Nick joined Watsi on January 18th, 2015. Nine years ago, Nick joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Nick's most recent donation traveled 5,600 miles to support Zoe, a 6-month-old baby girl from Bolivia, to fund heart surgery.
Nick has funded healthcare for 112 patients in 14 countries.
Nick has funded healthcare for 112 patients in 14 countries.
Zoe, who is six months old, lives with her parents and two older sisters in La Paz, Bolivia. Her father is a dentist, while her mother stays home to take care of the children. When Zoe was born, she was diagnosed with Down syndrome and patent ductus arteriosus, a condition where there is a hole between two major blood vessels near the heart. As a result of this condition, blood leaks through the hole, leaving her weak and unable to gain weight, as her blood isn't properly oxygenated. Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is requesting $1,500 to fund surgery to correct Zoe's condition. The operation is scheduled for April 19th at Hospital del Niño Dr. Ovidio Aliaga Uría, where doctors will sew the hole shut, allowing for her blood to flow completely through her heart. Zoe should grow stronger after she has recovered from surgery. Zoe's mother said: "Our family is very hopeful that Zoe will gain an appetite and become stronger after her surgery!"
Tey is a 15-year-old from Cambodia and the middle child in his family, with an older brother and a younger sister. His parents are rice farmers. Tey enjoys school, especially P.E. class, and dreams of being a professional soccer player one day! In March, Tey was riding on the back of his family's motorbike when they had to swerve to avoid a large animal in the road. The motorbike fell on its side and caused Tey to fracture his left wrist. For the last two weeks, he has been treated by a traditional Cambodian healer. Tey's family brought him to our medical partner's care center for review. On March 29th, he will undergo a fracture repair procedure that will allow him to move his hand and arm easily again. Tey is currently in pain and has limited use of his hand. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), requests $485 to fund Tey's surgery. His family contributed $100 to his care. Tey shared: "I hope surgery can help fix my hand, and I can do P.E. at school."
Junel is a loving father from the Philippines who lives with his mother, his partner, and their one-year-old daughter. To support their family, Junel works as a nursing aide and his partner is a dietician. Since 2017, Junel has experienced troubling symptoms including abdominal pain and feeling bloated. Most recently in February, Junel experienced severe abdominal pain that required medical attention. His ultrasound revealed that he was suffering from gallstones, and he will need to undergo surgery to remove his gallbladder to prevent worsening symptoms and/or future health complications. After seeking treatment through our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP), Junel is scheduled to undergo his gallbladder surgery on March 8th. A portion of the cost of the procedure is being supported by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and WSFP is looking to help raise $1,128 to cover the remaining cost of Junel's surgery and care. Junel shared: "My medical condition is a burden to me and my family. I have to miss going to work whenever the pain attacks, and that will cost my whole day's salary. Fortunately, WATSI and World Surgical Foundation Philippines are willing to help me. I couldn't thank you enough for your generosity. I'm eternally grateful for all your help!"
Tumaini is an 11-month-old girl, daughter to small-scale subsistence farmers, and sister to eight siblings. She is active and attached to her mother. Her mother enjoys playing with her as she laughs and smiles when spoken to in their native language. Tumaini has clubfoot on both feet, a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Tumaini and her family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre, where surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on February 24th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Tumaini's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily. Tumaini’s mother says, “I was worried when I saw my daughter’s leg. I am hopeful when I heard there is treatment for the condition my child has.”
Angelina is a mother of three children aged between 12 and 27 years old. She and her husband work as manual laborers in Kenya, but the income from this venture is inconsistent and negligible to pay for the proposed surgery. Angelina has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Without treatment, the cancer may spread to other organs. Thus, doctors suggested she undergo a mastectomy to prevent the cancer from metastasizing. On February 3rd, Angelina will undergo a mastectomy, a surgery to remove breast tissue, with the help of our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation. After treatment, Angelina will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Angelina needs help raising $1,110 to fund her procedure and care. Angelina says, “I am still in shock after hearing this cancer news. I hope to get treatment soon to stop it.”
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."
Eng is a 61-year-old farmer living in Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia. She and her husband have an adopted son who is 32 years old and now married. Their family grows rice just outside of the city limits. At home, she likes to grow vegetables for her family and to sell at the local market. Six months ago, Eng had an ear infection. This infection caused the ear drum in her right ear to perforate. Now Eng experiences ear discharge, tinnitus, pain, fever, and headaches. Sometimes she can’t sleep well at night. She has been treating her symptoms with medicine from a pharmacy but it is still not better. Eng visited our medical partner's care center, Children's Surgical Centre, hoping to receive treatment. On December 20th, she will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in her right ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $487 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. She said, "After surgery, I hope my ear stops having these infections and improves my hearing."
