dat joined Watsi on October 3rd, 2016. Six years ago, dat joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. dat's most recent donation supported Francis, a 68-year-old father of four from Kenya, to fund a surgery to fix his leg after a bad motorbike accident.
dat has funded healthcare for 71 patients in 9 countries.
dat has funded healthcare for 71 patients in 9 countries.
Francis is a 68-year-old father of four children from Kenya. He is a small-scale corn farmer with a motorbike that he uses as a source of income to feed his family. In November 2021, Francis was hit by a police officer pursuing criminals in a high-speed chase when they lost control and hit him by the roadside. He was rushed to a nearby hospital, where an X-ray confirmed he had broken his tibia and fibula in his right leg. He received surgery to repair the fracture that month. However, a year later, the pain persisted from his injury, and a wound developed. He decided to visit Kijabe Hospital (KH), the care center of our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), to seek a second opinion. Upon examination, the doctors quickly realized that the nail inserted to stabilize his leg during his last operation was infected and needed to be removed. He had the nail removed in October 2022, followed by a procedure to remove dead cells from the chronic wound that had developed. However, he still needs another procedure to create a cover for the wound in order to decrease the odds of future infection. Francis has been unable to walk or use his right leg for over 15 months, preventing him from working or using his motorbike. The multiple surgeries and the numerous hospital visits, coupled with his inability to work, have caused his family financial instability. Additionally, Francis was dependent on insurance for the previous treatments and surgeries. However, his insurance is now exhausted, and he cannot afford the next procedure. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Francis receive treatment. On February 16th, AMH surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure which will allow Francis to walk easily again and reduce the likelihood of further infection. AMH is requesting $1,185 to fund this procedure. Francis says, “I have never been able to walk since the accident. I depend on my motorbike to feed my family. In this state, I am unable to ride it. I hope to get the surgery to help me use my leg again."
Akram is a cute, curious 3-year-old from Tanzania. His mother is the family’s sole provider and works as a vendor at a local market, selling vegetables and fruits. Currently, Akram and his mother live in town to help save on living costs as he receives medical treatment, while his three siblings live with their grandmother in the village. Akram was diagnosed with bilateral genus varus, a condition in which his legs bow outwards so that his knees do not touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Akram receive treatment. On January 6th, he will undergo surgery that will restore his mobility, allow him to participate in various activities, and significantly decrease his risk of future complications. AMH is requesting $880 to fund this procedure. Akram’s mother shared: “As a single mother struggling to provide for my children, Akram’s condition has been weighing on me.”
Boniface is a 9-year-old student with two siblings. He started school late and enjoys taking part in science classes. Boniface likes to play soccer with his peers, but it is hard for him to play for long because of his leg condition. Boniface was diagnosed with genu valgus. His right knee knocks on his left 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, he has difficulty walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Boniface. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 8th. Treatment will hopefully restore Boniface's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Boniface’s mother says, “It has been hard for him with his leg condition. He wishes to do more, but he is limited."
Francklin is a loving husband and father from Haiti. He lives with his wife and two children in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. He works as a security guard for a private security company. Francklin has a cardiac condition called severe mitral stenosis which resulted from a rheumatic fever that he suffered when he was young. Blood cannot pass through a valve in his heart properly, leaving him weak and short of breath. The cardiac surgery that Francklin's condition requires is not available in Haiti, so he needs to fly to the United States to receive treatment. On November 18th, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will attempt to repair the damaged valve; if they are unable, they will need to implant an artificial replacement. Another organization, the Baylor Scott & White Heart Hospital, is contributing $20,000 to pay for his surgery. Francklin's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep, travel, and follow-up care while he heals. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and check-up and follow-up appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social worker from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Francklin overseas. Francklin says, "My family and I will pray for God's blessings on everyone who is helping us."
