Hungary • Born on March 8th
Gabi joined Watsi on March 3rd, 2021. Two years ago, Gabi joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Gabi's most recent donation traveled 6,700 miles to support Erick, a 5-month-old baby from Bolivia, to fund heart surgery to close holes in his heart.
Gabi has funded healthcare for 27 patients in 8 countries.
Gabi has funded healthcare for 27 patients in 8 countries.
Erick lives in a neighborhood on the outskirts of La Paz with his mother and his grandparents, who help take care of him while his mother works in the market. He was born with three different holes in and near his heart; as a result, blood leaks through these holes, and his heart cannot deliver enough oxygen to his body. Thankfully, our medical care partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, has been of great help and has helped Erick and his family receive the right medical attention. During his surgery, doctors will close all three holes to ensure oxygen-rich blood circulates throughout his body and he is able to grow into a strong young boy. On February 17th, Erick will undergo cardiac surgery at Hospital del Niño Dr. Ovidio Aliaga Uría in Bolivia. His family needs financial assistance to cover the $1,500 cost of this life-saving procedure. His mother shared, "I almost gave up hope that my son could live, and I am so thankful to everyone who is giving him this chance!"
Meet Dennis, a 12 year old boy living in Kenya with his parents and two younger siblings. When Dennis isn't in school - where math is his favorite subject - he enjoys playing with friends and reading books. Dennis' father works as a casual laborer, while his mother is a housewife. Dennis was healthy at birth, but at the age of two, his left foot started to bend inwards. His parents brought him to numerous hospitals, but his condition remained unresolved. This is very frustrating for Dennis, who has to walk on tiptoes, and is in pain when he walks. Doctors at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, diagnosed Dennis with a clubfoot. Now he is scheduled to undergo clubfoot repair surgery at AIC Cure International Hospital on January 16th. This procedure which will allow Dennis to wear shoes and to walk with ease. African Mission Healthcare Foundation is requesting $1,286 to fund Dennis' life changing procedure. “Our joy will be to see Dennis walking and playing like other children,” Dennis’s mother told us.
Saoly is a 33-year-old former garment factory worker from Cambodia. He is from the Kampong Speu province, and married with two children. His wife makes and sells traditional Khmer cakes at the local market. His children are four and seven years of age. Since an accident, he has been home and likes to listen to the news, watch TV, and play with his children. In March 2020, he was in a motorcycle collision with a truck and fell on his left shoulder on the pavement. This caused paralysis of his left shoulder and arm. He has been 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 loss of function and sensation. In August 2020, he had a surgical nerve graft, which allowed him to successfully bend his elbow, but he still cannot move his shoulder or his fingers. He cannot work, feels phantom pain in his arm, and is very depressed he cannot support his family and his wife has to work hard. Saoly traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. This is the only center in the whole country where this treatment is available. On December 1st, he will undergo a brachial plexus repair surgery. After recovery, he hopes that he will be able to move his shoulder, use his hand, and work again to support his family. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $709 to fund this procedure. Saoly said: "I hope this surgery will help me to use my arm again. I would like to work in a factory again to support my family."
Francklin is a loving husband and father from Haiti. He lives with his wife and two children in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. He works as a security guard for a private security company. Francklin has a cardiac condition called severe mitral stenosis which resulted from a rheumatic fever that he suffered when he was young. Blood cannot pass through a valve in his heart properly, leaving him weak and short of breath. The cardiac surgery that Francklin's condition requires is not available in Haiti, so he needs to fly to the United States to receive treatment. On November 18th, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will attempt to repair the damaged valve; if they are unable, they will need to implant an artificial replacement. Another organization, the Baylor Scott & White Heart Hospital, is contributing $20,000 to pay for his surgery. Francklin's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep, travel, and follow-up care while he heals. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and check-up and follow-up appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social worker from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Francklin overseas. Francklin says, "My family and I will pray for God's blessings on everyone who is helping us."
Hosea is a shy, 21 year old student, living with his parents and brothers in Kenya. Hosea's father herds cattle, while his brothers are casual laborers. His mother is unwell, and unable to contribute to the support of the family. When Hosea isn't at school, he helps to cultivate the land and to set up fencing in order to earn more income for the family. Hosea was recently sent home from school, due to a lack of the necessary fees to keep him there. He decided to find some work to earn the money for his school fees, and borrowed a bike from a friend, so that he could transport people and luggage, earning a commission for his work. Unfortunately, Hosea lost control of his bike, and was in a traffic accident, sustaining an injury to his leg. As a result, he is in chronic pain and is unable to work. Hosea sought the help of our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, and was diagnosed with a fracture of the tibia and fibula. Now he is scheduled to undergo fracture repair surgery on November 1st, at AIC Kapsowar Hospital, after which he should be able to resume his life, free from pain. African Mission Healthcare Foundation is requesting $1,145 to fund this procedure. Hosea said: "I am in need and appealing for help from all well-wishers reading my story."
