Brigitte joined Watsi on March 12th, 2013. Five years ago, Brigitte became the 831st member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,123 more people have become monthly donors! Brigitte's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Joseph, a father of 9 from Kenya, to fund hearing treatment and devices.
Brigitte has funded healthcare for 56 patients in 11 countries.
Joseph is a father of 9 children, now all grown up and working in small-scale businesses. He lives on his subsistence farm in Nakuru. Joseph started to experience hearing problem 20 years back but he could still hear with difficulties. The condition become severe about four years ago where he was forced to go to a provincial hospital. He was checked and the plan was to wash his ears. Since then he has been going for ear washing regularly when his family heard of our facility through the social media. This is when we had a free clinic for patients with a hearing problem. Joseph was diagnosed with mild to moderate-severe hearing loss. The plan is for him to have hearing aids for both ears so that he can return to a higher quality of life and independence. Currently, Joseph is not working due to his health and is fully depended on his children. He lives with his wife who is also elderly and can’t work either. "I will really appreciate if I can be able to hear clearly and communicate with my family," Joseph said.
The world welcomed a new baby boy, he has not yet been named, so goes by baby of Hawa Hassan. He is a first-born child to his mother who moved to Arusha, Tanzania four years ago looking for work. She was able to find work locally and has been earning income as a housemaid for two years now. Baby of Hawa was born in the hospital and was directly referred to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center ALMC when the doctors noticed he had a birth defect. At ALMC Hospital, he was admitted to the NICU and his mother was informed that her baby needed surgery as soon as possible to correct this birth defect. His mother could not afford surgery for her son for she does not earn enough to be able to afford the treatment. His father is a shop keeper and he is also not able to afford his son’s needed surgery, they had just enough savings for their baby’s birth costs. This surgery will enable Hawa's baby to be able to pass stool normally, if not treated this condition will cause discomfort for the baby as he cannot pass stool, and he may stop feeding properly. If not treated, his condition may even result in death. Hawa shared, “Please help my son get this treatment so that he can continue to feed well, I am worried about him. He looks very sick and discomforted.”
Robert is a casual laborer from Kenya. Robert works as a construction site worker in the capital while his wife takes up jobs such as laundry services. The father of two lives in a two-roomed house, paying $31 per month. They share bathroom amenities in a pro-poor home of the city. Robert walked to our facility in the late hours of 22 April 2020, with complaints of Achilles tendon injury. A week ago, he was bathing in their shared bathroom when he slid and his right foot got stuck by the toilet bowl sustaining the injury. Without treatment, Robert might not be able to walk with ease again and risks further wound infections. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Robert receive treatment. On April 23rd, surgeons will treat his Achillies injury and perform a debridement and skin graft procedure. Following treatment, he will be able to walk so he can return home and care for his family. Now, Robert needs help to fund this $1,129 procedure. Robert says, “Thank you for expressing a wish to support me. I did not have money for the motel lodge last night and do not have any money for the planned surgery. God bless you.”
John is a baby from Kenya. John’s father, the family's sole breadwinner, is employed casually to cut trees. His mother on the other hand is a full-time mom. His family lives in a single-rental house in Central Kenya. With limited income of $120 on average per month, John’s father is not able to raise the funds needed for his son’s treatment. John was born with hypospadias, a congenital abnormality that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of future infertility. Fortunately, John is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on March 10th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $700 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. “If only I can see him urinate normally, I’ll be very happy,” says John’s mother.
Sandar is is a 48-year-old pastor from Burma. She lives with her husband, daughter, and seven children who she is sheltering. In her free time, Sandar likes to prepare for her sermons, read the Bible, and pray for others in need. Since 2017, Sandar has been experiencing high blood pressure and heavy abnormal vaginal bleeding. She has been diagnosed with pelvic mass and has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Sandar's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Sandar is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on February 24th. 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 abnormal bleeding or discomfort. "I worry about the children I shelter," said Sandar. "Currently, I have to buy a lot of sanitary pads and my daughter borrowed 500,000 kyat (approx. 500 USD) from her boss to support me, which she will pay back in installments.”
