Patricia joined Watsi on March 17th, 2017. Six years ago, Patricia joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Patricia's most recent donation supported Priscillah, a 61-year-old farmer from Kenya, to fund a thyroidectomy.
Patricia has funded healthcare for 76 patients in 12 countries.
Patricia has funded healthcare for 76 patients in 12 countries.
Priscillah, who is 61 years old, is a mother of six and a grandmother of three living in the arid region of Baringo County, Kenya. Despite being a retired ECD teacher, Priscillah does not have a pension because she was employed on contract. She and her husband work as millet and mango farmers in order to earn an income. A month ago, Priscillah visited the doctor, complaining about a neck mass that she first noticed 20 years ago. Recently, Priscillah began to experience troubling symptoms, such as fatigue, weight loss, and breathlessness. Her neighbor convinced her to be evaluated and after lab tests and an ultrasound were done, Priscillah was diagnosed with a multinodular goiter. As it was toxic, she was immediately placed on medications to prepare her for surgery. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Priscillah receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on May 4th at AIC Kapsowar Hospital. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland, which should ensure that she will be able to live a healthy and more comfortable life. Priscillah and her family need your help to raise $936 to cover the cost of this procedure. Priscillah happily said: "I never knew I would ever undergo surgery; I was ready to live with the condition until my death. Thank you for giving me this chance."
Aung, who is 25 years old, lives with his mother, brother and two sisters in Burma. His mother is retired, and his brother is a security guard. One of his sisters works at a bicycle factory, while the other one works for a local company. Aung is currently unemployed because of his poor health. In October 2022, Aung fell ill and developed a persistent cough. He went to a charity hospital, where he was told that he had a heart infection. After he was treated with injected antibiotics, the doctor told him that he needed an echocardiogram, because he might have a heart condition due to the infection. After the echo was completed, he was diagnosed with mitral valve regurgitation, and he was referred to a cardiologist in Yangon. Aung went to see the cardiologist, who told him that he would need surgery, which he could not afford. On December 25, 2022, both of Aung's legs and his arms became swollen, and he was unable to sleep. He went to a private hospital, where it was determined that he would need surgery as soon as possible. Currently, Aung feels extremely fatigued, experiences chest pains, and has difficulty breathing. Sometimes, his legs and his arms become swollen, and he cannot sleep well at night. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 for the mitral valve replacement surgery that Aung needs. The procedure is currently scheduled to take place on April 2nd, at Pun Hlaing Hospital. "In the future, I want to work as a taxi driver, because I believe that I could easily earn money doing this [in the city]," said Aung.
Caleb is a playful and talkative 3-year-old boy from Kenya. He is an only child, and his mother works as a casual laborer at a local hotel. Currently, due to his clubfoot, Caleb cannot stand without assistance. He can roll over, but cannot yet walk or crawl. Caleb has clubfoot in both feet, a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This can cause difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Caleb traveled to visit our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, for treatment. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on March 14th. African Mission Healthcare Foundation is requesting $1,286 to fund Caleb's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to stand, walk and continue playing with other children. “I am appealing to people of goodwill to help my son undergo surgery to gain strength and walk on his feet,” Caleb's mother said.
Daw Nan is a 64-year-old woman from Myanmar. She lives with her husband in a village in Karen State. Her husband is retired and she occasionally works as an agricultural day laborer. She also grows cashews in her garden and sells what she harvests once a year. Sometimes, her daughter, who works in Thailand, sends her pocket money. In her free time, she likes to go to the temple and meditate. Currently, she can only perceive light with her right eye and the vision in her left eye is starting to blur. She cannot see people's faces with her right eye, and her left eye is sensitive to light. Because of her poor vision, she can only walk slowly because she is worried that she will trip and fall. She also feels stressed about her vision problem, and she has lost weight and has little appetite. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Daw Nan. On February 10th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Daw Nan'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. Daw Nan said, "Since the vision in my right eye worsened and I noticed that the vision in my left eye is worsening, I feel stressed at all times. I cannot work properly as my [left] eye hurts and waters when it is bright outside. I feel sad. Even though I eat, I have a poor appetite and I have lost weight. I will be very happy if I can see again after my surgery."
Bela is an 18-month-old girl from the Philippines, who loves listening to nursery rhymes and playing with her musical toys. She lives with her older sibling, her father, who is a businessman, and her mother, who is a homemaker. Bela was born with an anorectal malformation, which is a congenital condition that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. She needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate her bowel dysfunction and help her grow up healthy. Fortunately, our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP), is helping Bela access the treatment that she needs. She is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on January 14th, at Our Lady of Peace Hospital. A portion of the cost of her treatment is being paid for by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and WSFP is looking to you to help raise $1,211 to cover the remaining cost of Bela's procedure and care. After her recovery, Bela will no longer need a colostomy, experience bowel dysfunction, or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Bela's mother said: "As a parent, I hoped she'd have a normal life, and be free from using a colostomy bag. To be honest, a huge part of our budget goes to her colostomy supplies. So this free surgery is really a big help to our family. To WATSI and World Surgical Foundation Philippines, thank you very much! We wouldn't know how to get her treated without your support."
