James joined Watsi on April 15th, 2013. 71 other people also joined Watsi on that day! James' most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support James, a 13-year-old aspiring pilot from Kenya, to fund a contracture release surgery that will heal his burns.
James has funded healthcare for 32 patients in 12 countries.
James has funded healthcare for 32 patients in 12 countries.
James is a 13-year-old boy from Muranga County, Kenya. He is the second born in a family of three. James is in fifth grade, and he likes playing football and spending time with his friends. He aspires to become a pilot in the future. We met James at our main hospital, Kijabe, accompanied by a member of his church, Maina, who said “I know James as a hardworking and passionate boy in the church. I spotted him there doing presentations and performances and noticed that he had sustained a burn contracture on his neck which created a lot of discomfort because of the stiffness." James sustained burns when he was a child, which has caused him a lot of discomfort and prevents him from living a fully comfortable life. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping James receive treatment. On February 13th, surgeons at their care center will perform a single contracture release surgery on James; he will be able to move his neck more and be free from the stiffness. He will have a chance at a comfortable life. Now, he needs help to fund this $840 procedure. “Because of the challenges the family has, we are appealing for support to help this boy undergo surgery so he can be set free from neck stiffness and continue with his normal life,” Maina told us.
Nu is a 57-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband and two sons in a refugee camp. Her sons go to school. She and her husband raise chickens and grow vegetables both for their own consumption and for sale. She has cataracts and her vision is blurry. She is often worried that she might slip and fall due to her poor vision, and she has to walk slowly and carefully. Sometimes, she will have a headache and a stiff neck. Since her vision has become blurry, she can no longer read, which she shared she especially likes to do to read the Bible or the lyrics for new hymns. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Nu. On September 15th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Nu's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. “When I go to church, I feel sad because I cannot participate, like reading passages from the Bible," she shared.
Meet Agnes, a hardworking 39-year-old farmer and strong single mother. Two of her children live with her brother in a rural area of the country, while her other children live with Agnes in a house in a small shopping center. Agnes works hard to sustain her family. She does laundry in her neighborhood during the day, while selling vegetables in the evening. During the planting, weeding and harvesting seasons, Agnes goes to the village and works on people's farms. Sometimes she is paid with money, and sometimes she is given food in return for her work. Nine months ago, she was pricked by a maize stalk on her lower left limb. She was walking with difficulty because of the pain that resulted from the wound, and she ended up falling. Agnes traveled to a local facility because of pain and swelling in her leg, and was provided with pain medication and bandages. However, Agnes was referred on to another hospital, where her leg could be X-rayed. The X-ray revealed that Agnes had sustained a fracture in her lower leg. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, can help. On September 1st, Agnes will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation, at AIC Kapsowar Hospital. After this procedure, Agnes will be able to walk without pain and swelling, enabling her to return to her daily activities, and the work that she needs to do in order to earn an income. African Mission Healthcare Foundation is seeking $941 to fund her procedure and medical care. Agnes says: "My family depends on me in everything. With my condition, I cannot work and am afraid that my children will suffer. Kindly help me get through my treatment and be able to provide for them.”
Kheoun is a loving grandfather. He is 62 years old and farms rice and vegetables in Kandal province. He lives with his wife who manages the farm with him. Together, they have one son, four daughters, and 15 grandchildren. At home, he likes to watch the news on TV and listen to monks pray on the radio. Five years ago, Kheoun developed a pterygium in his right eye, causing him itchiness, tearing, and blurry vision. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, working, and going anywhere outside. Kheoun needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent recurrence. The total cost of his procedure is $225. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for September 13th. Kheoun says, "I hope after surgery I can see better to plant rice and vegetables. I want to be able to work outside to support my family."
Sarai is a sweet and friendly three-year-old girl from Bolivia who has Down syndrome. She lives in a small indigenous community in the mountains of central Bolivia with her parents, who are both farmers, and her five siblings. She is a friendly little girl who loves making new friends and blowing kisses to everyone she meets! Sarai was born with an atrial septal defect, a cardiac condition in which a hole exists between the two upper chambers of the heart. Blood leaks through this hole instead of flowing properly through her body, leaving her feeling weak and short of breath. Fortunately, Sarai is scheduled to undergo heart surgery on July 28th with the support of our long-standing medical partner Haiti Cardiac Alliance, which is now growing and expanding into Bolivia. Surgeons will close the hole with a patch, allowing blood to properly flow through her body and improving her quality of life. Another organization, Gift of Life International, is contributing $2,500 to pay for a portion of Sarai's procedure costs. Our medical partner is requesting $1,500 to cover the remaining costs, which cover surgical expenses, cardiac exams, medications, and travel fees so Sarai and her family can travel to receive her life-changing cardiac procedure in La Paz. Sarai's mother shares, "Our family is all praying that our daughter will become healthy and strong after this surgery!"
Christina is a 12-year-old student and the fifth born in a family of nine children. She is currently in grade four and her best subjects in school are mathematics and science. Christina has been diagnosed with left genu valgus, meaning that her left knee is bent inward so that her 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, walking is difficult and painful, and it has been more challenging for Christina to attend school. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Christina to receive treatment. On December 10th, she will undergo corrective surgery at AMH's care center. Treatment will hopefully restore Christina's mobility, allowing her to participate in a variety of activities and greatly decreasing her risk of future complications. Now, AMH is requesting $880 to Christina's procedure and care. Christina shared, "walking to school is really tiring and painful. I can’t walk as fast as my school mates."
