Iris joined Watsi on September 4th, 2014. Six years ago, Iris became the 293rd member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,657 more people have become monthly donors! Iris' most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Philomena, a baby girl from Kenya, to fund a colostomy closure surgery.
Iris has funded healthcare for 66 patients in 12 countries.
Philomena is a baby girl from Kenya. Philomena’s father is a carpenter and her mother, who used to operate a grocery store, is now a homemaker. Together they have five children, three of which are in school. The family has a small income and they have exhausted their savings helping pay for Philomena’s twin sister's heart problems. Philomena underwent a colostomy, in which the end of the colon is brought through an opening in the abdominal wall. This surgery is often performed to bypass bowel malformations, but colostomies are usually temporary and may call for closure. In Philomena's case, her colostomy requires closure in order to restore bowel function and prevent future complications. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $681 to cover the cost of a colostomy closure for Philomena. The surgery is scheduled to take place on July 3rd and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably and confidently. Philomena’s mother shared, “I will be very grateful for any financial help offered.”
Rath is a 34-year-old from Cambodia. He and his wife have been married for ten years, and have three children together. They live on the army base where Rath's unit is located. Rath is a good soccer player, and he plays often with others in his army unit. When he was only 15 years old, Rath had a serious ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in both ears to perforate. For this reason, Rath experiences severe hearing loss and constant discharge from his ears. He also experiences tinnitus. His ears are chronically infected and require a lot of medicine. His lack of hearing has made it difficult to communicate and affected his career. His family is worried that he will have this problem forever. Rath traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On June 3rd, he will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in both ears. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforations. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $913 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Rath said, "Once this ear infection is stopped, I will be able to hear better and maybe have an easier time in my work. Most of all I want to hear the voices of my children when they talk to me."
Geoffrey is a young boy from Kenya. Geoffrey has two other siblings and together with his parents, lives on their ancestral land. His father takes up casual labor in people’s farms to provide for their family, while his mother takes care of the house and children. Their income is quite limited to make ends meet. When Geoffrey was one-year-old, he fell on a basin with boiling water sustaining severe burns on his hands and scalp. He spent the next 6 weeks in the hospital receiving wound care. Fortunately, he healed, but with contractures on his left hand. This led to limited motion of his hand by the elbow. His fingers fused together, and he is not able to hold anything with his hand. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Geoffrey receive treatment. On June 10th, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery. In the future, he will be able to hold things and to write using his hands. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,176 procedure. Geoffrey’s mother says, “My hope is to see Geoffrey being able to hold something with his hands.”
Dymitry is a 13-year-old student from Haiti. Dymitry lives in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince with his mother and grandparents. He is in the sixth grade and especially likes engineering and math. Dymitry has a cardiac condition called Tetralogy of Fallot. This condition involves several related defects including a hole between the two lower chambers of the heart, and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. Fortunately, Dymitry will be able to fly to Canada to receive treatment. On April 2nd, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will close the hole in his heart with a patch, and remove the muscular blockage from his valve. Another organization, The Herbie Fund, is contributing $25,000 to pay for surgery. Dymitry's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep and transport. 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 Dymitry's family overseas. Dymitry told us, "I am looking forward to learning how to play soccer after my surgery!"
Immaculate is fast asleep on her mother’s lap. She was woken quite early to come to the hospital. A little bump, almost invisible, sits on her fontanel. Following results from CT scan, little Immaculate has been diagnosed with a dermoid cyst, a sac-like growth, that is present at birth and a craniotomy surgery is recommended. According to the doctor, the cyst sits on a very sensitive vein and if it ruptures Immaculate risks death. Surgery to close it will minimize such risks especially as she grows older, is more active, and playing with children who may accidentally hit the bump and cause the rupture. Immaculate lives with her parents and siblings in a one-room house in Central Kenya. The surgery is a cost that Immaculate’s parents cannot bear. They both are employed casually in a neighbor’s farm with an irregular daily wage of around Kes200 each. Immaculate’s elder brother is a student in class one and doing fine. With a very menial income, they are not able to raise the funds needed. “I will be glad if we get help,” says Immaculate’s mother.
