Jan joined Watsi on September 15th, 2013. Seven years ago, Jan joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Jan's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Prince, a 5-year-old from Kenya, to fund surgery so he can walk and study again soon.
Jan has funded healthcare for 83 patients in 13 countries.
Jan has funded healthcare for 83 patients in 13 countries.
Prince is a 5-year-old and the youngest of three children. His father works at a construction site to help provide income for his family. In early February, Prince was on the school bus when the bus ran into a nearby shop. Prince was trapped between seats and became injured. He was rushed to a nearby health facility for first aid and underwent surgery. Two weeks later, he was referred to our medical partner's care center Kijabe Hospital for review. Prince then underwent a debridement and skin graft procedure in mid-February. Currently, Prince cannot walk and attend school, which is affecting his ability to move up in grades this year. Prince’s first two surgeries were paid for using his parent’s medical coverage, but the medical insurer turned down the current request for the surgery Prince needs to heal. Prince’s family shared that their trips to the hospital have exhausted their savings. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help Prince receive treatment. On May 25th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure. This surgery will address any risks of infection so that Prince’s leg can heal and he can walk again and resume his studies. AMH is requesting $1,185 to help to fund this procedure. Prince’s father said, “Prince has missed school since February. He was supposed to graduate to grade one, but due to the injuries, he did not. He needs this surgery so that he can be able to walk again.”
Daw Nwe is a 61-year-old woman from Thailand. Originally from Mon State, Burma, she moved in with her sister’s family in Thailand in January 2022, when her vision worsened and she did not have anyone to take care of her at home. In her free time, she enjoys watching videos about Buddhism, reading books about Buddhism and praying. She has cataracts and she can can only perceive darkness and light with her left eye. The vision in her right eye is slightly better as she can still see a bit, but her vision is blurry and she needs help from her family for daily personal activities. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Daw Nwe. On April 25th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Daw Nwe's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Daw Nwe said, “I am very happy when I think about how my vision will be restored. I am thankful to all the donors and the organisation [BCMF] for helping me receive eye surgery.”
Jackson is a fifteen-year-old student and the last-born child to his mother. He has a large family, as is common in the Maasai community where he lives. Jackson is a very hard-working boy both at home and at school. He is social and self-driven. He shared that most boys his age don’t like school or don’t get the chance to attend school, but not Jackson! His favorite subjects are Physics, Swahili, and History. He wishes to be a teacher in the future to help educate his community. Jackson is a big football fan, but he had to stop playing because his legs started hurting and it has gotten difficult for him to walk. Jackson was diagnosed with Bilateral Genu Varus, where both of his legs are curving outwards. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he experiences pain and difficulty walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Jackson. The procedure is scheduled to take place on March 22nd. Treatment will hopefully restore Jackson's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Jackson says, "My legs have made walking very difficult due to the pain. I would like to walk to school without difficulty and enjoy playing sports and helping my parents."
Meet Enock, a twelve-year-old playful boy in grade five. Enock is the youngest in a family of five. His father is an electrician while his mother does maize farming in their village to help support their family. Enock's family lives in a two-roomed iron sheet-built house in their small piece of land. Two months ago, Enock sustained a severe injury while he was playing with friends in school. He was taken to the nearest hospital where a cast was placed and was scheduled for follow-up. Seven weeks later, he was still having pain and he could not even move his leg. That is when his family sought a second opinion at our medical partner's care center Kapsowar Hospital. They visited the hospital and after X-ray imaging, a closed right femur fracture was revealed which needs surgery to heal. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On February 1st, Enock will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. With treatment, Enock will be able to walk again and play with friends at school. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,145 to fund this procedure. Enock's father says, “He has so much pain, I feel sorry for him. I hope he gets treated and feels better and will be well again."
