Alan joined Watsi on December 24th, 2013. Eight years ago, Alan joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Alan's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Jane, a loving mom-of-3 from Kenya, to fund gallstones surgery so she can live pain-free.
Alan has funded healthcare for 94 patients in 13 countries.
Alan has funded healthcare for 94 patients in 13 countries.
Jane is a strong 34-year-old woman from Zambezi in Kiambu County. She is married with 3 children. Jane began having abdominal pains and vomiting about four years ago. She visited various hospitals and was treated for ulcers but her symptoms persisted. At one point she was told she had an issue with her liver and was sent to a specialist. Jane had extensive lab tests done and several scans which showed she has cholelithiasis or gallstones. These are hardened deposits of digestive fluid that form in the gallbladder. She came to Nazareth Hospital and consulted the surgeon who recommended laparotomy to finally remove the gallstones. Jane’s husband, who runs a small shop to fend for his family, has registered with the national health insurance program but their coverage has not yet been approved. On seeing his wife’s worsening pain and discomfort he decided he couldn’t wait any longer and came to the hospital to find out about the estimated cost of surgery so that he can organize a community fundraiser (Harambee). The family members are not able to raise the money required on their own and need support. Jane says, “I hope to be treated and get relieved of these symptoms so that my family can stop being in a constant state of worry and uncertainty.”
Klo is a 33-year-old man who lives with his wife in a village on the border of Thailand and Burma. He and is his wife are subsistence farmers, growing rice on rented land. Sometimes they work as day laborers when they can find extra work. However, due to a number of COVID cases around their area, they cannot find work right now. Late afternoon on 20 November 2021, Klo climbed a tree to pick cat tongue fruit, a type of local vegetable. Suddenly, the branch he was holding onto broke, and he fell out of the tree breaking both his wrists. Currently, both of Klo's wrists hurt badly. He cannot move his hands nor lift his arms up. He feels a bit better when he takes pain medication. He cannot dress himself and someone has to feed him and help him when he goes to the bathroom. He's worried that he cannot work on his farm since the accident. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Klo will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for November 26th and will cost $1,500. After surgery, he will be able to work on his farm again and he will no longer need someone to help him do everything such as eat and dress himself. Klo said, "I feel stressful that I cannot work during this time when I have to harvest. My wife has to work by herself and now also has to look after me. When I learned the large amount my treatment would cost, I felt hopeless. But when I learned from BCMF that donors would help me, I felt so happy and relieved! Thank you so much to all of the donors!"
Mapai is a three-year-old and the second born child in a family of three children. Mapai is a charming and social. He was born a healthy child but when he was two years old his parents noticed his right leg was slightly curved. They thought he would grow out of it with time. At the time, his parents couldn’t afford to seek treatment for him due to financial challenges. Mapai’s parents are livestock keepers from a remote village where health facilities are not easy to get to. A family who also had a similar condition to Mapai shared with his parents that they should visit our medical partner at The Plaster House. They had received treatment there and their child was now doing well. Mapai's family decided to travel there and hoped they could also get the care he needed. Mapai was diagnosed with right valgus, where his right leg is bending inwards. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, Mapai is having a hard time walking and moving around. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Mapai. The procedure is scheduled to take place on October 26th. Treatment will hopefully restore Mapai's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Mapai’s father says, “You can see how much he is struggling to walk, I have no means to afford the treatment costs, please help.”
