Jenna joined Watsi on August 21st, 2014. Eight years ago, Jenna joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Jenna's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Stefano, a 5-year-old boy from Tanzania, to fund leg surgery so he can walk well.
Jenna has funded healthcare for 89 patients in 12 countries.
Jenna has funded healthcare for 89 patients in 12 countries.
Stefano is a 5-year-old child from Tanzania. Stefano’s parents are small-scale farmers and livestock keepers. They are not able to afford their son’s treatment costs thus they are asking for help. When we first met Stefano he was having difficulty walking and it was challenging for him to do day-to-day tasks. He looked tired despite being carried on her mother’s back. Stefano has needed support from the hospital to get healthy enough for surgery and has been receiving care since last November. He now is healthy enough to undergo surgery for his leg condition. Stefano was diagnosed with windswept deformity. His legs bow so that the knees appear windswept. 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 a difficult time walking and experiences pain. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Stefano. The procedure is scheduled to take place on April 22nd. Treatment will hopefully restore Stefano's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Stefano’s mother shared in her language, “Mchugaji alituambia tunaweza kupata msaada wa matibabu kwa ajili yam toto wetu hapa.” Meaning: "The pastor told us our son could get treatment help from here."
Eden is a 15-month-old baby boy from Haiti. He lives with his mother, father, and two older brothers in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. Eden's father is a teacher and his mother takes care of their family and home. Eden was born with a cardiac condition called complete atrioventricular canal defect. A large hole exists in the center of Eden's heart that causes blood to leak between all four chambers. This condition puts a strain on his heart and makes it difficult for oxygen to circulate through his body. The treatment and diagnostics he needs is not available in Haiti so on April 20th, Eden will fly to the Dominican Republic to hoping undergo cardiac surgery. Upon arrival at the hospital, doctors will perform advanced diagnostics to determine the best way to treat Eden's condition. Depending on the results of the exams, the doctors will determine if they recommend Eden undergo surgery or have his condition closely managed through medication and other care. Haiti Cardiac Alliance is contributing $4,000 towards Eden's medical care, but his family also needs assistance covering an additional $1,500 for labs, medicines, and follow-up appointments. This also supports passport obtainment and the social workers who will accompany Eden's family overseas. Eden's mother shared, "We are very hopeful that the doctors will have good news to share with us about Eden's heart problem!"
Phyu is a 17-year-old who lives with her parents, husband, and two brothers on the Thai-Burma border. Her father and husband work as day labourers, while her mother looks after her two younger brothers. Phyu used to help on small jobs too, but stopped six months ago when she first felt unwell. Beginning last October, Phyu felt tired, experienced chest tightness, and oedema in both her legs. A few days later, she went to a clinic and was told that she has a problem with her heart. She received medication and a follow-up appointment for the following week. Although she took the medication regularly, she did not feel any better. When she went back to the clinic, it was closed due to an outbreak of COVID-19 in their area. While she waited for the clinic to reopen, the swelling in her legs worsened and she also had difficulty breathing. Eventually, her employer drove her to Phop Phra Hospital, where she was admitted and given oxygen. The doctor at the hospital referred her to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) the next day where she received a number of diagnostic tests. The doctor told her that she has a heart condition and diagnosed her with aortic valve regurgitation. The medical team shared that she needed to undergo surgery and told her to travel to Chiang Mai where they can provide the care she needs. Worried about how her family would afford the surgery, once Phyu arrived at the clinic, a medic referred her to our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund for assistance accessing the treatment she needs. Currently, Phyu feels tired if she walks far or when she has to do anything strenuous such as carrying water or cleaning her house. If she sleeps on her back, she has difficulty breathing. Although she still has oedema in her legs, the swelling has gone down since she started taking medication from MSH. “When I recover from surgery, I want to work to help increase my family’s income so that we can pay back our debt. I also want to support my brother who is attending a teacher training college in Burma. He is a second-year student now," said Phyu with new hope for her future.
Naw Pyar is a 65-year-old woman living in Thailand. She lives with her son, daughter, and grandson in a refugee camp in the border area near Burma. Her daughter works for women’s organisation in the refugee camp while Naw Pyar and her son are unemployed as they are not able to leave the refugee camp for work due to COVID-19 measures. Her grandson is too young to attend school. Every month, her household receives 1,170 baht (approx. $39 USD) on a cash card from an organisation called The Border Consortium and their monthly income is just enough to pay for their basic needs. Doctor have diagnosed Naw Pyar with a traumatic cataract with phacomorphic glaucoma in her left eye. Currently Naw Pyar’s left eye is itchy and watery. Her left eye is sensitive to light, and she can only perceive light and darkness. Since she is taking medication for the pain, her eye no longer hurts but it is still red. A small white spot now covers her left pupil. Sometimes, she experiences headaches and her appetite has decreased. She shared that without her health, she feels stressed and worried about her family. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Naw Pyar. On February 17th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Naw Pyar's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Naw Pyar said, “I want to receive surgery quickly and have my vision restored. Since I lost vision in my eye, my family faces financial problems. Only my daughter has work and she takes care of everything for our family. It makes me feel so sad. I feel happy and excited to get my vision back.”
