catherine joined Watsi on November 24th, 2016. Six years ago, catherine joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. catherine's most recent donation supported Steevenson, a 21-year-old from Haiti, to fund heart surgery and hopes to continue with his education.
catherine has funded healthcare for 70 patients in 12 countries.
catherine has funded healthcare for 70 patients in 12 countries.
Steevenson is a 21-year-old, living in a small farming village in southwest Haiti, with his parents and three younger siblings. Steevenson helps his parents tend to their farm, although he is hoping to be able to complete high school, once his health has improved. As a child, Steevenson suffered from a case of rheumatic fever, which left his heart severely damaged. As a result, one of his four heart valves cannot pump sufficient blood through his body, which leaves Steevenson weak and short of breath. Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is helping Steevenson to finally receive the treatment that he needs. Steevenson will fly to the Dominican Republic, where on September 26th, surgeons at Hospital CEDIMAT will attempt to repair his damaged valve. If this isn't possible, an artificial valve will be implanted. Haiti Cardiac Alliance is contributing $8,000 to pay for Steevenson's surgery. But Steevenson's family also needs your help to secure $1,500 to fund the cost of labs, medicines and follow up appointments, as well as for the passports and the social workers who will accompany the family to the Dominican Republic. Steevenson shared, "I have been praying for this surgery since I was a child, and I hope that when it is over I can be fully healthy and will have more energy."
Josephine is a 70-year-old mother of eight children who lives with her husband in Kenya. Although she and her husband both do some small-scale farming in her community, they depend on their children to support them. However, Josephine has recently been unable farm due to her current medical condition. Since January, Josephine has been experiencing troubling symptoms, including uncontrolled bleeding. She visited a nearby health facility in her hometown to be evaluated and was referred to a hospital for additional tests. There, she received a CT scan and a biopsy, which revealed that she has uterine cancer. Her doctor recommends that she undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, a surgical procedure to remove the uterus, to help remove the cancer from her body and hopefully stop its spread. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), is requesting $1,260 to fund Josephine's surgery. Josephine has gathered funds to help with a copay, but the full cost of the specialist procedure is out of reach. On August 25th, she will undergo gynecological surgery at AMHF's care center, AIC Kijabe Hospital. After this procedure, she should be able to resume her life free from discomfort and bleeding. Josephine says, “Struggling with cancer at my age is scary. I can’t believe it! I hope the surgery will help to get rid of the disease.”
Purity is an adorable seven-month-old baby who was born with spina bifida. She is the youngest of two children in her family. Her parents previously relied on casual labor to support their family, meaning they would pick up work wherever and whenever it was available. However, with jobs currently being so hard to find, they now do small-scale farming to provide for their family. Since she was born, Purity has had a swelling on her lower back. A few days after birth, her parents took her to a nearby facility, where she was examined three times without receiving any help. During the fourth visit, she was referred to another facility in the bigger city of Nakuru. There, she was diagnosed with spina bifida, a condition caused by the spine not properly closing around the spinal cord. After receiving a diagnosis, Purity was referred to our medical partner's care center, BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital (BKKH), for treatment. Last week, Purity's family was finally able to gather enough money to bring her to BKKH for an evaluation. However, due to financial constraints, her family is unable to fund the procedure needed to help her condition. Without treatment, Purity is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is able to help. Purity is scheduled to undergo spina bifida closure surgery on July 7th. Now, AMH is requesting $1,151 to cover the cost of Purity's spinal surgery. This procedure will hopefully spare Purity from the risks associated with her condition, instead allowing her to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Purity’s mother says, “I’m not happy to see my child with this condition. I would really like her to be treated and have a normal life.”
Kasaine is an 8-year-old boy, living with his family in a mud and grass thatched house in Southern Kenya. Kasaine's father is a farmer and a herder, while his mother stays home to take care of their family. Kasaine was born with a condition known as Rt hemiplegic CP, which means that his right side is weak, affecting his mobility, and the use of his hand. He tiptoes when he walks, and is able to walk only short distances. Kasaine also has clubfoot of his right foot, which causes his foot to be twisted, making it even more difficult for him to walk or to wear shoes. Fortunately, Kasaine's family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on June 20th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund Kasaine's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he'll be able to walk much more easily, play with friends, and continue with his education. “My prayer is to see my son walking normally like other children.” Kasaine's mother told us.
Prince is a 5-year-old and the youngest of three children. His father works at a construction site to help provide income for his family. In early February, Prince was on the school bus when the bus ran into a nearby shop. Prince was trapped between seats and became injured. He was rushed to a nearby health facility for first aid and underwent surgery. Two weeks later, he was referred to our medical partner's care center Kijabe Hospital for review. Prince then underwent a debridement and skin graft procedure in mid-February. Currently, Prince cannot walk and attend school, which is affecting his ability to move up in grades this year. Prince’s first two surgeries were paid for using his parent’s medical coverage, but the medical insurer turned down the current request for the surgery Prince needs to heal. Prince’s family shared that their trips to the hospital have exhausted their savings. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help Prince receive treatment. On May 25th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure. This surgery will address any risks of infection so that Prince’s leg can heal and he can walk again and resume his studies. AMH is requesting $1,185 to help to fund this procedure. Prince’s father said, “Prince has missed school since February. He was supposed to graduate to grade one, but due to the injuries, he did not. He needs this surgery so that he can be able to walk again.”
