Mark joined Watsi on September 20th, 2016. Four years ago, Mark became the 2376th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 3,580 more people have become monthly donors! Mark's most recent donation traveled 8,200 miles to support Gladys, a farmer and mother-of-nine from Uganda, to fund her thyroidectomy.
Mark has funded healthcare for 49 patients in 11 countries.
Gladys and her husband are farmers in Uganda, they plant maize in their one acre farm. Gladys has been blessed with nine children that are currently aged between 16 and 31 years old. The family is struggling financially due to the low socio-economic status of the area where they live. This area also experiences communal clashes. Gladys began to experience troubling symptoms 20 years ago. She was diagnosed with a goitre, 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 Gladys receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on June 16 at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $705, and she and her family need help raising money. “I want this mass to be removed for two reasons; so that I can continue with my daily chores and also so that the people in my community can learn from my experience that herbalists cannot cure and should seek medical care at a hospital," shared Gladys.
Joshua is a two-month-old baby and the youngest in a family of three children from Tanzania. His parents are small-scale farmers; his father owns a few cattle and they also have a small farm where they plant food for home consumption. Joshua has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Joshua has been experiencing challenges since birth. Without treatment, Joshua will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,362 to cover the cost of surgery for Joshua that will treat his hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 20th and will drain the excess fluid from Joshua's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Joshua will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Joshua's father shared, "Please help treat our baby, he needs to undergo a surgery which due to financial challenges, we are not able to afford. Please help us."
Sopha is a 22-year-old teacher from Cambodia. She has two brothers and five sisters. When she has free time, she enjoys reading, listening to music, and cooking. Five months ago, Sopha fell off a motorcycle and fractured her left forearm. She received initial treatment at a nearby hospital, however she still experiences swelling and pain in her wrist. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On February 25th, Sopha will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. Treatment will help Sopha's fractured arm to heal properly and allow her to use her arm normally again. "I hope that my arm will no longer have any pain and swelling, and the fracture will heal so that I can return to work," Sopha said.
Ni Tar is a 36-year-old man from Burma who lives with his mother and his younger sister in Mingalar Township, Yangon Division. His younger sister is the primary breadwinner for the household. She works at solar factory in Yangon. Ni Tar has been unemployed for five years. In his free time, Ni Tar likes to read the Quran, especially when the weather is cool. Ni Tar was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of his 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, Ni Tar exhibits similar symptoms as before. He has shortness of breath, weakness, chest pain, and a difficulty walking longer distances. He also has a chronic cough. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Ni Tar. The treatment is scheduled to take place on March 18th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. “I miss teaching the children at the Mosque,” said Ni Tar. “Sometimes, in the past I wanted to kill myself because I felt like I was useless. I wanted to help take care of my family, but now it is up to my younger sister. It makes me feel ashamed.”
Abigael is a three-year-old girl from Kenya. Her mother is a 20-year-old student due to complete her high school education. Her grandmother and uncle are the sole breadwinners of the family. From bi-monthly payments of selling milk, her grandmother makes $15 which mostly pays fees for her children. This leaves her grandmother with little income to take care of any other family needs. Abigael is a playful young girl. When she was two years old, in 2018, Abigael was playing with her friends and she ran into the kitchen, falling into boiling water. She dipped her left hand into the water and had spillover on her gluteal region. She is now not able to move her fingers. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Abigael receive treatment. On February 19th, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery so she will be able to move her fingers easily. Now, she needs help to fund this $1,176 procedure. Abigael’s grandmother says, “My prayer is to see my grandchild utilizing her hand with ease.”
Dalin is a third grade student from Cambodia. She enjoys reading books and playing with her two sisters. When she was five years old, Dalin had an ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. For this reason, Dalin experiences hearing loss, discharge, infection, and headaches. She frequently has difficulty focusing in class and has trouble communicating with others. She has undergone five days of antibiotic injections in her ear to attempt to clear the infection prior to operation, and now requires surgery. Dalin traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On January 13th, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in her left ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. "I hope that my daughter's ear issue will be resolved and that I won't have to worry about her anymore." -Dalin's Mother
Srang is a 61-year-old Khmer cake seller from Cambodia. Srang comes from a family of thirty, and she enjoys watching Khmer dramas on television in her free time. Four months ago, Srang developed a cataract in her left eye, causing her tearing, itchiness, and blurred vision. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Srang learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three and a half hours seeking treatment. On August 14, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in her left eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $211 procedure. She says, "I hope that I will be able to see more clearly, and will be able to recognize people's faces and go outside on my own."
