Sandra joined Watsi on May 1st, 2013. Six years ago, Sandra became the 543rd member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,465 more people have become monthly donors! Sandra's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Gathoni, an 18-month-old from Kenya, to fund a debridement and skin graft surgery for her burns.
Sandra has funded healthcare for 72 patients in 9 countries.
Gathoni is an 18-month-old girl from Kenya. She is the second-born in a family of two. Her mother is a stay-at-home mom while her father is a fruit vendor in a nearby market. The family lives in a two roomed rental house. On July 15th, Gathoni tripped on boiling water while playing with her 7-year-old brother. Doctors have recommended a debridement to reduce chances of further infections. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Gathoni receive treatment. On July 20th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to help ensure that her wounds heal without an infection. Now, Gathoni needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Gathoni’s mother shared, “I just wish that I can find help for my little baby so that she a grow into a successful young woman in future."
Hla is a 41-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her family in a village in Kawkareik Township in Karen State. Hla is a homemaker, raises livestock, and looks after her niece while her sister teaches at a nursery school in the village. Her two younger sons and her brother-in-law are subsistence farmers who grow rice on rented land. Hla’s oldest son is a distance education student in university. One year ago, Hla felt a painless growth when she touched her lower abdomen. That same day, she went to see a traditional birth attendant (TBA) about this. The TBA told her that she had a gastric problem. The next day, Hla went to see a traditional healer receive blessed water in the hopes it would make the growth disappear. Although she drank the blessed water for around two months, the growth remained. As she did not think that the growth would make her seriously ill, she did not go to a clinic. In January 2020, Hla felt like the growth was increasing in size. She decided to visit Kawkareik Private Clinic where the doctor performed an ultrasound. She was told that she had a mass in her uterus. The doctor provided her with painkillers and she was told to only take it when she is in pain. Hla has been experiencing back pain and the mass increases in size day by day. She has been diagnosed with a uterine mass and has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Hla's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Hla is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on March 13th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience back pain and she will be able continue working and helping out at home. Hla said, "I'm very scared when I heard that I need to receive surgery. When I got home, my family and friends encouraged me to not be afraid because there were many other people who had the same condition who recovered and became healthy again."
Esther is a small-scale farmer who has two children and also takes care of her sister's four children because her sister unfortunately passed away. She is now the sole provider of six children and pays for their school fees all by herself. They live together in a 2 bedroom house. Esther started to experience abdominal pain 3 years ago. Due to the severity of the pain, she recently visited our medical partner's care facility. She will undergo surgery for her acute appendicitis. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $646 to cover the cost of Esther's curative laparatomy. This surgery will hopefully relieve her pain and enable her to live life more comfortably and confidently. "I would really appreciate treatment because I am the sole breadwinner for my family," shared Esther.
Horn and his wife have been married for forty years, and have three daughters together. His wife works with him in the fields, while his daughters are all still in high school. He spends free time with his friends raising livestock for sale. Four months ago, Horn started feeling pain in his left hip. He had one previous surgery there, but no trauma. His pain reached the point where he can no longer walk unaided, and he had to stop working. On recommendation from one of his friends, he traveled for nearly ten hours to come to Watsi's Medical Partner CSC to receive treatment. Doctors at CSC will perform a girdlestone procedure in order to alleviate his pain. Once he recovers, he will no longer experience any pain in his hip, but his mobility will be reduced and he will use a cane. He will be able to continue working and doing the same activities he enjoyed before. Horn said, "I am glad my pain will finally be gone after my surgery. I cannot walk or do anything right now, so I am excited for the day I can finally go back to working and supporting my family."
Sarun is a 64-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She has five children, ten grandchildren, and enjoys listening to the monks pray on the radio and joining in ceremonies at the local pagoda. Two years ago, Sarun developed a cataract in each eye, causing her blurry vision. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Sarun learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for five hours seeking treatment. On January 13th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $425 procedure. "I hope that I will be able to see clearly so I can recognize my relatives' faces and go outside easily again," she hoped.