Choranai is a 14-year-old student in tenth grade. She has two siblings, a nine-year-old brother, and a seventeen-year-old sister who is at the university. Her mother works at a local NGO. Her parents have been divorced for seven years and Choranai lives with her mother. When not doing homework, she plays with her brother, watches TV, and listens to music. She also enjoys swimming and helping with housework. She shared that her favorite meal is fried vegetables and milk. Two weeks ago, she developed a problem in her arm so her mother took her to Angkor Hospital for Children in Siem Reap, where her skin was debrided twice to help her heal. Doctors at the local hospital suggested she visit our medical partner Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) for further diagnosis and treatment. Surgeons at CSC diagnosed her with radial nerve palsy and need to do a radial nerve repair and rotational flap and skin graft to repair the paralysis in her arm and hand. On February 24th, she'll undergo surgery and after recovery, she will be able to feel and use her hand again. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $696 to fund this procedure. Choranai and her mom are hopeful that the numbness and paresthesia will disappear and she can use her hand again.
Jacinta is a beautiful 38-year-old small-business woman. She is the third born in a family of four, and a mother of one 15-year-old child. Jacinta was married but due to challenges, she separated from her husband and has been taking care of her son alone. Jacinta was trained in hotel management and was working in a big hotel before Covid-19 when she and some of her colleagues lost their jobs. She shared that since then, life has not been easy. Jacinta decided to start a small food kiosk to help meet the basic needs of herself and her son. Since one year ago, Jacinta has been experiencing on and off pain at the lower abdomen and irregular bleeding. She has been diagnosed with multiple myomas and now needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. She had a previous surgery, but doctors have recommended that this will help fully heal her condition. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $755 to fund Jacinta's surgery. On January 28th, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Jacinta will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain. “I am ashamed to keep asking for help. If I was still employed, I would be able to take care of my medical bills. I kindly request assistance again, so that this condition can be treated and I can regain my normal life. This will enable me to work hard and support my son,” said Jacinta.
Bonface is a commercial motorcycle driver. He lives in one of the biggest informal settlements of Nairobi Kenya with a relatively inconsistent income. He earns a daily commission depending on the availability of customers. Bonface lives in a single-room rental house that costs Ksh. 3000.00 ($30) per month. He is also hosting and taking care of his younger sister, who lives with him. His parents are elderly and stay in their ancestral home. They also depend on him for upkeep. He relies on national insurance medical coverage but has depleted his surgery allocation and, therefore, is in financial distress. Bonface was involved in a road traffic accident in early July 2021 and sustained a fracture tibia fibula. Although he underwent a surgery at a government facility in Nairobi, the wound developed an infection. This has delayed the healing of his wound and Bonface is experiencing pain in his right lower leg. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Bonface receive treatment. On November 8th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure. The surgery will help to manage the infection and avoid risk of imputation which would affect his work. Now, Bonface needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Bonface says, “This leg is so painful and I am scared if not treated it can be cut. But doctors have given me hope of healing if I undergo this surgery.”
Letina is a bright sixteen-year-old student. He's from a large family with ten children with Letina being one of the oldest. At school, Letina's best subjects are math, Swahili, and social studies. He is a hard-working student and helps look after his father's cattle when he is not studying. About three years ago, Letina's legs began curving as he grew. At first, it was a slight curve but has worsened over the years. As a result, Letina has had to stop his studies in search of treatment for his legs. Due to the family's limited income, they could not previously seek treatment for their son. Letina visited our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), where he was diagnosed with bilateral valgus, a condition in which the bone joint is angled outward away from the body's midline. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, walking is painful and near impossible. Letina shared he is now unable to walk a long distance and feels pain when he does walk. On October 26th, Letina will undergo corrective surgery. Treatment should help restore Letina's mobility, allow him to participate in various activities, and significantly decrease his risk of future complications. AMH is requesting $880 to help fund Letina's surgery. Letina shared, "Walking has become very hard for me due to pain and how deformed my legs are. My friends have been making fun of me at school."