Maung is a 43-year-old father from Burma with two daughters. He used to work as a boatman, ferrying people to and from the island across from where they live; however, he had to stop working two years ago when a stroke weakened the left side of his body. Maung's mother supported the family until she developed severe diabetes and can now only provide them with rice. Maung's daughters are students; however, due to the current wave of COVID-19 infections and teachers protesting the country's recent coup, all schools are closed. As a result, his youngest daughter is looking after household chores, while his oldest daughter has found work to support the family. She works as a shop vendor and earns about 80,000 kyats (approx. $80 USD) per month. Maung's family shared that their current income is insufficient to cover daily needs or basic health care. About a month and a half ago, Maung's left toe became very itchy, and, eventually, the skin turned red and darkened further around his toe. Initially, Maung thought the skin was healing; however, the skin became hot, itchy, and painful. The area on his left toe later turned black, with the surrounding skin reddening. Maung was unable to see a doctor due to his family's limited income. Currently, the pain in his left toe makes it difficult to sleep and get around. Fortunately, in mid-September, Maung's relatives came to visit the family. When they saw Maung's toe, they were able to help him visit our medical partner's care center, Mawlamyine Christian Leprosy Hospital (MCLH). On September 21st, doctors examined Maung's toe and ordered a blood test. He was diagnosed with diabetes and gangrene on his left big toe. Maung will need to undergo surgery to clean and remove the necrotic tissue and help him heal. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $694 to fund this procedure. Maung shared, "After surgery, I will no longer be in pain ... I will try to find some work to support my family."
Salome is a jovial but very timid student. Her mother does most of the talking as she lovingly clings to her. Currently a fourth-grade student, and she aspires to be a teacher in the future. Salome is the second born in a family of four. Her older sibling is 17 years old, and the youngest is 8 years of age. Her father is a casual laborer who transports meat to butcheries around the Kagwe area in Kenya. Her mother is also a casual laborer and tends to farms for a living. They live in their ancestral home on a quarter an acre farm. Since birth, Salome has had an umbilical hernia. If not treated, the hernia could result in intestinal tissue damage and/or death. Fortunately, on August 26th, she will undergo repair surgery at our medical partner's care center, BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $585 to fund Salome's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably and to continue her studies. Salome’s mother says, “My baby has had this condition since birth. We have not been able to take her to a hospital because we are financially struggling. I hope her condition does not threaten her life.”
Hy is a 38-year-old fisherman from Cambodia. He has been married for 9 years and has 2 young sons. His wife worked in a factory but now stays at home to look after Hy. One year ago, Hy was in a motor vehicle accident that left him with fractures that caused paralysis of his left arm. He was brought to a government hospital for treatment, but his arm still did not recover sensation or feeling after weeks of treatment. Hy has been diagnosed with a brachial plexus injury on his left side. The brachial plexus is a nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Injuries to this nerve network can result in loss of function and sensation. He is unable to lift his arm, is in chronic pain, and can't work Fortunately, Hy traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On July 30th, he will undergo a brachial plexus repair surgery so that he will be able to use his arm again. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is requesting $696 to fund this procedure. He hopes that he can use his arm as soon as possible and can return to work to support his family.
Baby Nejat is a sweet six-month-old boy from Ethiopia. He has one brother, a father who works as a laborer, and a mother who is a homemaker raising their two children. Baby Nejat loves playing and spending time with his parents and brother. Baby Nejat was born with an abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage, and needs to undergo a series of procedures to correct his condition. Baby Nejat's surgery is scheduled to take place on June 24th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMH), is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Baby Nejat's procedure and care. After his recovery, Baby Nejat will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing serious health complications in the future. His mom is optimistic, “After the operation, I believe my son will grow healthy. And I hope I will educate him and help him reach higher in life."
Panha is a 14-year-old student who needs spinal surgery. His parents are both farmers, and he has one younger sister. He loves to read stories at school, and wants to be a policeman when he gets older. Panha was born with scoliosis. This condition has made it difficult for him to walk or sit up for a long time, and he often feels discomfort before going to sleep. It is difficult for him to join his friends in sports such as volleyball or soccer. He also occasionally has difficulty breathing due to pain. Panha and his parents have come to Children's Surgical Centre, where doctors will be able to perform a spinal surgery to put in place implants that will correct the curve of his spine. He will undergo this procedure on May 25th. Once he has recovered, Panha will no longer experience pain or discomfort, and will be able to walk easily. Panha shared, "I want to play sports with my friends and I will practice running and getting stronger after I am healthy from my surgery."
