Jeffrey Braun
Jeffrey's Story

Jeffrey joined Watsi on October 14th, 2015. 30 other people also joined Watsi on that day! Jeffrey's most recent donation supported Godlisten, a baby boy from Tanzania, for skin graft surgery to treat burns.


Jeffrey has funded healthcare for 11 patients in 6 countries.

Patients funded by Jeffrey

Shalo is a nine-month-old infant from Ethiopia living with an imperforate anus. An imperforate anus is a type of anorectal malformation, where the malformed rectum threatens to complication normal bowel movements. An anorectal malformation is discovered upon birth, and is often accompanied with spinal or heart complications as well. Depending on the severity of the malformation, those with an imperforate anus can have chronic constipation, or in more serious cases, may need an emergency colostomy. Shalo was one who needed to have an emergency colostomy due to obstruction of his bowels. Since then he has been unable to independently pass stool, and is exposed to further colostomy complications such as leakages, infection, or obstruction. Shalo is the third child born to his family. His father works as a laborer, and makes approximately $2.40 per day. Since birth, Shalo has needed full time care, and his mother has stayed at home to take care of him and his siblings. With the reduced income, saving for the needed procedure has been difficult. “All I need is my boy to get the treatment and be healed,” says Shalo’s mother. “Then I can get back to my work and help support my family too.” Shalo needs a posterior sagittal anorectoplasty to surgically reposition the rectum and anus and better allow for regular bowel movements. After the surgery, a colostomy opening will be created to allow recovery from the anorectoplasty. Then, two to three months later, a colostomy closure will be done to complete the process. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, tells us that for $1,500, Shalo can have the posterior sagittal anorectoplasty and colostomy closure he needs. The total cost includes the antibiotics, imaging, and inpatient stay. After his recovery, he is expected to be able to independently pass stool and allow his mother to return to work.

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“Laxman studies in the second grade and is a bright student,” says our Nepalese medical partner, Possible. “He enjoys reading Nepali stories and playing volleyball.” Several months ago, the nine-year-old boy from Nepal developed an inguinal hernia, a condition where part of the lower intestine protrudes through a weakened section of the abdominal cavity, causing a painful bulge. “Although initially it did not make much of a difference, it has been painful for a while now," Possible shares. "It also hurts when clothes rub against it or it is touched accidentally.” Laxman's father adds, “He cannot run or walk long distance.” Without intervention, Laxman’s condition could worsen and put him at risk of hernia strangulation, which cuts off blood flow from parts of his body. To support the family, Laxman’s parents tend to their farm. However, their modest income prevents them from being able to support the cost of Laxman’s operation. For $491, Laxman will undergo a hernia repair surgery. During this procedure, surgeons will insert the displaced section of the intestine back into its normal position. Following surgery, Laxman will remain under close medical supervision. This operation offers Laxman both short-term and long-term benefits. Possible states, “Having the surgery will not only prevent Laxman's hernia strangulation but it will also relieve his discomfort.” "I hope Laxman's condition will not cause any complications in future," Laxman's father shares. "I wish for his treatment to be successful."

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Mesiaki was born at home on December 28th, 2015. “He is the first born to his young parents who are still living at Mesiaki’s grandparents’ house (father’s side) while slowly trying to build their own house,” says our medical partner in Tanzania, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). Mesiaki was born with a condition called spina bifida — a protrusion on his lower back which is growing with time. Although Mesiaki is active and breastfeeding well there is a risk that the protrusion may burst leaking cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), creating bigger health problems. Mesiaki is also at risk of developing hydrocephalus if not treated. “Mesiaki’s mother is very worried about the condition of her son,” AMHF says. “She was unable to bring him to the hospital sooner because they needed a few days to gather enough cash to travel from their village to a hospital where their baby can receive proper treatment. Mesiaki’s parents are small scale farmers; they rely on selling the little that remains after taking out what they need for food.” $1,200 will cover the cost of surgery to treat Mesiaki’s condition, and prevent future complications. After treatment, “The protrusion on Mesiaki’s back will be removed, allowing him to sleep on his back, continue with normal growth, and he will also be out of the risk of developing hydrocephalus.” “God has given us this beautiful baby and we pray that He will see him through his health problem,” Mesiaki’s mother says. “We would love to see him growing up like other children and later on live an independent life.”

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At 16 months old, Eliseo is the youngest of ten children. He lives with his parents and siblings in a small adobe house in Guatemala. Eliseo loves to play with his brothers, especially with toy cars and balls. However, due to acute malnutrition, he often has low energy and stamina, and is frequently sick with fevers and diarrhea. Our medical partner, Wuqu’ Kawoq (WK), tells us that Eliseo's mother first brought him to a local health clinic where a nurse told her that Eliseo was not getting the calories he needed. Without a healthy diet, "Eliseo is far below the average height for age and weight for age and if intervention does not occur, he will be physically and mentally stunted," his doctor says. Eliseo's immune system is also weakened--increasing his risk of chronic disease. Eliseo’s mother does household chores and collects firewood to sell. However, the family is primarily dependent on Eliseo’s father’s modest income earned as fieldworker. WK tells us “Eliseo’s family does not have enough money to afford the amount of food and the quality of calories that Eliseo needs.” For $535, Eliseo will undergo intensive nutrition therapy. He will receive micronutrient food supplementation as well as medication to prevent infections during his treatment. Combined, this intervention will improve Eliseo's immunity and overall nutrition--allowing Eliseo to regain the height and weight he has lost. He will also have improved long-term health, including reduced risk of chronic disease. Eliseo’s mother will also receive the education she needs to support her children. She adds, "with the help of God and the institution, kids like our son will begin to get the food and care they need to grow. This is such a blessing.”

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Tracy is an 18-month-old baby girl from Uganda, where she lives with both of her parents. A year ago, Tracy’s father developed a disability that prevents him from working, leaving the family dependent on her mother’s income as a subsistence farmer. “Tracy has acute malnutrition, diarrhea, and has not yet fully developed,” our medical partner, the Kellermann Foundation, tells us. Poor nutrition has pushed back Tracy’s development during a crucial time in her life--at 18 months, she has not yet started to walk as most healthy children do. If untreated, malnutrition will continue to diminish Tracy’s immune system, making her susceptible to illness. She will also continue to miss mental and physical developmental milestones. With her father out of work and her mother supporting the whole family, Tracy’s family cannot save to afford the treatment. For $375, Tracy will receive treatment for acute malnutrition. Doctors and nutritionists will work together to provide Tracy the appropriate antibiotics to help cure her infection and diarrhea. She will also be provided with micronutrient support and food supplements to help her meet her nutritional needs. With our support and the help of the doctors and nutritionists, Tracy will begin to hit major developmental milestones at the same rate as other children. She will also benefit from having a stronger immune system, improved energy, and better focus--giving her the opportunity to to reach her full potential. Tracy’s parents are eager to see their baby begin to thrive. “Seeing my child healthy again will be like I have just been born,” her mother shares. “I lost my other baby and am so praying for Tracy to recover.”

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