Dina is a 69-year-old mother of seven from Kenya. She plants maize and beans on her farm left by her late husband. She lost her husband in the year 2014 after suffering from stomach cancer. Despite all the challenges she faced, Dina has been a strong woman for her children. She has worked hard to educate her children and provide basic needs for them through farming. The family stays together in a grass-roofed house. Dina came to our hospital recently with a severe fracture on her right femur. X-ray imaging confirmed a closed femur fracture. Dina, who is unable to walk and has severe pain, was admitted for skin traction and requires an ORIF surgery with a plate to heal her broken femur. Dina is unable to attend to her daily duties because of her broken leg. She is worried about being dependent on her children who also need her. She is requesting anybody reading her story to support her raise funds for her surgery of $968.00. On January 22nd, Dina will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. The surgery will allow Dina walk with ease and reduce chances of further complications. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $968 to fund this procedure. Dina says, “I want to get back on my feet and resume my normal duties farming so that I can be able to raise school fees for my son who is in college.”
On May 28th 2019, Min was playing tag with his friend in front of his house, when he decided to climb up a tree. Unfortunately, the tree was slippery due to the rainy season, and Min slipped and fell out of the tree. At first, he was able to stand on his right leg, but he was not able to walk. When Min’s mother heard the news, she immediately came to see him. In the morning, his mother and grandmother rented a car and brought him to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC). The staff at MTC then sent him to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for an X-ray, which indicated that his left femur was broken. After they received the results of his X-ray, MTC referred Min to Watsi partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for help in accessing the treatment he needed. On May 31st, Min underwent surgery to place a metal rod into his leg. He was discharged from the hospital on June 5th. Within the past two months, Min returned to MSH for three follow-up visits. At his most recent follow-up, he was told his prognosis was good, and he was scheduled for surgery to remove the metal rod on January 2nd, 2020. “I feel normal again,” he said. “I’m no longer in pain. I can walk, sit, and take a shower by myself again. Before, I couldn’t do anything. I could only lay on my back and watch as people around me had to do everything. After my second surgery I want to work with my older brother in the factory.”
Lucito is a boy from Haiti. He was born with a cardiac condition called double outlet right ventricle, in which the aorta connects to the wrong chamber of the heart, causing the heart to pump oxygen-depleted blood to his body. He will require an open-heart surgery to correct this condition. Lucito lives in a small city in western Haiti with his parents and four siblings. He has not yet started school because of his cardiac problems, but is studying at home with his mother. Lucito will fly to India to receive treatment. On August 7, he will undergo cardiac surgery. Another organization, Rotary International, is contributing $8,000 to pay for surgery. His 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 his family overseas.
Deria is a mother of three from Malawi. She lives with her husband and children, and she works in a small shop selling groceries to support her family. She enjoys working around the house in her free time. Since March of this year, Deria has been experiencing severe abdominal pain. She has been diagnosed with fibroids. She needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Our medical partner, World Altering Medicine, is requesting $650 to fund Deria's surgery. On May 23, she will undergo gynecological surgery at Nkhoma Hospital, our medical partner's care center. The requested money pays for supplies, medications, and seven nights of hospital stay. She looks forward to returning to work and caring for her home and family upon recovery. She says, "The price was very high for surgery, so this program has provided a very good assistance. Thank you!"
Nam is a 16-year-old student from Burma. She lives with her family in Mae Sot. She likes reading in her free time. Nam was born with a meningocele, a birth defect in which the spinal cord fails to form properly. Meningocele is characterized by a sac-like protrusion of the membranes surrounding the spinal column. If left untreated, it can result in extreme neurological impairment due to the continued exposure of the spinal tissue. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to help cover the cost of meningocele repair surgery for Nam. The procedure is scheduled to take place on April 25. Nam says, "I want to finish my high school and after that I will join the university in Thailand."
Tin is a 25-year-old woman from Burma. She is a mother of two daughters and she lives with her family in the village in Kyain Seikgyi Township, Karen State. Since December of 2018, Tin has been experiencing lower abdominal pain. She has been diagnosed with a dermoid cyst. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Tin's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Tin is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on March 26. 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 suffers from abdominal pain and she will be able to be with her family happily again. Tin says, “I miss my daughters and I want to have surgery soon. I want to get well and return home. I want to live my life freely without any disease in my body.”
Alex is a young student from Kenya. Alex’s mother sells groceries to support her family. Alex has been diagnosed with encephalocoele, a type of neural tube defect in which brain tissues and overlying membranes protrude through openings in the skull. Encephalocoele usually results from a failure of the neural tube to completely close during fetal development. Without treatment, Alex is at risk of developmental delays, brain damage, or premature death. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $929 to fund encephalocoele repair surgery for Alex. The procedure is scheduled to take place on February 11. Hopefully, the repair of this condition will allow Alex to grow up healthy. “The swell was really worrying us but we are happy to know so many people have had the same issue and got treated,” says Alex's mother.