J. joined Watsi on August 15th, 2013. 25 other people also joined Watsi on that day! J.'s most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Naomi, a baby girl from Tanzania, to treat a myelomeningocele and hydrocephalus.
J. has funded healthcare for 32 patients in 10 countries.
J. has funded healthcare for 32 patients in 10 countries.
“I just pray that my baby will get well, grow up like the rest of my children and later on become independent,” says Naomi’s mother. Meet Naomi, a newborn baby girl from Tanzania. Naomi is the youngest of five and according to our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), “She feeds well but cries whenever she is lifted up or moved.” Naomi cries more often than other newborns because she has myelomeningocele with hydrocephalus. As AMHF explains, “Naomi has an open lesion on her lower back which is leaking cerebral spinal fluid [CSF]. If not treated, Naomi is at risk of contracting infection and causing bigger problems.” AMHF continues, “Naomi’s mother works very hard as a small scale farmer. She lost her husband a few months after conceiving so she is the one taking care of the whole family. Her financial situation is currently not good given that she cannot do anything to earn some money because she has a newborn who is also not well. She relies on her relative to support her.” $1,100 will fund treatment for Naomi. AMHF explains that after treatment, “Naomi will not lose CSF from her lower back anymore, she will be out of risk of contracting infection and with extensive physiotherapy she may have the ability to use her lower limbs.” Let’s help Naomi and her mother access the healthcare Naomi needs.
Zar Zar is a shy 14-year-old girl from Burma. She lives with her parents, 17-year-old brother, and two younger brothers. Her mother says that Zar Zar is a good student and she studies hard. Zar Zar is in the 9th grade and is looking forward to completing her studies. Her parents and older brother work as rice farmers, but this is typically not enough income to cover their expenses. Zar Zar has been diagnosed with encephalocele, a neural tube defect that causes a mass to grow. “When she was born her parents noticed a small lump on the bridge of her nose,” Zar Zar’s doctor at Burma Border Projects (BBP) tells us. “At that time the bump did not cause her any physical discomfort and she was otherwise a healthy, active baby. Her encephalocele now takes up the bridge of her nose and completely obstructs the vision in her left eye. Although it causes her considerable discomfort, she has learned to make do as well as she can. Only having vision in one eye has not stopped her from going to school, nor has the stigma attached to her condition.” “In the future, she said that she would like to be a teacher,” BBP adds. “At the moment, teaching is like a hobby for her, and she helps her younger siblings and her peers with their school work, she added that she enjoys explaining things and helping people learn. In addition, in her free time, she likes running and staying healthy.” Zar Zar’s family cannot afford the surgery needed to remove the growth from Zar Zar’s face, but with $1,500 we can make sure she receives the treatment. “After treatment she will concentrate on her education and hopes to help her family,” BBP explains. "Treatment will improve her confidence and make her more outgoing. Zar Zar’s treatment will also benefit the family as they will no longer have to worry about paying for expensive surgery and can look to the future with happiness."
"Dennis is now in form four, his last year of high school; he is the hope for our family,” shares Dennis’ mother. “We have struggled to educate him so that he could help us in the future. I hope he will have successful operation.” Meet Dennis, an 18-year-old young man from rural Kenya, and the second born in a family of six children. “Dennis fell in 2009 and sustained a fracture on the tibia bone of the right leg,” shares our medical partner African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). “Dennis did not go to the hospital. However, about two weeks ago, the leg started having pain and difficulty in walking." AMHF will perform an open reduction and internal fixation surgery (ORIF) to properly realign Dennis' bone. The surgery will cost $1125. “We expect after an ORIF, Dennis will recover fully and be able to use his leg.” continues AMHF. “Dennis will be able to attend school and later on achieve his dreams and be able to support his family in the future.”