Titus is a 22-year-old motorcyclist and is the sixth born in a family of nine: six boys and three girls. His father earns wages from farming and working in other people’s farms, while his mother takes care of their house and family. They live in a two-roomed iron-built house in their village. Two months ago, Titus was involved in a road accident. He was riding a motorcycle that lost brake power and fell into a ditch. Titus sustained lacerations on his knee and fractured his right patella, and was rushed to a nearby district hospital where he was sutured and discharged home. Three weeks later, when he tried to stretch his leg, his wound opened and an X-Ray imaging of his leg revealed an open patella fracture. The doctor has recommended open reduction and internal fixation surgery and skin grafting to avoid further complications and further wound infection. Currently, Titus is in pain and has to use a walking frame to get around. His parents have desperately searched for a solution, but their socioeconomic status with the family of many children in school with fees has limited the options of helping Titus. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On January 13th, Titus will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will relieve him of his pain and he'll be able to use his leg once he recovers. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,145 to fund this procedure. Titus shared, "My biggest hope is to get an opportunity to be treated so that I can go home to better my life.”
Florante is a 44-year-old father from the Phillippines. He has one daughter, and he volunteers as a driver in his local administrative district. In 2016, Florante developed a mass in his neck. He was diagnosed with a cyst in his preauricular sinuses and surgery was recommended to treat his condition. Fortunately, our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, is helping Florante receive treatment. On December 9th, he will undergo a parotidectomy, where surgeons will remove his parotid gland, the largest of the salivary glands. Now, he needs help raising $1,323 to fund his procedure and care. After he has recovered, Florante will be able to lead a higher quality and pain-free life. Florante shared, "this will be the best Christmas gift of my life. I am very grateful to WSFP and Watsi."
Lomayani is a 4-year-old boy and the fourth child of his mother. Lomayani has not started school yet, but his parents hope to enroll him once he is older and healthy. They shared that Lomayani is a shy, quiet boy who often likes to spend his time playing and listening to his older sibling’s stories. Lomayani’s parents sell milk from their cows and goats to provide for the family’s daily needs. Lomayani was born with clubfoot of both feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape, causing difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Lomayani’s family traveled to visit the care center at our medical partner’s care, African Mission Healthcare (AMH). On November 16th, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery. AMH is requesting $935 to fund Lomayani’s procedure. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily and wear shoes. Lomayani told us, “I would like to be able to walk like my friends or other kids, please help me get this treatment. I have never played football because I am scared I will get hurt, but it looks like a fun game. I would really like to try playing too.”
Sreng is a 45-year-old mechanic. He has one daughter who is a young student. Sreng's wife works in a garment factory. Right now, Sreng cannot work due to his poor vision. He enjoys being able to listening to the news on the radio. Due to a traffic accident one year ago, the retina of Sreng's left eye detached, causing him vision loss and pain. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Sreng learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for three hours seeking treatment. On October 13th, eye surgeons will perform a retinal detachment repair procedure on his left eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, Sreng needs help to fund this $648 procedure. Sreng says, "I hope I can see clearly so I can return to my job to support my daughter's schooling."
Sat is a 33-year-old sandwich seller. He lives with his wife and and two daughters. Their oldest daughter is in grade two and their younger daughter is four years old and not yet in school. At home, he likes listening to music, playing football or watching TV. When he was 10 years old, Sat had an ear infection that caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in both ears to perforate. For this reason, Sat experiences ear discharge, headaches, pain and hearing loss. He cannot communicate clearly with others and has frequent headaches that make work challenging. Sat traveled to our visit our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), for treatment. On September 15th, he will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in both ears. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforations. Now, CSC is requesting $913 to fund this procedure. This covers the cost of medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Sat shared that he hopes the surgery will stop the pain and improve his hearing.
Deth is a 37-year-old farmer from Cambodia. He lives in the Kampong Cham province with his wife and two children. His wife works on a farm alongside him, while his children are both in primary school. They also have another son who recently became a monk. Deth works seasonally, and when he is not working he likes to spend a lot of time playing soccer, growing vegetables, and watching movies. One year ago, Deth had an ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in both ears to perforate. For this reason, Deth experiences hearing loss, pain and ear discharge. He cannot communicate clearly with others. Deth traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On August 17th, he will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in both ears. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforations and relieve Deth's pain. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $913 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and in-patient care. Deth said, "I am hopeful that my ear will get better soon, so I can work in peace and enjoy talking to my family."
Phoebe is a fruit vendor and a single mother with one daughter, now 27 years old. She moved in with her daughter in December 2018 after she was involved in an accident and broke her leg. She used to sell fruits but has not been able to work since her accident. Since the beginning of January 2021, Phoebe has been experiencing back pains, which have persisted over time and extended to her lower abdomen. Upon examination, doctors found a mass on the cervix which was bleeding, and she has been diagnosed with an early stage cancer. She needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $794 to fund Phoebe's surgery. On July 15th, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Phoebe will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain and her risk for future spreading of the cancer will be limited. Phoebe says, “Cancer is scary for me. I cannot wait to be declared free of the dangerous cells that I know can end my life. ”
Guadalupe is an one-year-old baby from Colombia. She is an only child, so she is regarded as the little princess of the family, which consists of her mother, grandma, and uncle. She is already sympathetic and friendly, and loves to play with stuffed toys and with other kids. Guadalupe has clubfoot on her right foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Guadalupe's family traveled to visit our medical partner, Clínica Noel, where they can offer treatment. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 13th. Our medical partner is requesting $1,422 to fund Guadalupe's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to start walking and running without pain. Her mother shares a story and her hopes for Guadalupe, "I would really love to see her walk and run normally, she is not the first person with this condition in our whole family, I have a cousin who received treatment when he was 8 years old and it was really hard to see him asking why he couldn't run like the other kids."