped his right thigh in a bandage and gave him medication for his pain. While admitted, his pain lessened but his thigh became swollen and he began to develop a fever which caused him extensive pain and an inability to sleep. His mother was told by the medic that they would arrange transportation to take him to a hospital. On April 31st, Tablut and his mother were brought to our medical partner's care center Maharaja Nikon Chiang Mai Hospital (CMH). There, he received an x-ray confirming that his right thigh was fractured. In early May he underwent surgery to place an external fixation device onto his right thigh. Initially, after surgery his pain lessened, however as time has gone on the pain and swelling have returned and he's once again began to develop fevers at night, as well as blisters on his leg where the external fixation device is attached. Currently, he cannot shower by himself, and cannot move his right leg or walk anywhere without the help of his mother. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Tablut will undergo surgery on June 17th to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. After surgery, Tablut's pain will finally subside and he will be able to walk, play, and go back to school to be with his sisters and friends. Our medical partner is asking for $1,500 to fund Tablut's surgery and medical care. His mother said, “Now I am miserable. I want my child to receive surgery quickly so that we can go home. I worry for him and I also worry about my other children who were left behind [at home]. There is flooding in my village, and I am worried that they will go to the river to swim. Thinking about both Tablut and my other children, I can’t sleep at night nor eat. The school will reopen soon, but I have not saved any money for my children’s school fees yet. I want him to go to school when he recovers.”
Abity is an adorable 5-year-old boy who loves food and playing with friends. He spends his days playing football and loves to play with toys. He is a shy child in front of new people, and especially likes spending time with his sister and a brother. His mom is a daily laborer finding work whenever she can and his dad has been sick for some years resulting in him leaving his job in a government office. They shared that there are days that his mom gets outside work and there are days that she spends at home. All the children in their family are not able to go to school yet as a result of Abity's health and the financial constraint in the family. Abity's has an abnormally functioning segment of bowel. He has suffered with partial bowel obstruction & other severe symptoms. He now is waiting for a procedure called a coloanal pull through. His parents shared that because of the condition, they are also affected psychologically. Abity's mom hoped that we could help him to finally heal, she said: “His belly was too big before the colostomy and we were so scared and sad. When I was confused as to what I could do, people advised me to go to a charitable organization and the organization brought me here.”
Meet Mercy, a 7-year-old jovial and calm girl. Our medical partner met Mercy at Cure Hospital's satellite clinic in Matuu, Kenya when she arrived with her mother. Mercy is a second grade student who is very bright and likes to study. Her mother is a homemaker while her father works on a tea farm whenever he can get small jobs there. Mercy 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, Mercy's family was referred to our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on April 11th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund Mercy's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk, play and run like other kids she knows. “As a mother, I will be so happy seeing my child walking like other children,” Mercy’s mother told us.
Dane is a bright 6-year-old girl. She lives in a remote province with her grandmother while her parents live and work in the capital of Phnom Penh to make a better living to support their family. Dane's father is a construction worker and her mother is a factory worker. Dane has recently started the first grade. When not in school, Dane loves to have her grandmother tell her stories and playing with her older sister. For the past two years, Dane has been experiencing frequent fevers and sore throats. Dane's mother took her to a local clinic for medicine, but this has not improved her symptoms. Dane has difficulty swallowing and eating causing her to be small for her age. Dane was recently diagnosed with enlarged tonsils and adenoids, which, if not treated, will cause her symptoms to persist and possibly intensify over time. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is helping Dane's family requesting $265 to fund a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy scheduled to take place April 20th. Surgeons will remove her tonsils and adenoids, hopefully relieving Dane of her symptoms and helping her live much more comfortably. Her mother said, "I hope that Dane will be better after her surgery and her infections won't come back."
Juvens is a sweet 2-year-old boy from Haiti. Juvens is his parent's first child. His parents have been happy to see Juvens starting to play, but his condition makes it difficult for him to control his head and his body. Juvens has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain increasing intracranial pressure. Without treatment, Juvens will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, Project Medishare, is requesting $957 to cover the cost of surgery for Juvens at Hospital Bernard Mevs that will treat his hydrocephalus. This is the only site in the country where this care is currently available and the procedure is scheduled to take place on April 19th. This critical treatment will place a shunt to drain the excess fluid from Juvens's brain to reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Juvens will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Juvens's family is hopeful that the surgery will allow him to be able to walk and talk and be able to play as he grows.