Charles joined Watsi on September 9th, 2014. Eight years ago, Charles joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Charles' most recent donation traveled 1,900 miles to support Anthonie, a 9-year-old boy from Haiti, to fund overseas prep and transportation for his life-saving heart surgery.
Charles has funded healthcare for 100 patients in 13 countries.
Charles has funded healthcare for 100 patients in 13 countries.
Anthonie is a student from Haiti. He lives with his aunt and uncle and their family in a small town in northern Haiti. He enjoys going to school and church. Anthonie has a cardiac condition called Tetralogy of Fallot. This condition involves several related defects including a hole between two chambers of the heart, and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. These prevent blood from flowing normally through his body, leaving him weak and short of breath. The care Anthonie needs is not available in Haiti so he needs to travel for surgery. He will fly to the Cayman Islands and on January 9th will undergo cardiac surgery. During surgery, surgeons will sew a patch over the hole to close it, and remove the muscular blockage in his heart. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman, is also contributing $16,000 to pay for his treatment. Anthonie's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep, travel, and follow-up care. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also pays for obtaining his passport, and for the social worker from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Anthonie's family overseas. Anthonie's aunt says, "Anthonie has been very sick for a long time, we are all praying that this is the miracle that will make him better!"
Alex is a four-year-old boy who lives with his parents and three siblings in Tanzania. His parents are small scale farmers. Alex was brought to Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre in October after having been involved in an accident in 2020, that resulted in burns and deformed toes on both of his feet. His condition makes it painful for Alex to wear shoes or to walk, and the surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, have advised Alex's parents that the optimal treatment would be the amputation of his toes. As small scale farmers, Alex's parents have struggled during the recent droughts in Tanzania. Therefore, they are looking to you to help fund the $1,088 for the surgery that Alex needs to resume a full and happy life, which is scheduled to take place on December 1st, at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. Alex’s father says: “Alex is having a hard time walking barefooted. I hope one day he is able to wear shoes and to walk without enduring pain.”
Meet Katweensly, a 16 year old student, living with her mother and siblings in a small town in Haiti, near the border with the Dominican Republic. Katweensly, who is a junior in high school, particularly enjoys her math and science classes. As a young child, Katweensly suffered a bout of rheumatic fever, which damaged one of the four valves in her heart. As a result, her heart cannot pump blood efficiently through her body, leaving her feeling weak and short of breath. Thanks to the help of our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, Katweensly is scheduled to travel to the Dominican Republic for surgery, which is scheduled for November 10th, at Hospital CEDIMAT. There, doctors will first try to repair the damaged valve. If they are unable to do this, they will implant an artificial valve. Another organization, Mitral Foundation, is helping supporting the cost of the surgery, but Katweensly's family needs an additional $1,500 to pay for lab tests, medicines, and follow up appointments that are a part of her overall treatment. In addition, support will help cover the travel costs and ensure a social worker from Haiti Cardiac Alliance can support the family during treatment in the Dominican Republic. Katweensly said: "I am feeling very happy to finally have the chance to have my heart repaired after waiting for so long."
Alice is a cheerful and talkative 63-year-old farmer from Kenya. She has seven children, with her youngest being 14 and her oldest being 40. Although she is married, Alice works to support her children alone. She and her family live on a small piece of land, half of which is reserved for a tea plantation. She grows and sells this tea in order to pay her children's school fees and provide them with their day-to-day needs. 15 years ago, Alice began experiencing troubling symptoms, including neck swelling, joint weakness, and constant fatigue. After attempting to alleviate her symptoms using herbal medication with no success, she decided to seek medical attention at a health center. The medics referred her to our medical partner's care center, AIC Kapsowar Hospital, for diagnosis and treatment. Fortunately, a friend provided her with money to pay for her transportation to the hospital. Once there, she was diagnosed with bilateral non-toxic multinodular goiter, meaning she has multiple lumps located within her thyroid glands. In order to stop her symptoms and prevent them from worsening, she must undergo surgery. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), is helping Alice receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on August 15th at AMHF's care center. During this procedure, surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This surgery will cost $936, and Alice and her family need help raising money. Alice says, “I would like to see my children achieve their dreams. I look forward to getting well to continue providing for and supporting them. Kindly help me.”
