UNIVERSAL FUND MEMBERDesigner, photographer, cookie monster.
United States • nettaselene.com • Born on March 29th
Works at Etsy
Netta joined Watsi on August 8th, 2013. Nine years ago, Netta joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Netta's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Alex, an 11-year-old boy from Kenya, to treat his clubfoot.
Netta has funded healthcare for 180 patients in 15 countries.
Netta has funded healthcare for 180 patients in 15 countries.
Alex is an 11-year-old pupil from Kenya who is the elder of two siblings. His mother is a housewife while his father works as a casual laborer at construction sites. Due to his clubfoot, which causes his left foot to be twisted out of shape, Alex tiptoes when he walks, cannot walk for long distances, and currently stays home with his mother. He has difficulty walking and wearing shoes. Fortunately, Alex and his family traveled to visit our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, where surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on March 14th. African Mission Healthcare Foundation is requesting $1,286 to help support Alex's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk comfortably and return to school. “I am appealing for support from well-wishers to help my son undergo surgery and I will appreciate it,” Alex's mother said.
Valentina is a beautiful 2-year-old girl from Bolivia. She lives in La Paz with her parents, who are a teacher and a homemaker respectively, and two older siblings. Valentina was born with a cardiac condition called atrial septal defect, in which a hole exists between the two upper chambers of her heart. As a result blood leaks through this hole, leaving her weak and short of breath. Our medical partner HCA is helping Valentina access life-saving cardiac treatment so she can grow up healthy. During surgery, doctors will use a patch to close the hole so that blood can no longer leak through it. Her family is raising $1,500 to support her surgery and care. Valentina's mother shared: "Our family is very thankful that Valentina can have this opportunity for her heart to be healed."
Bela is an 18-month-old girl from the Philippines, who loves listening to nursery rhymes and playing with her musical toys. She lives with her older sibling, her father, who is a businessman, and her mother, who is a homemaker. Bela was born with an anorectal malformation, which is a congenital condition that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. She needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate her bowel dysfunction and help her grow up healthy. Fortunately, our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP), is helping Bela access the treatment that she needs. She is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on January 14th, at Our Lady of Peace Hospital. A portion of the cost of her treatment is being paid for by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and WSFP is looking to you to help raise $1,211 to cover the remaining cost of Bela's procedure and care. After her recovery, Bela will no longer need a colostomy, experience bowel dysfunction, or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Bela's mother said: "As a parent, I hoped she'd have a normal life, and be free from using a colostomy bag. To be honest, a huge part of our budget goes to her colostomy supplies. So this free surgery is really a big help to our family. To WATSI and World Surgical Foundation Philippines, thank you very much! We wouldn't know how to get her treated without your support."
Mary is an eight-year-old girl. She is a talkative and playful young girl. She is the last born in a family of seven children and the family is not well off financially. Both of her parents do casual jobs like ploughing people's farms for a living and such jobs are not easy to find where they live. Sometimes the church members chip in to help them where they can. When Mary was one year old, she was involved in an accident where she sustained burns to her head, some parts of her face and neck. She was rushed to the hospital and was admitted for better care. While in the hospital, a surgery was done on her head where she had sustained more burns. She was then discharged and booked for wound dressing clinics. The wounds were healing well as per the doctors’ plan. Her parents managed to take her for the clinics for a few months but later stopped because of finances. While at home, the wound got infected but due to lack of funds, she was not taken to hospital at that time. Time went by and the infection spread to most parts of the head. When she was three years old, the family met up with a local pastor who started helping them. He started financing Mary’s hospital visits with the help of some church members where he ministered. The wound was dressed again but the recovery process was very slow. In mid this year, the pastor brought them to Kijabe Hospital, she was examined, and the wound was dressed properly. Since then, the wound has been healing as expected. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Mary receive treatment. On December 9th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to help the remaining wound to heal properly. Now, Mary's family needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Mary’s father says, "Since the accident, we have been struggling a lot to make her get the required treatment but have failed to some extent. Coming to Kijabe, our hopes have been boosted greatly with the improvement she has experienced, and we hope that she will go through with the surgery and be well again.”