Jane is a 53-year-old woman who works as a street vendor in Kenya. Her husband was a hotelier, but she shared with us that he has been jobless for over ten years since he suffered a stroke. She shared that he has been in and out of the hospital seeking treatment and the family has been relying on friends and relatives to settle bills and cover medical trips. Jane herself has now been diagnosed with breast cancer. A mastectomy, a surgery to remove breast tissue, has been recommended to rid her body of the cancer and to prevent it from metastasizing. Without treatment, the cancer may spread to other organs. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Jane to receive treatment. On May 3rd, she will undergo a mastectomy at AMH's care center. After treatment, Jane will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Now, AMH is requesting $857 to cover the cost of a mastectomy for Jane. Jane shared that she is feeling, “I have nothing to smile about, the cancer is threatening my health and we have been treating my husband who had a stroke. I hope I will be able to get help.”
Saw Moo is a seven-year-old boy who lives with his parents and older sister in a refugee camp on the Thai-Burma border. Saw Moo is a student in kindergarten and his sister goes to primary school. In his free time, Saw Moo enjoys playing hide and seek outside. Around mid-May 2020, Saw Moo began to experience blurry vision in his right eye, making it increasingly difficult to for him to see clearly. Saw Moo was diagnosed with retinal detachment, a condition in which the retina pulls away from the supportive tissue in the eye, resulting in vision loss. If left untreated, he could lose vision completely. Saw Moo is scheduled to undergo surgery to reattach his retina and our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund is raising $1,500 for his treatment. After his surgery, there is hope for Saw Moo's vision to be restored so that he is able to resume his daily activities comfortably. Saw Moo's aunt shared, “My nephew is a hard-working student. You do not need to tell him to read [or study] because he loves to do it. He is amongst the top 10 students in his class. I want him to regain vision in his right eye and to continue his studies so that he can become a medic. His mother is ill and cannot accompany him [during his treatment]. If my nephew becomes a medic or health worker, he can look after his mother and his community.”
Esther is a 13-year-old girl from Kenya. She is the first born in a family of two children. Currently, Esther is a sixth grade student. She likes reading and is very active at home, especially with helping her mother with household chores. Esther's father is a farmer, while her mother is a homemaker and takes care of their family. Esther was born a healthy child. However, when she turned one year of age, her family noticed un unusual bowing in her legs. Since then, her condition has worsened. She often feels pain while walking, and cannot walk well or carry heavy loads. This affects her self-esteem, and in turn her studies as well. Esther has a condition called genu valgus, or knock knees. Last year with the help of Watsi supporters, she underwent corrective surgery on her left side, which has healed and she is walking well. Now, she is scheduled to undergo the same surgery on her right side to completely correct her legs from the bowing. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Esther receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a corrective foot surgery on February 15th at our medical partner's care center. This procedure will cost $1,224, and she and her family need help raising money. Once Esther is fully recovered, she will be able to walk, continue with her education, and help her mother again. Esther will also be able to socialize and play with other girls more comfortably. Esther's Aunt Fridah shared, "On behalf of the family, we are extremely grateful for the support you rendered to our daughter. May the almighty God bless you. We continue to plead for more support to ensure that she is completely healed and continue with her life like other girls."
Jonah is a 9-year-old student from Kenya. He is a jovial and high-spirited boy. Jonah is the seventh born in a family of eight children. Under the sponsorship of a well-wisher, he is a second grade student at Mwiteria Vision Academy. Jonah's family hails from Iteria Village in Meru County. His mother is a single parent who used to be a farmer, but now stays at home to take care of her children. She recently underwent an amputation on her leg after suffering from diabetes. Jonah has clubfoot, a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even with wearing shoes. His mother, sister, and elder brother brought him to AIC Hospital's mobile clinic in Meru to seek treatment. Watsi donors supported surgery for his left foot and now his family has returned to help heal is right foot as well. Jonah will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation. Fortunately, he is scheduled to under go a clubfoot repair surgery on January 25th. African Mission Healthcare Foundation is requesting $1,286 to fund Jonah's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk and play easily again. Rosaria, Jonah's mother shared, “We are grateful for helping my two sons undergo surgery. We have seen a lot of impact on their feet. Previously, they used to complain of pain while walking and they like playing a lot. We plead for more support to ensure that their feet can be able to step on the ground and walk like other children. God bless you."