Mark joined Watsi on December 30th, 2014. Six years ago, Mark joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Mark's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Duncan, a strong and optimistic man from Kenya, for pain-relieving spinal fusion surgery.
Mark has funded healthcare for 76 patients in 11 countries.
Mark has funded healthcare for 76 patients in 11 countries.
Duncan is a 28 year old man who is currently single and unable to work due to his condition. Duncan experienced trauma in early 2010 after a road traffic accident that caused spine injury and hearing loss. At the time of the accident, Duncan had a loss of consciousness, memory loss, and was even paraplegic at one point. He also had tinnitus in his right ear but with earlier support from Watsi donors, he got a hearing aid fitted and can now communicate well. Duncan now walks on a crutch, however, his pain worsens with movement, and radiates to his lower limbs. Because of his condition, Duncan has been in and out of hospitals. He is supposed to visit the hospital regularly. For convenience, he currently lives with his relatives nearby in Nairobi. His parents are elderly farmers in his ancestral home in Kisii in rural Kenya. Duncan is currently struggling to walk. An MRI exam identified canal stenosis and bone degeneration, so doctors have recommended surgery. He is scheduled for L4/5, L5/S1 Decompression, and Spine Fusion to avert chances of being immobile for the rest of his life. The hospital is requesting $1,500 to perform his surgery and his health insurance coverage will not cover this care. He currently relies on well-wishers to pay for his medical bills. Duncan told us, “I cannot walk well without support. I am also in pain and very uncomfortable. I hope to get better soon.”
Queen is a six-year-old girl and the first born child in a family of two children. She and her younger brother are cared for by their grandparents as their mother sadly passed away in 2018 and their father is absent. Queen has been happily helping her grandmother with little home chores like washing dishes, sweeping the compound, and sometimes cooking. Both grandparents depend entirely on small scale farming of maize, vegetables, and bananas. As her name suggests, Queen is a nice and charming student who was to join first-grade early this year but unfortunately during the December holidays last year, she was involved in a painful fire accident. One day, Queen was helping her grandmother prepare porridge on a three stone fire place. Unknowingly, her dress caught on fire and badly injured her legs. Her wound healed, but burn scar contractures developed because of the tightened the skin around her legs. As a result, this has limited her ability to stand, walk, and enjoy her daily activities with her grandmother. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Queen receive treatment to relieve her pain. On August 5th, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery to help her walk again. Now, she needs help to fund this $874 procedure. Queen’s uncle says: “She used to be the one helping her grandmother who has already aged up but with her condition right now her grandmother has to help her do everything. Please help my niece.”
Nuriya is 2-year-old toddler from Ethiopia who loves his mom and dad very much and always wants to be with them. Nuriya enjoys chatting and playing with his parents. Now he also has a three-month-old baby sister. His parents are working hard to raise them both. They shared that they went through a lot as a previous immigrant in Saudi Arabia and their family now decided to stay in their home country to raise a family and support it from their homeland. Nuriya's grandparents gave his parents a small piece of land that they are now farming. However, the fruit that they farm is only enough to maintain the daily needs of the family. Nuriya was born with hypospadias, a congenital abnormality that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility. Fortunately, Nuriya is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on July 6th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Nuriya was also born with another birth condition that Watsi donors supported for treatment and his family is tremendously grateful for support. Nuriya's mother is inspired by the care he is receiving, “I hope he will be a doctor in the future. Just as the doctor who treated him and changed his health in the past, I want him to grow and treat so many kids with sickness and disability.”
Olivia is a 3-year-old girl who lives with her parents in a small city in the north central part of Haiti. Her father works in a local hospital and her mother is a homemaker. She is their only child. Olivia 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. Olivia will fly to Cayman Islands to receive treatment. On June 4th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which doctors will close the hole in her heart with a patch, and dissect the blockage of her valve. Another organization, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is contributing $18,000 to pay for surgery. Olivia'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, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Olivia's family overseas. From father: "Our family will pray for everyone who is helping to save our daughter's life."
Abigael is a 14-month-old baby girl and the youngest in her family of three children. Her mother does household work washing clothes and cleaning houses for their nearby homes. Her father separated from the family many years ago. Abigael was born with an amniotic band on her right foot, and a webspace on her left foot and right hand. If these deformities are not corrected, they will make it more difficult for her to walk and hold things using her right hand in future. Doctors recommend Abigael undergo surgery to help correct her condition. However, Abigael's family cannot afford the cost of her care. Fortunately, Abigael will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare. She is scheduled to undergo her treatment on May 9th. African Mission Healthcare is requesting $1,224 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. The surgery will be of great benefit to Abigael at this age because she will be able to heal more quickly and be able to walk like other children even sooner. Abigael's mother shared, “I am appealing for support for my daughter to undergo surgery so that she can live like other children.”