Mkaluza Katunga is a 54-year-old woman from Malawi. She is the mother of eight children and is currently separated from her husband. Because he no longer supports her, Mkaluza depends upon selling her pottery and on farming, in order to survive. In 2021, Mkaluza started experiencing pain on the left side of her abdomen, which would be especially bad after she had eaten. She went to the hospital, where she was given medication and sent home. In early 2022, Mkaluza noticed that the left side of her abdomen was becoming hard and swollen. She returned to the hospital, but could not afford the tests that were recommended. Instead, she went home with pain medication. On September 14th of this year, Mkaluza visited the hospital once again, as her condition had persisted. After assessment in the surgical clinic, and after having undergone an X-ray, Mkaluza was diagnosed with an enlarged spleen. The doctor told her that she would need to undergo a splenectomy, to remove the enlarged organ. While Mkaluza does not have sufficient funds to cover this procedure, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is here to help. They are requesting your assistance in funding the $709 needed to pay for Mkaluza's surgery, which is scheduled for October 13th, at Nkhoma Hospital. This operation will prevent the possible rupture of Mkaluza's spleen, and will also enable her to return to her life, free from pain and the worries of the potential complications posed by her condition. Mkaluza says: “I am looking forward to a healthy and bright future after treatment.”
Aleeson is a three-year-old who needs open-heart surgery. He lives in Port-au-Prince with his parents and one older brother; his father is an accountant and his mother is a homemaker. Aleeson was born with a cardiac condition called Tetralogy of Fallot, which involves several related defects including a hole between two chambers of the heart and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. As a result of these defects, his heart cannot adequately provide oxygen to his body, leaving him weak and short of breath. Doctors will perform open-heart surgery to repair these defects and to allow his heart to function fully. As the care he needs is not available in Haiti, Aleeson will fly to Italy to receive treatment and on September 27th, he will undergo life-saving cardiac surgery. Aleeson's family needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep and travel. 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 his family overseas. Aleeson's father shared: "Our family feels very lucky to have this wonderful chance for our son's surgery."
Faith is a beautiful four-month-old baby from Kenya. She is the youngest of two children. To support their family, her mother is a stay-at-home mom, and her father herds and sells cattle. Faith was born at home with several congenital conditions. Her parents took her to a nearby facility for examination, where she was diagnosed with spina bifida, hydrocephalus, and clubfoot. They were referred to another facility where a medical device, called a shunt, was used to help treat the hydrocephalus, draining the excess fluid from her brain. On discharge, the hospital referred her and her family to our medical partner's care center, BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital, where Faith was examined and scheduled for spina bifida repair surgery. Spina bifida is a type of neural tube defect in which the spine does not properly close around the spinal cord. Without treatment, Faith is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,151 to cover the cost of Faith's spina bifida closure surgery. The surgery is scheduled to take place on July 13th. This procedure will hopefully spare Faith from the risks associated with her condition, instead allowing her to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Faith’s father says, “When I saw the problems that my child has, I was worried that she would never receive treatment. I am hopeful she will receive treatment with your help.”
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.
Guerdina is a 15-year-old girl who lives in the mountains of central Haiti with her parents and four siblings. When she was 10 years old, Guerdina suffered from rheumatic fever. Her illness severely damaged one of the valves of her heart, making it unable to adequately pump blood through her body. In 2019, she underwent a surgery to repair her damaged heart valve. That procedure helped for several years, but her repaired valve is becoming less functional and now needs to be replaced with an artificial valve. After surgery, Guerdina's heart should be able to pump more normally and her doctors share that she should be able to lead a full and active life. Because the surgery she needs in not available in Haiti, Guerdina must travel overseas to receive surgery. On June 2nd, she will undergo heart surgery with the Cardiac team at the Cleveland Clinic, where surgeons will replace her mitral valve. Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA) is helping Guerdina's family raise $1,500 to cover the cost of labs, medication, and follow-up appointments. This will also support her family to obtain passports and the HCA social workers who will accompany Guerdina's family during their travels. Guerdina shared, "my entire family and I would like to say thank you to everyone who has been helping me!"
Marc is a 16-year-old boy who lives in an urban neighborhood of Port-au-Prince, Haiti's capital, with his parents and four younger siblings. He is in his first year of high school and would like to eventually become either an engineer or a teacher. Marc was born with a condition called atrial septal defect. The birth defect means there's a hole between the two upper chambers of his heart. Blood leaks through this hole, which often leaves Marc weak and short of breath. Fortunately, the condition is highly treatable with surgery. There is not a local pediatric cardiac surgical team in Haiti, but our medical partner Haiti Cardiac Alliance has arranged to accompany Marc to the Dominican Republic. There, on May 25th, doctors will use a catheter to plug the hole in his heart. "I have been waiting for this chance for many years," Marc said, "and I am very happy the time is almost here!" The Rotarian-based organization Gift of Life International is contributing $5,000 toward Marc's surgery. His family needs to raise $1,500 to help cover remaining medical costs and travel for Marc.
BB Mireille is a one-month-old baby from Haiti and her parents' first child. BB Mireille was 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 Mireille has been experiencing an increasing head circumference. Without treatment, BB Mireille will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, Project Medishare, is requesting $957 to cover the cost of surgery for BB Mireille at Hospital Bernard Mevs that will treat her hydrocephalus. Hospital Bernard Mevs is the only facility in the country where this care is currently available and the procedure will take place on March 22nd. This critical treatment will place a shunt to drain the excess fluid from BB Mireille's brain to reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, BB Mireille will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Her parents are grateful for the opportunity for this surgery. They have hope that the procedure will allow BB Mireille to grow up healthy.