Paw is a 46-year-old woman who lives with her husband, son, and daughter in the refugee camp in Mae Hong Son Province. Originally from the conflict area of Karen State, Burma, she and her family fled to the refugee camp due to conflict in their area. Today, her daughter goes to school in the camp, while her son stays home because he has an intellectual disability. In her free time, Paw enjoys gardening. Paw and her husband also raise chickens and grow vegetables to supplement their family's diet. Every month, their household receives 1,460 baht (approx. $49) on a cash card from an organization called The Border Consortium to support their day-to-day needs. Sometimes, Paw also receives pocket money from her other son, who works as a security guard in the refugee camp and lives with his wife and children. This amount is not enough to cover their daily needs, so they often have to purchase food on credit, which they pay back at the end of the month. They receive free basic health care at the hospital in the refugee camp, provided by Malteser International (MI) Thailand, but surgery there is not available. In early 2020, Paw started to experience pain in her lower abdomen. She also experienced severe back pain, dizziness and nausea when she ate. She went to the hospital in the refugee camp, where she was treated for a urinary tract infection (UTI). When the UTI kept returning, MI staff referred her to Mae Sariang Hospital for further treatment. Paw went to that hospital in February 2020, where she was diagnosed with a stone in her right kidney and acute pyelonephritis, a bacterial infection causing inflammation of the kidneys. She was admitted for five days and received treatment for the infection. Afterwards, she was referred to Chiang Mai Hospital (CMH) for further treatment for the kidney stone. In July 2020, MI staff brought Paw to CMH, where she received various x-rays. Doctors confirmed her diagnosis, but also diagnosed her with severe hydronephrosis, or a buildup of urine, in her right kidney. She received a catheter to drain urine from her kidney, and was brought back to CMH every three months to change the catheter. The doctor also scheduled Paw to have the stone removed from her right kidney on October 31st. Our partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), is asking for financial assistance to help Paw pay for this surgery. Currently, Paw experiences pain and has difficulty sleeping. Traveling to the hospital regularly is also difficult for her family. Paw thinks a lot about her future and shared: “In the future I want to buy and raise a pig and more chickens. I do not want to be resettled in another country because I love living near my siblings. If they [my siblings] are resettled, I might go with them."
Dennis is a handsome young man aged 28 years old from a village in Kenya. He is married and has two children, ages 8 and 1. Dennis is the bread winner of his young family. He operates a small business selling chicken meat. He is very social and friendly. Recently, as he was going home, he was hit by a hit-and-run motorbike which had lost control. He was injured on the right leg and was taken to the hospital. Now he is not able to walk on his own and is in a lot of pain. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On October 4th, Dennis will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. After he heals, he will be able to walk again on his own. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1049 to fund this procedure so he can get back to his life and supporting his family. “I am very disappointed because I have a very young family and they all depend on me. I hope I can get help and fast treatment so that soon I can be on my foot again, to restart my small business and earn for my family,” said Dennis.
Henrico is a kind 3-year-old boy, who lives with his parents in a small fishing village in western Haiti. He was born with a cardiac condition called Tetralogy of Fallot, which involves several related defects including a hole between two chambers of the heart and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. As a result of these defects, his heart cannot adequately provide oxygen to his body, leaving him weak and short of breath. As the care he needs is not available in Haiti, Henrico will fly to Italy to receive treatment and, on September 27th, he will be able to undergo the life-saving cardiac surgery he needs. Henrico's family needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep and travel. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany his family overseas. His family hopes he will have a bright future and plans to start him in preschool as soon as he has recovered from his heart surgery. Henrico's mother shared, "Our family is praying for everyone who is making it possible for our son to have this surgery!"
Simon is a 20-year-old who, since he was a little boy, he has worked selling goods at a nearby open market. He has no stable source of income and is currently unable to work due to his medical condition. His single mother is unable to support him. Fortunately, his friend is allowing him to stay in their single room close to the city market. Two years ago, Simon began experiencing pain in his left knee, causing him to limp as he walked. His pain eventually spread to his hip. He now cannot walk without a walking stick and has an infected hip and knee, which are limiting his mobility. After receiving a CT scan, Simon was diagnosed with septic arthritis, which is inflammation of a joint caused by an infection, and sequelae of the hip. In hopes to help his condition, Simon visited visited Kenyatta National Hospital. He has since been on medical follow-up for septic arthritis at the facility without any surgical intervention. He eventually had to stop attending the follow-up clinics due to a lack of financial resources. Fortunately, a friend told Simon about our medical partner's care center, and he traveled there to receive treatment. Now, Simon is scheduled to undergo a treatment on July 8th. This will hopefully finally help heal his condition and relieve his pain. Our medical partner is requesting $1,500 to fund his treatment. Simon shares, “I can barely move my leg without support from this walking stick. My hip is painful and my knee is just unbearable. I cannot work in my condition and therefore am struggling to survive.”