Dennis is the first born in a family of four children. When he finished high school, he was reluctant to join college because of his condition. He currently is not able to work because he gets easily tired and cannot carry heavy loads. He joined college just recently but has been out of school for the past two months. Now that he is at home, he helps his mother who picks tea for a living. He does not have a health insurance coverage and cannot raise the required amount of money to cater for his hospital bill. In 2019 while he was sitting for his national school exams, Dennis experienced sharp pain in his esophagus. He took a glass of water, and the pain went away for a few weeks. The pain used to occur roughly two times in a month and a glass of water would help a lot. Late last year, the pain worsened. He was not in a position to swallow food. He went to a herbalist and was given some medication to use for some time. When the dose was over, the pain was still persistent, and he still could not swallow food normally. He was then referred to Kijabe Hospital by a friend where he was examined and given some medication to use. He didn't feel better and decided to go back to the herbalist for different medication but there was no change. Later he finally returned to Kijabe Hospital and scans and tests revealed that he has Achalasia. He is scheduled for a heller's myotomy which is a curative laparotomy surgery for his condition. Now he needs $1,074 to pay for the surgery. Dennis says, "I feel very sad. If I was healthy, I would be able to work well and be comfortable with myself.”
Samuel is a 21-year-old talkative young man. He is the second born in a family of five children. His father passed away when he was four years old, so his mother had to raise him and his siblings by herself. She does jobs on tea farms to provide for the family. When Samuel was two years old, his abdomen started to swell, which was very painful for him. His mother took him to the hospital and he was given some medication and sent back home. The medication did not work as expected. He was then taken to a different hospital for examination. He was given more medication and after some time he seemed to be better. The stomachache did not go away completely, however. Samuel and his mother shared that over the years, he has had stomachaches and gotten used to taking pain medication. In 2017 when Samuel was in high school, the pain worsened and his abdomen started to swell again. He had to leave school as a result. His mother took him to a hospital in Meru where he was admitted for three months. While in the hospital, scans and a biopsy were done to determine what the problem was. He was given a colostomy, where the end of the colon is brought through an opening in the abdominal wall, in order to pass stool. This surgery is often performed to bypass bowel malformations, but colostomies are usually temporary and may call for closure. In Samuel's case, his colostomy requires closure in order to restore bowel function and prevent future complications. At that time, his doctors did not manage to treat him and referred him to BethanyKids Hospital in 2018. On arrival, he was examined and admitted, as he was not in good condition. After more scans and tests, he was ultimately diagnosed with Hirschsprung’s disease. Since then, Samuel has undergone several surgeries with the aim of trying to better his condition. The first surgery failed, but the second was successful. He is now scheduled to undergo his last surgery to close the colostomy so that he can pass stool on his own again and live a more active life. Earlier in his treatment, Samuel's parents had enrolled in the national health insurance program (NHIF), which helped them pay for most of his hospital bills. BethanyKids also chipped in on occasion to help with some of the bills. Unfortunately, for his last surgery, NHIF has rejected the request since he is beyond the age to be covered by his mother’s insurance. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping him to undergo treatment and needs $1,084 to cover the cost of a colostomy closure for Samuel. The surgery is scheduled to take place on November 11th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Samuel’s Mother says, “For years now, I have been very worried about my son, but God has seen us through.”
Pauline is a 36 year old single woman, living in Kenya. She works at a facility where they take care of street children. Both of her parents have passed away, and she has no siblings. Pauline has lived in near constant pain for 26 years. After she was finally able to have an MRI, an ultrasound and blood tests, she was diagnosed with endometriosis. Because of this condition, tissue, which is similar to that of the lining of the uterus, grows outside of the uterus, enveloping the ovaries and fallopian tubes, causing chronic discomfort. The tissue can also affect other nearby organs, such as the bowel and the bladder. Surgical intervention is required to resolve this condition. With the assistance of our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, Pauline is now scheduled to undergo a hysteroscopy and operative laparoscopy, on October 11th, at AIC Kijabe Hospital. After the surgery, Pauline should be able to live her life, free from pain. Now she needs your help to fund the procedure, which costs $1,074. Pauline says: “I have always lived with pain since I was a small girl. I hope this discomfort will come to a halt once and for all.”
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.”
Christine is a 36-year-old mom who is expecting a new baby. Christine met her husband and got married at the tender age of 17 years. Since then, she has been blessed with her children. Christine is a farmer and her husband is a builder. He gets work whenever he can, but it is not consistent enough to support their family and meet medical needs. Our medical partner shared that without national health insurance programs in Uganda, medical care can be difficult especially for low-income families like Christine's. Her doctors have recommended a c-section delivery as she is at risk of uterine rupture, which could be fatal. Christine appeals for help to pay for her surgery and shared, “I will be able to resume farming once given your support to deliver successfully. I hope to deliver a live baby and in good health afterwards.”
Nancy is a bright and social 12-year-old student from Tanzania. She is the youngest in a family of three children. Her and her siblings are being raised by their grandparents with the help of amazing well-wishers, since their grandparents are older and appreciate the extra help. Nancy currently attends primary school, and her favorite subjects include Swahili, mathematics, and social studies! She is very friendly and loves to play netball with her schoolmates. However, playing is becoming increasingly difficult due to her condition. Nancy has clubfoot of the left foot. Clubfoot is a condition where the foot is twisted out of shape, which causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Nancy and her family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on July 15th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Nancy's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily. Her grandmother says, "Nancy and her siblings have been in my care since they were babies. We struggle to raise them. That's why well-wishers help. Unfortunately, they can’t help her with her treatment. Please help us."
Loveness is a charming, friendly and smart girl who is currently in the 8th grade. She is a charismatic girl who makes friends easily. Loveness wishes to be a doctor in the future, and she is already working hard towards fulfilling her dreams. Her best subjects are mathematics, science, biology, and physics. She says English as a subject is giving her a hard time, but she is determined to keep improving. She enjoys drawing and painting in her spare time. Loveness lost her mother when she was just two years old. After her mother passed away, her aunt on her mother’s side decided to take Loveness and raise her as her own daughter because, she shared, the father had a hard time managing by himself. Loveness has clubfoot of 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, Loveness traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on June 7th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Loveness's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily. Loveness says, “I wish I could have my foot treated so that I can walk normally.”