Michael joined Watsi on July 29th, 2013. Two years ago, Michael joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Michael's most recent donation traveled 3,800 miles to support Nekanisa, an 11-year-old girl from Kenya, to fund angular deformity correction.
Michael has funded healthcare for 46 patients in 11 countries.
Michael has funded healthcare for 46 patients in 11 countries.
Nekanisa is a jovial and social 11-year-old girl. She attends Marlal primary school in Kenya and loves reading and playing with her friends. She aspires to become a nurse in the future and help hospital patients. Nekanisa is the child of a single mother, who depends upon farming to earn a living. Nekanisa was healthy at birth. However, about one year ago, she developed a problem with her leg that led to the contortion of her right knee, greatly affecting her mobility. Nekanisa visited Loitoktok General Hospital in Kajiado County for review, but due to financial challenges, she was discharged before she could be treated. As she walks with a lot of discomfort and is unable to run, Nekanisa sought help from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation. She is now scheduled to undergo a distal femur osteotomy on May 8th at AIC Cure International Hospital. She needs your help to fund this $1,224 procedure, which will enable her to walk pain-free. “I am requesting support from the donors to help me undergo surgery so that my foot can be corrected and I can resume my usual walking style,” Nekanisa told us.
Sayuni, who is 4 years old, lives with her mother and two siblings in Tanzania. Sayuni's mother sells local bites like buns and Vitumbua- coconut rice pancakes- by the roadside to try and make ends meet. Sayuni was diagnosed with bilateral genu varus, which causes her legs to bow outward at the knees. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, stemming from the consumption of contaminated drinking water. As a result of her condition, Sayuni has a difficult time walking and playing. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Sayuni. The procedure is scheduled to take place on April 17th, at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. Treatment should restore Sayuni's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Sayuni’s mother says: “I have hope that my daughter will be able to walk better after the treatment.”
Jayden is a preschooler from Haiti. Jayden lives with his parents, who are both schoolteachers, and older brother in a small city in the mountains of central Haiti. He likes to draw and is learning to read. Jayden has a cardiac condition called atrial septal defect and ventricular septal defect. Two holes exist in his heart, one between the two upper chambers and another between the two lower chambers. Blood leaks through these holes, straining his heart and making it difficult for him to obtain oxygen. Because the surgery he needs is not available in Haiti, Jayden will fly to Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On April 28th, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will use patches to close the holes in his heart so that blood can flow normally. Our medical partner Haiti Cardiac Alliance is also contributing $9,000 to pay for surgery, but Jayden and his family still need help covering the costs of surgery prep and travel. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Jayden overseas. Jayden's mother shared, "Our family has been very frightened for our son's health so we were so happy to get the news that he could have this surgery!"
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."
Jul is a homemaker from Thailand. She lives with her husband, toddler son, and sister-in-law. Her husband is also a homemaker, and her sister-in-law is a student. During her free time, she enjoys looking after her son and doing household chores. She is currently expecting her second child. Her doctors recommend that she deliver via a Caesarean section because she previously gave birth through an emergency C-section. Delivering via C-section ensures the safety of both the mother and the child. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is helping Jul undergo a C-Section on January 30th. This procedure will cost $1500, and Jul and her family need your support. “I want to have a girl this time because I already have a son,” Jul said.
Abel, who is 11 months old, lives with his parents in La Paz. He is his parents' first child. Abel was born with a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect. Because of this, a hole exists between the two lower chambers of his heart. Blood leaks through this hole without passing through Abel's lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving him weak and short of breath. Abel's parents sought the help of our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, and now Abel is scheduled for surgery on January 16th, at Hospital del Niño Dr. Ovidio Aliaga Uria. During surgery, doctors will sew the hole shut, so that blood will no longer leak out. This procedure should enable Abel to grow into a healthy young boy. Abel's mother said: "Our family is praying that our son will be strong and healthy after this surgery!"
Kenenitu is a young child from Ethiopia. She is a beautiful baby who loves playing with other children. She developed bowel obstruction and an emergency colostomy surgery was done at our medical partner's care center BKMCM. The condition and care has been challenging for Kenenitu and her mother who has been affected psychologically. Kenenitu's mother is a single mom with four children. Her brother stepped in to help raise the children as her husband has left without support. Before giving birth to Kenenitu, her mother used to make injera, an Ethiopian cuisine, for a living. Currently, she is not working. The family received logistical support from an NGO to arrive at the hospital and Kenenitu's mother is staying at another NGO in Addis Ababa for medical follow-up and accommodation. Due to their financial situation, the family cannot afford the medical bills for Kenenitu's treatment. Kenenitu's mother has struggled emotionally with her daughter's condition. She said, "I wondered what was going to happen to her. I used to cry a lot and I was not in my normal mental condition. But when I heard that she could be treated, my hope was restored and I felt better." Kenenitu 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. Kenenitu is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on December 20th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Kenenitu's procedure and care. After her recovery, Kenenitu will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Kenenitu's mother said, "After receiving treatment, I hope she will start making stool... I want to take her to school and educate her."