This little boy is one-year-old John Knox from Haiti. "John Knox lives with his parents and one older brother. His father is a fisherman, and his mother sells goods in the market," shares our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA). "John Knox was born with a heart condition called pulmonic stenosis, in which the valve carrying blood between the heart and the lungs is too narrow to allow blood to pass freely," continues HCA. "Because of this, the body is deprived of oxygen and blood backs up into the heart, causing heart failure." John Knox is a happy and curious baby, although he is small for his age because of his heart condition. His mother tells us, "I have seen that John Knox has been suffering ever since he was born, and it's very hard for me. I'm very happy that the doctors have agreed to help him!" Surgery for his condition costs $1,500, and it is expected to have a huge impact on his health and development. "John Knox's pulmonary valve should be stretched to a near-normal size, allowing blood to pass freely to his lungs. He should be able to live a full life without further cardiac issues," explains HCA.
This little guy is Gerson, a one-year-old from Guatemala. Together with his parents and three siblings, Gerson lives in a humble home in Central Guatemala. Recently Gerson was diagnosed with malnutrition. Our medical partner, Wuqu’ Kawoq, tells us that Gerson has had several acute diarrheal illnesses and has lost some weight. He has stopped growing and has been lethargic and acting differently from other children. Though his parents work hard to provide for the family, they’ve been experiencing a financial crisis that makes it hard to put food on the table. Gerson’s parents tell the Wuqu’ Kawoq social work team that they’ve noticed that Gerson is growing much more slowly then their other children, which they attribute to the tough financial times they are going through. They’ve reached out to Watsi for help so that their little boy can "grow up, study and be a professional." For $535, Watsi can help get little Gerson on the road back to health. He will receive food, nutrition education, and nutritional supplements. This regimen should stop Gerson’s diarrhea and allow him to start growing again. His developmental milestones should improve and hopefully he will go on to live a happy, health life!
This is Yeat. She's 68-years-old, mother to five, and grandmother to ten. "Yeat's vision was partially restored - thanks to a successful cataract surgery funded by Watsi donors last week - but her vision remained blurred because of the hypermature cataract remaining on her left eye," Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) tells us. "She continues has problems working on the rice farm and cannot see clearly to watch TV or read." With $150 CSC clinicians will be able to move the cataract from Yeat's left eye, too. "She misses reading the most and looks forward to returning to work on the rice farm once her vision is restored," CSC writes about Yeat. Let's help Yeat see clearly again!
Say hi to Thai, an 82-year-old man in Cambodia who has five children and six grandchildren. Thai has a mature cataract in his right eye which affects his vision. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), explains, "Thai had a successful surgery to remove the cataract in his left eye but for his vision to be fully restored the remaining cataract in his right eye will also need to be removed." For $150, Thai will receive the surgery he needs to see clearly again. CSC tells us, "He likes listening to the monks praying and is looking forward to being able to go to the pagoda on his own if his eyesight is restored. Thai also looks forward to taking care of his grandchildren.” Let’s help Thai get his eyesight back and achieve these goals!
Meet eight-year-old Mi Soe! Mi Soe lives with her parents and younger brother in Thailand. Her parents work as agricultural day laborers in their village, planting beans and corn to make money. Due to the seasonal nature of their work, they sometimes aren’t able to make ends meet and have to ask around for small loans. Despite their circumstances, Mi Soe’s mother dreams of sending Mi Soe and her brother to school. “When Mi Soe was just two years old," our medical partner writes, "she began showing signs of Thalassemia,” a genetic disorder which causes the body to produce abnormal hemoglobin resulting in symptoms like anemia, fatigue and stunted growth. "She had a fever and couldn't eat or sleep, she became very weak and wasn't able to walk. Since then she has had to come regularly to a clinic along the border for blood transfusions and medicine.” Mi Soe can’t attend school because she is too weak to walk. Without treatment, Mi Soe will continue to experience fatigue, jaundice, abdominal swelling, shortness of breath and overall weakness. For $1,000, Mi Soe will receive a splenectomy, or a spleen removal, with professional medical care before, during and after her surgery. This treatment will increase Mi Soe’s energy levels and overall appetite while reducing abdominal swelling. Eventually, she will have enough energy to walk again so she can go to school.