Dina is a student from Tanzania. She is the sixth born in a family of eight children. She is currently in form one at school and her best subjects are mathematic and biology. She wishes to be a nurse in future. Dina is a very social person and very hard working both at home and school. She helps her mother with home chores and looking after her siblings. Her parents are small-scale farmers of maize, beans, and vegetables. Due to financial challenges her parents have not been able to seek treatment for her. Dina was involved in a fire accident when she was two years old. This accident has left her with contracture on her elbow and her right hand fingers have been left deformed. Dina was playing with her sibling and friends close to their home while her parents were out in their farm. There was a tree stump which had been put on fire so that the land could be used for house construction. It had past all week and most people knew the fire was out, since the fire had burned the stump leaving a big hole that went down a meter. As Dina was playing around the stump she got pushed by a friend and went head first in the stump hole. In the process of try to support herself, she landed with her right hand while her legs were left up the stump. At the bottom of the stump there was still fire burning, leading to her hand being burnt. By the time the neighbors heard her and ran to her rescue, she had sustained severe burns on her right hand. She is still not able to use her hand freely and this is affecting her studies. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Dina receive treatment. On September 30th, during her school break, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery so Dina will be able to use her hand freely again. Now, she needs help to fund this $608 procedure. Dina says, “My wrist is now released and I can move it, now I need to have my fingers released too. Please help me have my fingers treated so that I can be able to fully use my hand.”
Win is a 49-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her husband and four sons. Two of her sons are distant learners at university while her husband and two other sons work as masons. However, her husband had to stop working to look after the housework when she was no longer able to do so. Win was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of her mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. Currently, Win feels tired, has no appetite, cannot sleep well nor walk longer distances. She also has a headache, chest pains, and tingling and numbness in her extremities. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Win. The treatment is scheduled to take place on March 11th and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. Win said, “When I recover from my illness, I will go back to doing the housework so that my husband can also go back to work.’’
Aung is a 34-year-old man from Burma who lives with his wife, son, and daughter. Both he and his wife work as government officers. In his free time he likes to read books. Aung was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of the mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. Currently, Aung feels tired, has chest pains, and has difficulty breathing. However, he can eat and sleep well. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Aung. The treatment is scheduled to take place on January 27th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. “I want to go back to work [as a] healthy [person] and support my family,” said Aung.
Alice is a wife and mother of eight from Tanzania. Her husband, is also a farmer, and they both assist each other in their daily duties. They plant potatoes for consumption and also for commercial purpose. The family is hardworking but due to having a large family, they struggle financially to make ends meet. Also to add to their hardship, one of their children is paralyzed and disabled. Alice has give him special attention because he can’t leave the compound and all he can do is crawl outside and in the house. Seven years ago, Alice began to experience troubling symptoms, including anterior neck swelling that has been increasing in size. She was diagnosed with a goiter, an abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland. She needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Alice receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on November 15th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $641, and she and her family need help raising money. Alice says, “I want to be a strong mother for my children especially my son. I have good plans for them.”
Modesta is a beautiful and playful 5-year-old girl from Tanzania who struggles to walk due to genu varum, a condition where the legs curve outward at the knees. She falls often when she tries to run. The curving has increased as she has grown. Her parents did not think its a treatable condition, but during an outreach program, her father learnt of the treatment option and hopes to have Modesta treated. With successful surgery, Modesta will be able to walk with ease and less pain. She will also walk to school easily when she joins. Modesta's parents are peasant farmers relying on maize, sorghum and vegetable plantations to meet their daily needs. They have limited income to pay for the cost of surgery. Modesta lives with her parents and 8 siblings. The family appeals for financial assistance. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $838 to fund corrective surgery for Modesta. Treatment will hopefully restore Modesta's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Modesta’s father says, “The treatment cost is too expensive for us to afford please help.”
Juma is a child from Kenya. He is the second born of two children. He lives with his elder sister and parents in a two-room house in Nairobi slums. Juma’s mother is a hair dresser while his father is a motorcycle taxi rider. For some time now, Juma has had a hydrocele. This causes him pain and discomfort. Fortunately, on September 12th, he will undergo repair surgery at our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $423 to fund Juma's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. “I want to ride a motorcycle like my father when I grow up,” says Juma.
Lameck is a child from Tanzania. Lameck is a fifth born child in a family of five children, he is a shy little boy and likes to keep to himself. His parents are subsistence farmers who earn very little and can barely support their family. Lameck has clubfoot of both his feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Lameck traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on September 10th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $890 to fund Lameck's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily with no pain and difficulty. Lameck’s father says, “Please help my son get the treatment he needs so he may be able to walk without difficulty.”