Michael joined Watsi on April 24th, 2015. Six years ago, Michael joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Michael's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Jackson, a toddler from Kenya, to fund corrective surgery for his birth condition.
Michael has funded healthcare for 71 patients in 13 countries.
Michael has funded healthcare for 71 patients in 13 countries.
Jackson is a three-year-old boy and loving big brother. His father's work at the welding shop provides the main source of income for the family. His earnings are just enough to support the household. Jackson's mother is not working so she can take care of Jackson and his very young sibling. The family currently lives in a small rented house. Jackson was born with hypospadias, which causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility. Fortunately, Jackson is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on July 27th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $735 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Jackson’s mother says, “It is difficult for us to raise the money for his treatment as we always rely on the National Insurance, which has turned us down.”
Kelvin is a 12-year-old boy and the youngest of nine children in his family. Two of his older siblings have already finished high school and are now married. His mother is a small-scale farmer who sells maize and beans. His parents separated a long time ago and his father does not support their family. They rely on help from their local church. Kelvin was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles remains undescended. If left untreated, Kelvin will have an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, or fertility problems in the future. Kelvin is receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH). He is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on June 8th and AMH is requesting $561 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Kelvin’s mother shared, “I am happy that one of my sons noticed this early enough, but at the same time I’m sad that I cannot afford to cater for his surgery. I am requesting any financial help that can help my son get treated.”
Pascalina is a charming and friendly four-year-old girl. She is the youngest child in a family of four children, and her mother is currently pregnant and ready to welcome a new baby. Last year, Pascalina stayed home with her aunt while her mother went to sell vegetables at the market. Her aunt had a pot of porridge on the charcoal stove and when Pascalina ran into the house, she tripped over the pot sustaining burns. Her wounds have healed, but the skin around her elbow has contracted limiting her ability to straighten and use her left hand. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Pascalina receive treatment. On May 21st, surgeons at AMH's care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery. Now, her family needs help to fund this $874 procedure. Pascalina’s mother shared, "the accident has left my daughter with a deformed left hand which she is having difficult using. Please help us."
Hong is a 66-year-old widowed rice farmer. She shared proudly that she has eight children: four sons and four daughters. All of her children are married except the youngest daughter - a factory worker - with whom she lives. She also has ten beautiful, lively grandchildren. When not helping to care for her family, she likes to listen to monks pray on the radio. Eight months ago, Hong developed a mass on her right elbow. At first, it was small, but it quickly grew larger. Now, the mass on her right elbow is painful and swollen, and Hong is unable to work with her right hand. She visited her local provincial hospital in January for a removal, but the mass has grown even larger since then. Another local hospital referred her to our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, for treatment. On April 21, surgeons at CSC will perform excision of mass in her right elbow and a flap for a skin graft. These surgical procedures will help her feel comfortable again and regain use of her right arm. Now, she needs help to fund this $657 procedure. Hong said, "I hope that this treatment will be successful this time, so I can go back home and work as I did as before. I hope I am able to use my right hand without pain, without a recurrent mass, and have full function of my right hand again."
Alex is a 20-year-old high school student from Haiti. He lives with his parents and younger brother in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. When he's healthy, he enjoys dancing and playing drums in church. Before his most recent illness, he was in his final year of high school. Alex has a cardiac condition called mitral regurgitation. When Alex was a child, he became infected with rheumatic fever which severely damaged one of his heart valves so that it could no longer pump blood through his body. Four years ago, surgeons in the Cayman Islands repaired Alex's existing heart valve in order to avoid replacing it with an artificial valve. This repaired valve worked well for three years, but then began to have difficulty pumping blood as well. Doctors now need to implant an artificial valve to replace the valve that is no longer working well. Alex will fly to the Cayman Islands to receive treatment. On April 7th, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will remove Alex's damaged valve and implant a mechanical replacement valve. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman Islands, is contributing $20,000 to pay for surgery. Alex's 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 Alex's family overseas. Alex shared, "I am looking forward to this surgery so that I can get back to attending school and going to church."
Gody is a two-month-old baby boy from Tanzania. He is the youngest of his mother's two children, and one of his father's five children. Gody's father works at a butcher shop and is able to get by and support his family. Gody has clubfoot of both feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Gody traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on February 16th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Gody's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily. Gody’s mother shared, “we had a little money that we thought we could use to treat our baby but all that money has been used up with no successful treatment. Kindly help correct my baby’s feet.”
Dominick is a 4-year-old child from Tanzania. He is the firstborn child in a family of three children. Because he has difficulty walking, his mother has been unable to enroll him in school yet. Dominick was diagnosed with bilateral genu varus, or bowleggedness. His legs bow outward when he walks. 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 physically struggles to walk and cannot walk for a long time. However, Dominick's parents cannot afford the cost of the treatment he needs to cure his condition. They are subsistence farmers who make a humble income to support the family, and they appeal for financial help. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Dominick. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 22nd. Treatment will hopefully restore Dominick's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Dominick's mother shared, "I believe our prayers were answered when we met one of Watsi's colleagues who directed us here. We are not able to afford Dominic's treatment and we had lost hope, but we just thought of taking Dominick for prayers that week and God led us here."
