Dick joined Watsi on August 14th, 2015. Seven years ago, Dick joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Dick's most recent donation supported Maripet, a 9-year-old girl from Kenya, to fund brain surgery.
Dick has funded healthcare for 88 patients in 11 countries.
Dick has funded healthcare for 88 patients in 11 countries.
Meet Maripet, a 9 year-old-girl, living with her parents and two siblings. Her father is a farmer, while her mother stays home to look after the children. In August of last year, Maripet began experiencing persistent, severe headaches. Her parents brought her to a local hospital, where she was prescribed medication, and sent home. When her headaches didn't improve, her parents brought her to a second hospital, where she was given additional medication and sent home, once again. Her family tried traditional medicine, but nothing worked. When Maripet's headaches continued, her parents brought her back to the first hospital they had visited, and this time, brain scans were performed. Maripet's family was immediately referred to our BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital, but without funds for her care they had to delay for visit for one month. During that time, Maripet lost her ability to walk and to move her head, and she also lost her eyesight for a few days. She is now in a wheelchair. When she arrived to BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital, Maripet was examined and booked for immediate surgery to remove a brain tumor. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is here to help make sure she can finally access the treatment she needs. They are seeking $1,500 to fund Maripet's surgery and medical care. Maripet’s mother says: “I’m very much worried about my daughter's condition. I just pray and hope that she will be fine.”
Doreen is a 29-year-old farmer from Southwestern Uganda. She is married and a mother to two children, including a daughter and a son who are both in primary school. She and her husband both work as farmers for a living, and supplement their farming income by working on other people's farms. The family lives in a room in Doreen's father-in-law's home. Eight months ago, Doreen developed a painful mass on her chest. She feels a sense of heaviness, and often tires quickly. She also experiences pain and has difficulty sleeping. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Doreen receive treatment. On March 1st, surgeons at AMH's care center will remove the mass. Now, Doreen needs help raising $188 to fund her procedure and care. Doreen shared, "I hope when I get a chance to undergo the surgery under your support, this mass will be removed and my life will get back to normal."
Meet Jonah, a 31-year-old quiet man. Jonah is the 2nd eldest in a family of three. His siblings and him were raised by a single mother who makes a modest living as a farmer. Earlier, Jonah left secondary school studies to find work to help support his family. Jonah has a history of a growing cheek mass that has recently increased in size. Jonah's condition is uncomfortable and often causes people to stare, which Jonah finds upsetting and is impacting his self esteem. Jonah received a scan of his cheek at AIC Kapsowar Hospital and was subsequently diagnosed with a submandibular tumor. Doctors recommended that the mass be removed and the procedure is scheduled for February 14th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare is helping Jonah raise the $1,196 he needs to undergo this life altering surgery. Jonah shared, “I have waited for this moment in my life for so long. My mother has tried to take me to so many hospitals but we lacked means because they requested too much from us.”
Askaw is a 47-year-old woman who lives with her father, husband, two sons and her daughter-in-law. Her husband is currently unemployed while her oldest son and her daughter-in-law are farmers. Her youngest son is a day labourer, finding work whenever he can. Askaw is a homemaker and looks after her father who is retired. In her free time, she loves to read, sing, and go to church every Sunday. Toward the end of 2018, Askaw noticed that the vision in both her eyes was blurred. In early 2019, unable to afford seeking treatment at a hospital or a clinic, she purchased eyeglasses for herself at a shop. Although the eyeglasses helped her see better at first, a year later her vision worsened and she could no longer see even with the eyeglasses. She purchased a new pair of glasses, but her vision worsened again. Finally in December she was able to go to an ophthalmologist's clinic with the help and financial support of her brother. After the ophthalmologist examined her eyes, she was told to go to a hospital for further investigation because she likely needed surgery. Askaw's brother knew of our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) which could help make her care possible even though it was out of reach financially for their family. Currently, Askaw can see very little in her left eye and she can only perceive light with her right eye. She cannot read anymore, and finds it difficult to pay for items when shopping since she cannot see the money. When she cooks, she will often mix-up the ingredients. She shared that sometimes, when she is alone, she will cry and feels sad about her symptoms. She said, “When I cook, I will mix-up the ingredients because I cannot see clearly. Now I am no longer able to cook and I have also stopped cleaning as it is so hard to clean with my poor vision."
Grace is a bright and hardworking student who is ready to sit for her government-mandated national exams for high school students in just two days. She is the youngest in her family of four. Grace's family came to Kenya as refugees from Rwanda to escape the 1994 genocide. Her parents started a small cereal shop after they settled. They don’t have medical insurance so are requesting help for Grace. She has had many ear infections that have now caused difficulty for her to hear and she strains to pick up voices. This has been affecting her classwork and she's even worried she may not be able to hear during her final exams on Monday. Grace urgently needs hearing aids on both ears and our medical partner African Mission Healthcare (AMH) is helping her receive this treatment and care. AMH is raising $1,171 to fund the full cost. Grace father shared, "Grace has been struggling with her studies because of her hearing. She is now supposed to sit for her final exams in two days and will need the hearing aids so as not to miss the instructions during the exams.”
