Kurt joined Watsi on March 7th, 2014. Four years ago, Kurt became the 64th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 3,203 more people have become monthly donors! Kurt's most recent donation traveled 9,000 miles to support Matchipisa, a man from Malawi, to fund prostate surgery.
Kurt has funded healthcare for 45 patients in 9 countries.
Matchipisa is a farmer from Malawi. Matchipisa owns a small farm with his wife, and to supplement the family income, he also works as a gardener. In his free time, Matchipisa likes to talk with his wife and spend time with his children. Since 2015, Matchipisa has been experiencing pain when urinating. These symptoms are caused by an enlarged prostate, a condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia. He needs to undergo a prostate resection surgery, a procedure in which surgeons will remove part of the enlarged gland. Our medical partner, World Altering Medicine, is requesting $733 to fund Matchipisa's surgery. On October 17, he will undergo prostate surgery at Nkhoma Hospital, our medical partner's care center. The requested money pays for supplies, medications, and two weeks of hospital stay. Matchipisa was thrilled to find out his surgery would be funded, and he is looking forward to having his operation and being pain free. "Thank you," he says.
Sarah is a student from Haiti. She lives with her parents, brothers, and sisters in a rural area in the mountains of central Haiti. Her parents are both farmers. Sarah has graduated kindergarten but is not attending first grade this year because of her illness. Sarah has a cardiac condition called Tetralogy of Fallot. This diagnosis involves several related defects, including a hole between two chambers of the heart and a blockage of one of the valves. Sarah will fly to Cayman Islands to receive treatment. On November 10, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will close the hole in her heart with a patch and remove the muscular blockage in her valve. Another organization, Health City Cayman Islands, is contributing $22,000 to pay for surgery. Sarah'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 Sarah's family overseas. Her aunt says, "Our family is very excited for Sarah's surgery so that she can be healthy and safe, and can go to school."
Pedro is a six-month-old baby boy who lives with his parents in Guatemala’s rural highlands. Pedro was born with a cleft lip, which, in his short life, has already brought him health difficulties. A cleft lip makes it difficult for Pedro to breastfeed, so he has not been receiving enough nutrition to grow healthily. If left untreated, Pedro’s cleft lip will cause him further complications, including continued difficulty feeding and swallowing, speech difficulties, and dental problems. It can also lead to chronic ear infections and hearing loss. Since Pedro was born, his parents have been extremely worried for their son, as they do not have the resources to pay for the necessary surgery to correct his condition. Pedro’s parents’ greatest hope is for their son to be healthy and undergo a successful surgery. With the aid of Watsi funding, Pedro will have the surgery he needs on October 6. He will stay with his mother in the hospital for up to 10 days afterwards to allow the lip to heal and to ensure he can feed properly. Treatment will also include three doctor consults before surgery and two after. Our medical partner, Wuqu’ Kawoq, requests $1,014 for Pedro's medical care. After the surgery, Pedro will be able to feed like a normal, healthy baby boy, and he will be able to develop normal speech capabilities. Pedro will have the opportunity to grow and develop healthily, for this surgery will eliminate any risk of ear infection, hearing loss, or dental issues related to cleft lip. Pedro’s mother says, “I am so happy to have this support, and we are so grateful because it is not only a great help for our son but it is a great help economically to our family.”
Jackyto is a six-year-old boy from southern Haiti. He is in the first grade and likes going to school and drawing. Jackyto has four siblings and his parents are farmers. Jackyto was born with a heart condition called Tetralogy of Fallot. This means he has a hole between two chambers of his heart and a muscular blockage in one of the heart's valves. As a result, not enough oxygen is delivered to his body, leaving him sick and weak. Although Watsi has already funded Jackyto's [transportation](https://watsi.org/profile/e95b7420cae8-jackyto) to the hospital for his surgery, he is still in need of $1,500 to cover exams, heart surgery prep, and medications. Have a Heart Cayman is also contributing $22,000 to the costs of his heart surgery. "I am so thankful Jackyto will be able to travel for his surgery!" says Jackyto’s mother.
Bunna is a 14-year-old boy from Cambodia. He has three brothers and one sister. In his free time, he enjoys playing football, going on Facebook, and reading books. When he was four years old, Bunna developed an ear infection in his left ear. This infection perforated his tympanic membrane (eardrum), resulting in constant ringing and buzzing, hearing loss, and some discharge. Because of this, it is hard for young Bunna to hear at school. He traveled for three hours with his father to reach our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) for treatment. ENT surgeons at CSC will perform a myringoplasty procedure on Bunna's left ear to close the perforation in his eardrum. Once this is completed, his hearing will improve. CSC is requesting $423 to fund Bunna's treatment, scheduled for April 25.
Esther is a 73-year-old subsistence farmer and mother of eight from Kenya. In her free time, Esther attends meetings with the other women in her village because she says "unity is strength." Six months ago, Esther felt a lump in her breast that was later diagnosed as breast cancer. Surgery was recommended to remove the lump. Seeking treatment through our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, Esther is scheduled to have a mastectomy on May 2. She is requesting $816 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. “I wish to be well so as to serve the Lord and be with my husband in a healthy state,” says Esther.