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.”
Thet is a 35 year old husband and father, who lives with his wife, son and in-laws in Mon State in Burma. Both Thet and his wife work in his uncle's grocery store, while his in laws are farmers. When he isn't working, Thet enjoys spending time with his son and reading. In November 2018, Thet started to experience tiredness when working, and frequent headaches. He also had a rapid heartbeat, and he couldn't sleep well. He went to a hospital in Mawlamyine, where he was referred to a different hospital in Yangon for further treatment. At the hospital in Yangon, Thet was diagnosed with mitral valve regurgitation and stenosis, which would require surgery to correct. Thet was sent home with medications to manage his condition. In March 2022, Thet went back to the hospital in Yangon, because of continuing fatigue, headaches, coughing and fever. The doctor told him they would contact him to schedule his surgery in May, but Thet never heard back from the hospital. When Thet told his neighbor about this, his neighbor gave him the phone number of a heart patient who had been helped by our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). Thet followed up, and thanks to the assistance of Burma Children Medical Fund, he is finally scheduled for surgery to replace the valve in his heart on October 13th, at Pun Hlaing Hospital. Now Thet needs your help to fund the $1,500 to cover the cost of this surgery. "I have sold all my jewelry to pay for the cost of traveling to the hospital. I feel less stressed since I met the BCMF staff,” said Thet.
Nu is a 57-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband and two sons in a refugee camp. Her sons go to school. She and her husband raise chickens and grow vegetables both for their own consumption and for sale. She has cataracts and her vision is blurry. She is often worried that she might slip and fall due to her poor vision, and she has to walk slowly and carefully. Sometimes, she will have a headache and a stiff neck. Since her vision has become blurry, she can no longer read, which she shared she especially likes to do to read the Bible or the lyrics for new hymns. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Nu. On September 15th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Nu'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. “When I go to church, I feel sad because I cannot participate, like reading passages from the Bible," she shared.
Francis is a helpful and supportive son who lives with his single mother and eight siblings. His family lives together in a rental house. Together, he and his mother work tending farms to support their family. Francis has been a great source of support for his family, especially in helping his mother raise his siblings. However, Francis experiences frequent convulsions, or uncontrollable muscle contractions, preceded by dizziness, nausea, and headaches, which have affected his lifestyle and his family. Francis first experienced a convulsion at the end of 2020 after being hit in the head by a ball and losing consciousness while playing football with his colleagues. This marked the beginning of his health troubles. Although he has been seeking treatment at a local health center, he decided to seek out specialized care at our medical partner's care center, AIC Kijabe Hospital, once the intervals of his convulsions began to increase. After receiving a CT scan, it was revealed that Francis has a brain tumor, which is the cause of his convulsions. Fortunately, he is scheduled for a craniotomy for tumor resection. This procedure will help remove the tumor and stop its spread. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to fund Francis's tumor removal surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on August 22nd. Once completed, he will hopefully be able to live more comfortably and confidently. Francis says, “My work is to tend farms so that I can help my mother and siblings. I sometimes experience many convulsions that are affecting my livelihood. I hope for treatment to end these discomforts.”
Faith is a beautiful four-month-old baby from Kenya. She is the youngest of two children. To support their family, her mother is a stay-at-home mom, and her father herds and sells cattle. Faith was born at home with several congenital conditions. Her parents took her to a nearby facility for examination, where she was diagnosed with spina bifida, hydrocephalus, and clubfoot. They were referred to another facility where a medical device, called a shunt, was used to help treat the hydrocephalus, draining the excess fluid from her brain. On discharge, the hospital referred her and her family to our medical partner's care center, BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital, where Faith was examined and scheduled for spina bifida repair surgery. Spina bifida is a type of neural tube defect in which the spine does not properly close around the spinal cord. Without treatment, Faith is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,151 to cover the cost of Faith's spina bifida closure surgery. The surgery is scheduled to take place on July 13th. This procedure will hopefully spare Faith from the risks associated with her condition, instead allowing her to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Faith’s father says, “When I saw the problems that my child has, I was worried that she would never receive treatment. I am hopeful she will receive treatment with your help.”