Faith is a very cheerful and friendly 9-year-old student from Kenya. She is the youngest in her family. Her father works as a casual laborer, and her mother works as a vegetable vendor. Her mother shares that she is limited in seeking more job opportunities due to her daughter's required care. Faith was born with hemiplegic cerebral palsy, a condition that results from damage to the part of the brain that controls muscle movements. She also has clubfoot of her right foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and wearing shoes. Faith is currently unable to stand and walk on her own, but she can sit comfortably. Her parents have visited different hospitals in search of treatment for her without success. Fortunately, Faith recently traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 22nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), is requesting $1,286 to fund Faith's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will hopefully be able to stand and walk without support. Her parents will also be able to seek more job opportunities to further provide for their family. Faith's mother shares, "We are not in a position to raise the estimated hospital bill. We are seeking help from AMHF for my daughter to undergo surgery. God will bless you."
Dorcas is an adorable one-month-old baby from Tanzania who loves being close to her mother. Her mother practices subsistence farming, and she is their family's sole source of income. Dorcas was born with clubfoot, a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. Because of this, her right foot is twisted both downwards and inwards. This has made standing up, walking, and wearing shoes very difficult for her. Her mother shares that due to financial difficulties, she is worried about the cost of Dorcas's needed surgery. Fortunately, her family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. On August 9th, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on Dorcas. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund this procedure. After treatment, she will be able to walk without straining. Dorcas's mother says, "I will tell my daughter about the help she got here and how it changed her life."
Lenny is a beautiful eight-month-old baby girl from Haiti. She is a happy and bubbly girl who loves to smile and play with her mother! Lenny has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of her condition, Lenny has been experiencing an increasing head circumference. Without treatment, Lenny will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, Project Medishare, is requesting $957 to cover the cost of surgery for Lenny at Hospital Bernard Mevs, where she will receive treatment for her hydrocephalus. This is the only site in the whole country where this care is currently available. The procedure is scheduled to take place on July 5th. This critical treatment will place a shunt to drain the excess fluid from Lenny's brain to reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Lenny will hopefully grow to be a strong, healthy young girl. Lenny's family expressed that they are hoping for a successful surgery that will help Lenny to grow and develop without complications.
Vania is a hardworking 14-year-old student from Haiti. She lives in an urban area of the island nation's capital, Port-au-Prince, with her parents and three younger brothers. She enjoys studying, especially science and literature. Unfortunately, Vania has not been able to attend school for two years because of her heart condition. She suffered from rheumatic fever early in her childhood. The illness damaged one of the four valves in her heart, leaving her with a condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation. Her heart cannot pump blood adequately through her body, which leaves her weak and short of breath. The good news is that surgery can help. Vania will fly to the Cayman Islands to receive treatment. On May 16th, surgeons will remove her damaged valve and implant an artificial valve in its place. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman, is contributing $17,000 to pay for the procedure. But Vania's family also needs help to fund other medical and travel costs, which is where our Watsi donors come in. They are raising $1,500 to cover lab work and medicine for Vania, along with checkup and followup appointments. It also will help pay for her to get a passport and support social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Vania and her family overseas. Vania says, "I am looking forward to this surgery so that I can feel more normal and go back to school."
