Zachary joined Watsi on August 30th, 2018. Three years ago, Zachary joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Zachary's most recent donation supported Sophanha, a curious six-month-old baby from Cambodia, to fund arm surgery so he can grow up healthy.
Zachary has funded healthcare for 37 patients in 9 countries.
Zachary has funded healthcare for 37 patients in 9 countries.
Sophanha is a six-month-old baby who has an older brother and sister. His father and 20-year-old brother operate a coffee stand outside a factory, and his sister is a 17-year-old high school student. His mother stays home to take care of Sophanha right now. When he was born, Sophanha was diagnosed with Erb's palsy on his left arm and hand. This leads to weakness, loss of function and sensation so that the young boy is unable to lift his arm or use his hand. Sophanha traveled with his family to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On July 29th, he will undergo surgery that will help him be able to use his hand in the future as he grows up. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is requesting $696 to fund this procedure. Sophanha's mother shares, "I am glad my baby can get this surgery, and I hope he can use his arm soon and grow strong."
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.
Rexa is a 47-year-old mother from Malawi. She has four children, and her sister lives together with their family. Rexa has been selling second-hand clothes called kaunjika locally, but had to pause her business last December due to her health condition. Rexa’s husband is an electrician and is currently unemployed. Two of their children are in college, and they shared that their family is struggling to pay their school fees. Rexa also cares for her mom, who lives in the village. Last December, Rexa started having sharp pains in her abdomen radiating to the back and both legs. Her husband has taken her to many hospitals to figure out the cause of her pain, and it has cost their family a significant amount of money. After being evaluated for peptic ulcers, heart, liver, and kidney problems to no avail, she finally was diagnosed in April with uterine fibroids. Fibroids are abnormal growths that develop in or on a woman's uterus. These growths may become quite large and cause severe abdominal pain and heavy bleeding. If left untreated, fibroids can continue to grow, both in size and number, and could result in increased heavy bleeding or a fatal case of anemia. Rexa was referred to Partners in Hope Medical Center for further review and the gynecologist recommended that she undergo a hysterectomy, which will remove her uterus and cervix and hopefully cure her of this pain. However, she has no insurance and is unable to pay for the cost of her care due to her family's earnings. Rexa will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare. She is scheduled to undergo a hysterectomy on May 28th, and African Mission Healthcare is requesting $1,363 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. After the surgery, Rexa is hopeful that she will stop having abdominal pains and can return to normal life, which can help her resume her business and support her family members again. Rexa's husband shared, “I am excited that finally there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel. When my wife feels pain, I also feel pain and I fail to go and look for work to support the family. I strongly believe that this surgery will bring an end to our misery and sleepless nights. Now we will stop begging relatives for support with even transport money to the hospital, I am very grateful to the donors!”
Jane is a 53-year-old woman who works as a street vendor in Kenya. Her husband was a hotelier, but she shared with us that he has been jobless for over ten years since he suffered a stroke. She shared that he has been in and out of the hospital seeking treatment and the family has been relying on friends and relatives to settle bills and cover medical trips. Jane herself has now been diagnosed with breast cancer. A mastectomy, a surgery to remove breast tissue, has been recommended to rid her body of the cancer and to prevent it from metastasizing. Without treatment, the cancer may spread to other organs. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Jane to receive treatment. On May 3rd, she will undergo a mastectomy at AMH's care center. After treatment, Jane will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Now, AMH is requesting $857 to cover the cost of a mastectomy for Jane. Jane shared that she is feeling, “I have nothing to smile about, the cancer is threatening my health and we have been treating my husband who had a stroke. I hope I will be able to get help.”
Thavy is a 62-year-old woman with a son, a daughter, and three grandchildren. Thavy enjoys listening to the radio, reading dharma, visiting the pagoda, and taking care of her grandchildren. In May 2019, Thavy fell and fractured her left elbow. She has been diagnosed with a brachial plexus injury on her left side. The brachial plexus is a nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand, and injuries to this network can result in loss of function and sensation. She was taken to a clinic where the fracture was healed but she still experiences numbness, pain, muscle atrophy, and lack of mobility of her left hand. Surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, will perform a brachial plexus repair surgery. After recovery, she will able to freely use her left arm and hand again. Thavy shared, "I hope I can start to use my left hand again without numbness or pain."