U Pyin is a 36-year-old monk who lives with three other monks, seven novice monks, and his two younger brothers, in a village in central Burma. His two younger brothers are not monks, but work at the monastery as helpers, assisting with cooking and cleaning. U Pyin has no income, but receives food and accommodation at the monastery. If he is ill, there are three local families that help to cover the costs of his basic health care expenses. In early May, U Pyin began experiencing difficulty breathing, chest pains, and headaches. One of his brothers brought him to a hospital, where tests revealed that one of the valves in his heart needs to be replaced. This is a particularly dangerous condition, as it can lead to a stroke, and U Pyin has already suffered a stroke, earlier in his life. U Pyin was given medication, an appointment to return in two months, and sent home. When U Pyin did not feel any better after taking the medication that he had been given, he and his brother decided that he should see a cardiologist in Yangon. The cardiologist confirmed U Pyin's diagnosis, and stressed the need for U Pyin to have surgery to replace the ailing mitral valve. As U Pyin was unable to pay for the surgery, the doctor referred him to an abbot for assistance. Fortunately, the abbot referred U Pyin to our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, and now U Pyin is scheduled to have mitral valve replacement surgery on June 24th, at Pun Hlaing Hospital. Burma Children Medical Fund is seeking $1,500 to cover the costs of U Pyin's procedure and care, which will enable him to breathe well and to sleep comfortably again, things that he is unable to do right now. U Pyin will also be able to return to teaching the novice monks at the monastery, which he has been unable to do because he feels so unwell. U Pyin said: “After I recover, I want to teach novice monks again and I want to open a Buddhist school near Yangon.”
Dennis is a newly married, 20-year-old motorbike taxi driver. Dennis' wife is currently unemployed, so Dennis' earnings need to sustain his family. On April 14th, Dennis was involved in a road accident while riding his motorbike. He was diagnosed with a closed fracture of his femur, put in traction, and sent home from the hospital to heal. A clinical officer at our medical partner's hospital who knows Dennis reviewed his X-ray, and after consulting with another surgeon, it was determined that Dennis requires surgery in order for his fracture to heal properly. Currently, it is difficult for Dennis to walk, and he is still in constant pain. Dennis shared that this was not how he had hoped to begin married life. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner's care center, Nazareth Hospital, can help. On June 2nd, Dennis will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This operation will enable Dennis' fracture to heal without deformity or malunion. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. “This is not the way I expected to start my family. I had planned to work hard, but this accident has interrupted that. It is one month now since the accident, and my leg is not well yet. I pray that I may get help, and have this surgery done so that my leg can be well soon to resume working for my new family,” Dennis said.
Vania is a hardworking 14-year-old student from Haiti. She lives in an urban area of the island nation's capital, Port-au-Prince, with her parents and three younger brothers. She enjoys studying, especially science and literature. Unfortunately, Vania has not been able to attend school for two years because of her heart condition. She suffered from rheumatic fever early in her childhood. The illness damaged one of the four valves in her heart, leaving her with a condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation. Her heart cannot pump blood adequately through her body, which leaves her weak and short of breath. The good news is that surgery can help. Vania will fly to the Cayman Islands to receive treatment. On May 16th, surgeons will remove her damaged valve and implant an artificial valve in its place. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman, is contributing $17,000 to pay for the procedure. But Vania's family also needs help to fund other medical and travel costs, which is where our Watsi donors come in. They are raising $1,500 to cover lab work and medicine for Vania, along with checkup and followup appointments. It also will help pay for her to get a passport and support social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Vania and her family overseas. Vania says, "I am looking forward to this surgery so that I can feel more normal and go back to school."
Mom is a 42-year-old seller of snacks and drinks. She is married with three young children. Her husband also sells goods at the market in Siem Reap province. She works hard to keep their house clean, cook for the children, and spend time with relatives when she has free time. Ten years ago, Mom had an ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. Mom experiences frequent ear infections causing ear discharge, hearing loss and tinnitus. It is difficult for her to communicate with others. She feels unwell and often cannot work due to frequent headaches. Mom is frustrated because she has spent money on medicine and treatments but nothing has worked. Mom traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 8th, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in her left ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. She hopes that - after this surgery - her ear infections will disappear and she will improve her hearing. She said, "I want to care for my children and not always feel bad."