Sierra joined Watsi on December 8th, 2014. One year ago, Sierra became the 4518th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 1,483 more people have become monthly donors! Sierra's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Gian, a six-year-old from Kenya, to fund hypospadius surgery.
Sierra has funded healthcare for 51 patients in 11 countries.
Gian is a young boy from Kenya. Gian’s mother sells clothes and his father is a private school teacher. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Gian’s father has not been receiving any monthly income because learning in institutions has been suspended until the pandemic is over. This has made it hard for his parents to earn enough money for his surgery because they only get enough for basic needs of their family of four. Gian has a twin brother who also needs surgery. Gian 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, Gian is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on July 13th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $735 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Gian’s mother says: “Having gone through several revision surgeries, I am praying and hoping that this surgery will be successful.”
Kyaw is a 23-year-old young man from Burma. He lives with his mother, younger brother, and sister in Mawlamyine City. He and his mother own a small plot of land where they plant different fruit trees, such as mango, rambutan, durian, lime and others. They sell the fruit at the market and in total make around 200,000 kyat (approx. 200 USD) per month. His younger sister is in her final year as a university student, while his younger brother is in grade nine. Kyaw used to work as a day laborer sometimes when he was well, but now his symptoms prevent him from working. In his free time, he loves to read newspapers and listen to music at home. Kyaw was born with a ventricular septal defect, a cardiac condition in which a hole exists between the two lower chambers of the heart. Blood leaks through this hole without first passing through his lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving him feeling sick and short of breath. Kyaw is scheduled to undergo heart surgery on June 14th to correct his condition and improve her quality of life. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Kyaw's procedure and care. Kyaw's mother said, “My son is a good man and he always works hard for the family. When he gets sick, he hides it because he is worried that I would feel stressed about him. He does not go out much and enjoy himself. He always helps me in the garden.”
Jalen is a lively 6-month-old baby who was born with an anorectal malformation. Over the last six months, he has had three surgeries for his condition and now a PSARP surgery is needed as a final stage. The surgery will allow Jalen to be able to pass stool normally. Jalen’s past three surgeries were funded by the national health insurance system (NHIF), but he has now exhausted the maximum surgical package the insurance offers. His parents are not able to meet the cost of surgery. Jalen’s father is a peasant farmer while his mom a housewife. She recently completed college and is yet to secure a job. Jalen has a 7-year-old sibling and their family lives together in a rented house. Their reliance on seasonal farming limits their income level, leaving too little to meet the cost of surgery. Jalen’s mother says, “My hope is to see Jalen recovering and leading a normal life like any other child.”
Korb is a 34-year-old mother of two from Cambodia. She has one son and one daughter, she enjoys cooking for her family, cleaning the house, and playing with her children. Three years ago, Korb had a serious 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, Korb experiences ear discharge, pain, itchiness, and headaches. She cannot hear others clearly and has been unable to find any work. Korb traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 9th, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in her right ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. "I hope that after surgery, the infection will stop and my hearing will improve and my family will not have to worry anymore," she said.
Bres is a 38-year-old rice and vegetable farmer from Cambodia. He is married with one son and two daughters. When he is finished working, he enjoys listening to music and spending time with his children. Twenty-three years ago, Bres 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, Bres experiences dizziness, discharge, tinnitus, pain, and hearing loss. He is unable to hear others clearly and cannot communicate easily. Bres traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 9th, 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 $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. "I hope that the ear discharge and the ear infection stops, and my hearing improves," he shared.
