AUSTIN joined Watsi on June 21st, 2014. Five years ago, AUSTIN joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. AUSTIN's most recent donation supported Stefano, a 5-year-old boy from Tanzania, to fund leg surgery so he can walk well.
AUSTIN has funded healthcare for 71 patients in 11 countries.
AUSTIN has funded healthcare for 71 patients in 11 countries.
Stefano is a 5-year-old child from Tanzania. Stefano’s parents are small-scale farmers and livestock keepers. They are not able to afford their son’s treatment costs thus they are asking for help. When we first met Stefano he was having difficulty walking and it was challenging for him to do day-to-day tasks. He looked tired despite being carried on her mother’s back. Stefano has needed support from the hospital to get healthy enough for surgery and has been receiving care since last November. He now is healthy enough to undergo surgery for his leg condition. Stefano was diagnosed with windswept deformity. His legs bow so that the knees appear windswept. 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 has a difficult time walking and experiences pain. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Stefano. The procedure is scheduled to take place on April 22nd. Treatment will hopefully restore Stefano's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Stefano’s mother shared in her language, “Mchugaji alituambia tunaweza kupata msaada wa matibabu kwa ajili yam toto wetu hapa.” Meaning: "The pastor told us our son could get treatment help from here."
Alex is a student and is a very ambitious and active teenager from Kiambu, Kenya. He is the only child of a single mother, who is a hawker of different items. He is in high school and his mother shared that he has a passion for football and running. After schools were closed in March, Alex decided to go and visit his aunt who lives near Nazareth Hospital. Being playful as he is, he took a bicycle from his aunts’ house and decided to have a ride on last Saturday. Unfortunately, while riding, he tried to avoid a collision and he fell. He sustained an injury to his left hand. Now Alex is in pain, unable to use his hand. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On April 12th, Alex will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. Alex's fracture will heal, he will be able to use his hand and also resume school. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. “I am feeling for my son, and hope he could receive the sponsorship so that he can be well before the school opens,” said Alex’s mother.
Aljahnie is a four-year-old boy from the Philippines. He loves to play with toy cars, to sing nursery rhymes, and to listen to songs. His mother is a stay-at-home mom, and his father is a jeepney driver. Despite working hard, they are unable to finance his medical needs. Aljahnie 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. Aljahnie is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on March 17th. Our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, is requesting $1,279 to cover the total cost of Aljahnie's procedure and care. After his recovery, Aljahnie will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. "By the grace of God, and extra caution, we hope that his condition will be much better after this treatment. We are very grateful to World Surgical Foundation and WATSI for helping us," shared Aljahnie’s mother.
Angel is 10-month-old baby girl. She lives in a small rental house in Nairobi, Kenya with her parents and older sibling. Angel’s parents do not currently have stable jobs. Her mother used to sell fruits, however had to stop to take care of Angel. Her father, now the sole wage earner of the house, is a tailor but does not earn much. The earnings they receive are just enough to take care of the family. As a result, they can not raise the money that is needed to cater for Angel’s hospital bill. Angel has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. Over the December holidays, Angel and her family visited her grandparents, however during this time she became persistently unwell, which caused her parents' concern to grow. They took her to a facility nearby and along the way her grandmother noticed that her head looked bigger than normal, and her eyes were not as they used to be. Upon arrival, the doctor immediately referred them to another specialist. facility in Nairobi. She was then examined and booked for surgery in April of this year. After returning home, the parents continued to watch as Angel grew weaker day by day. A family friend heard about their child’s condition and referred them to our medical partner's care center, BethanyKids Hospital. On arrival, she received another examination and was promptly scheduled for a shunt insertion surgery. If not treated, Angel will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $720 to cover the cost of Angel's surgery to treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on February 9th, during which surgeons will drain the excess fluid from her brain. This will relieve the pressure inside her head, and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Angel will have the chance to develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Angel’s father says, “This is a condition that we have never heard of before and didn’t know how to go about getting her care. It is very difficult for a parent to see their child in a situation when they do not have finances to help them.”
Ravuth is a bright student in the 4th grade. He's the youngest in his family and has three older siblings. When not studying, Ravuth likes to play football, watch TV and play games with his friends from school. Six weeks ago, Ravuth had a severe ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. Ravuth now experiences ear discharge, pain, fevers, and hearing loss. It is difficult to listen and he feels shy because he doesn't understand the conversation. He has frequently been absent from class and his mother is worried that he might be held back in school. Ravuth's family traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On January 18th, he will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in his left ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Ravuth said: "I hope my hearing will improve and I can go back to school!"
Mu is a 17-year-old boy who lives with his sister in Mae Sot, Thailand. Before that, he lived with his parents, one older sister, two younger brothers and one younger sister in a refugee camp. His sister works at a non-governmental organisation helping others in need. Around mid-August, Mu woke up one morning with pain in his left knee. At first he thought that the pain would go away on its own and that it was nothing serious. However, when the pain remained a few days later, he told his sister about it. His sister bought him a type of Burmese pain reliever balm to apply on his knee. He applied the balm for a week, but he did not feel any better. When he and his sister noticed that his left knee had become slightly swollen his sister called their father. Mu’s father told them that it could be an ulcer and suggested that they go to a hospital or buy him pain medication to reduce swelling. His sister bought the medication their father had suggested at a pharmacy, and Mu took it for a week. However, he did not feel better, and the swelling did not decrease. Mu was able to have an MRI at Chiang Mai Hospital and now the doctor recommends he undergo surgery to remove a tumor on his left knee. Mu sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund and is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on December 17th. He is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care which will enable him to get off of using crutches and back to feeling well again. Mu said, "After I heard from the doctor that my leg does not need to be amputated, I feel so happy."