Myo Htay is a 22-year-old who lives with his parents and younger brother in the border region of Burma. His parents work as day laborers at a gold mine, carrying dirt and debris. Myo used to work with his parents but stopped last November when his health deteriorated. Because the gold mine closes during the rainy season, his parents only have work for six months out of the year. The rest of the time they try to live off of their savings. Around six months ago, Myo started to feel tired when he worked. At first he thought he was tired from working too hard. When he continued to feel tired for over a month, he thought that he needed to see a doctor. However, because of their limited funds, he did not want his parents to spend what they had on a trip to a clinic or a hospital. Around the middle of April, his condition worsened. He had difficulty breathing, experienced chest pain, and also heart palpitations. His parents brought him to a nearby hospital where he was diagnosed with a heart disease. The doctor told them to bring him to Yangon for further treatment. After Myo's parents borrowed money, they went to Yangon and took him to two different hospitals. At the last hospital, Myo was admitted for five days as he was unwell at that time. He received a follow-up appointment for two weeks later, but was brought back on April 30th when he developed rapid breathing, heart palpitations, chest pain and oedema (swelling) in both his legs. Myo was readmitted to the hospital, and the doctor told Myo's parents that his surgery would cost 20,000,000 kyat (approx. $11,000 USD). When they told the doctor that they cannot afford to pay for his surgery, a nurse gave them the phone number of an abbot in Yangon. After they called the abbot and told him what the doctor had said, the abbot referred Myo to our medical parter Burma Children Medical Fund for the assistance accessing the cardiac treatment he needs. Currently, Myo is on oxygen. If he does not receive oxygen, he has difficulty breathing as well as heart palpitations. He cannot walk for more than three minutes and if he does, he feels extremely tired. His whole family is worried about his condition. Fortunately, Myo's surgery has been scheduled for May 8th. He will have both valves of his heart replaced. His family needs $1,500 to help with the total cost of his surgery and care. Myo’s mother said, “I would give up everything to save my son’s life. I would sleep on the ground if we had no home to live in. I only wish to see my son getting better.”
Mab is a 34-year-old electrician. He has two children, with his oldest son is seven years old and his newborn daughter at two months old. In Mab's free time, he enjoys playing volleyball with his friends. Last December, Mab was in a motorcycle accident that caused a brachial plexus injury on his left side. The brachial plexus is the nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Injuries to this nerve network can result in a loss of function and sensation. After the accident, Mab's family took him to a local hospital for treatment; however, his left arm is still immobile, and he has shoulder pain. The doctors referred him to our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), for review, where they determined his shoulder is partially dislocated, and he has no elbow or wrist flexion. CSC is the only treatment center in the country that can help Mab receive the treatment he needs. On April 5th, he will undergo brachial plexus repair surgery that will allow him to use his hand again. CSC is requesting $696 for the cost of this surgery. Mab was able to gather $100 to contribute to his care, as well. Mab says, "I hope my arm will regain strength, and I can return to work."
Liam is a playful four-year-old boy and the only child in his family. Liam and his young, single mother both live with Liam's grandmother, and depend on her farm for food. Liam was born with a condition known as quad cop, which is a subset of cerebral palsy that affects all four of his limbs (both arms/hands and legs). In addition, Liam has clubfoot on both of his feet. Clubfoot is a congenital musculoskeletal condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes him to have a great deal of difficulty walking and wearing shoes. Fortunately, on March 15th, Liam will undergo clubfoot repair surgery at our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,286 to fund Liam's treatment. After treatment, Liam will be able to place his entire foot on the ground when he walks, compared to now where he can only walk on his tiptoes which makes it hard for him to get around freely and independently. In the future his mother hopes he will be able to run, play, and join school like other children. Liam's mother says, "We would like to request support because we have nothing in our pockets to facilitate the surgery he needs."
Julius is a 44-year-old man with two children. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Julius used to buy old clothes to sell, but the business was so greatly affected by the pandemic that he has had to search for other work to survive. He now takes on labor jobs at construction sites. Julius was in a hit-and-run accident where a driver lost control of the vehicle and hit him while walking along the side path. Julius was thrown over the car and sustained an open fracture on his left leg. As a result, he is experiencing pain and is at risk of developing an infection or malunion, which occurs when a fractured bone heals in an abnormal position. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help Julius heal. On February 7th, he will undergo a fracture repair procedure known as an open reduction and internal fixation. After surgery, Julius will no longer be in pain, and he will be able to walk and work again. AMH is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. Julius shared, “I depend on my legs because, for construction work, you have to climb. However, I thank God I am alive. I kindly request help so that my leg can get well. I can then go back to my hustles and sustain myself."