May Gibillini
May's Story

May joined Watsi on March 29th, 2014. May's most recent donation supported Susan, a brave girl from Kenya, to fund fracture treatment so her leg can heal.

Impact

May has funded healthcare for 23 patients in 8 countries.

All patients funded by May

Susan is a seven-year-old girl in the first grade and the second child in her family. Unfortunately, Susan was involved in a grisly road traffic accident when a vehicle lost control on March 8th, 2021. Five children and the teachers were hit, and one child unfortunately passed away. Susan survived despite sustaining fractures on her right hand and leg. She was brought to our medical partner's care center, Nazareth Hospital, and had a fracture repair surgery on her hand and leg. One week ago the plates were removed. Susan's hand has healed well but she has started having severe pain on her leg. When Susan's parents brought her back to the hospital, a X-Ray showed the fracture has reoccurred, and the surgeon recommended a repeat surgery. Without treatment, Susan will continue experiencing the pain, she may never be able to use her leg again, or her leg may eventually heal with a deformity. Fortunately, the surgeons at Nazareth can help. On July 1st, Susan is scheduled to undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. Afterward, Susan will freed from pain and will be able to use her leg to walk to school and play again. Susan’s father works temporarily as a welder and her mother is a housewife. Their income is limited and their health insurance can no longer cover for another surgery after supporting the previous one. Therefore, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMH), is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure for Susan. “We thank God that our child is alive as one child died during the accident. We are hoping her surgery can be successful so that we can see her happy again and not in pain. We plead for her surgery sponsorship, ” Susan’s father wishes for her daughter's full recovery.

$1,049raised
Fully funded

Meet Muteyanjula, a 10-month-old child from Uganda who lives with his parents and two older siblings. His mother is a farmer and grows food for their family, while his father works as a taxi driver to pay for his siblings' school fees. When Muteyanjula was four months old, his mother noticed an inguinal swelling. At first, Muteyanjula's family didn't have the money to take him to the hospital, so his grandmother advised them to give him local herbs. Unfortunately this did not improve his condition. Muteyanjula was first taken to the regional referral hospital, where he was diagnosed with a left inguinal hernia—a protrusion of intestinal tissue through a tear in the abdominal wall. The doctors said he was too young for an operation and should wait until he turned five years old to have the surgery. But soon his family learned that if not treated right away, Muteyanjula may suffer intestinal tissue damage due to hernia twisting and blocking. "He needs help," shares Muteyanjula's mother. Although Muteyanjula urgently needs an operation to prevent further damage, his family is unable to pay for his surgery. $249 will cover the costs of a hernia repair procedure, in which doctors will surgically reposition the protrusion of intestinal tissue and fix the tear in his abdominal wall. This will also pay for his hospital stay before and after the operation, so that Muteyanjula can quickly recover and return home to his family. Surgery is scheduled for October 11. After surgery Muteyanjula will have a healthy childhood and his parents will have peace of mind.

$249raised
Fully funded

Mary is a cute little baby girl who was born less than one month ago in Tanzania. She is the third child in her family, and she is loved by all of her family members. Mary was born with an open lesion on her lower back that is leaking cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Her condition—known as spina bifida—is a birth defect in which several vertebrae in the lower back do not close properly, leaving the baby’s spinal canal exposed. The spinal cord and its surrounding membranes protrude through the opening in the backbone, forming a sac on the baby’s lower back that may tear and leak. If not treated, Mary will be at risk of easily contracting an infection, and she will continue to lose CSF, which could be fatal. As is common in infants with spina bifida, Mary also has hydrocephalus, a condition in which there is an accumulation of CSF in the brain. Too much fluid can increase pressure on the brain and inside the skull, leading to an enlarged head and developmental issues. Mary's head is unusually soft, and the circumference has slowly been increasing in size. Mary’s parents are small-scale farmers who rely on growing and selling maize and beans to support their family. As much as they would like to help their daughter, the cost of surgery is too expensive for them. Her mother worries about what will happen to Mary, as she has never seen a child with this condition. Fortunately, the baby girl is feeding well. For $1,200 in funding, Mary will undergo two surgical procedures to close the lesion on her spine and drain the excess fluid from her brain. First, doctors will place the spinal cord and membranes back inside the spinal canal and close the opening on her back. Next, they will place a shunt in Mary's brain to drain the excess fluid and transport it to her abdomen, where it can be resorbed by the body. Funding for Mary also includes 10 days of hospital care, lab tests, medicine, five physical therapy sessions, and a two-week stay at The Plaster House for recovery and rehabilitation. “How we wish our daughter to get well," shares Mary's mother. "We’ll take her to school so that she can study and later on get a good job and live an independent life."

