Michael joined Watsi on April 11th, 2013. Nine years ago, Michael joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Michael's most recent donation traveled 8,200 miles to support Kenay, a toddler from Ethiopia, to fund surgery for a birth condition.
Michael has funded healthcare for 115 patients in 12 countries.
Michael has funded healthcare for 115 patients in 12 countries.
Kenay is a sweet eleven-month-old baby boy from Ethiopia who loves to play with his mom. He is the fourth child of his parents. Kenay has started weaning and is eating Plumpy Nut, a nutrition supplement donated by the government and organizations to children with malnutrition, as Kenay was underweight. Kenay’s dad is a farmer and has land, but because of the drought, they couldn’t harvest enough, even for the family’s consumption. Initially, Kenay got his emergency colostomy from Sekota Hospital, which was supported by the community. However, he became so sick and underweight that his mother and some family members lost hope in his ability to survive. Fortunately, his mom heard about our medical partner’s care center, BethanyKids, from a social worker, and upon learning that they could get treatment for his condition, their hope increased. Bethany Kids covered the family’s transportation and accommodation to bring Kenay to the hospital, where the medical team first put him on a nutrition program for over four months to treat malnutrition. Now, Kenay’s weight is normal, and he is fit for surgery. Kenay 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. The long journey with multiple issues with his colostomy care has significantly impacted the psychological health of his parents, and they are requesting financial assistance with his surgery cost. Kenay is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on November 22nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,500 to cover Kenay’s procedure and care costs. After his recovery, Kenay will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Kenay’s mom said, “I hope my child will get treatment, and I hope he will heal after the treatment. I hope I will see him growing up and start a decent life.”
Carl is a student from Haiti. Carl lives with his parents and two younger brothers in a small town on the southern coast of Haiti. His father is a teacher and his mother is a homemaker. Carl is in the fourth grade and likes his math and science classes. Carl has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation. One of the four valves of Carl's heart is severely damaged due to an infection he suffered earlier in childhood; this valve cannot adequately pump blood through his body, leaving him weak and short of breath. The care that he needs is not available in the country, but fortunately Carl will be able to fly to Egypt to receive treatment. On January 31st, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will first attempt to repair his damaged valve. If this is not possible, the surgery team will then implant an artificial replacement. Another organization, Gift of Life International, is contributing $6000 to pay for surgery. Carl's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep. 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, International Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Carl's family overseas. Carl's father shared: "Our family is very hopeful that this surgery will let our son live a normal life again."
Four year old Neserian lives with his family in a village in the Manyara region of Tanzania. The family has long depended upon agriculture and livestock keeping to sustain them. However, climate change has shadowed their agricultural activities, rendering them increasingly unreliable. Consequently, Neserian’s father has turned to selling cattle to support his household. But drought has led to the cattle being unable to feed properly, so that they fetch considerably less money at the market. Neserian's father works hard to meet the needs of his family. In October 2022, Neserian was alone at home, when he ventured too close to an open flame. His clothing caught fire, and he suffered burns to his right elbow and wrist. The neighbors came to his aid, and when his mother returned home, she brought him to a local hospital for care. Neserian remained at the hospital for a month. Despite the care that he received, Neserian has only a limited range of motion of his right arm. Sadly, the local hospital lacks the resources to address this. Neserian and his father traveled for nine hours to consult with doctors from our medical partner's care center the Plaster House NGO. After a thorough assessment, it was determined that Neserian would need to undergo a Z-plasty procedure, to release his right axilla and elbow, along with a full thickness skin graft on his right hand. The pinky on his right hand will need to be amputated. The surgical procedures are set for August 15th but the cost of treatment is beyond the means of Neserian's family, prompting them to appeal for your assistance in covering the $1,088 needed for Neserian's care. After he has healed completely, Neserian will be able to use his hand, and lead a full life, free from disability. Neserian’s father says: “We wish for him to be able to use his hand because he is about to start school, and we are worried it will be hard for him as his right hand is the one affected.”
Maria Gorrety is a 56-year-old single mother from Ongata Rongai near Nairobi. Maria does works washing clothes for her neighbors, work that is just enough to sustain her. Her daughter recently secured a job with a company in Nairobi as is happy to be able to get work when it is available. Their income is only sufficient to maintain them for basic needs. While working, Maria slipped while stepping on a stool to clean, and she fell and broke her leg. An x-ray showed she had a closed fracture tibia on her left leg. Her family has been unable to raise the money for treatment and needs help. She is experiencing pain and cannot use her leg. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner could help. On October 12, Maria will undergo a fracture repair procedure called an open reduction and internal fixation. Maria will no longer be in pain; she will heal and be able to use her leg and work. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. “I am used to doing my own things and caring for myself and my daughter. I am worried about my leg and kindly request help so that my leg can heal soon and I can get back on my feet,” said Maria.
Daniel, who is 34 years old, lives with his mother in Kawaida village in rural Kenya. He works in construction trying to get jobs whenever he can, while his mother sells groceries at a nearby market. Daniel is separated from his wife and child, which he shared has left him feeling sad and incomplete. On Sunday, July 30th, Daniel was a passenger in a Matatu (public bus), which was involved in an accident. Daniel sustained injuries to his back, right femur and his right tibia. The surgeon at the hospital where Daniel was brought told him that his back and tibia would heal over time, but the fractured femur needed to be surgically repaired. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, can help. On August 7th, Daniel will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation, at Nazareth Hospital. This procedure will ensure that Daniel's fracture will heal properly. Now, African Mission Healthcare is requesting $1,049 to fund Daniel's surgery. Daniel said: “I kindly request help because I have no one to turn to. I am hoping one day I will be able to walk again with my legs.”