Joshua is a happy and active 11-year-old boy who lives in Tanzania. He loves to run around with other children, even though a condition in his right foot, a severe equinus deformity, causes Achilles tendon tightness and makes it difficult for him to walk or run without falling. "If not treated, Joshua will develop early osteoarthritis of the foot," our hospital partner writes. Joshua's parents are small scale farmers and he is the youngest of seven children. This year, Joshua began to live with his uncle, who wanted to help take care of his nephew. “Joshua can very easily fall and hurt himself when trying to catch up with other children out in the field, his uncle says. "I will be happy to see him able to walk like my children.” But the cost of the necessary treatment for Joshua, one which will lengthen his Achilles tendon, is probihibitive even for Joshua's uncle, who has four children of his own. By banding together, we can raise $715 to pay for Joshua's treatment.
“I don’t know if my wish will ever come true, but I wish to become a pilot one day,” says 18-year-old Steven from Tanzania. The second born of six children, Steven lives with his siblings and parents who work as small-scale farmers growing corn, beans and sunflowers. Although Steven completed his primary education, his parents couldn't afford for him to continue with his secondary education. Now Steven works hard at a local garage helping fix motorcycles. He is saving the money he earns from the garage to go back to school. Despite his determined spirit, Steven faces daily challenges caused by a medical condition. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, writes, “Steven was born with severe bilateral genu valgus and a bowing femur, an abnormal bone deformity of the tibia and femur which cause his legs to bow out. It is impossible for Steven to walk without knocking his knees. His gait is tremendously affected and the pain in his knees makes it difficult for him to accomplish his daily activities. Steven will develop early osteoarthritis if not treated.” For $555, Steven will receive a bilateral distal femoral osteotomy, a procedure that cuts through the femur to correct its relationship to the hips. Currently the money Steven’s parents make isn't enough to support the family and the cost of surgery. Let's raise the funds to pay for Steven's procedure and support his dream of becoming a pilot!
Margaret is a mother of two children, ages eleven and six. She does any type of job that is available to earn money to support them - from washing to cleaning to farming. Margaret's husband is a street salesman at their local bus stop. The couple spends almost all of their earnings on their youngest son, who has health problems of his own. Margaret recently experienced a disk prolapse, a condition in which one disc in a her spinal column bulges out and often makes contact with nerves on the spine. This gives her severe back pain and numbness her legs. "I am used to working hard," Margaret says, "but when the pain starts, I feel as though my back is breaking and I cannot do anything. I want to be well again and take care of my family." For $1500, we can give Margaret a hemilaminectomy. This surgery will help alleviate the symptoms of an impinged or irritated nerve root in the spine. The procedure will also create more space in the spinal canal and release Margaret's nerve tissue from pressure. Doctors at our medical partner expect that after the surgery, Margaret will no longer be in pain and will be able to take care of her family.
Say hello to Innocent, a sweet, one-month old baby boy. He lives in eastern Kenya with his parents, who rely on casual jobs to earn an income. Innocent's parents are hopeful that Watsi can help provide a healthy life for their first child. Innocent was born with spina bifida, a congenital disorder caused by the incomplete closing of the neural tube, in which a portion of the spinal cord protrudes through the skin, causing an open hole in the lower back. As a result, Innocent is at risk of developing a tethered cord, a condition in which the spinal cord attaches to the surrounding tissue. Left untreated, this leads to mobility issues and nerve damage. Innocent’s mother is optimistic that Watsi will help her son: “If I can only have my son treated, I’ll be very grateful. I am hoping that we will find support for his surgical care.” For $980 Innocent can receive a closure surgery to correct his spine. Surgery will prevent the development of tethered cord and mitigate Innocent’s risk of infection.