Lynemandy is a 28 year old woman from Haiti, who is studying for a business degree at a local university. She lives with her parents in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. Lynemandy has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation, which is a result of a bout of rheumatic fever that she suffered as a child. One of the four valves in her heart was severely damaged as a result of this illness, and in 2018, Lynemandy underwent surgery to repair the damaged valve. The valve functioned well for four years, but now it needs to be replaced so she can live healthy in the future. The care she needs is unfortunately not available within Haiti, so Lynemandy will need to travel to undergo cardiac surgery in the United States on November 17th. Her surgery, during which a new valve will be implanted, is being funded by Baylor Scott & White Heart Hospital. Now Lynemandy and her family need to raise $1,500 to cover the costs of pre and post operative treatment, and for the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Lynemandy when she travels to the United States. Lynemandy said: "I am very grateful to everyone who is working so hard to keep me alive and healthy."
Hsa is an 18-year-old living with his parents, three brothers and a sister, in Burma. Two of his siblings are still in school, while the remainder of his family work as subsistence farmers. Hsa, however, is currently unemployed, and enjoys playing various sports with his friends. Hsa has cataracts in both of his eyes, making it difficult for him to see clearly. Thanks to assistance from our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Hsa is scheduled for cataract surgery on October 11th, at Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital. During the surgery, doctors will replace Hsa's own lenses with intraocular implants, enabling Hsa to live a more independent life. Now, Hsa needs your help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Hsa said: "I wish to see again so that I can look after myself. Then my family will no longer need to assist me with everything."
Safia is a bright student - she is an orphan who is still mourning the loss of her mother who passed on in February 2022. Her father died a few years ago, and she lives with her relatives in Moyale. She has not been able to attend her classes since she started feeling unwell. She is the last born in a family of five children. She does not have medical coverage and is unable to raise the required amount for the surgery. She first experienced a small itch on her leg at the beginning of April 2022. She later experienced swelling in that area, and she did not have any feeling on the infected leg. Over time, the situation worsened and developed pus. She now has a chronic wound on her left leg that requires debridement and skin grafting. Safia was referred to our medical partner's care center Kijabe Hospital by friends after her condition did not improve. She visited the facility and underwent a sequestrectomy on the 8th of September and now needs a debridement and skin graft procedure. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Safia receive treatment. On September 14th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure so she can walk without straining and be able to attend school and continue with her studies. Now, Safia needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Safia's aunt says, “She has been away from school for almost five months now. Her condition keeps getting worse that she is unable to walk. We even have to carry her to the bathroom. She needs this surgery, or she will lose her leg.“
Francis is a helpful and supportive son who lives with his single mother and eight siblings. His family lives together in a rental house. Together, he and his mother work tending farms to support their family. Francis has been a great source of support for his family, especially in helping his mother raise his siblings. However, Francis experiences frequent convulsions, or uncontrollable muscle contractions, preceded by dizziness, nausea, and headaches, which have affected his lifestyle and his family. Francis first experienced a convulsion at the end of 2020 after being hit in the head by a ball and losing consciousness while playing football with his colleagues. This marked the beginning of his health troubles. Although he has been seeking treatment at a local health center, he decided to seek out specialized care at our medical partner's care center, AIC Kijabe Hospital, once the intervals of his convulsions began to increase. After receiving a CT scan, it was revealed that Francis has a brain tumor, which is the cause of his convulsions. Fortunately, he is scheduled for a craniotomy for tumor resection. This procedure will help remove the tumor and stop its spread. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to fund Francis's tumor removal surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on August 22nd. Once completed, he will hopefully be able to live more comfortably and confidently. Francis says, “My work is to tend farms so that I can help my mother and siblings. I sometimes experience many convulsions that are affecting my livelihood. I hope for treatment to end these discomforts.”
