Michael joined Watsi on June 8th, 2016. Seven years ago, Michael joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Michael's most recent donation supported Raymond, a toddler from Kenya, to fund a colostomy closure.
Michael has funded healthcare for 79 patients in 13 countries.
Michael has funded healthcare for 79 patients in 13 countries.
Raymond is a 2-year-old toddler from Kenya and the only child in his family. A few months back, his mother lost her job at a clothing store because she must be at the hospital most of the time attending to her son. She works more flexible jobs like washing clothes for people in her neighborhood to help provide for the family. Raymond has been in and out of the hospital since birth. He was diagnosed with Hirschsprung's disease, a condition where the ganglion cells in the colon responsible for pushing food through are inactive or dead. He has undergone a series of surgeries through the family's health insurance fund. After a long journey, Raymond has one procedure left, but their insurance coverage has been exhausted, and they request financial assistance for his final procedure. Raymond underwent a colostomy, a procedure in which the end of the colon was brought through an opening in the abdominal wall. Raymond's colostomy requires closure in order to restore his bowel function and prevent future complications. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,084 to cover the cost of his colostomy closure. The surgery is scheduled to take place on March 14th and, once completed, will allow Raymond to live more comfortably and confidently moving forward. Raymond's mother said: "We have come a long way with his treatment, and I have been waiting for this moment for a long time. I really hope that it will go as planned."
Hser is a 30-year-old midwife from Burma. She lives with her husband and eight other colleagues in the staff housing of the clinic she works at. Hser is a midwife, and her husband is a medic. In her free time, she enjoys going fishing with her husband and friends, weaving Karen clothes, and visiting the villagers nearby. Around June 2020, Hser felt she had a mass. Thinking it was not serious, she did not go to a hospital for treatment until April 2022. At the hospital, a doctor gave her medication for three months, but the mass did not decrease in size. Currently, Hser's experiences uncomfortable symptoms from the mass. Hser sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. She is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on March 8th. Hser needs help raising $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Hser said, "I am married, but I don’t plan to have children yet because my husband and I are both busy working as health workers for our community. So, I am very worried that I won't be able to have children anymore because of my condition. However, I have a loving and kind husband who understands me in every way, and he told me not to worry and feel sad. We cannot help but stay strong, helping and encouraging each other."
Emmanuel is a 39-year-old father of two from Port-au-Prince, Haiti. He lives with his wife and children and works in sales at an electronics store. He has a cardiac condition called atrial septal defect. There is a hole between the two upper chambers of his heart, which causes blood to leak out without first passing through the lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving him weak and short of breath. Because the care he needs is not available in Haiti, Emmanuel will fly to the United States to undergo cardiac surgery on February 27th. Doctors will sew a patch over the hole in his heart so that blood can no longer leak through it. Baylor Scott and White Heart Hospital is contributing $10,000 to help pay for this surgery. His family now needs $1,500 to help fund costs of the surgery preparations, including labs, medicines, and check-up and follow-up appointments, and travel expenses. Our medical partner Haiti Cardiac Alliance will accompany Emmanuel overseas and ensure he safely undergoes treatment. Emmanuel says, "I am excited for this surgery so that I can focus on taking care of my family without worrying about my health."
Nine-year-old Thiri is a first-grader, living with her mother and two brothers in Burma. Her mother sells vegetables in a local shop, while Thiri and her brothers attend school. While playing with her friends in front of her house in early January 2023, Thiri tripped, and fell into a pile of rice sacks, injuring her left eye in the process. Immediately, she realized that she could not see out of her left eye. Over time, her eye injury became more painful, red, and sensitive to light. Eventually, when her eye did not heal, her mother brought her to Mae Sot Hospital, where she was diagnosed with traumatic glaucoma. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Thiri. On February 1st, doctors at Mae Sot General Hospital will remove the natural lenses from both of her eyes, and replace them with intraocular lens implants. Once she has recovered. Thiri will regain her ability to see clearly. Now she needs your help to fund this critical procedure. Thiri's mother said: "I want her to receive surgery and recover soon so that she [Thiri] can go back to school and I can go back to work. I want her to be rich in the future, not like me, and own her own shop, because she likes to cook."
Anthonie is a student from Haiti. He lives with his aunt and uncle and their family in a small town in northern Haiti. He enjoys going to school and church. Anthonie has a cardiac condition called Tetralogy of Fallot. This condition involves several related defects including a hole between two chambers of the heart, and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. These prevent blood from flowing normally through his body, leaving him weak and short of breath. The care Anthonie needs is not available in Haiti so he needs to travel for surgery. He will fly to the Cayman Islands and on January 9th will undergo cardiac surgery. During surgery, surgeons will sew a patch over the hole to close it, and remove the muscular blockage in his heart. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman, is also contributing $16,000 to pay for his treatment. Anthonie's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep, travel, and follow-up care. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also pays for obtaining his passport, and for the social worker from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Anthonie's family overseas. Anthonie's aunt says, "Anthonie has been very sick for a long time, we are all praying that this is the miracle that will make him better!"