Joyline is a humble 9-year-old girl. She's the only child in her family and was born with a bilateral clubfoot condition. Her father is a farmer while her mother is a housewife. Together their family lives in a rural area of Kenya. Joyline has clubfoot of both legs. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Joyline cannot put on shoes, walk or play with her friends. Her situation makes her lead a lonely life as her father put it. She underwent foot surgery in 2020 and her condition was partially corrected. Joyline is now scheduled to undergo a corrective osteotomy surgery. The family is not in a financial position to cater for the surgery and is appealing for financial assistance. Fortunately, Joyline's family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on November 22nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund Joyline's clubfoot repair. After treatment, Joyline will be able to put on both shoes, walk comfortably, play with other children and continue with her education uninterrupted. Joyline's father says, “Being our firstborn child, we would love to see her grow well, join school and excel in life. Any help to make her foot look and feel better would be highly appreciated.”
Collins is a polite and humble 14-year-old student and the third born in a family of four children. He is in primary school class six and hopes to become a doctor in the future. His mother is a housewife while his father works as a farmer. When he was one year old, while he was crawling, Collins accidentally fell on boiling water in a pan. He was taken to a nearby hospital for first aid for his burns. Now, he has burn scar contractures on his feet and has difficulty walking and running. His condition has affected his self-esteem, because he cannot play with his friends in school and at home. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Collins receive treatment. On October 25th, surgeons at AMH's care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery to help him wear shoes confidently, walk well, and play with his friends. Now, he needs help to fund this $840 procedure. Collins shared, "I am happy because after the surgery, I will be able to walk, run and play with my mates in school and when I'm home."
Ndaanya is a five-year-old boy and the youngest child in a family of three children. His mother is not married and works as a farmer to support her family growing maize, sunflowers, groundnuts and vegetables. Ndaanya 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, Ndaanya traveled to visit our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), to receive treatment. On September 14th, surgeons at AMH's care center will perform clubfoot repair surgery. Now, AMH is requesting $935 to fund Ndaanya's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily and start schooling. Ndaanya’s mother shared, "I had lost hope... I knew this problem could only be corrected when he was a small baby and because his treatment was not successful I thought he would live with this disability for the rest of his life. I will be so happy and grateful if you help correct my son’s feet.”
Paw is a 24-year-old woman from Thailand. Originally from Burma, Paw, her husband, their three daughters and her parents fled in March 2021 after the Burmese military shot rockets into their village. In Thailand, as refugees, they cannot work, and have temporarily moved in with Paw's brother and his family. They receive rice from her brother's neighbors, while her brother's family provides them with vegetables and curries. In July 2021, Paw's parents and her two older daughters went back to their village when they felt it was safe to do so. Meanwhile, her husband and her three-month-old baby have stayed with her while she receives treatment in Chiang Mai. Two years ago, Paw noticed a mass on the right side of her neck. Her neighbor suggested she apply a natural remedy, but unfortunately, the mass remained and grew over time. In September 2019, she visited a local hospital in Thailand with her husband, but the surgery recommended was too expensive. She experiences pain near the site of the mass, and the mass is still growing. Paw sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). She is scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on August 16th, and now she needs to raise $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Paw shared, “I felt embarrassed and very upset when I first noticed that I had this problem. I will feel a lot better after my surgery because I have needed to receive it since I first went to see the doctor in 2019. In the future I want to look after my children and send them to school.”
Dora is a teenager studying in class six and her best subjects are English and Swahili. Once she completes her studies, Dora has dreams to become a teacher. At home, she is the seventh oldest of her mother's eleven children. Dora's father has three wives, so Dora has twenty siblings total. Dora likes helping her mother with home chores, such as washing dishes and keeping their home clean. Dora's parents are small scale farmers of maize and vegetable, and they also have a few cattle that they depend on for milk. Dora was diagnosed with left genu valgus, a condition typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, her left leg is bowed so that her knees touch, thus making walking difficult. Dora has to walk forty minutes one way to and from school everyday, so this condition poses a significant barrier to Dora continuing her education and pursuing her aspirations. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Dora. The procedure is scheduled to take place on July 15th. Treatment will hopefully restore Dora's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Dora shares her current condition, "When I walk to school my leg pains so much there are days I am unable to put weight on the leg especially when it’s cold. Please help me."
Lah is a 50-year-old woman from Thailand who lives with her husband and her daughter in a refugee camp on the Thai-Burma border. Lah is a homemaker, and her daughter is a middle school student. Her husband cannot work since he was in an accident six years ago. Her neighbor pays for her daughter’s school fees and in return, Lah shares vegetables that she grows with her neighbors. Her family receives about $35 per month on a cash card, but this income is not enough to cover their daily needs. In her free time, Lah loves praying at home and she enjoys going to church every Sunday. Starting from 2018, Lah has been experiencing dizziness, back pain, fatigue, loss of appetite, and lower abdomen pain every day. If she sits for a longer period of time, she has difficulty standing up due to the back pain. Lah cannot walk longer distances because of the pain in her lower abdomen and back. Lah has been diagnosed with myoma uteri, and is advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy. If left untreated, Lah's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Lah is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on June 16th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once she is fully recovered, Lah will no longer experience pain in her back and abdomen and will be able to sit and walk without difficulty. Lah said, “I am so happy that my condition is treatable. I will be able to live with my family for a longer time. Now that I know donors may help pay for my treatment, I would like to thank them in advance for helping me. I want to live long, and look after my daughter and my husband. I prayed and God has answered my prayers, so I am very thankful to God and your organization who helped find donors for me.”