Youbendjy is a four-month-old baby who lives in a neighborhood in Port-au-Prince with his mother, father, and older sister. Neither parent is employed full-time, but both of them work as day laborers when they can. Youbendjy was born with a cardiac condition called total anomalous pulmonary vein return, in which the pulmonary veins connect to the right atrium of the heart. Typically, these veins should connect to the left atrium. This condition deprives his body of oxygen and leads to heart failure. Youbendjy will undergo a surgery in which the veins are disconnected from the heart and reconnected in the appropriate location. First, he will undergo a full cardiac assessment on February 9. This assessment will include physical exams, labs, and an overnight stay at the hospital. Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is requesting $1,500 to fund these procedures. Funding for Youbendjy also covers the cost of medications and social support for him and his family. Gift of Life International is contributing $7,000 to cover additional costs associated with Youbendjy's surgical care. "I thought from the time my baby was born that we would lose him," says his mother. "It is like a dream for me that we have a chance for surgery."
John Mark is an active two-year-old boy from the Philippines. He enjoys playing outside with his friends and loves his family very much. His mother is a homemaker, and his father is a fisherman. Since he was two months old, John Mark has had a swelling in his neck. In 2015, he was diagnosed with a cyst that could only be treated surgically. Due to economic hardship, his family could not afford treatment. As John Mark has grown, the cyst has grown too, making treatment an urgent need. On March 21, John Mark will undergo a sistrunk procedure—during which his cyst will be removed—at our medical partner's care center, Silliman University Medical Center. Our medical partner, International Care Ministries, is asking for $1,464 to fund John Mark's hospital and physician fees. "We are thankful as parents that our child will be treated. We have been praying for this since he was diagnosed," says John Mark's mother. "Thank you so much for your desire to help us."
Ma Nyein is a dressmaker who lives with her son and extended family in Burma. In early 2016, Ma Nyein had an accident in her home, which resulted in chronic, severe pain on the left side of her head and numbness in her left eye. She was no longer able to work as a dressmaker. After the use of prescribed painkillers did not help, she consulted an eye surgeon. After numerous diagnostic procedures, Ma Nyein was found to have a large cyst on her optic chiasm. The optic chiasm is the point in the brain where the optic nerves cross. The optic nerves are pathways that carry information from the eyes to the brain. The cyst on Ma Nyein’s optic chiasm needs to be surgically removed. On February 8, Ma Nyein will undergo a cyst excision procedure. She needs help to fund this $1,500 surgery. Ma Nyein says, "I am excited to have surgery and get well soon. I plan to start sewing as soon as I recover from this illness."
Danis is an 18-year-old boy. He is the third-born of eight children. His family members are traditional pastoralists who look after animals with a small area of crops. Danis was born with a mild right clubfoot, or twisted foot, and his family was unable to seek treatment for the condition. Recently, a missionary told them that it is possible for Danis to walk without pain and that his foot can be fixed to a normal position. The family traveled to our medical partner's care center. Danis will undergo foot surgery on February 3. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,160 to fund this treatment. After his treatment, Danis would like to join his brothers in looking after the livestock. Danis says, "I'd like my feet to be straight so that I can wear shoes and walk properly."
Ma Nyein lives in the village in Burma where she was born. She is 42, and she lives with her 18-year-old son and her seven-year-old nephew. Her daughter has worked in a food shop in Bangkok for seven years. Eight months ago, Ma Nyein had an accident inside of her house. She stepped on a loose plank in the floor, which made the piece of wood swing up and hit the left side of her head. Soon after, her left eye became swollen, bruised, and numb. When her condition did not improve, Ma Nyein visited our medical partner's care center. She underwent a CT scan, the results of which revealed a benign brain tumor. Before surgery can take place, Ma Nyein's doctor wants to perform an MRI to clarify the mass. This $814 scan is scheduled for November 24. "I would like to recover soon," says Ma Nyein. "Then, I can open my own shop at home to sell dried food and the clothes that I made."
Ilsi is a three-year-old girl from Guatemala. Her family cannot afford to give her a nutritious diet, so she is not gaining weight or growing as she should. She has been diagnosed with acute malnutrition. She has little energy to grow, and her immune system is weak and vulnerable to illness. She is also at risk of chronic disease and delayed development. Fortunately, Ilsi began malnutrition treatment on December 19, 2016. Ilsi lives with her five-year-old sister, mother, and extended family in an adobe house. She loves to play dolls with her older sister. Ilsi's father passed away last year, so her mother supports the family by washing clothes. She needs help to fund this $512 treatment. While malnutrition can have devastating effects, it is also very treatable. Growth monitoring, micronutrients, and food supplementation will help Ilsi recover. She will gain weight and grow taller to catch up with other children her age, and her immune system will grow stronger. Community health workers will teach her mother about creating a nutrient-rich diet from limited resources. Treatment will give Ilsi a chance to grow healthy and strong. "Sometimes I don't know what to do for her because I don't have the resources to give her what she needs so she can get better and grow well," says Ilsi's mother. "I want my daughter to grow and study so she can graduate and become a teacher."