Michelle is a young child with a sweet smile. She is the firstborn of a two-child family. Her parents are modest farmers who grow potatoes and vegetables primarily for their own family's consumption. Additionally, they run a small kiosk out of their home, but its limited earnings are insufficient to cover their basic needs. Michelle is presently enrolled in nursery school at a nearby public school. Michelle had a normal cold when she visited our medical facility. She was gasping loudly while inhaling and coughing frequently. Since last year, Michelle has been ill. Her mother noticed that whenever she had a cold, she would frequently complain of a sore throat and cough a lot. She also have a hard time sleeping, has trouble breathing, and has difficulty feeding because she always breathes through her mouth. Michelle has to wear extra warm clothing to stay warm during the colder months because her nose always gets congested, which is hard for her. She has been an inactive child as she is always tired. Her sleep patterns are constantly off, and she easily nods asleep during the school day, which has a negative impact on how well she does academically. Due to recurring tonsil infections that are resistant to therapy, Michelle has been in and out of the hospital several times. During her last visit, the doctor examined her and realized that her tonsils and adenoids had hypertrophied. She has been diagnosed with grade three tonsils, and since she was not responding to any medication, the doctor advised them to have surgery, which would provide a lasting, long-term solution to her problem. Michelle's parents have medical insurance, but in the last three months, they did not manage to pay their monthly subscriptions as they were low on income. Their coverage is in arrears, and unfortunately, it will not cover her procedure. She requires $714 for her surgery to be done, and her parents are appealing to all well-wishers reading her story to assist her in getting her surgery. Michelle's mother says, “My daughter has really suffered over a long period of time. She has taken numerous drugs without any noticeable change in her, and this has me very concerned. I want her to be able to have a regular life and do well in school. Please assist her so that she can eventually realize her goals."
Lynemandy is a 28 year old woman from Haiti, who is studying for a business degree at a local university. She lives with her parents in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. Lynemandy has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation, which is a result of a bout of rheumatic fever that she suffered as a child. One of the four valves in her heart was severely damaged as a result of this illness, and in 2018, Lynemandy underwent surgery to repair the damaged valve. The valve functioned well for four years, but now it needs to be replaced so she can live healthy in the future. The care she needs is unfortunately not available within Haiti, so Lynemandy will need to travel to undergo cardiac surgery in the United States on November 17th. Her surgery, during which a new valve will be implanted, is being funded by Baylor Scott & White Heart Hospital. Now Lynemandy and her family need to raise $1,500 to cover the costs of pre and post operative treatment, and for the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Lynemandy when she travels to the United States. Lynemandy said: "I am very grateful to everyone who is working so hard to keep me alive and healthy."
Hout is a loving mom and grandmother. She has one son, two daughters, and twenty grandchildren. She lives with her youngest daughter, who works in construction. At home, Hout cooks for the family and likes to listen to monks pray on the radio. She also enjoys visiting the pagoda with her family. About three years ago, Hout developed a cataract in her left eye, causing her blurry vision. As a result, she has difficulty at night with her vision and often sees halos around lights. She also cannot see objects clearly, including colors and faces, and is worried about falling when walking. Consequently, she cannot go places on her own. When Hout learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), she traveled for an hour seeking treatment. On September 29th, doctors will perform cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in her left eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. CSC is requesting $253 to fund this procedure. Hout said, "After surgery, I hope I can see better and help my daughter take care of my grandchildren and can go out by myself well."
Adrian is an 8-year-old boy from Bolivia. He lives in a neighborhood in the mountains above La Paz with his parents and three siblings; he is in the fourth grade in school. Adrian was born with a cardiac condition called pulmonary valvar and subvalvar stenosis, in which the area in and around one of his valves is too small to allow blood to flow through it properly. As a result, blood backs up into his heart, leaving him weak and short of breath. During surgery, doctors will use a balloon to stretch the valve open so that blood can pass through it more freely. His family is raising funds to support his treatment with our medical partner HCA. Adrian's mother says: "Our family is very excited to know that our son can finally have a normal heart!"
Ly is a 62-year-old widow from Cambodia who has seven children and eight grandchildren. She currently lives with her youngest son. Some of her favorite activities include joining ceremonies at her local pagoda and cooking for her grandchildren. Five years ago, Ly developed a cataract in her right eye, causing her to experience blurry vision, light sensitivity, eye irritation, and tearing. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, including colors and faces, and is worried about falling when walking, so she is not able to go places on her own. When Ly learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for four hours seeking treatment. On August 15th, doctors will perform a small incision cataract surgery and place an intraocular lens implant in her right eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $253 procedure. Ly says, "I hope my vision improves and I can get around easily by myself. I want to be able to help care for my grandchildren and walk to the pagoda by myself."