Erik joined Watsi on November 6th, 2014. Seven years ago, Erik joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Erik's most recent donation traveled 8,200 miles to support Joy, a mother and farmer from Uganda, for thyroid removal surgery to finally relieve her swelling.
Erik has funded healthcare for 82 patients in 11 countries.
Erik has funded healthcare for 82 patients in 11 countries.
Joy is a farmer and a mother of 6 children from Western Uganda. She works on her small piece of land to make ends meet together with her husband. Their income is limited to their family's day-to-day needs. Joy's children are not able to work, which makes their income irregular and minimal. 35 years ago, Joy began to experience troubling symptoms, including anterior neck swelling. Lately, she started having breathing problems and general body weakness. She had a thyroid test and scan done, and she was diagnosed with bilateral goitre. She needs surgery but the cost is too high for her to meet. Joy appeals for help, since she needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Joy receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on October 6th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $252, and she and her family need help raising money. Joy says “I hope to get healed once am given your support and I will resume farming once I have fully recovered.”
Thuwaibatu is a three-year-old girl and the second-born child in a family of three children. Thuwaibatu is a friendly, playful and talkative girl. Thuwaibatu was diagnosed with genu varus, where her legs bow outwards and her knees do not 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, she has difficulty walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Thuwaibatu. The procedure is scheduled to take place on September 2nd. Treatment will hopefully restore Thuwaibatu's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Thuwaibatu’s mother says "Her legs worsen each day, you can see how she walks and how big the curve is. Please help my daughter, we cannot afford the treatment cost.”
Sopheap is a 38-year-old farmer. Her husband works at a hotel near their home. Together they have two young daughters, a one-year-old and a three-year-old. Four months ago, Sopheap was in a driving accident that led to paralysis of her right hand. She has been diagnosed with a brachial plexus injury. The brachial plexus is a network of nerves that transmit signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Injuries to this nerve network can result in loss of function and sensation. Due to this injury, Sopheap is experiencing pain and paralysis on her right side. Sopheap traveled to our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), to receive treatment at their care center. On August 4th, she will undergo brachial plexus repair surgery. Upon recovery, Sopheap will be able to use her arm again. CSC is requesting $696 to fund this procedure. Sopheap says, "I hope I can regain use of my arm as soon as possible after this procedure."
Kyin is a 48-year-old woman who lives with her daughter, her friend, and her friend's family in a village in northern Thailand. Kyin’s daughter and her friend’s two children study at a migrant school. Kyin used to work as an agricultural day laborer, but stopped two months ago when her vision deteriorated. In her free time, Kyin likes to garden and clean her house. Kyin has lost most of the vision in both of her eyes. Sometimes her eyes are watery and itchy, and if she tries to focus on identifying someone’s face, her eyes will hurt and she will develop a headache. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Kyin. On June 7th, doctors will perform a lens replacement in both eyes, during which they will remove Kyin's natural lenses and replace them with intraocular lens implants. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Kyin shared, “I hope that I will get better soon so that I can go back to work. I want to support my daughter so that she becomes an educated person. I also want to build a new house and live with my daughter happily for the rest of my life.”
John is a three-year-old boy from Kenya who will turn four in July. He is the oldest in a family of two children. John’s mother sells charcoal, while his father is a motorcycle rider. He is quiet and enjoys playing with other children. When John was a month old, his mother noticed that one of his testes had not descended. He was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one of the testicles remains undescended. She has been taking John to different hospitals, but he has not received treatment yet. If left untreated, John has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. Fortunately, John will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH). He is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on May 25th, and AMH is requesting $483 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. John’s mother shared, “I have been taking him to many hospitals and they are always telling me to wait. Therefore, I came to Nazareth but the money required is beyond my means. I kindly seek help so that my son can be treated and have a chance of having his own children in the future.”
Degenet is an eight-month-old baby boy from Ethiopia and the third child born to his parents. He is curious and loves juice, eggs, and playing with his mom. His father is a day worker and a student, while his mom is a homemaker. Degenet was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. He needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. Degenet is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on May 4th. After his recovery, he will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Degenet's procedure and care. Degenet's mother shared, “I hope our baby gets as normal as other boys. I hope he will be educated and do good work in the future. And it is my hope he will serve God becoming a good Christian.”
Lucas is a playful four-month-old baby boy and the youngest child in a family of five children from his mother. His parents are small scale farmers of maize and vegetables for their food and they also keep livestock for a living, which allows them to get milk. Given the remoteness of their village, they shared that life is very difficult; meeting basic needs and access to health services are big challenges. Lucas has clubfoot of both feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Lucas traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, where surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on April 2nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $935 to fund Lucas's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily and wear shoes when he grows up. Lucas’s father shared, "we have no means of raising money to afford our son’s treatment cost. We will be very grateful if you can help correct his feet."
