Jennifer joined Watsi on August 24th, 2015. Seven years ago, Jennifer joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Jennifer's most recent donation supported Rechael, a widow and young mother from Kenya, to fund surgery to remove her gallbladder.
Jennifer has funded healthcare for 86 patients in 11 countries.
Jennifer has funded healthcare for 86 patients in 11 countries.
Rechael is a 38-year-old widow and mother of three children, who works in a small grocery store. Her husband died in a traffic accident in 2018, and her life changed dramatically as a result. Her husband's family sent her away with the children, and since her mother had also died earlier, she shared with us that she had nowhere to go. Her aunt agreed to have Rachael and her children come live with her. Rechael was accompanied by her aunt and uncle when she came to Nazareth Hospital this week. She was very anxious, and when she started narrating her story she began to cry. She had become depressed, had experienced periodic upper abdominal pains, and occasional vomiting. She has been admitted at hospitals three times, and a scan showed that she had gallstones. Doctors advised that she have surgery to heal her condition. Unfortunately, she is unable to pay the $788 needed for this surgery. If not treated, Rechael will continue to experience these symptoms, and could develop complications such as pancreatitis, or obstruction of the gallbladder among others. “I am desperate and don’t know what to do. I can only depend on my family, and they are not in a position to help. I pray for help so that at least my life can be normal again for the sake of my children,” said Rechael.
Sebastiana, who is eight years old, lives with her mother and four siblings in Tanzania. Because she is separated from her husband, Sebastiana's mother works many different jobs in order to support her children. One day, when their mother was away, Sebastiana and her siblings were busy helping out with household chores. Sebastiana got into an accident, and hot water spilled all over her arm. She received treatment for her burns - which healed - but they have left her with scars that limit the use of her arm. Sebastiana and her mother traveled a long way to meet with doctors from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation. As a result of their visit, Sebastiana is now scheduled to undergo contracture release surgery, and the amputation of her left thumb, at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre on October 13th. After her surgery, Sebastiana should regain full use of her hand and arm, which will be a big relief to her mother. Now we need your help to fund the $1,088 required for the surgery. Sebastiana’s mother says: “When we were leaving home, she was so happy knowing that she is going to get treatment.”
Kay is 43-year-old woman and garment factory worker. She lives alone on the border of Thailand and Burma. Kay supports her parents in Burma by sending them money every month. In her free time, she enjoys reading books about Buddhism. In the middle of 2021, Kay began experiencing pain and abnormal bleeding. By September of 2022, the pain and symptoms had worsened. Kay has been diagnosed with myoma, or a noncancerous growth in the uterus. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, which would surgically remove her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Kay's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Kay is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on September 19th. 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 pain or abnormal bleeding. She will be able to go back to work, and to continue supporting her family. “When I recover fully, I will continue to work in the garment factory. I will save my money and I will pay back my debt. I will try to continue supporting my parents,” said Kay.
Josephine is a 70-year-old mother of eight children who lives with her husband in Kenya. Although she and her husband both do some small-scale farming in her community, they depend on their children to support them. However, Josephine has recently been unable farm due to her current medical condition. Since January, Josephine has been experiencing troubling symptoms, including uncontrolled bleeding. She visited a nearby health facility in her hometown to be evaluated and was referred to a hospital for additional tests. There, she received a CT scan and a biopsy, which revealed that she has uterine cancer. Her doctor recommends that she undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, a surgical procedure to remove the uterus, to help remove the cancer from her body and hopefully stop its spread. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), is requesting $1,260 to fund Josephine's surgery. Josephine has gathered funds to help with a copay, but the full cost of the specialist procedure is out of reach. On August 25th, she will undergo gynecological surgery at AMHF's care center, AIC Kijabe Hospital. After this procedure, she should be able to resume her life free from discomfort and bleeding. Josephine says, “Struggling with cancer at my age is scary. I can’t believe it! I hope the surgery will help to get rid of the disease.”
Zuriel is a friendly three-year-old boy from the Philippines. He loves to play with his friends in the neighborhood! His mother is a full-time mom, and his father works as a tricycle driver. Two years ago, Zuriel's mother noticed a mass on his groin. She brought him to the nearest hospital to get it checked, and it was diagnosed as an inguinal hernia. This hernia occurs when tissue, such as part of the intestine, protrudes through a weak spot in the abdominal muscles. Zuriel's parents share that his father earns just enough to support their day-to-day needs, so they are unable to fund their son's needed surgery to heal his condition. Fortunately, our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP), is helping Zuriel receive treatment. He will undergo hernia repair surgery on July 23rd at WSFP's care center, Our Lady of Peace Hospital. A portion of the cost of Zuriel's treatment is being supported by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation. WSFP is raising the remaining $845 to cover the cost of his surgery and care. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Zuriel's mother shares, "It's hard to find help for my son's treatment. Fortunately, we were able to reach out to the World Surgical Foundation Philippines. This free surgery will be a big help to our family. Thank you so much to Watsi and World Surgical Foundation Philippines. God bless you."
