Michael KolodnyUNIVERSAL FUND MEMBER
Michael's Story

Michael joined Watsi on September 20th, 2016. Seven 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 Simon, a 33-year-old motorbike taxi driver from Kenya, to fund leg surgery.

Impact

Michael has funded healthcare for 92 patients in 16 countries.

Patients funded by Michael

Simon is a 33-year-old man from Kiambu County in Kenya. He is the firstborn in a family of two children. Simon is now married and a father of two of his own children, aged 10 and 7. He is known for his hard work and dedication. He managed to acquire a motorbike, which he used for ferrying riders to support his family. His wife engages in a casual job cooking in a nursery school. Regrettably, in May 2022, Simon had an accident while driving his motorbike. The incident resulted in an open fracture of the left tibia/fibula bones in the leg. He sought medical attention and underwent surgery. However, after about a year, it was discovered that his injury was not healing as expected. The plate was subsequently removed, and a plaster cast was applied. By October 2023, the plaster cast was also removed due to significant pain. A repeat X-ray revealed that the fibula bone had united, but the tibia bone had not. Simon has non-union of the broken bones, prompting the surgeon to recommend another surgery to help him fully heal. Unfortunately, Simon's inability to work currently has left him unable to cover the costs associated with the recommended surgery. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On February 1st, Simon will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. The treatment will reduce the risk of permanent disability and non-union in his leg, enabling him to regain mobility. His current situation not only jeopardizes his ability to return to work but also places a strain on his responsibilities as the head of a family. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. Simon said, “I am desperate and at the mercy of the doctor. I hope I can get sponsorship so that my leg can be well again; I can be able to walk and also resume my job because my family is looking up on me.”

$357raised
$692to go

Edina, a 41-year-old mother of seven, works as a vegetable seller, earning about $2.97 per day for her family's upkeep. She finds joy interacting with her customers and has a fondness for chicken and nsima, a Malawian staple porridge made from maize flour. Four years ago, Edina discovered a small, painless swelling on the right side of her neck. After seeking medical advice at a nearby hospital, she was diagnosed with goiter, an enlargement of the thyroid gland. She was instructed to wait for an opportunity for surgery, but her condition has worsened, causing breathlessness, neck pain, and difficulty lifting heavy objects. This has affected her work capacity and resulted in a decrease in income. Inspired by a fellow community member's journey to seek help, Edina visited our medical partner's care facility, Partners in Hope Medical Centre, where a surgeon reconfirmed the need for a thyroidectomy, the surgical removal of all or part of your thyroid gland. Faced with financial hardships, Edina is seeking support for her surgery treatment. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Edina receive treatment. On March 20th, surgeons at PIH will perform a thyroidectomy to relieve her symptoms and help her resume her vegetable business at full capacity. Now, Edina needs help to fund this $1,015 procedure. Edina says, “I feel so fortunate to get the opportunity for support. Thank you so much, I believe surgery will help me get back to normal life."

$298raised
$717to go

Nay is a 31-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his mother, two sisters, two brothers-in-law, two nephews, and two nieces in a village in Karen State along the Burma border. Nay works in Thailand as a day laborer, spending one week working in Mae Sot and then returning for two days to his village. Nay’s mother is retired and one of his sisters is a homemaker, taking care of her children. The other sister and two brothers-in-law are day laborers on a farm in Karen State. They also grow vegetables for family consumption. His nephews and one niece go to school. Their monthly income is enough for basic needs and they make an effort to pay for basic health care. In his free time, Nay enjoys helping in his community and fixing electronic items. In July 2023, Nay began to experience blurred vision in his right eye. He has intermittent pain and discharge. These symptoms have made it increasingly difficult for him to see clearly. Nay feels uncomfortable seeing only with his left eye and feels sad and depressed about his condition. Nay 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 entirely in the right eye. Nay is scheduled to undergo surgery to reattach his retina on January 18th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the cost of this procedure and care. After the surgery, Nay's vision will hopefully be restored, and he will resume his daily activities comfortably. Nay said “I was stuck and hopeless while the doctor was telling me that I would need a surgery. I don’t even know how to explain about my health problem to my family. I worry they will feel so sad and worry about me. I am unhappy and feel tired emotionally. After learning that I have donors who will help me paying for my treatment in Chiang Mai, I feel like my hope has returned and I'm wishing my vision would repair and I'll be able to continue my career in the future."

$1,025raised
$475to go

Gay is a fifteen-year-old resident of Burma, who lives in a village in a conflict area called Karen State with his parents and two older sisters. Gay's parents and one of his sisters work in subsistence farming and his other sister is still in school. Due to financial constraints, Gay tends to the family's cows instead of attending school. During his leisure time, he enjoys fishing and gathering vegetables. On the morning of November 13, Gay was in an accident while riding on his friend's tractor. He was seated next to the driver and fell off when the tractor hit a bump while descending a slope. The trailer being towed behind the tractor ran over his right thigh, resulting in a severe femur fracture. Currently, Gay experiences considerable pain and is unable to move his right leg. He requires assistance from his father for basic activities like using the bathroom. Fortunately, Gay was able to make it to Mae Sot General Hospital, a care center of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). Thanks to the support of BCMF, Gay is slated to undergo surgery on November 14th, to reset his fractured bones, allowing them to properly heal. BCMF is requesting $1500 to help fund this procedure. This surgical intervention holds the promise of enabling Gay to walk again without enduring pain. Expressing his gratitude, Gay's father shared, "When I heard that my son needs an expensive surgery, I felt hopeless. I did not know what to do and I felt so sad to see him in pain. When I learned from the doctor that donors will help pay for my son's treatment, I felt so happy that words cannot express how I felt. Thank you so much with all my heart for helping my son."

$1,500raised
Fully funded