Pheak is a 33-year-old construction worker. He is married and has two daughters who are in elementary school. His wife stays at home to take care of them. When Pheak is not working he enjoys watching boxing matches, listening to the news, and telling stories to his daughters. Five years ago, the retina of Pheak's right eye detached, causing him blurred vision and irritation. He has had limited work opportunities due to this condition as well. When Pheak learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for three hours seeking treatment. On November 9th, eye surgeons will perform a retinal detachment repair procedure in his right eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $648 procedure. Pheak said, "I am hopeful that when my vision is better I can work more and support my family well."
Grace is a small scale farmer and a mother of four children. Her husband died 18 years ago and left her a small house that later fell down beyond repair but she has recently managed to put up a small mud-made single room for shelter. All her children were not able to attend school. Her eldest is now 35 years old and is married while the youngest is 18 years old. She relies on the sale of her farm produce to cater to her basic needs. Four years ago, Grace began to experience troubling symptoms, including a small painless swelling which recently started increasing in size. She has never visited any health facility to seek treatment. Currently, she experiences airway obstruction and severe headaches whenever she carries a heavy load and this has greatly affected her farming. She occasionally develops high temperatures, especially around her chest and neck. She was diagnosed with a goiter and after a review by the surgeon, a thyroidectomy was recommended. She needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Grace receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on November 2nd at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $333, and she and her family need help raising money. Grace says, “I pray that I may look normal again through surgery. I hope to live a comfortable life because the swelling makes me feel abnormal. I will continue with farming once I recover after the surgery.”
Neang is a 38-year-old tuk-tuk driver. Neang comes from Kompong Speu Province in Cambodia. Since his father passed away ten years ago, Neang has decided to stay with his mother to take care of her. He also has five siblings that live in his area, and many nieces and nephews. When he is not working, he enjoys playing sports, cooking for his mother, and visiting his siblings. In 2008, Neang was involved in a motor vehicle accident that caused a fracture of his right femur. He visited a government hospital after the accident, where doctors fixated hardware to heal the fracture. The hardware has recently become infected and exposed. It has become difficult for Neang to walk, and he is experiencing chronic pain and discomfort. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On November 9th, Neang will undergo a hardware removal procedure, which will cost $230. This procedure will allow his leg to heal and help him walk easily again. Neang said, "I hope my leg can heal quickly, so that I can work again and make sure my mother is cared for."
Siv Tech is a 51-year-old taxi driver with one son and one daughter who are both in school. Siv Tech enjoys watching local and international news. One year ago, Siv Tech developed a cataract in his right eye, causing him blurry vision, photophobia, and tearing. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Siv Tech learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), he traveled there hoping for treatment. On July 21st, doctors will perform a cataract extraction and lens implant in his right eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, CSC is requesting $229 to fund this procedure. Siv Tech shares, "I hope I can drive a car again so I can return to my work driving a taxi."
Banobi is a 57-year-old mother of seven: her two sons both operate small-scale retail shops and her five daughters are all married and are small-scale farmers. She earns a living from her banana and coffee plantation which she operates with her husband. She lives with her husband and two grand children in a semi-permanent house. Banobi has been experiencing lower abdominal pain, abnormal vaginal bleeding, and severe backaches. She has been diagnosed with a uterine prolapse. She also has an anterior and posterior cystocele and her doctors recommend her for colporrhaphy treatment as well. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, can help. Now, they are requesting $220 to fund Banobi's surgical care. Banobi shared, “I hope to recover from this painful condition I have had for a long time and be able to resume with farming after I have fully recovered."
Khaing is a 27-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband and a three-year-old son in a village in Mae Ramat District, Tak Province. Originally from Karen State, Burma, they moved to their current address three years ago in search of better job opportunities. Her husband is a day laborer and she is homemaker. Ten years ago, Khaing felt like her nose was blocked and that she could not breathe well. She also had a runny nose and saw a small mass in her nostril while looking at her reflection in the mirror. She did not go to see a doctor because she could not afford to pay for treatment. She also thought that she would feel better over time. However, four years ago she noticed that the mass had increased in size. She went to her local hospital in Karen State, Burma, where the doctor confirmed she has a mass in her nostril and gave her medication for a week. She did not go back to her follow-up appointment as she had run out of money. She then tried to treat herself with traditional medicine. However, this was unsuccessful as the mass continued to increase in size. In the beginning of May 2020, Khaing developed a severe headache and pain in her nose. The area around her nose also become swollen. She went to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) on May 15, 2020 for treatment. The medic at MTC checked her nose with a flashlight and told her that she has a large mass in both of her nasal passages. She was then taken to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. At MSH, she received an x-ray of her nose and the doctor told her that the masses are large and that they were infected. Khaing was told that she would need surgery to remove the masses as soon as possible. Before the surgery however, she would need to undergo a computerized tomography (CT) scan to confirm the diagnosis. Unable to pay for her CT scan nor her surgery, she went back to MTC to ask for help. The medic at MTC then referred Khaing to Burma Children Medical Fund for assistance accessing further treatment. Currently, the area around her nose is swollen and painful. She also feels like her nostrils are itchy. Her nose is blocked and has to breathe through her mouth. Although she still has a headache, the pain is now less severe because she received painkillers from the doctor at MSH. Doctors want Khaing to undergo a CT scan, a procedure in which x-ray images taken from several angles are combined to produce cross-sectional images of the body. This scan will hopefully help doctors diagnose her condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Khaing's CT scan and care, scheduled for August 21st. Khaing said, "I am depressed and I feel stressed about my condition. In the future, I want to work and support my parents. I also want my son to receive an education."