Michael is a three-month-old infant from Haiti. He was born to a very young mom. He and his mom live with her parents while she attends high school. Michael has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Michael has been experiencing an increasing head circumference. Without treatment, Michael will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Fortunately, our medical partner Project Medishare can help. Michael is scheduled to undergo surgery on August 8th when doctors will drain the excess fluid from his brain to reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. Project Medishare is requesting $897 to cover the cost of surgery for Michael. With proper treatment, Michael will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Michael's family said they are grateful for this procedure to give him a chance at a normal, healthy life.
Nelson is a 79-year-old loving father from the Philippines. He lives with his partner and relies on their only son's financial support to meet their basic needs. He has a passion for gardening and loves to plant vegetables at home. Three years ago, Nelson's health took a downturn when he experienced bleeding during urination. After a consultation, he was diagnosed with a urinary tract infection and was prescribed medication. However, the pain reoccurred, prompting further investigation. An ultrasound revealed the presence of a bladder stone, necessitating surgical intervention. Over time, Nelson's condition has deteriorated, leading to increased urinary frequency and pain, which severely hinders his daily activities. Fortunately, Nelson found his way to our medical partner World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP) who will be helping him receive the treatment he needs. He is scheduled to undergo a urinary cystolithectomy, the removal of the bladder stone, on July 21st. A portion of the cost of his treatment is being supported by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and WSFP is raising $1,128 to cover the remaining cost. After treatment, Nelson will hopefully have a pain-free and healthier life. Deeply appreciative of the support he received, Nelson shared, "I'm eternally grateful to Watsi and World Surgical Foundation Philippines. Your generosity has given me hope to have a more comfortable life, and be free from all that I've been enduring for years."
Sofia is a 21-year-old student from the Philippines. She loves to read and is very active in school. She is in her final year of college and is getting ready to graduate. During her spare time, Sofia likes to help out in her family's sari-sari store. When Sofia was in high school, she noticed a mass in her left breast. Fearing their family’s history of breast cancer, Sofia and her mom decided to consult a doctor. Sofia was diagnosed with breast cancer. A mastectomy, a surgery to remove breast tissue, was suggested to rid her body of breast cancer and to prevent the cancer from metastasizing. However, due to financial constraints, Sofia was unable to undergo treatment at the time. Fortunately, our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP), is helping Sofia receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a mastectomy on June 24th at Our Lady of Peace Hospital. A portion of the cost of her treatment is being supported by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and WSFP is raising $1058 to cover the remaining cost. After treatment, Sofia will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Sofia shared, "I hope the operation will be a success so that I can continue my studies, and my mom can stop worrying about my future health conditions. I'm grateful to WATSI and World Surgical Foundation Philippines for providing me with this opportunity to have the surgery free of charge."
San is a 26-year-old factory worker who lives with his wife and five-year-old daughter in Kandal province in Cambodia. His wife is employed at the same factory where San works. In March 2023, San was the victim of an attempted robbery, during which the left side of his neck was injured. He was treated at a local hospital, where surgeons attempted to do a nerve transfer. However, the doctors told San that his condition would require further investigation and treatment. San was referred to our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, where he was diagnosed with a brachial plexus injury on his left side. The brachial plexus is a nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Injuries to this nerve network can result in a loss of function and sensation. Currently, San can't move his arm and his left hand is paralyzed. He also experiences a great deal of pain and is unable to work or care for himself. With assistance from the Children's Surgical Centre, San is now scheduled to undergo brachial plexus repair surgery on May 9th at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre, the only facility in the country where this surgery is available. After he has recovered, San hopes to be able to use his arm and hand again. Children's Surgical Centre is requesting $709 to fund this procedure. San said: "I'm hoping to regain movement in my arm and to get back to work."
39-year-old Sopheap lives with his wife and two young children in rural Pailin province in Cambodia. Both Sopheap and his wife farm potatoes, and sometimes rice, for extra income. In his free time, Sopheap likes to play volleyball in the village. In early March, Sopheap was in a motorbike accident and suffered an injury to his back. X-rays showed a C6-7 dislocation of the spine. Since the accident, Sopheap has not been able to work, experiences numbness in his arm, and is unable to sleep comfortably through the night due to his pain. Fortunately, our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre (CSC), is helping Sopheap to receive treatment. On April 6th, doctors at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre will perform spinal surgery with implants to stabilize the spinal column. Now, Sopheap and his family need your help to raise $1,500 to fund the procedure and care. The money will cover the cost of hospitalization, surgery, implants, physical therapy, and medication. After recovery, Sopheap's condition should improve significantly, and he should have full mobility after four to eight weeks. Sopheap shared: "I want to be able to go back to work and support my family."
Masiaya is a two year old baby boy. He was the fifth child born to his mother, who is a second wife to her husband. The family resides in a remote area called Oloirobi, located within the Ngorongoro area. They are members of the Maasai community, and Masiaya's father is a cattle breeder. While playing with his brother, Masiaya was accidentally pushed, and he fell into an open fire. When Masiaya was rescued, he was rushed to a nearby hospital. Sadly, despite treatment, the wound on his head has never healed properly. He has been treated at different hospitals, but he still has a wound on his head. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is here to help. On February 27th, surgeons at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre will perform burn contracture release surgery to help Masiaya heal completely, and to reduce the risk of infection. Now his family needs your help to fund this $874 procedure. Masiaya’s mother says: “I am constantly worried about my son’s health because the head is such a sensitive part of the body.”
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.”