Antony is a 36-year-old motorbike taxi operator. He is married and has three children. Antony is the sole breadwinner of the family. In his line of work, his income depends on the availability of customers and is somewhat inconsistent. He lives with his family in a two-roomed rental house. On February 9th, Antony was riding a friend to a funeral on a motorbike, when he got into an accident along the Nairobi-Nakuru highway. His bike lost control when he tried to avoid an oncoming vehicle that was speeding on the wrong side of the road. Antony hit a ditch on the side of the road and sustained multiple injuries. He is in pain and is not able to use his left hand. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On March 5th, Antony 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 arm normally again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Anthony shared, “I am the sole breadwinner and my family is looking upon me for survival. I cannot work without the use of my hand, and my hand needs surgery to heal. I am unable to get the money to raise the amount needed for my care."
Saw Ki is a 10-year-old boy living with his parents, sister and a brother in Mae Ra Ma Luang Refugee Camp in Thailand. Saw Ki is in grade two and his siblings also attend school in the camp. At school, Saw Ki’s favorite subject is Koraen literature. In the future, he would like to become an agricultural day laborer and work hard like his father. On the morning of January 30, 2021, Saw Ki was playing with his friends when he slipped on some rocks and fell onto his left arm. Right away, his left arm became extremely painful and his left arm looked deformed. Saw Ki was brought to the refugee camp’s hospital run by Malteser International (MI) Thailand. After a medic completed a physical examination, the medic told him that they thought his left forearm was broken. Saw Ki was referred to Mae Sariang Hospital to receive an x-ray. There, the doctor confirmed that his left forearm was broken and referred him to Chiang Mai Hospital for surgery right away. Currently, Saw Ki cannot move his left hand and he is in a lot of pain. He has been receiving pain medication while waiting for surgery. This surgery is costly for Saw Ki and his family. Saw Ki's father used to work as an agricultural day laborer in nearby villages, but he can no longer work since the refugee camp went into lockdown following the outbreak of Covid-19. His mother is a homemaker. Although their household receives a cash card with 2,200 baht (approx. 74 USD) every month to purchase rations, this amount is not enough. Their family struggles to make ends meet without Saw Ki’s father’s income, and they appeal for financial support. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Saw Ki will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for February 2nd and will cost $1,500. After surgery, Saw Ki will no longer be in pain and he will be able to return home, play with his friends and also continue his studies. Saw Ki shared, "I want to play a lot of games with both of my hands, like before. I am not scared of receiving surgery."
Pamela is wheeled into the consultation room wincing in pain. She briefly smiles but gets back to a serious face. Pamela is a widow whose husband passed away in 1993. After his passing, family conflicts forced her to move from their home village in Migori and settle in a crowded, more run-down neighborhood near Eastleigh. She used to work as a tailor but, after she needed a wheelchair in 2011, she has been unable to work. Pamela lives in a single room tin-roofed house and the local church helps to support her rent. She doesn’t have an ID so it has been hard for her to access local services such as medical support. Pamela told us that she has been relying on well-wishers and their local church for survival and her closest relatives live in Migori and rarely are able to offer her support. Pamela arrived to the hospital with bladder calculus with recurrent UTI that requires an urgent cystolithotomy, a curative laparotomy procedure, to aid relieve her stomach pains that have been recurrent for many years now. According to her neighbors who brought her to the facility, she had been in severe pain the whole night, and the medicine that she received from a nearby dispensary were not helping her. Pamela has been through a lot medically and socially. In late 2011, she suffered from TB of her spine and underwent spinal surgery. She has been using a wheelchair since then. In mid-2017, her stomach pains started and in November 2019, she underwent several tests and was booked for surgery at a hospital. She didn’t have funds so she went back home and continued managing her pains with pain medication. Upon hearing about Watsi's Medical Partner Kijabe Hospital, she came hoping for treatment. On November 7th this year, she was reviewed by the doctors and several tests were done which revealed her condition and need for surgery. She was discharged home and booked for a follow up appointment and possible surgery next week (November 23rd) but because of the pains, she was rushed back to the hospital. Pamela shared with us, “This is my only option to get rid of the pains. I have tried several medications but they are not working. I really need assistance to get this surgery. “