Joe is a 12-year-old student from Thailand. He moved to Mae Sot in early 2019, in search for better education. He now lives at a boarding house while studying at a migrant learning center. Joe noticed his blurred vision since he was five years old. Although he told his parents about it, his parents thought it was not that serious; they just told him that his eye sight will get better with time. As Joe did not experience any pain, aside from blurry vision, Joe stopped complaining about his problem to his parents. Joe continue to have a blurred vision, especially in his left eye. After he moved to Mae Sot, he told his uncle about his eye sight. His uncle made arrangements for him to meet with a medic, who later found that Joe has a cataract on his left eye and that it needs to be fixed in order for Joe to regain a clear vision in his left eye. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Joe. On December 10th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Joe's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Joe said, “I don’t know yet of what I want to be in the future, but all I’m looking forward to is to ride a bicycle and play with my friends without any difficulty seeing.”
Saitabu is a one-month-old baby from Kenya who has congenital spina bifida and hydrocephalus. Saitabu gets frequent fevers and vomiting due to the condition. He requires urgent surgery but the family was not able to raise funds needed. Saitabu's parents are peasant livestock keepers. They are not able to meet daily needs and those of their baby's cost of surgery. Saitabau has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Saitabau has been experiencing An increasing head circumference. Without treatment, Saitabau will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,238 to cover the cost of surgery for Saitabau that will treat his hydrocephalus. The procedure will drain the excess fluid from Saitabau's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Saitabau will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Saitabau’s mother says, “Please help my son we can’t afford his treatment cost and he really needs this.”
Nareth is a 15-year-old girl from Cambodia. She has two sisters, one brother, and hopes to become a tailor when she gets older. When she was eight years old, Nareth had an ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in her left ear to perforate. For this reason, Nareth experiences discharge, itchiness, pain, and hearing loss. She has difficulty communication clearly with others and can no longer attend school. Nareth traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On September 17th, she will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in her left ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $423 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Nareth's mother says,"I hope that my daughter's surgery goes well so I won't have to worry about my daughter's condition and she will feel better."
U Kaung is a 52-year-old man from Thailand. He is originally from Mon State, Burma. In his free time, U Kaung likes to forage for vegetables and cut firewood. On the 6th of September 2019, U Kaung went to visit his friend on his bicycle. The road was slippery, and his bike slid, causing him to fall off his bike and break his lower left leg. Currently, U Kaung suffers from a sharp pain in his left leg, which is also swollen. Even though he is taking painkillers, the pain is not alleviated. He cannot walk or place any weight onto his left leg. Presently, he has to use a wheelchair whenever he needs to use the toilet. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, U Kaung will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for September 17 and will cost $1,500. This procedure will help him walk again and relieve him on the pain. "When I recover fully, I will continue to stay at home and do all the housework," said U Kaung.
Isabella is a child from Kenya. She hails from Kaloleni village in Machakos county. She together with her sister are twins. They are both in nursery school. She likes playing with her sister and as well associating with other people. Her mother is housewife while the father is a conductor. The family live in a one roomed rental house and as the mother informed us, they have to work hard in order to provide for the basic needs to the family. Isabella 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, Isabella traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 29. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,224 to fund Isabella's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily. “My joy is to see my daughter walking on her feet like her twin sister. I will appreciate any kind of support rendered to help my daughter rise and walk. God bless you.” Isabella’s mother informed us.
Ali is a baby from Ethiopia. He 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. Ali is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on August 1. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Ali's procedure and care. After his recovery, Ali will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future.
Careen is a baby from Tanzania. She has been diagnosed with genu varus. Her leg is bowed outward. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, she has difficulty walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $940 to fund corrective surgery for Careen. The procedure is scheduled to take place on June 21. Treatment will hopefully restore Careen's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Careen’s mother says, “We tried to use medication to help correct her legs but nothing worked, we could afford the surgery cost we are here asking for help please help our daughter.”