Sharon is a 23-year-old small-scale farmer from Kenya. She is married with two children, aged four years and one year old. Sharon and her husband grow and sell vegetables and take on casual labor jobs to help supplement their income. They have a three-room house for their family. A week ago, Sharon was grazing her sheep when she tripped on a root. She was located on a hill and fell from a high distance causing her to fracture her right leg. Unable to walk or stand, some neighbors heard her call for help and rushed her to the hospital. Sharon was experiencing severe pain, swelling, and skin traction on her right lower leg. She underwent an x-ray, which showed that she had a fracture on her right femur. She also underwent skeletal traction to realign the bone and keep it in place until she could undergo surgery. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help. On November 29th, Sharon will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation, to mend her right femur and allow her to move again. AMH is requesting $1145 to fund this procedure. Sharon says: “It’s so unfortunate that I broke my leg at a time when my children needed me the most. I am now forced to stop breastfeeding my son, who is still young, but I am grateful as I am still alive. I need your help, and I believe that someday things will get back to normal, and I will be able to be there for my family.”
Veasna is a hardworking 42-year-old farmer and construction worker from Cambodia. He has two sons and two daughters, all of whom are students in public schools. To support their family, Veasna works as a small-scale farmer, and his wife sells vegetables at the local market. Veasna works construction jobs during the off-season to supplement their family's income. In his free time, he enjoys exercising, visiting his friends, and helping his wife with housework. Three years ago, Veasna underwent back surgery for sciatic pain, which led to a reduction in sensation in his feet. He stepped on a hot brick at work two years later and severely burned his left heel. Despite taking antibiotics, this wound has remained unhealed. The wound is currently producing discharge, which he shares is both unpleasant and painful. He is unable to walk on his left foot, preventing him from working. Veasna's wife now provides their family's sole income, and he shares that they are facing difficulty feeding their children and keeping them in school. When Veasna learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), he traveled for two hours seeking treatment. On August 11th, surgeons at CSC will perform an excision of dead skin and a sural skin flap procedure to heal his wound and help him walk again. Now, he needs help funding this $673 procedure. Veasna shares, "I hope after surgery my foot will heal soon with no infection. I am hopeful I can walk without pain and can return to work to support my family."
Dibora is a smiley and playful 13-month-old baby girl from Ethiopia. Her father is a farmer and her mother is a housewife. She has three older siblings and loves to eat and to play with her family. Dibora was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. Due to her condition, she developed a bowel obstruction and an emergency colostomy procedure was performed. She has had a number of complications due to this procedure, and requires an additional procedure to correct her condition. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Dibora receive treatment. On September 8th, she will undergo corrective surgery at AMH's care center. After her recovery, Dibora will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Now, she and her family need help raising $1,500 to fund her procedure and care. Dibora's mother shared, "Once Dibora has recovered and is healed of this condition, I want to take care of her and her siblings well."
Erlinda is a hardworking 54-year-old woman from the Philippines. She earns money to support her family by washing and ironing clothes. In 2019, Erlinda began to experience troubling symptoms, including difficulty breathing and swallowing. Eventually, she noticed a growing mass on her neck. Because of this, she decided to seek medical treatment, but the doctor notified her that due to the progression of her mass, medication would not be enough to treat her condition. Erlinda was diagnosed with Thyroid Carcinoma, a type of cancer that begins in the thyroid gland. It occurs when healthy cells in the thyroid change and grow out of control, forming a tumor. She now needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse. Fortunately, our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, is helping Erlinda receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on July 16th at Our Lady of Peace Hospital. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $890, and she needs help raising money for this life-changing care. Erlinda tearfully shared, "Where else would I find money to pay for my surgery? We can't afford it. I'm really thankful that Watsi, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, and Our Lady of Peace Hospital are going to help me."
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.”
Gabriel is a friendly and social 12-year-old boy, living in a remote Maasai community in Tanzania. Unlike his five siblings, Gabriel does not attend school because of a condition on his right leg. He is unable to walk the long distance required to get to school, and instead, he stays home. He used to help his parents tend to their livestock, but this has gotten more difficult. Gabriel was diagnosed with right genu valgus, a condition which often results from contaminated drinking water. His right leg bows inward, so that both of his knees touch. Because of pain and difficulty walking, Gabriel can no longer herd cattle or fetch water, or assist his parents in other ways. Gabriel needs surgery to correct his leg, so that he will be able to walk more easily and return to school. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Gabriel. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 10th. Treatment will hopefully restore Gabriel's mobility, allowing him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decreasing his risk of future complications. Gabriel says: "I have wanted to join school, but I can’t walk every day to and from school with my leg."
Christian, who lives in the Philippines, is a hardworking father with a 7-month-old daughter. He works as an on-call waiter, while his wife is currently a student. With Christian’s limited income, he is worried about supporting all of his family’s needs and financing his medical treatment. In April, Christian was diagnosed with a hernia which requires surgery. Correcting the hernia will better enable Christian to find a new job and higher pay, and improve his ability to care for his family. With the help of our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, Christian is scheduled for surgery at Our Lady of Peace Hospital on May 3rd, for which they are requesting $1,130 to fund his procedure and care. “I always fail my physical exams because of my condition, and I'm burdened by it because, as a father, I need to support my family,” Christian shared. “This surgery will be a big help to our family so thank you so much World Surgical Foundation Philippines and Watsi for helping,” he added.