Nasma is a ten year old girl from Tanzania who has had a challenging health background since she was young. When she was one year old, Nasma's ability to walk and talk was affected. This was followed by increased head size due to fluid accumulation in the brain. Nasma previously had surgery and she recovered well, albeit with slow growth. Unfortunately in 2016, she fell sick again and was in a coma for 6 weeks. Her parents had lost hope and thought she would pass away. However, she made a remarkable improvement and further needed hydrocephalus care. Her parents were not able to settle the hospital bill and went back to the village. With a continuous head migraine, Nasma's parents brought her to our medical partner in June 2019 where she had VPS shunt insertion with Watsi donor support. Later in December 2019, she was brought back with complaints of cries and head migraine. Upon review and several days of observations, the surgeons recommended a shunt revision to reduce intracranial pressure. She is in much pain, neither able to walk nor talk. The surgery will greatly reduce the pain and chances of brain damage. Nasma's parents are peasants who rely on subsistence farming to make ends meet. They had to borrow bus fare to reach our facility. Nasma has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of her condition, Nasma has been experiencing Increased head circumference and persistent pain. Without treatment, Nasma will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $728 to cover the cost of surgery for Nasma that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 2nd and will drain the excess fluid from Nasma's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. Nasma’s mother says, “Please help my daughter get this treatment so that she may even be able to smile and talk again.”
Dalin is a third grade student from Cambodia. She enjoys reading books and playing with her two sisters. When she was five years old, Dalin 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, Dalin experiences hearing loss, discharge, infection, and headaches. She frequently has difficulty focusing in class and has trouble communicating with others. She has undergone five days of antibiotic injections in her ear to attempt to clear the infection prior to operation, and now requires surgery. Dalin traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On January 13th, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in her left ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. "I hope that my daughter's ear issue will be resolved and that I won't have to worry about her anymore." -Dalin's Mother
Jane, a self-employed woman, was unfortunate to fall in a latrine in July 2018, severely breaking her leg. Upon the accident, she was rushed to Nakuru Hospital, where she was admitted and had surgery in which a metal plate was inserted. She went for clinics in the same hospital after being discharged, but the leg was not improving at all. Her uncle came to her rescue in June 2019 and brought her to Kijabe Hospital. Jane was admitted, had the metals on her leg replaced with lighter ones, and was discharged. She has been coming for clinics to monitor her leg. An x-ray was done and it was decided that another surgery was needed. Due to lack of funds, Jane went home helpless. Being a divorced woman and self-employed (selling second-hand clothes), Jane is the breadwinner of her family of five children. With her mobility being hindered by her broken leg, she cannot do as much as she would have if she’d be on both feet. This surgery will definitely improve Jane’s and her children’s quality of life.
Sarah has a cardiac condition called pulmonary atresia, in which one of the four valves of the heart is missing, and blood cannot adequately reach the lungs. Last year, she underwent a procedure called a cardiac catheterization to confirm that her condition can be fixed; now, she is ready to proceed with the surgery. Sarah lives with her parents and older brothers in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince; she likes playing with her cousins and her neighborhood friends. Sarah's mother said, "We know this is a very big surgery for Sarah but are hopeful that when it is done her heart will be normal."
Elisha is a child from Kenya. Elisha is the last born in a family of 5. He is currently a nursery school boy and likes reading and scribbling things on a paper. He also likes playing with other children both at home and at school. The family used to live in Marakwet but fled as a result of ethnic clashes. They now live in a village called Kachibora at a farm. Elisha has clubfoot of his right foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Elisha traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on October 07. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,224 to fund Elisha's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily and wear closed shoes. “Your help will be highly appreciated. Continue doing good.” Elisha’s father noted.
Lameck is a child from Tanzania. Lameck is a fifth born child in a family of five children, he is a shy little boy and likes to keep to himself. His parents are subsistence farmers who earn very little and can barely support their family. Lameck has clubfoot of both his feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Lameck traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on September 10th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $890 to fund Lameck's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily with no pain and difficulty. Lameck’s father says, “Please help my son get the treatment he needs so he may be able to walk without difficulty.”
Sokmy is a 41-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. He has three daughters, and enjoys helping with the housework and feeding the animals nearby the house. In April 2019, Sokmy was involved in a motorcycle accident, fracturing his right femur. His right leg is now shorter than the other, and he has difficulty walking without support and has limited flexibility in his knee. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On August 7, Sokmy will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $430. Surgery will help to realign the femur bones and allow them to heal properly. He will be able to walk easily again and relieve the pressure on his knee. He says, "I hope that my condition will improve and that I will no longer have anymore pain, and I can return to work and help my family."