$1,200raised
Fully funded

Angela is a 44-year-old mother of six children who lives in the Philippines. Seven years ago, Angela began tiring easily when doing household chores and would sometimes not finish her tasks for the day because she would need to stop and rest multiple times. She also began feeling nervous and having difficulty sleeping at night due to discomfort. To support the family, Angela's eldest son works as a fisherman and gives his mother money every month. His income is necessary to provide for their daily needs, as Angela's husband leaves only enough money to cover a month's worth of expenses when he goes away for five months of the year. Angela cannot work as she has to take care of her children, and she tries hard to keep them in school. Recently, Angela was visited by her family's pastor and a friend who is a part of our sponsored community to discuss a program to help her family elevate their economic status. During the second week of the program, Angela underwent a medical screening and was diagnosed with thyroiditis, a condition involving inflammation of the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland produces hormones that regulate the body's metabolism. When the gland is inflamed, thyroid hormone production can decrease, leading to fatigue. After completing blood tests, Angela was cleared to undergo surgery to remove her thyroid so that her condition would not progress. $1,500 covers the cost of Angela's surgery, transportation to and from the hospital, 10 days of hospital care—including medicine, imaging, and additional blood tests—and medication to take after she goes home. Angela looks forward to having more strength to take care of her family. "I would like to be healed and become better to serve my children and family and have quality time with them," she shares. "I want to be effective as a mother and friend to them. Thank you for your kind hearts."

$1,500raised
Fully funded

"I wish to become an accountant when I grow up so I can help my mother with her business," shares Phyu Zin, a 13-year-old girl who is quick to smile and laugh. In school, she likes her math courses, and in her free time, she enjoys watching movies and spending time with school friends and her cousin. Phyu Zin lives with her parents, two older sisters, brother in-law, and niece in Burma. Her father works in the lumber industry, felling trees and sawing them into construction planks. The family’s average income is sufficient for their day-to-day needs, with limited savings and funds for healthcare expenses. At two months of age, Phyu Zin developed pneumonia with a fever and nasal drainage. Her parents took her to Kawkareik Clinic for medication. Upon examining the girl, the doctor detected a heart condition known as tetralogy of Fallot—a congenital disease comprising four different heart defects that cause oxygen-poor blood to flow from the heart to the rest of the body. Phyu Zin returned to the clinic three times in her first year of life for repeat incidents of fever. On each occasion, she was medicated for her immediate symptoms. When Phyu Zin was eight years old, her symptoms worsened. She was always tired, and exercise easily fatigued her. She was tired at school and could not walk far or fast. In addition, she experienced several spells of dizziness at school. Until two months ago, Phyu Zin was a student in the sixth grade. However, her declining health forced her to drop out of school, as she could not keep up with her class work and the large, noisy classes made her uncomfortable. Her current symptoms are difficulty breathing—especially when active—and she is easily fatigued. Her mother places cold compresses on her when her breathing is labored. The past several years have been very difficult for Phyu Zin's family, as so much time, energy and resources have been dedicated to Phyu Zin. They have been worried about their ability to secure treatment for her and were glad to learn about Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) from a family member. Phyu Zin's parents brought her to MTC, and the medics referred her to Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) as a surgical candidate. For $1500, Phyu Zin will receive a complete diagnostic workup to assess her heart function and undergo corrective surgery to restore normal blood flow within her heart. Funding also covers the costs of 12 pre- and post-operative consultations, transportation to and from the hospital, and three weeks of hospital care during assessment and recovery.

$1,500raised
Fully funded