Khaing is a 27-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband and a three-year-old son in a village in Tak Province. Originally from Karen State, Burma, they moved to their current home three years ago in search of better job opportunities. Her husband is a day laborer and she is homemaker. Ten years ago, Khaing started feeling 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. At the time, Khaing did not go to see a doctor because she could not afford to pay for treatment, and she thought that she would feel better over time. However, four years ago she noticed that the mass had grown. Khaing went to her local hospital in Burma, where the doctor confirmed she had 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 unsuccessfully 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 became swollen. She went to Mae Tao Clinic for treatment, where the medic found large masses in both of her nasal cavities. 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 were large and surrounded by a lot of pus. After a CT scan, the doctor diagnosed her with a nasal polyp and scheduled her for surgery on December 28th, 2020. Currently, the area around her nose is swollen and painful. Her nostrils feel itchy, her nose is blocked, and has to breathe through her mouth. She still has a headache, though since she received pain medication from the doctor at MSH, this has been less severe. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On December 28th, Khaing will undergo an endoscopic sinus surgery. Once recovered, she will be able to breathe normally again and her quality of life will significantly improve. Now, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Khaing shared, "I really want to have surgery and feel better. I am not scared because I believe that the surgery will help me be free from headaches and breathe well again."
Stanley is a manual labourer from Kenya. A father of 3 children, all between 11 to 22 years old, his children are in school and are dependent on him for support. Depending on the availability of work, he and his wife do daily manual jobs. As a result, their income is not stable, and they also do not have medical coverage. They live in a 2-room house in their ancestral home in Ndeiya. Last month, Stanley was working to offload and reload hay. He and some other workers had gone to deliver the grass to a client in a village a few kilometres from their town of Limuru. Stanley was trying to direct the lorry through a corner. Once the driver had finished driving through the corner, Stanley tried to jump back into the vehicle while it sped off. He missed a step and flipped, causing serious wounds on his thigh and a fracture on the left fibula head and left femoral condul. He also has an unstable knee. Following this accident, Stanley has undergone multiple debridement surgeries to treat the wound. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Stanley receive treatment. On November 18th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to finally help him heal and prevent infection. Now, Stanley needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Stanley shared, “My bills have really gone up and I am not able to settle them. I still need this surgery recommended by the doctors so that I can heal properly and avoid infections.”
Johnelson is a young boy from Kenya. His mother brought him and his sister to Nandi County, Kenya, to live with his grandmother while she looked for work. In August 2020, while at home playing with other children in the kitchen area, Johnelson accidentally fell in the three stone firewood cooking stove where his grandmother had just removed boiling water and left the fire to cool. Having fallen with the back of his head first in the fire, Johnelson was unable to pull himself out. Hearing Johnelson's playmates' cries, his grandmother rushed back from helping a local medical practitioner who was attending Johnelson’s sick grandfather. Johnelson suffered severe scalp burns. Though she was advised to take him to the hospital, his grandmother was not able to raise the funds required to take him to the hospital for care. One month later, after talking to friends and some relatives, she took him to a nearby facility. She had not yet informed Johnelson's mother, fearing she would be angry. Upon arrival, Johnelson was admitted for a few days for washing and dressing to reduce the risk of infection as the wounds were in a bad state. A few weeks later, during the burial of his grandfather, Johnelson’s mother and other relatives learnt about his worsened condition. His mother brought him to Watsi's Medical Partner's Care Center Kijabe Hospital, where the doctor examined him and recommended a debridement and skin grafting surgery to be performed on the back of his head. Without treatment, he will remain in constant pain and his wounds may become infected. Johnelson's surgery is a large financial burden for his family and they are unable to personally raise the amount needed to fund the procedure. His mother mostly does laundry for people. When she can’t find work, she does any other work she comes across to support her mother and her two children. Johnelson’s grandmother is a farmer and relies on the produce she gets from the farm and from Johnelson’s mother. They are appealing for financial help. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Johnelson receive treatment. On October 19th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure on his scalp. This will help limit the risk of wound infection. Now, Johnelson needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Johnelson’s mother says, “Having to take care of my son in this condition, it really pains me to know that I cannot do anything for him to get the required treatment. Any financial help will be very much appreciated.”
Max is a young boy from a rural village in Kenya and the only son in his family. He recently lost his dear mother who passed on after a long battle with diabetes and heart complications. Their family is currently servicing debts accrued from his mother’s several visits to different facilities as they were forced to deposit their grandfather's title deed to be able to bury Max's mother. His father is a driver who used to work for a private lorry owner. However, he lost his job because of his continued absence from work to take care of Max’s mother during her numerous hospital admissions. On August 20th, Max broke his arm while scaling an 8ft. ladder on their farm in the Kiambu region. Unfortunately, he tripped and came down tumbling, causing him to break his arm. He is in pain and cannot use his left hand at all now. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On September 23rd, Max will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him heal well and he will be able to use his hand with no pain. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Max’s father shared, “If my son doesn’t get this surgery, he might not be able to use his arm again. He is young with a full life ahead of him.”
Khna is a 31-year-old taxi driver from Cambodia. He got married only five months ago, and his wife is a farmer. In his free time he enjoys playing volleyball with his friends, going for walks with his wife, and making improvements to his home. In August 2020, Khna fell out of a tree from a height of five meters. He was able to get up and walk home, but later that night he started feeling pain in his back. Now he is experiencing numbness in his legs and an inability to control urine flow. He has come to our partner facility, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), where doctors will be able to perform a spinal implant procedure which will alleviate the pressure on the spinal nerves. This will allow him to regain feeling in his legs and walk easily again. Khna told us, "I hope that this surgery will go well, and that I can recover quickly. I will work hard to regain strength and walk like normal."