Jovin is an adorable three-year-old boy. He's the only child of a single mother whom he loves very dearly. Jovin’s mother is a small-scale farmer of maize and vegetables. Jovin and his mother live with her parents who help watch Jovin while his mother is working. Jovin was diagnosed with Bilateral Genu Valgus that cause his legs to bow inward making it difficult for Jovin to walk. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, often a result of contaminated drinking water. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Jovin's mother raise $880 to fund corrective surgery for Jovin. The procedure is scheduled to take place on February 10th and will hopefully restore Jovin's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Jovin’s mother says, “I have given him calcium medication, but it hasn’t helped. The cost of surgery is too high for me to afford.”
Moses is a 15-year-old and the 2nd born in a family of 5 children. He hails from a village in Migori County, Kenya and both of his parents have physical disabilities. They live in a two-roomed traditional mud house in the village. Moses is sponsored in school by an organization known as Maranatha Faith Assembly (MFA) and is in the fifth grade. His teacher reports that he is very bright and a promising student and once his condition is corrected, he can excel greatly in life. Moses 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. Moses was born with bilateral clubfoot, which has greatly affected his mobility. He underwent surgery on his left foot in 2019 and has healed well. Now he needs treatment for his other foot too. Fortunately, Moses traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on January 10th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,286 to fund Moses's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk and run well, play with friends and continue with his education uninterrupted. Moses says, “ I would love to walk and play football just like my friends.”
Phon is a 27-year-old farmer with three brothers and five sisters. Phon is the 6th child in his large family. He lives with his parents who are farmers too. Phon likes to play volleyball at home when he has free time. One year ago, Phon developed a pterygium in his left eye, causing him irritation and burning. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. When Phon learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled there hoping for treatment. Phon needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent recurrence. The total cost of his procedure is $216. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for November 1st. Phon says, "I hope after surgery my eye burning stops so I can go back to helping my parents on the rice field."
Dah is a 28-year-old man who lives with his mother and sister in Mae Sot District, Tak Province. Originally, Dah’s family moved to Thailand 10 years ago due to the armed conflict in their home area. Dah is unemployed and his mother is a homemaker. They are supported by Dah’s sister who works as an agriculture day labourer. Currently, Dah needs someone to hold his hand and guide him when he walks. His mother helps to feed him because it is difficult for him to do on his own without his eyesight. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund eye surgery for Dah. On December 21, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Dah's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, their family needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Dah’s sister said, “Sometime Dah will shout. He seems like he has a short temper since he cannot see. Our mother and I feel so sad when we see Dah using his hands to feel his way and objects. When I give him food, he can’t put the food into his mouth. It makes me feel sad seeing him suffer.”
MengHorng is a 27-year-old farmer from Kampong Cham Province in Cambodia. He lives with his mother, who is also a farmer, and a younger brother and sister. His brother works as a seller in the local market and his sister is in 8th grade in school. He shared that his father died many years ago. MengHorng was in a motor vehicle accident in July. He fractured his right tibia and had a plate and screw applied to heal the bone. His wound became infected, exposing the plate and screw, causing him pain. Now he feels poorly, is unable to walk without crutches, and is in chronic pain. The surgeons at our medical partner Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) removed his plate and screws and now they need to do a split-thickness skin graft surgery to cover the exposed bone and heal his leg. On December 06, surgeons at CSC will perform a skin graft procedure to to heal his chronic wound. Now, MengHorng needs help to fund this $474 procedure. MengHorng shared that he is hopeful that his wound will heal soon and wants to be able to walk again without pain.
Chhot is a 73-year-old retired teacher. He has three sons, five daughters, and many grandchildren. Chhot lives with his wife and their youngest daughter who is a garment worker. Now he stays at home to look after his grandchildren. Chhot likes to listen to the news and the monks praying on the radio. Three years ago, Chhot developed a cataract in his left eye, causing him blurry vision and photophobia. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Chhot learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for seven hours seeking treatment. On November 23rd, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and will place an intraocular lens implant in his left eye. After recovery, Chhot will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $229 procedure. Chhot says, "I hope my eye can see clearly so I can teach my grandchildren to read and write well."
Im is a 38-year-old construction worker. He is married and has one son and one daughter. Four years ago, his family moved to the city. His son works at a gasoline station and his daughter is an 11th grade student. Im's wife sells fried bananas. In August 2021, Im was in an accident while working and developed an open fracture and skin infection on his right big toe. After the accident, he received wound care and sutures at a clinic, but he still experiences pain, swelling and discharge from the wound. He's worried about it worsening and continue to impact his day-to-day life. When Im learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for thirty minutes seeking treatment. On October 19th, surgeons at CSC will perform a debridement procedure to remove damaged and infected issue from the wound. Now, Im needs help to fund this $273 procedure. Im shared, "I hope the wound heals quickly and my pain will stop."