Vijay joined Watsi on September 8th, 2014. Five years ago, Vijay joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Vijay's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Mafuru, a four-year-old boy from Tanzania, to fund corrective surgery so he can run and play.
Vijay has funded healthcare for 44 patients in 11 countries.
Vijay has funded healthcare for 44 patients in 11 countries.
Mafuru is a happy and energetic four-year-old boy from Tanzania and the oldest child in a family of two children. Mafuru was diagnosed with bilateral genu valgus, which means that his legs bow inward and his knees touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often comes from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he falls when walking or running and experiences pain in his knees that is more severe during cold weather. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Mafuru. The procedure is scheduled to take place on June 4th and treatment will hopefully restore Mafuru's mobility, allowing him to participate in a variety of activities and greatly decreasing his risk of future complications. Mafuru’s father shared, "I wish to see my son have the surgery so that he can lead a life free of disability."
Than is a 44-year-old man who lives with his wife and three children in Mon State, Burma. He works hard as a day laborer and his wife sells vegetables around their neighborhood to support their family. His oldest child goes to school, while his other two children are still too young. In the future, Than hopes he can open a small shop. In mid-April 2021, Than was cutting wood with an ax to make charcoal for cooking. While cutting wood, his ax accidentally hit his left foot. He went to the nearest clinic, where the nurse stitched up his wound. After this, his wound was not painful. However, two weeks later, his left foot started to have pain and when he checked his foot, he saw pus around the area he had received stitches. Currently, the area around the injury on Than's left foot has turned black. He experiences severe pain, especially at night when the pain prevents him from sleeping. At the hospital, the doctors found that he had low blood supply, an ulcer, and cellulitis in the injured foot. In order to heal, Than must undergo wound debridement, a procedure which will clean the wound and remove the most damaged tissue to create opportunities for new skin to grow. His procedure is scheduled for May 11th, 2021 and his family needs $694 to fund his treatment. Than said, "I want the doctor to perform surgery on my foot as quickly as possible because I cannot handle the pain anymore."
Sumeya is a baby girl from Ethiopia who loves music. She also loves sweets and playing with her mom. She is her parents' first child, and her mom is a housewife while her dad is a teacher in a mosque. They all live together in his parents’ house, who help support them with their basic needs. Sumeya was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. She needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. Sumeya is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on April 20th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Sumeya's procedure and care. After her recovery, Sumeya will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing serious health complications in the future. Her mom said “ It is my hope that my baby will heal and get in to school.”
Peter is a third grade student from Kenya. Peter is very active and playful like many kids his age. He is the seventh son in a family of eight children. Peter's father repairs household items including basins and jerricans, and his mother is a casual laborer who washes clothes for a living. Their family currently lives together in a two-room mud house. About 10 weeks ago, Peter fell from a tall tree and he sustained a femur shaft fracture and hip dislocation. He currently walks and gets around using crutches, and there is the risk that he may not able to walk on his own again unless he receives surgical intervention. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On March 17th, Peter will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him walk easily again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to fund his surgery. Peter's father shared, “[Peter] has been unable to go to school since the accident. He can’t walk without the help of crutches and if he doesn’t go for surgery he might be unable to walk normally.”
Neng is a 54-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. Her husband of 24 years unfortunately passed away five years ago from illness. Neng has two sons and one daughter, and her daughter is married and has one child. In her free time, Neng enjoys watching Thai movies on TV and taking care of her grandchild. Neng slipped and fell on October 21st, fracturing her right elbow. She received initial treatment from a Khmer healer, but the treatment did not improve her closed elbow fracture. Neng came to Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) with right elbow pain, swelling, and inability to flex her arm. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On November 10th, Neng will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. This procedure will allow her to use her right arm easily again. Neng shared, "I hope my right arm is better after surgery so I can be free of pain and continue my work as normal."
Naw Ree is a 49-year-old woman from Thailand. Naw Ree has lived by herself in a refugee camp in northern Thailand since 2009. As a camp resident, Naw Ree receives 243 baht (approx. $8 USD) each month from an organization that supports refugee camp residents. She also works as a maternal and child health worker, receiving 900 baht (approx. $30 USD) per month. Naw Ree raises chickens and grows vegetables. Despite receiving free health care services in the camp, Naw Ree is struggling to make ends meet. On December 16th, 2020, Naw Ree went to see a woman who had recently given birth, to remind her about vaccinating her baby on time. After sitting and talking to the woman in her home, Naw Ree stood up to leave but felt light headed and fell. She put out her left hand to stop her fall, and hurt her left arm. She went to the hospital in the camp, run by Malteser International [MI] Thailand, and received pain medication and her arm was put into a sling. The next day, she was referred to Mae Seriang General Hospital for further treatment. At the hospital she received x-rays and the doctor told her that she had fractured one of the bones in her left forearm. She was then referred to Chiang Mai Hospital for further treatment, but her transfer was delayed for over two weeks due to an outbreak in COVID-19 cases in northern Thailand. Since Naw Ree lives by herself, she has to cook, wash her clothes, and feed her chickens without anyone's help, a difficult feat with her broken arm. Currently, she is in pain but has no fever. She can only fall asleep if she takes pain medication. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Naw Ree will undergo surgery to reset her fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for January 6th and will cost $1,500. After surgery, Naw Ree will no longer be in pain. She will be able to go back to work as a health worker and she will be able to complete her household chores without pain or discomfort. Naw Ree shared, "My greatest wish is that I recover and that I may be able to use my left arm again."
