Dan joined Watsi on November 5th, 2015. Four months ago, Dan joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Dan's most recent donation supported Lakati, an active boy from Tanzania, to fund mobility-restoring corrective surgery.
Dan has funded healthcare for 16 patients in 8 countries.
Dan has funded healthcare for 16 patients in 8 countries.
Lakati is a 12-year-old boy and the fifth born out of six children. Lakati comes from a big extended family. Lakati got a chance to go to school but since he finished his primary school education he has been helping look after his father's cattle. His parents are nomadic pastoralists who settle in very remote regions, so getting to a hospital is not easy. They depend mainly on milk and meat from their cattle and once in a while, they are able to sell the cattle. Lakati was diagnosed with right genu valgus. His right knee bows inward so that his knees touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, Lakati experiences pain when walking for a long distance. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Lakati. The procedure is scheduled to take place on October 8th. Treatment will hopefully restore Lakati's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Lakati says “We have to walk long distances each day in search of pasture for our father’s cattle and as days go by it keeps being hard for me because of my right leg which hurts badly especially in the evening when we return home.”
Boaz is a small baby boy and the last born in a family of three children. Boaz’s father is a teacher and his mother is a housewife. Boaz was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition he was born with. If left untreated, Boaz has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. Fortunately, Boaz is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on September 6th. Boaz will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). AMHF is requesting $646 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care so he can grow up healthy. Boaz’s mother says, “When we heard that we were not in a position to be covered with support for his surgery, we had no choice but to go back and gather some funds which would take a long time. We are grateful for your help.”
Richard is four year old boy and the third born in a family of four children. He has not yet started school and enjoys looking after his father's cattle alongside his siblings. Richard's parents are small-scale farmers who grow maize, beans, and vegetables for their own consumption and they also have a few cattle for milk. Since he was a baby, Richard has had an inguinal hernia, a condition in which soft tissue protrudes through a weak place in the abdominal muscles. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Richard to receive treatment. On July 4th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at AMH's care center. Now, AMH is requesting $566 to fund Richard's surgery and once complete, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Richard’s mother shared, "if my son is able to get this treatment it will help stop the suffering he is going through especially this cold season."
Deng is a 18-year-old student who lives with his mother and his three siblings. His mother works at a local restaurant and in town as a cleaner. His older brother is a construction worker, and Deng plans to start working along side him soon to help support his family. In his free time, he likes to play soccer with his friends. In May, Deng was in a motor vehicle accident, where he injured his right ankle. His wound was dressed at a clinic, but now has become infected. Deng experiences constant pain and it is difficult for him to walk. When Deng learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled across the country for six hours seeking treatment. On July 6th, surgeons at CSC will perform a skin graft procedure to help him walk easily again. Now, Deng needs help to fund this $474 procedure. Deng shared, "I hope that I can heal quickly and begin work with my brother, so I can make more money for my family."
Deyvin is a 22-month-old boy from Guatemala. His parents have had trouble affording foods rich in calories, protein, and nutrients. He has been diagnosed with acute malnutrition. This means he has little energy to grow, and his immune system is weak and vulnerable to illness. He is also at risk of chronic disease and delayed development. Fortunately, Deyvin began malnutrition treatment on November 24, 2016. Deyvin's favorite foods are eggs, black beans, and rice. He loves to play hide-and-seek with his cousin, Brenda. He lives with his family in a one-room adobe house with a tin roof. His father works as a day laborer on a bean plantation, but he cannot afford this $512 treatment. While malnutrition can have devastating effects, it is also very treatable. Growth monitoring, micronutrients, and food supplementation will help Deyvin recover. He will gain weight and grow taller to catch up with other children his age, and his immune system will grow stronger. Community health workers will teach his mother about creating a nutrient-rich diet from limited resources. Treatment will give Deyvin a chance to grow healthy and strong. "I am appreciative of the support that you will give my son," says Deyvin's mother, "and I hope to learn many things about how to feed my son what he needs to grow."
Pan is a happy 76-year-old married man from Cambodia. He has a son, four daughters, and ten grandchildren. He enjoys listening to the monks praying and hearing the news on the radio. He also very much enjoys looking after his grandchildren. He traveled 3 hours with his daughter to reach CSC for treatment. Two years ago, Pan developed a cataract in each of his eyes. This condition is commonly seen in older adults, and it can severely affect his vision, lead to eye tearing, and cause photophobia. He can't see clearly, do work well, or go outside independently. So, he traveled three hours with his daughter to reach Watsi's medical partner, Children's Surgical Center, for treatment. After an ophthalmologist performs cataract surgery (ECCE and IOL) in each eye, Pan's clouded lenses that contain protein buildup will be replaced with clear, artificial lenses. He will be able to see clearly again and without any problems. $292 in funding will make this intraocular lens surgery possible for Pan, so that he may once again be able to look after his grandchildren and family.
Austin is a 95-year-old farmer from a village in Malawi. He has nine children and 30 grandchildren, who he loves spending time with when he isn't farming. When he is not on the farm or with his family, Austin likes to stay at home and do things around the house. Four years ago, Austin started experiencing symptoms from a benign enlargement of his prostate. He has been in a lot of pain and has been unable to work due to the symptoms. This condition is easily treated surgically, but the surgery is very hard to access in Malawi, especially on a farmer's wages. Luckily for Austin, he will be receiving a prostatectomy at a high quality hospital. His treatment costs $726, and includes all post-operative care. Austin knows that he needs the surgery, and is looking forward to the result. He will be happy to be free from the pain he has lived with for years.