Gabriel is a 46-year-old refugee from South Sudan. He is a father of six children aged between 2-19 years old. Currently, Gabriel and his family are staying in the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya fleeing civil conflict in their home country. In June 2020, Gabriel had an accident and broke his arm. He underwent surgery in his hometown of Juba in the same month and was discharged home from the hospital. However, his left arm started developing further complications, and he was forced to seek treatment in Kenya after his family left Sudan. Gabriel has chronic osteomyelitis of the left humerus and infected hardware in his arm. Gabriel has undergone 3 surgeries, including humeral debridement, hardware removal, and bone cementing. Doctors recommend another urgent sequestrectomy surgery on his left humerus to remove the infected hardware. If left untreated, he risks impediment of blood circulation within the bone leading to bone death and even amputation. Unfortunately, this procedure is costly for Gabriel and his family. He does not currently have a job, nor any medical coverage. Due to the support of well-wishers, friends, and family, Gabriel has been able to raise some money for his earlier medical and surgical concerns. However, he was forced to postpone his surgery due to lack of funds. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Gabriel receive treatment. He is scheduled to undergo a sequestrectomy on December 2nd at our medical partner's care center. This procedure will cost $1,500, and he appeals for financial help to fund the cost of his care. Gabriel shared, “I am in so much pain and there have been so many surgeries for me. I need assistance on this one.”
Seanghong is a 14-year-old student from Cambodia. He lives at home with his mother and siblings. Seanghong has two brothers and one sister, and he is the youngest in the family. His father passed away several years ago, and his mother now works as a farmer. His siblings also work to support the family. At school, he is in seventh grade and loves to read. He also enjoys playing sports with his friends. When he was only one year old, Seanghong was burned on the right side of his body. He received care at an NGO hospital, but has since had scar contractures on his right hip, right knee, and right foot. These scars have caused him pain and irritation, and make it difficult to walk or run. When Seanghong learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for two hours seeking treatment. On October 13th, surgeons at CSC will perform a burn contracture release surgery to help him move easily again. Now, he needs help to fund this $477 procedure. Seanghong shared, "I hope that after this surgery, I can be a better soccer player and athlete."
Bernice is an 8-month-old baby from Tanzania. She is a beautiful and cheerful baby, and the last born in a family of two children. Bernice’s mother shared that she is currently having a hard time raising her children because of misunderstandings with her husband. Bernice was born with bilateral clubfoot, something the father was not happy about. The father now does not treat the rest of the family well and he does not support them in any way. Bernice's mother and her children have moved into their living room where they sleep and do everything since the father locks the bedroom and does not want any of them going in there. This has left Bernice’s mother feeling very depressed and struggling to support her children. Bernice 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. Bernice’s mother works at a local school as a teacher and uses her salary to support her children. She is not able to afford Bernice’s treatment cost. Fortunately, Bernice traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on October 9th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Bernice's clubfoot repair. After treatment, Bernice will be able to walk easily. Bernice’s mother says, “I am going through a very difficult time and seeing my daughter being disabled is hurting me even more. Please help my daughter so that she can have a normal walking style when she grows up.”
Meet Britney, a 14-year-old girl from a village in Meru County. Britney likes socializing and playing handball. She aspires to become a doctor in future to help patients who are going through tough times in the hospital. Britney is the second born in a family of three children. Her father is a small businessman while her mother is a farmer. While playing with a few other girls, Britney slipped in the field and injured her left foot. She has been to different hospitals for x-rays and seeking treatment, but her condition has been worsening. It affects her mobility and is causing her to feel pain anytime she walks. Britney cannot stand for long and doing household duties is also a challenge for her now. Surgery will be of great impact as she will be able to walk without any challenge and the pain which she has been feeling whenever she walks, will be alleviated. “I want my foot to be corrected so that I can walk well like other girls,” Britney told us.