Jackson is a nine-year-old boy from Tanzania. He is the fourth born child in a family of six children. Jackson is a hard-working boy both at home and school. He is currently in class three and his best subjects are Mathematics and Swahili. Due to his health condition, Jack is having a hard time walking and it continues to become more difficult as time goes on. When he is not at school, he helps to look after his father's cattle. Jackson's parents are livestock keepers who make a very humble income. When Jackson was two years old, he fell off his bed. As he fell, his right leg went into the fireplace, which is usually next to the bed to keep the hut warm. At the time, his parents couldn't take him to the hospital due to financial challenges and treated the burn wound using traditional herbal medication. His wound took a long time to heal. Over the years, the skin around his right foot has contracted and pulls his toes upward, which makes putting shoes on very challenging for Jackson. His parents have to buy big, soft shoes so that he can go to school wearing shoes. Jackson often complains of pain after a long day of walking. Most of the times when he is home, he doesn’t like wearing shoes due to the pain and discomfort. Through a mission organization, Jackson was referred to Plaster House at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre to seek treatment help. Doctors recommend that Jackson undergo an amputation of two toes on his right foot in order to remove the pain and difficulty that he feels when walking and wearing shoes. Jackson's parents cannot afford the treatment cost thus they are asking for help. Jackson will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare. He is scheduled to undergo surgery on April 23rd. African Mission Healthcare is requesting $1,088 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Once recovered, he will be free of pain and will soon be able to walk comfortably again. Jackson shared, "I would like to be able to wear shoes and walk without feeling pain. I will be happy if am able to have this treatment."
Say is a four-year-old boy who lives with his mother, brother, sister, and grandfather in a refugee camp on the border of Thailand. His father returned to Burma to visit his village last year. When Thailand closed its borders because of the COVID-19 outbreak, his father could not come back to the camp. Say's grandfather is an assistant pastor in the camp and he receives his income through donations when he visits his church members for home prayers. Say goes to nursery school while both of his siblings go to primary school. His mother does all the household chores. Every month, their household receives some funding to purchase rations in the camp, which is just enough for their basic needs. They receive free healthcare and education in the camp, but specialized procedures like the care that Say needs are often not possible. In early February 2021, Say developed an inguinal hernia on his right side, which has resulted in swelling and pain. His mother has noticed that since he developed the hernia, his appetite has decreased, as eating more can sometimes cause additional discomfort. Fortunately, on March 25th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at Mae Sot General Hospital, our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Say's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on March 25th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Say's mother said, "When I heard that my son needs surgery, I became so worried because he is the youngest in our family." She is eager for the surgery to be complete and for Say to have healed.
Alamunyak is a 16-year-old boy from Tanzania. He is the first born child to his father and mother, and they have are six children together. Alamunyak's parents are small scale farmers and livestock keepers. Because he was the firstborn, Alamunyak was never able to join school because he was the one looking after his father's cattle. He is a hard working young man who walks long distances seeking green pasture for the cattle. Currently, Alamunyak is unable to walk well because his legs bow outwards as he walks. Alamunyak was diagnosed with a condition called genu varus on his right leg, or bow-leggedness. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he is in pain and cannot walk comfortably for a long distance. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Alamunyak. The procedure is scheduled to take place on February 9th. Treatment will hopefully restore Alamunyak's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Alamunyak shared, “The first surgery I had helped correct my leg, and walking became a bit easier compared to before. If I am able to get this next surgery, I will be able to walk better and be able to go back home and help my parents and siblings without difficulty.”
Rebecca is a 1-year-old girl from Tanzania. She is the last born in a family of two children and has started to grow into a strong and beautiful girl. Both of her parents depend on small scale farming to support their family. Rebecca was initially brought to the hospital by her parents seeking treatment to help correct her spina bifida condition. Spina bifida is a birth defect that occurs when the spine and spinal cord fail to form properly. This puts a child in danger of limb paralyses or death in case of a severe infection. At the time, Rebecca's parents could not afford the proposed surgery. Luckily, one of their friends advised them to seek help at our medical partner's care center, ALMC Plaster House. Through Watsi funding, Rebecca’s life was saved and she has been growing well since then. However, a few weeks ago, Rebecca's mother noticed her daughter's head was increasing in size at a very fast rate and she was complaining of headaches. Her parents had worked hard to save some money and got a health insurance card for their baby, so they decided to take her to the hospital to seek treatment. There, Rebecca was diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. She needs to have an ETV surgery that will help relieve her of the pressure build-up, which would otherwise lead to brain damage. Unfortunately, their insurance has not matured enough to cover this kind of major surgery, so Rebecca's parents are appealing for financial support to help her. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of surgery for Rebecca that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 25th and will drain the excess fluid from Rebecca's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Rebecca will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Rebecca’s mother shared, “My daughter’s head is increasing in size and it is making her sick. She needs surgery but the insurance we got for her cannot cover the cost. Please help once more if it is possible because we don’t know where to run to for help besides all of you.”