Karin joined Watsi on June 21st, 2015. Six years ago, Karin joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Karin's most recent donation supported Merline, a girl from Haiti, to fund heart surgery.
Karin has funded healthcare for 30 patients in 10 countries.
Karin has funded healthcare for 30 patients in 10 countries.
Merline is a girl from Haiti. She lives in the outskirts of Port-au-Prince with her parents, two brothers, and one sister. She is in the second grade and likes math and reading. Merline has a condition called pulmonary stenosis, in which one of the valves in her heart is too small, causing blood to back up and not circulate properly. To correct this condition, she will need to undergo a catheterization, in which a catheter with a balloon on its tip will be used to stretch the valve open to a more normal size. This procedure is scheduled for August 22. Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is contributing $3,500, and they need our help raising an additional $1,500 to fund the procedure. Her mother says, "I am excited for our daughter to have this procedure so that she can run and play without me worrying about her."
Samuel is a child from Tanzania. He is the ninth born in a family of ten children. Samuel’s father is a farmer who says the change in climate has made farming harder and more unreliable. Samuel was diagnosed with bilateral genu varus. His legs are bowed outward at the knees. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he complains of pain after walking for a while. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $940 to fund corrective surgery for Samuel. The procedure is scheduled to take place on July 6. Treatment will hopefully restore Samuel's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Samuel’s father says, “I didn’t know my son needed treatment for his condition. Thank you for enlightenment and I am really thankful for your help."
Kennedy is a casual laborer from Kenya. He sells hats along the streets to make ends meet. Kennedy has a closed femur fracture. He is not able to walk or move and is in a lot of pain. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On June 5, Kennedy will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will enable Kennedy to heal and walk again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,451 to fund this procedure. Kennedy says, “I would like to be treated and resume my duties to secure my future."
Nan Htwe is a 21-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her parents and older sister. When she is not helping with household chores, Nan Htwe spends her time reading. Nan Htwe was born with ventricular septal defect, a cardiac condition in which a hole exists between the two lower chambers of the heart. Blood leaks through this hole without first passing through his lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving him sick and short of breath. Nan Htwe is scheduled to undergo heart surgery on May 11 to correct his condition and improve his quality of life. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Nan Htwe's procedure and care. She says, "I would like to finish school and become a medic when I feel better so that I could be a good medic, with a smiling face and a smiling heart.”
Cho is a 20-year-old young woman from Burma. She lives with her parents and younger brother. Her parents sell flowers in front of a Buddhist temple for a living, and her brother works in a tea shop. Cho likes to read stories and study English in her free time. Cho was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of the mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. Currently, Cho suffers from chest pain, difficulty breathing, and heart palpitations. She cannot walk long distances and tires easily. Additionally, due to her poor health, Cho is no longer able to continue her studies. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Cho. The treatment is scheduled to take place on March 12 and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. "I want to get well soon and continue my studies. In the future, I want to become a teacher," says Cho.
Mohammed is a two-year-old baby from Ethiopia. He loves to play and laugh with people. His father is a traditional farmer, and his mother is a stay-at-home mom. They have eight children. Mohammed 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. Mohammed is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on February 9. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Mohammed's procedure and care. After his recovery, Mohammed will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Mohammed’s mother says, “My husband is a poor farmer with low income and I’m a house wife and I take care of my kids in the house. Our income is very low even to support our kids. It is our hope to get the surgery and to see our child in a healthy and good position by your support.”
Chit is a one-year-old boy from Thailand. He lives with his parents in Mae Sot, a border town. He loves to play with his parents. Since he was one month old, Chit has had an inguinal hernia. Now, his hernia is getting bigger. He is in pain and cries a lot, and he is no longer able to play. Fortunately, on January 6, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at Mae Sot General Hospital, our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Chit's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 6 and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. His mother says, "I want my son to be a teacher when he grows up."
Ruth is a 14-year-old girl living in Haiti with her mother, grandmother, and sister. She enjoys going to school and church, and would like to study to become a nurse when she's older. Several years ago, Ruth contracted rheumatic fever, which caused damage to her heart. She developed a condition called mitral and aortic regurgitation, where blood backs up into her heart and does not properly circulate through her body. This condition causes Ruth to experience shortness of breath, painful breathing, fatigue, and swelling of the legs. If left untreated, her condition could be fatal. Seeking treatment through our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, Ruth is scheduled to undergo heart surgery to correct her condition on July 10. Although Ruth's [transportation](https://watsi.org/profile/7b224fb3153e-ruth) to our medical partner's care center has already been funded by Watsi, she is still in need of $1,500 to cover the cost of her heart surgery prep. The organization, Have a Heart Cayman, is also subsidizing Ruth's surgery, donating $22,000 to cover the rest of her medical bills. "I am a little scared for my surgery, but I know that God will protect me and make everything go well," Ruth says.