Nimo is a 3 year old girl, living with her grandmother in Ethiopia. When she was just a few months old, Nimo's parents gave her to her grandmother, as with four other children already at home and Nimo's medical condition, they were unable to take care of Nimo. Nimo's grandmother, who has a small business, was already supporting four other people, so she shared that it is hard for them to survive from day to day. Nimo was born with a congenital malformation, that led to a blockage in her intestines. At first, when Nimo began to show signs of this condition, her family didn't have the funds to take her to the hospital. By the time someone provided funds so that Nimo could get to the hospital, she was weak and underweight from malnourishment. An emergency colostomy was performed, and over time, Nimo gained strength, and is now able to run and play with her friends. However, she still has multiple issues that require medical attention and additional surgery to help her fully heal. Nimo is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on July 5th, at BethanyKids Myungsung Christian Medical Centre. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Nimo's procedure and care. After her recovery, Nimo will no longer experience bowel dysfunction, or be at risk of developing related health complications in the future. Nimo's grandmother says: “When she heals, I will go to my home and celebrate with my family. ”
John is 22-year-old who is working hard to make a life for himself. He currently stays with his parents in their ancestral home in the South Central Kenyan town of Narok, and works as a casual laborer who loads and off-loads maize for a living. Unfortunately during a dispute at a farm where he was working, John and other workers were attacked. John was hit on the head, resulting in an intracranial hematoma (pooled blood in his skull). The internal injuries are currently affecting his mobility and speech, and could be fatal without treatment. John urgently needs a craniotomy to remove the hematoma and this family is raising $1,500 for his surgery at Kijabe Hospital. His father says, “John is a young hardworking man. He was attacked while trying to earn a living. These head injuries are serious, they have made him almost immobile, and has started having trouble speaking. This surgery is urgent to restore his speech and ability to walk.”
La is a 36-year-old mother of three children. She is married and her husband works as a construction worker. To help support her family, she sells soft drinks and coffee from her home. The couple has one son and two daughters, who are all in public school. In her free time, La enjoys walking her children to and from school, cooking, and, after a long day, watching television. Five years ago, La injured her left knee and she has experienced intermittent pain since the injury. Unfortunately, in December 2021, she was involved in a motorbike accident where she re-injured the same knee. After an x-ray, she was diagnosed with an aneurysmal bone cyst, or a benign, blood-filled lesion in the bone that often expands or grows. She experiences severe pain and now has difficulty walking. To treat her condition, surgeons plan to remove the cyst from her left knee and help to heal the joint. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is helping La receive treatment. On April 9th, surgeons will perform a procedure to relieve La of her pain and allow her to walk easily. Now, she needs help raising $273 to fund her procedure and care. La shared, "I am thankful that I will be able to return to work and care for my children after this surgery."
SokChea is a 57-year-old farmer. She and her husband farm their ancestral land; they have seven children who are all married and help them with the farming. She enjoys spending time with the family and cooking for her grandchildren. When SokChea was about ten years old, she developed chronic ear discharge from both ears. Sometimes she would experience headaches, dizziness, and ringing in her ears. The infection she had caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in both ears to perforate. Now she cannot communicate clearly with others because it is hard for her to hear. She shared that this feels embarrassing for her so she shies away from speaking with strangers. Also, the medications she has used are costly for the family. SokChea traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 10th, she will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in both ears. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforations. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $913 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. "I hope that my hearing will improve and I won't have to spend money to keep buying ear drops," SokChea told us.
Yousos is a 26-year-old rice farmer who is married with has a four-year-old son and an eight-month-old son. Yousos enjoys reading and playing chess. In May 2019, Yousos was in a motor vehicle accident that caused a right hip fracture. Yousos sought treatment at a local hospital and was diagnosed with avascular necrosis. Yousos was also seen by a Khmer traditional healer, but his hip pain has persisted. Now Yousos's hip pain is so great, he can no longer walk. Fortunately, a neighbor told Yousos about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC). At CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Yousos of his pain and allow him to walk easily. CSC is helping Yousos raise the $1,087 to cover the cost of the procedure scheduled for February 16th. Yousos is now hopeful to be more active and feel well again. He shared, "I hope I can walk easily again without pain."
Navin is a sweet 22-month-old boy. His family shared that he is very charming and also has a twin brother. Navin's father works as a phone repair person while the mother is a housewife. Over the December holidays, Navin's mother visited her parents in Arusha and when his grandparents saw how impacted his legs were, they advised Navin's parents to seek treatment for the twins. Navin has been diagnosed with bilateral genu varus, meaning both of his legs bow outward. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, Navin has a challenging time walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Navin. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 11th. Treatment will hopefully restore Navin's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Navin’s mother says: “Please help my children they are struggling to walk and their legs keep worsening.”
U Hla is a 43-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his wife, three sons and a three-year-old daughter in Mon State. His sons go to school, while he and his wife collect recyclable plastic items and sell it to a recycling plant to earn a living. In his free time, U Hla enjoys growing vegetables in their garden. In October, U Hla was walking around his hut barefoot when he stepped on a piece of glass that cut his right toe. He could not afford to go to a clinic or a hospital and, over time, the injury became infected. His right toe is swollen and has turned blue. He cannot put any weight on his toe and has to use a wheelchair. Due to the pain, he cannot work as much as he needs to and he shared that since the end of November, he had to take his sons out of school to help him earn enough income for them to survive. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is helping U Hla receive treatment. On December 16th, surgeons will perform a debridement to help his infection heal so that he can go back to work and his sons can go back to school. Now, U Hla needs help to fund this $694 procedure. “I really miss my children and I want to see them,” said U Hla. "After I recover, I will go back to work and plant more vegetables. My garden is small, but I want to grow more vegetables and sell it to earn more money. I want to support my family as much as I can."