Htoo is a 6-year-old boy from Thailand. He lives with his parents, brother and two sisters in a refugee camp on the border of Thailand and Burma. Htoo and his siblings were born in the refugee camp. Htoo’s mother is a homemaker, while Htoo’s older brother and sisters go to primary school and Htoo attends kindergarten. His father used to work as a day labourer, but has been unemployed since the pandemic began. Currently, they have no income and receive some financial support for their daily expenses. Luckily, Htoo's family receives free basic healthcare and education in the camp. In late October 2020, Htoo was diagnosed with an inguinal hernia. If he stands up for a short period of time, or walks, the right side of his private area will swell. Around twice a week, Htoo shares with his parents that this area is hurting him and he feels uncomfortable. Fortunately, on April 8th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at Mae Sot General Hospital, our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Htoo's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on April 8th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Htoo's father shared, “Most of the time, my son is very active and playful. He will only rest when he complains about the pain.”
Doto is a 10-year-old boy who is a very social and cheerful child. Doto has a twin brother by the name of Kurwa. His parents are small scale farmers who grow maize and vegetables to make a living. Doto's father also seeks day labouring jobs to supplement his income and provide for their family. Doto was diagnosed with left genu varus, or bow-leggedness. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he cannot walk to school comfortably or for long periods of time. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Doto. His treatment is scheduled to begin on February 11th. Treatment will hopefully restore Doto's mobility, return to walking and playing normally, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Doto’s father shared, “I would love my son to lead a normal life like his twin without his leg being a challenge. Please help correct his leg.”
Ry is a 69-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She has two sons, three daughters, and five grandchildren. She lives with her husband and all of her grandchildren. Her husband does not work currently, so they spend most of their time taking care of the house and of their grandchildren. In her free time, she likes to listen to monks praying on the radio. Six years ago, Ry developed a cataract in her right eye, causing her blurry vision and photophobia. These symptoms have worsened in the past five months. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Ry learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three hours seeking treatment. On October 5th, doctors will perform a small incision cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in her right eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $229 procedure. Ry said, "I hope after surgery it will be easier for me to see where I am going and what my grandchildren are doing, so that I can keep them safe."
Noeun is a 41-year-old construction worker. He works alongside his wife; they have been married for fifteen years and have two children together. He takes his children to school everyday, and in his free time he loves to play soccer or exercise. Three years ago, Noeun fell from the roof of a construction site and suffered a traumatic injury to his left hip. He has taken medicine to help with the pain, but lately the pain has gotten worse, and he has difficulty walking and sleeping. He came to Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) on recommendation from a neighbor. An x-ray found that Noeun had a fracture in his left hip so doctors now plan to perform a hemiarthroplasty, a surgical procedure that involves replacing half of the hip joint. Once he recovers his hip pain will be gone and he will be able to walk easily and return to work. Now he needs your help to fund this $539 procedure.
Margaret is a 65-year-old woman from Kenya. She is a happy lady with two adult sons, whom she raised as a young, single mother. Margaret initially sought care due to excruciating pains in her knee and right leg. Her knee problems started back in late 2017, and she visited a health facility in her hometown, Kiambu, for medical attention. However, after that first treatment, her condition has only deteriorated. After visiting several health centers, she was referred to our medical partner's care center, Kijabe Hospital. In early October, she was reviewed by their orthopedic team, who recommended a total knee replacement surgery. Margaret underwent a knee replacement procedure and was finally discharged after a lengthy stay in the hospital. Unfortunately, during her follow-up clinical review visits, her doctors continued to discover infections and fluctuant swelling that require further attention and treatment. Margaret has undergone additional treatment including draining and debridement on the area that was operated on during her total knee replacement surgery. Now, she will need another debridement and skin graft procedure, in addition to a total knee implant hardware removal, to prevent possible infections that could result in amputation or even death. She is currently ambulating on crutches. In the past, Margaret relied on national health insurance funding to support her medical and surgical treatment costs. However, the money has been depleted over time, and they are unable to cover any additional surgical bills for her. Margaret does not work and has been relying on her sons for physical and financial support. They do not have have stable jobs and are responsible for monitoring her treatment and care. Margaret and her sons have tried to raise funds from friends and relatives, to no avail. They are appealing for financial help. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Margaret receive treatment. On November 4th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to heal the infection and allow her to walk more easily. Now, Margaret needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Margaret shared, “I have been through a lot with this leg. Anytime it heals, the pain starts again. I can’t even sleep because of the pain. I appreciate any support you can provide."
Vin is a 32-year-old construction worker from Cambodia. Vin's sister and parents have died, so he now lives with other relatives. When he isn't working, Vin enjoys meeting up with his friends and helping people work on their homes while listening to the radio. One year ago, Vin developed hip pain on the left side. He presented to our medical partner Children's Surgical Centre with left femoral neck necrosis. Surgeons at CSC will perform a left hip replacement that will reduce his pain and increase his mobility again. Currently, he can not walk without supports and is unable to work. His treatment is scheduled for October 7th, and Vin needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. Vin said, "I hope I am able to walk again so I may work again and my family members won't have to worry so much about me."
Thomas is an 11-month-old baby boy from Tanzania. He is the last born in a family of five children. Thomas was born through an emergency cesarean section, which his parents were not expecting. They had to sell some of their harvest which they had saved for home use to be able to pay the bill. Thomas' parents are small-scale farmers who depend entirely on what they harvest for their living. Thomas has clubfoot of both feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Thomas traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on September 8th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Thomas's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily and wear shoes when the time comes. Thomas’s mother says, “We have been left with no money to be able to afford our son’s treatment cost, kindly help us.”