Jeremy is a beautiful five-year-old boy from Kenya who has autism. To support their family, his mother manages their home and cares for her children, and his father currently works as a mechanic. His parents share that their income is just enough to sustain the basic needs of their family of six. On July 7th, Jeremy was playing with his brother when he fell and broke his leg. An X-ray scan showed that he has a fracture of his femur bone on his right leg. Since the incident, he has been experiencing severe pain. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, can help. On July 12th, Jeremy will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will allow his injury to heal and help him walk again. Now, our medical partner is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. Jeremy’s mother expressed, “I am desperate and worried...I am pleading for assistance so that soon he can be treated. I thank God in advance."
Meet Maripet, a 9 year-old-girl, living with her parents and two siblings. Her father is a farmer, while her mother stays home to look after the children. In August of last year, Maripet began experiencing persistent, severe headaches. Her parents brought her to a local hospital, where she was prescribed medication, and sent home. When her headaches didn't improve, her parents brought her to a second hospital, where she was given additional medication and sent home, once again. Her family tried traditional medicine, but nothing worked. When Maripet's headaches continued, her parents brought her back to the first hospital they had visited, and this time, brain scans were performed. Maripet's family was immediately referred to our BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital, but without funds for her care they had to delay for visit for one month. During that time, Maripet lost her ability to walk and to move her head, and she also lost her eyesight for a few days. She is now in a wheelchair. When she arrived to BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital, Maripet was examined and booked for immediate surgery to remove a brain tumor. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is here to help make sure she can finally access the treatment she needs. They are seeking $1,500 to fund Maripet's surgery and medical care. Maripet’s mother says: “I’m very much worried about my daughter's condition. I just pray and hope that she will be fine.”
Ko Kyaw lives with his wife and two daughters in the border region of Tak Province in Thailand. He is a homemaker while his wife works as a day laborer. He plans to send his older daughter to a Thai school in the new school year, but his younger daughter is still too young to go to school. In early 2021, Kyaw was still living in his village in Myawaddy Township in Burma but it has been a very challenging time for his community ever since the military coup. He and his wife were injured in an emergency involving the local soldiers who came to their area. Luckily other villagers came to their rescue and Kyaw was treated for fractures on both his upper and lower leg, where a metal rod was inserted to help him heal. Now the bone in his thigh is misshapen and doctors have diagnosed osteomyelitis (infected bone). His doctor told him that in order to heal, he would need to have the metal rods replaced in both his upper and lower leg. Currently, Kyaw’s left leg is in a lot of pain. He can only bend his leg slightly and needs to use crutches to get around. With his leg in pain, Ko Kyaw spends most of his time helping out with household chores he can do and teaching his oldest daughter how to read and write in Burmese. He feels frustrated that since his leg was broken, he cannot support his family. Our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund is helping to pay the cost of his treatment and is raising $1500 to cover his surgery, which will take place on May 10th. “I feel upset that I cannot support my family as the head of the house,” he said. “We only have my wife’s income. We do not have our own house to live in. I want to say a lot of things but I cannot express what I want to say. I never thought that I would lose my house, my possessions and that my leg would be in pain.”
La is a 36-year-old mother of three children. She is married and her husband works as a construction worker. To help support her family, she sells soft drinks and coffee from her home. The couple has one son and two daughters, who are all in public school. In her free time, La enjoys walking her children to and from school, cooking, and, after a long day, watching television. Five years ago, La injured her left knee and she has experienced intermittent pain since the injury. Unfortunately, in December 2021, she was involved in a motorbike accident where she re-injured the same knee. After an x-ray, she was diagnosed with an aneurysmal bone cyst, or a benign, blood-filled lesion in the bone that often expands or grows. She experiences severe pain and now has difficulty walking. To treat her condition, surgeons plan to remove the cyst from her left knee and help to heal the joint. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is helping La receive treatment. On April 9th, surgeons will perform a procedure to relieve La of her pain and allow her to walk easily. Now, she needs help raising $273 to fund her procedure and care. La shared, "I am thankful that I will be able to return to work and care for my children after this surgery."