Twelve-year-old Koket is a spirited boy from Ethiopia who loves to play football and watch movies. He wants to be a doctor in the future. His parents are civil servants who raise and teach six children, including Koket. Koket was born with hypospadias, a birth defect of the urethra in which the opening is not at the usual location at the head of the penis. In Koket's case, the urethral opening is in two different places, making him unable to urinate while standing. In the last 12 years, Koket's parents have taken him to several hospitals in Ethiopia, and they have spent a lot of money on transportation and on treatment, including six different surgeries for his condition. Koket is currently on a two-year waiting list for the hypospadias repair surgery that he needs. Without additional treatment, Koket may suffer urinary tract infections, and continued urine leaks may cause skin rashes. Koket's condition has affected him and his parents socially and psychologically. “I gave all I had for my son's treatment in the past twelve years," shares Koket's father. "And in 2014, we were included on a waiting list and waited for a call for about two years, and that made both his mother and me weary. We always worry about his condition.” For $1,155, Koket will undergo hypospadias repair, a procedure in which the surgeon takes tissue grafts from the foreskin or from the inside of the mouth to extend the length of the urethra so that it opens at the tip of the penis. Funding also covers the costs of a 10-day hospital stay, including blood tests and medicine. After surgery, Koket will be able to pass urine normally, and the risk of urinary tract infections will be reduced.
Seang is a 76-year-old woman from Cambodia married with two sons, one daughter, and six grandchildren. She spends her time cooking and cleaning in her home. She traveled three hours with her daughter to reach Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) for treatment. One year ago, Seang developed a cataract in each of her eyes. This causes her blurred vision, tearing, cloudy lenses, and photophobia. She can't see everyone clearly or do work very well. After a small incision cataract surgery and intraocular lens implant in each eye, Seang will be able to see clearly again. This procedure costs $225.
Nancy is a 20-month-old baby girl who lives with her parents in a remote village in Kenya. Nancy’s mother is a housewife, and her father sells khat to sustain the needs of the young family. Nancy was born with a small anal opening. During the first six months of her life, while she was only feeding on breast milk, she did not have trouble passing stool. When she started eating solid foods, she began to have a difficult time passing stool, and her stomach started to swell. Nancy was taken to several hospitals by her parents, and eventually, she had a colostomy done to create an opening on her upper abdomen for passing stool. Her parents were able to pay for the surgery through financial contributions from friends and family, but as time passed, it became more and more expensive for them to cater to their child’s medical expenses. To prevent infections, Nancy's parents must keep the area around the colostomy clean. “This is really hard for us—very hard,” says Nancy’s father. Keeping the area clean has also been expensive, making it more difficult for the family to raise the funds required for the next phase of Nancy's medical care. Now, Nancy needs a pull-through surgery—an anorectoplasty—to create an anal opening through which she can pass stool normally. $1,260 pays for the surgery, and Nancy's parents are contributing $21 to cover additional costs associated with her care. “Please help my daughter get treated, as we have exhausted funds in trying to get her treated," shares Nancy's father. "My prayer is to have her treated. I really understand her condition, and I am desperate to make life easier for her."
Edwin is a 17-month-old baby boy and the last-born in a family of two children. The family lives in a one room rental house in Kenya. Edwin’s father is a security guard in an estate near their home while his mother was a cleaner before she quit to care for Edwin. Edwin was born with a leaking mass swelling on his lower back that has been growing in size. To prevent infections from the leaking, Edwin has required dressing changes for the swelling. His parents were advised to seek for specialized treatment and went to a government hospital, but the wait became unbearable as their case kept getting postponed. Finally, a friend advised them to visit African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). A surgery to correct the open spina bifida is required to avoid the risks of infection or the development of a tethered cord. These complications can lead to either scolisis or kyphosis, and loss of muscle function of the lower limbs. Edwin's parents have contributed $73 towards their son's treatment, but are not able to raise all the money needed for their son's treatment. To cover the cost of treatment, they need $805. “Please help my son get treated," Edwin's father shares.
Angelica is a newborn baby girl from rural Guatemala. She was born one month prematurely. She was small and weak when she was born, and acquired an infection in her eyes and now her lungs. When she came to see us at the clinic, she was very sick, but now she is doing much better after receiving hospital care. Unfortunately, her mother had to receive antibiotics that are unsafe for breastfeeding. Since her mother had to stop breastfeeding while taking the medications, she lost her ability to make milk and now Angelica is acutely malnourished. Her mother says her heart breaks because she is unable to give her daughter enough milk to make her stop crying. Angelica lives with her parents and her older siblings in a humble one-room wood house with a tin roof. Her mother is worried because she can see her daughter losing weight, and she does not have enough milk to feed her. Since she spends so much time caring for Angelica and her father works as a day laborer in the coffee fields, barely making enough money to support basic living costs, they cannot afford the extremely expensive formula Angelica needs to survive. Although Angelica's life is in danger now, the treatment she needs to be a healthy and happy baby is simple. She will receive formula with the protein, calories, and nutrients she needs to grow and develop. Her immune system will grow stronger with the formula, and she will no longer cry from hunger. This treatment will not only save Angelica's life, but will mean she is no longer at risk for seizures, diarrhea, and long-term developmental delays due to her lack of milk. "My desire is that my daughter gets better and can grow healthily," her mother said. "I want to see her get big so that she can go to the school and study and be a person like you all that helps the people that need it."