Bb Lafleur is a newborn baby from Haiti. She has an older brother and two loving parents. Bb Lafleur 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, Bb Lafleur has been experiencing an increasing head circumference. Without treatment, she will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, Project Medishare, is requesting $957 to cover the cost of surgery for Bb Lafleur at Hospital Bernard Mevs that will treat her hydrocephalus. This is the only site in the country where this care is currently available and the procedure is scheduled to take place on April 7th. This critical treatment will place a shunt to drain the excess fluid from Bb Lafleur's brain to reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Bb Lafleur will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Her family hopes that this early treatment of their baby's hydrocephalus will allow her to grow up without any health problems and have a full life ahead.
Jack is a teacher from the Democratic Republic of the Congo and is currently in Kenya in search of a better livelihood. He works as a French translator and part-time teacher, but his job is temporary so isn't providing a stable income yet. Jack and his wife are separated and together have two children aged 12 and 14 years old. He currently lives in a single-room rental house costing Ksh. 9000.00 ($90) per month. Two weeks ago, Jack was involved in a road accident that caused a left tibial fracture. Now he is unable to walk and needs to get around in a wheelchair. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On March 18th, Jack will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. If left untreated, he risks being unable to use his legs and could become permanently disabled. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to fund his procedure. Jack says, “This accident caused me to be confined in a wheelchair. If I don’t get treated I might lose my ability to walk. This surgery will really help to rectify the injuries.”
Erlando is a playful three-year-old boy from the Philippines who loves to giggle and watch Tik Tok videos. Erlando was born with a congenital abnormality that leads to intestinal complications. This condition requires Erlando to go through a series of corrective procedures to eliminate the abnormality and reduce the risk of life-threatening complications. Erlando's parents sew uniforms for a living and work hard to earn enough to sustain their daily needs. Our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, is helping Erlando's parents raise $1,279 to cover the total cost of Erlando's procedure and care. He is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on February 16th and after his recovery, Erlando will be able to live a happier and healthier life. Erlando's mother shared," This surgery will be the biggest blessing our child will ever receive given our economic situation. It will be a such a relief to see him grow up healthy."
Titus is a 22-year-old motorcyclist and is the sixth born in a family of nine: six boys and three girls. His father earns wages from farming and working in other people’s farms, while his mother takes care of their house and family. They live in a two-roomed iron-built house in their village. Two months ago, Titus was involved in a road accident. He was riding a motorcycle that lost brake power and fell into a ditch. Titus sustained lacerations on his knee and fractured his right patella, and was rushed to a nearby district hospital where he was sutured and discharged home. Three weeks later, when he tried to stretch his leg, his wound opened and an X-Ray imaging of his leg revealed an open patella fracture. The doctor has recommended open reduction and internal fixation surgery and skin grafting to avoid further complications and further wound infection. Currently, Titus is in pain and has to use a walking frame to get around. His parents have desperately searched for a solution, but their socioeconomic status with the family of many children in school with fees has limited the options of helping Titus. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On January 13th, Titus will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will relieve him of his pain and he'll be able to use his leg once he recovers. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,145 to fund this procedure. Titus shared, "My biggest hope is to get an opportunity to be treated so that I can go home to better my life.”
Daniel is a two-year-old from Tanzania. Daniel’s father is a tailor and his mother is a stay at home mother. Their family does not earn enough to be able to afford Daniel’s needed treatment which will allow him to be able to walk without difficulty. If not treated Daniel will continue to have challenges when walking. Daniel was diagnosed with genu varus where his legs bow outward so that his knees do not touch. 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 feels pain after walking for a while. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Daniel. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 3rd. Treatment will hopefully restore Daniel's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Daniel’s mother says, “Please help my son get this treatment so that he can be able to walk.”
Mary is a farmer and the single mother of three children who are now grown. She lives in her parents’ home in Central Kenya. Mary farms on a small piece of land given to her by her parents, growing food crops for home use. She has no source of income and relies on her kids for upkeep and support. However, all her children do not have stable jobs. Her parents are elderly and don’t work either, so she is worried about how to fund the care she needs. Mary first started experiencing pain in her stomach at the beginning of October. Mary's pain has gradually increased and her stomach began swelling making her uncomfortable. She went to a health facility in Central Kenya for a check-up and review. She has been diagnosed with cancer of the ovaries. She needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, can help. AMH is requesting $1,260 to fund Mary's surgery. On November 24th, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Mary will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain. Mary says, "I feel uncomfortable with a swollen stomach and I am in pain. I know this surgery will go a long way to help heal the issue and make me well again.”
Veronica is a 50-year-old small-scale farmer. She has a contagious smile and an optimism for life despite the challenges she has encountered. She is a mother of six children and lives with her husband who is a boda boda (motorcycle taxi) driver. She grows maize for home consumption and sells the surplus for additional income. 10 years ago, Veronica began experiencing troubling symptoms, including a small mass on her neck. She visited several hospitals for lab tests and medication, but nothing seemed to help and the mass has grown. She has also gained weight and experiences shortness of breath and a fast heart. A friend told her about our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH) and she visited AMH's care center hoping for a clear diagnosis and treatment. She was diagnosed with an enlarged thyroid and surgery is recommended to prevent her symptoms from worsening. On October 19th, she will undergo a thyroidectomy at AMH's care center, where surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $936, and she and her family need help raising money. Veronica shared, "this condition is making me weak and I can’t work like before. I want to be strong for my children so that they can receive education and get their daily needs."