Salmani is a six-month-old baby from Tanzania and the second born in his family. His parents live in Arusha where they are both subsistence farmers. Salmani was born healthy, but at the age of three months, Salmani’s mother observed that his head size looked abnormal. His neck was not as strong as a 3-month-old, and she felt his other body parts were somewhat weak. As a result of his condition, Salmani has been experiencing an increasing head circumference and inability to sit on his own. His mother took him to Mount Meru Hospital and they referred their family to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center ALMC Hospital for treatment. She decided she had to wait to go because they could not afford to proceed with Salmani's treatment, doctor’s visits, or the tests required. Later on, they heard about Watsi's ALMC-The Plaster House program and how children with disabilities are able to be supported. Salmani's parents wish to see him be able to sit, walk one day, and also to see his head size return back to normal. Salmani has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. Without treatment, Salmani will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of surgery for Salmani that will treat his hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 14th and will drain the excess fluid from Salmani's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Salmani will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Salmani’s mother shared, “Please help my son get this treatment so that we can save his life and he can be able to play like other children.”
Thein is a 33-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his wife in Yangon, while his daughter lives with his aunt. He and his wife are vendors at the main bus station. In his free time, Thein likes to go to the tea shop with his friend and talk about work. In the future, he would like to become a motorcycle broker, where he believes he could earn a more steady income. Unfortunately, Thein has been unable to work since March 2020. At the time, he often felt too tired or unwell to work. Upon seeking care, Thein was diagnosed with a heart condition involving a malformation of the mitral valve, which is the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. Currently, Thein has difficulty breathing and feels tired when he does not receive oxygen or an intravenous drip. He cannot sleep well at night and has to take sleeping pills to help him get rest. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement procedure for Thein. The treatment is scheduled to take place on November 13th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and improve his quality of life. Thein shared, “After I have recovered fully, I will go back to work. I will try to search for a job that pays better so that I can pay off my debt. After I have paid back my debt, I will save money for my family’s future. I want my daughter to complete her studies.”
Chamrong is a 19-year-old motorcycle mechanic from Cambodia. He has three siblings and enjoys playing soccer and hanging out with his friends. Ten years ago, Chamrong had an ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. For this reason, Chamrong experiences discharge, tinnitus, hearing loss, and headaches. He is often unable to hear or communicate with others effectively. Chamrong traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On November 21st, he will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in his right ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $842 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Chamrong said, "I hope that after my surgery, my ear infection will heal and my hearing will improve."
Hellen is a farmer from Kenya. Hellen, accompanied by her youngest daughter, looks uneasy but confident as she met with our local Watsi rep. She shared a smile as we approached her but occasionally frowns and gets lost in thoughts. She has symptomatic fibroids which have been causing her excessive bleeding since 2015. Doctors recommended a Total Abdominal Hysterectomy-TAH to help stop the prolonged bleeding and relieve her of stomach aches and discomfort. Hellen's problem started in early February 2015 when she began experiencing stomach aches and bleeding. She visited a nearby health centre and was treated for suspected ulcers and stomach pains. Although her pains and the discharges kept recurring, she never visited the hospital but was managing the condition with medication from a nearby pharmacy. However, in November 2016 her condition worsened and she was forced to visit a bigger hospital. After a series of tests and visits to the facility, doctors recommended myomectomy. At the time Hellen was taking care of two of her family members, her husband who succumbed to prostate cancer, and a son who has epilepsy. Due to financial constraints, she was unable to get the surgery done and opted not to seek medical attention. After a while, her daughter mobilized resources from friends and relatives and opted to bring her to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Kijabe Hospital for medical attention. The OBS/GYN team recommended a TAH, of which she is unable to fully cover the cost. She was recently widowed after her husband and the father to her 4 children passed on as a result of his cancer. Her second-born child is suffering from epilepsy and has been in and out of the hospital depleting their family's already limited resources. She shared that her kids have been supportive but bills for her husband and his subsequent burial have forced them to seek help from well-wishers and relatives. Her National Health Insurance has not been approved for the procedure. Hellen lives in a one-acre piece of land in Embu where they practice small scale farming for home use. She was a housewife who relies on her children since her husband who was the breadwinner passed on. She is unable to pay for the cost of the surgery and treatment and hereby requests for help. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $794 to fund Hellen's surgery. On September 24th, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Hellen will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain. Hellen says, “I have lived with pain and bleeding for a long time. I sacrificed the family resources to treat my husband and child. I need help to at least put this pain to a stop.”
Susana is a 62-year-old farmer from Kenya. She is a talkative and happy grandmother who lives in along the Kerio Valley. Susana is a mother of four and is a subsistence farmer in the upcountry. She plants millet and sorghum in her small farm along the valley to meet her daily needs. She lives in a mud house with her husband. She shared that her four children did not finish school due to lack of money and are in the village doing casual jobs like working in hotels, while her two daughters are married. Susana was well until the Sunday, August 9th when she accidentally fell and injured her left hip. She is currently in pain and unable to walk. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On August 13th, Susana will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help her walk again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,016 to fund this procedure. Susana shared, “I want to get back on my feet and resume my normal duties of farming and taking care of my husband."
Dismus is a small child from Uganda. He is the second born in a family of two children and his parents are eager to see their son get treated. His father works in a local tea farm and his mother is a casual laborer who mostly washes clothes for neighbors. Dismus was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. He needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. Dismus is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on July 16th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Dismus's procedure and care. After his recovery, Dismus will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Dismus’ father shared, “I will be grateful for any financial help offered.”