Nathan is a child from Kenya. Nathan is the lastborn in a family of three children. He lives with his parents and siblings in a two-room house in the Western region of Kenya. Nathan’s parents sell second hand clothes to sustain their family needs. Nathan 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 infertility. Fortunately, Nathan is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on November 28. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $700 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. “I look forward to have this operation done on my son. The past year has been quite troubling for us,” says Nathan’s father.
Khin is a 39-year-old woman who lives with her family in Hpa-An Township, Karen State, Burma. Both her children are in preschool. She and her husband are subsistence farmers, growing rice during the rainy season on rented land. The rest of the year, her husband collects leaves used to make roofs, works as a daily labourer or collects branches to sell. Khin was born with a scar the size of an ant bite on her upper lip. Her parents thought that it would disappear or heal on its own but the scar developed into a growth and increased in size. Her parents passed away when she was young and after that she went to live with her brother’s family. By the time she was around 20 years old, the growth had become large and soft, covering the area between her upper lips and her nose. When the pain became unbearable in 2005, her uncle dropped her off at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) in Thailand, a free clinic close to where her uncle used to work. At this point, the growth had become so large that dragged her upper lip down and extended into her nostrils. At MTC, she was seen by doctors and medics, before she was diagnosed with a hemangioma. At this point, the growth had worsened, and she was bleeding from her lips. In April 2006, Khin went to Chiang Mai Hospital and had the hemangioma removed surgically. The growth later has returned. Overtime, the hemangioma has increased in size and become hard. It has now expanded into Khin’s nostrils, especially her left nostril, which causes her to have difficulty breathing at times. She feels uncomfortable but is not in pain. Sometimes she also feels like she has a blood clot in her nostrils during her nosebleeds. Because the nosebleed can start at any time and can last anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes, her life revolves around managing her nosebleeds. She is unable to work or sleep properly, and if she is about to have a nosebleed, she is unable to eat. The nosebleeds have also affected her ability to earn an income for her children and continues to impact her social life. “When I socialise, I do not feel comfortable and some people think I have a disease that I can infect them with,” said Khin. “So, I hope to get better after surgery, and I hope I will no longer have nosebleeds. I don’t want to bleed, and I want to socialise with my friends and family happily. [Right now] my friends won’t even touch me.”
Daniel is car wash attendant from Kenya. Daniel’s wife left with their two children in 2002 when he developed the leg ulcer and could barely provide for the family. He now stays alone in a one-room rental house in Central Kenya. In 2017, Daniel was diagnosed with venous leg ulcer at Kijabe hospital after struggling for over 15 years to find the cause for the leg swelling. Daniel walks with a limp and is in pain and discomfort. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Daniel receive treatment. On October 08, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to help him walk easily again. Now, Daniel needs help to fund this $1,129 procedure. “I at times wonder whether God forgot about me. Please help me get an admission,” says Daniel.
Abiud is a baby from Kenya. Abiud was born and raised in a small village called Tuturung where most of the inhabitants work in farms or other small not very stable jobs. Abiud parents don’t have an education so they don’t speak Kiswahili but a local Kalenjin language. They live in a small mud hut with palm frawns as a roof. They fetch water from one stream that serves the whole village they live. His family gets its food from their small farm and consists mostly of cassava, millet, and sorghum. On Monday 9/9/2019, Abiud came to hospital accompanied with his parents presented with history of fall while crawling on top of a bench and sustained injury on the left hand. An He can not use his hand and is in pain. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On September 12, Abiud will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. The treatment will help his hand heal well and he will be able to use it again Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $771 to fund this procedure. His father says, “I just want my child not to be in pain anymore and be healthy and happy and have a good life.”
Brian is a student from Tanzania. He is the youngest in a family of four children. He joined kindergarten last year. For four years, Brian has been experiencing difficulty swallowing and regular fevers. Frequent illness causes him to miss school. Brian was recently diagnosed with enlarged tonsils, which, if not treated, will cause his symptoms to persist and possibly intensify over time. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $633 to fund a tonsillectomy for Brian, which is scheduled to take place on August 9. Surgeons will remove his tonsils, hopefully relieving Brian of his symptoms and helping him live more comfortably. Brian’s mother says, “This problem has made my son suffer a lot and made him miss a lot of class please help my son we have no means means of affording the cost.”