Alexandra is a 20-year-old young woman from Haiti. She lives with her mother and older sister in Port-au-Prince. Alexandra has finished high school and is looking forward to attending college after resolving her heart condition. She hopes to attain a degree in business. About six years ago, Alexandra had rheumatic fever, which caused damage to her mitral valve, causing blood to back up into her heart and not properly circulate through her body. On August 18, Alexandra will be flown to the Dominican Republic, where she will be treated at our medical partner's care center, Hospital Pediatrico Robert Reid Cabral. Heart Care Dominican has contributed $8,000 towards Alexandra's care. Her family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany her family overseas. "I am excited to have my heart surgery so I can have the energy to go back to school!" says Alexandra.
Meet Mu, a 41-year-old woman who lives with her family in a remote village in Burma. She grows rice as a subsistence farmer with her husband, and also works as a day laborer if they need cash. In 2016, Mu began experiencing troubling gynecological symptoms. Mu learned about Watsi's medical partner, Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), from her brother-in-law, who lives nearby. After spending three months saving money, Mu and her husband made the two-day trip to MTC, where she was diagnosed with an ovarian cyst. This small fluid filled sac usually does not have any symptoms, but if left untreated can lead to pain and other complications. Since Mu has to pay for her 13-year-old son’s school fees, her family often struggles to make ends meet and cannot afford the surgery she needs to treat her condition. For $1,500, Mu will receive a total abdominal hysterectomy, during which doctors will surgically remove her uterus in order take out the cyst and ensure that it does not grow back again. The procedure is scheduled for August 15. After recovery, Mu will be able to return home to her family and friends. "I hope that after I recover from surgery, I will be able to return to farming and take up waving again," Mu shares.
Only one month old, baby Roberto lives with his parents, older brother, and extended family in his grandmother’s house in rural Guatemala. His father works hard but earns little as an agricultural day laborer, and his mother takes care of the home. Roberto's mother has been unable to produce sufficient breast milk to nourish him—a condition known as lactational failure. She has been feeding him boiled water. This limited diet is insufficient and has dangerous implications for Roberto’s health. Lactational failure can lead to starvation, dehydration, and electrolyte imbalances that cause seizures. Brain development occurring during this delicate time can also be compromised, putting Roberto at risk of long-term damage. Roberto needs baby formula, but his parents already have difficulty providing for the everyday needs of their family. His family’s limited resources put treatment for Roberto outside of economic reach without outside intervention. Lactation failure, while dangerous, is easy to treat. Baby formula will provide Roberto with the calories he needs to grow and thrive. One-on-one motivational education for Roberto’s mother will teach her how to create a nutritious, inexpensive diet for Roberto. Roberto’s immune system will strengthen, and he will grow to be a healthy, energetic baby. Watsi's medical partner, Wuqu’ Kawoq, will formally begin his treatment on February 22. Roberto's family needs help raising the $1,107 to pay for the nutritional support that he needs. Roberto's mother shares, "My desire is that he will be able to grow well, to be able to go to school to study a lot so that he can become an engineer."
“I just want to see my daughter laugh and play again,” shares Shallon’s mother. Shallon, an 18-month-old baby girl from Uganda, has been sick for two months. She is extremely thin and weak, experiences diarrhea, and has lost her appetite. Her mother brought her to Bwindi Community Hospital, our medical partner's care center, where she was diagnosed with malnutrition. In addition to the immediate dangers that Shallon faces from a compromised immune system, she runs the long-term risks of compromised physical and cognitive development. Before she fell ill, Shallon was a very different girl. She was a lively child who liked running and playing. She would mimic everything she saw her mother do, from rinsing dishes and washing her father’s hands to digging in the garden. In order to restore her to this state of health and happiness, Shallon’s doctors need to provide her with emergency nutritional supplies, such as therapeutic milk and dextrose. On April 16, they will also run a number of lab tests to evaluate her body’s needs and to determine whether there are any additional causes for Shallon’s lack of appetite. Shallon’s parents—who provide food for the family through subsistence farming and earn a small income making bricks and baskets to sell—do not have enough money to pay for their daughter's medical care. But for $316, we can cover the costs of Shallon’s lab tests and nutritional supplies, as well as her ten-day stay at the hospital and transportation home. Let’s make sure Shallon can once more become the energetic child that her parents remember. “I am so grateful for the help,” says Shallon’s mother.