Losieku is a nine-year-old boy and the youngest child born to his mother, who has six children. He is a friendly, cheerful and hard-working boy. He has not had the chance to go to school yet, though his father says he has plans to enroll him in school next year if everything goes well. Losieku lives in Northern Tanzania. The majority of people in this area are traditional Maasai and are livestock farmers. Losieku's father has a few goats that Losieku and his siblings take out to graze. They also practice small-scale farming of maize and vegetables as a source of food. About three years ago, Losieku was out playing with his siblings. He fell and his left hand went into an open fireplace where a bit of hot charcoal was burning below ashes. He sustained burns which were treated at home using traditional herbal medication due to lack of money and distance to the closest hospital. Over the years, the skin around his fingers has contracted and he is unable to straighten them. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Losieku receive treatment. On March 3, surgeons at AMH's care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery so that he will be able to use his fingers freely. Now, he needs help to fund this $874 procedure. Losieku’s father shared, "it’s really challenging for my son to carry out his daily activities because of his hand. He is a hardworking boy, and if he gets his hand corrected, it will help him do more with ease.”
Navy is a 49-year-old rice seller. She's been married for 15 years and has 2 daughters who are in school. Navy sells rice in front of a factory, but has been unable to work for over a year. Her husband is currently unemployed. Four years ago, Navy started to have pain in her back and on both hips, and she was given steroids to ease the pain. Doctors have diagnosed her with avascular necrosis in both hips. Avascular necrosis, or osteonecrosis, is the death of bone tissue due to a lack of blood supply. Navy cannot walk and is confined to a wheelchair. She is in constant pain, and is depressed because she cannot work to support her family. Fortunately, Navy learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC). At CSC, surgeons will perform a total hip replacement to relieve Navy of her pain and allow her to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for February 5th, and Navy needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. Navy shared, "I hope that I'll feel better soon, and will be able to walk again without pain. I am anxious to return to work to help my family."
Kelvin is a 13-year-old boy from from Nyeri County in Central Kenya. He is a humble and calm child, and the 4th born in a family of six children. His mother is a farmer, while his father passed on 6 years ago after a long illness. At school, Kelvin is in Class 3 at Karangi Primary School. His teacher says he is a bright boy and performs well in class. Kelvin is actually supposed to be in Class 8 but, because of the condition of his feet, he has not been able to advance in his education as quickly. Kelvin was born with bilateral clubfoot, which was neglected and not treated earlier on. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape, and causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Though he was taken to a hospital in the area to seek treatment, he could not initially undergo surgery due to lack of money. Now, Kelvin faces difficulty as he walks because his feet knock each other and causes him to fall every time. Unfortunately, this has affected his self-esteem when he sees other people playing and he cannot join. In March 2020, Kelvin underwent left triple arthrodesis surgery supported by Watsi donors and the procedure corrected his foot perfectly. Now, he is scheduled to undergo a right triple arthrodesis, a surgery to correct his right foot so he can walk well with both feet. Fortunately, Kelvin traveled back to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on him on January 11th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund Kelvin's clubfoot repair. This surgery will be very impactful as he will be able to wear both shoes, walk well, and play with friends. Kelvin will also be able to continue with his studies without any hindrances. His mother asks for support for his second surgery. Kelvin's mother shared, “We are grateful to God for the support we received from Cure Hospital through the Watsi donors. I have seen great improvement with my son and am looking forward to seeing him walking like other children. God bless you and continue with the good work you do of helping needy families to have surgery. God bless you."
Naomi is a 6-year-old girl from Tanzania and the youngest to her mother who has five children. Naomi's father is polygamous with three wives with a total of thirteen children in their family. Her parents have a few cattle which they depend on for daily living. Naomi is a playful girl and always wants to take part in daily home activities, but most of the time she can't due to her disability and how much she struggles using her hand. At the age of four months, Naomi was left by her mother sleeping as she went outside. She had left a fire burning close to the bed to keep their hut warm when Naomi rolled and fell into it. Her mother heard her cry and ran to her rescue. She sustained severe burns around her head and face, left hand, left foot, and around her stomach. Currently, she can’t use her left hand because it has contracted from the burn scar making it impossible for her to straighten and use it. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Naomi receive treatment. On December 1st, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery. She will be able to straighten her hand and use it after she heals from surgery. Now, her family needs help to fund this $874 procedure. Naomi’s mother shared: “My daughter is very hard working but her hand limits her a lot and I feel bad seeing her struggling to carry out her daily life activities. Please help treat her.”
Debora is a three-weeks-old beautiful baby girl and the firstborn child to her young parents. Both parents are small-scale farmers and depend fully on what they harvest for their daily living. Debora was born with spina bifida, a type of neural tube defect in which the spine does not properly close around the spinal cord. Without treatment, Debora is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,015 to cover the cost of Debora's spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on November 2nd. This procedure will hopefully spare Debora from the risks associated with her condition, instead allowing her to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Debora’s mother shared with us, “Please help my daughter I am scared. I would love to see my daughter grow up into a big girl but this condition is putting her life at risk.”