Shane joined Watsi on May 15th, 2013. Four years ago, Shane joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Shane's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Jane, a 70-year-old kiosk owner from Kenya, to fund a hip fracture repair procedure.
Shane has funded healthcare for 55 patients in 11 countries.
Jane is a 70-year-old kiosk owner from Kenya. She is a former civil servant who was released from government duty in 2000. Since then, she has since been running a small kiosk that sells vegetables and other groceries. In March 2019, Jane suffered a fracture on her left distal femur with intraarticular extension, meaning the break crossed into the surface of a joint. To remedy this, she underwent surgery with a locking plate. However, the fracture has not healed properly, which threatens her mobility. Doctors are now recommending a another fracture repair surgery to prevent future complications of her condition, including inability to walk. However, this procedure is costly for Jane. The profit she earns from her small business is not enough to cover her basic needs, let alone her medical bills. Jane has been relying on a small government pension to get by. She separated from her husband over 30 years ago and has since been raising her only son alone. Her son is an adult, but lacks a stable job and works as a casual laborer to make ends meet. Thus, Jane is appealing for financial help. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On November 11th, Jane will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. After recovering, she will no longer have difficulties in walking or be in constant pain. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Jane shared, “I need this surgery to get back on my feet. I am the one taking care of my grandkids since my son has no job. This procedure will help me be able to go get vegetables from the market so that I can sell and continue my business.”
Saratt is a 39-year-old cook from Cambodia. She and her husband have four daughters together, all of whom are in school. Her husband is taxi driver. Saratt works at a local restaurant, and in her free time she does housework, prepares food for her daughters, and grows vegetables in her garden. Since she was 10 years old, Saratt has had a persistent ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in both of her ears to perforate. As a result, Saratt experiences ear discharge, hearing loss and pain on both sides. She has taken a range of medications as treatment including antibiotics, but they have had little effect. In daily life, it is difficult for her to communicate clearly with others. Saratt traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On October 13th, she 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 amount covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Saratt shared, "I hope after surgery that my ear will feel better, and that there will be no infection or discharge. I hope that I can talk normally with my family."
Sopheak is a 45-year-old grocery seller from Cambodia. She has three children, two sons and one daughter. She likes to listen to the radio, watch television, and look after her children. When she was young, Sopheak had an ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. For this reason, Sopheak experiences ear discharge, tinnitus, and ear pain. She finds difficulty in hearing clearly, and she has trouble communicating with her family members and her customers. Sopheak traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 11th, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in her right 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.
Gladness is a two-month-old baby girl from Tanzania and the last born in a family of two children. Both parents depend on small-scale farming for a living and their income is very limited. Gladness 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, Gladness traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 11th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Gladness's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily and wear shoes. Gladness’ mother shared: “Please help us, our daughter needs this treatment but the cost is too high for us to afford.”
Lawrence is a young boy from Kenya and the second born of three children in his family. He is in nursery school and doing well. He lives with his parents and siblings in a two-room rental house in the Central region of Kenya. Lawrence’s mother is employed in a tea farm as a tea picker while his father takes on any casual task, ranging from farming to construction to supplement their family’s income. Lawrence was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles remains undescended. If left untreated, Lawrence has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. Lawrence will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). Fortunately, he is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on March 19th. AMHF is requesting $535 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. “I want to be a pastor when I grow up,” says Lawrence.
Shedrack is an infant from Tanzania. He is the fourth born child to his mother and one of sixteen children to his father. Shedrack’s mother keeps cows and goats and his father works as a guard. Since birth, Shedrack has had a bilateral inguinal hernia. The hernia may result in intestinal obstruction resulting in tissue damage or death. Fortunately, on July 16th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $566 to fund Shedrack's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Shedrack’s mother shared, “Please help my son get this treatment so that he is no longer in pain and he is able to eat and feed well.”
Joyce is the oldest of three siblings and likes helping her mother do household chores at home. She also has a green thumb and enjoys helping her father on his farm. She is in seventh grade and her favorite subject is English. Joyce dreams of being a future doctor. In June of 2019, Joyce's family noticed an unusual curving of her spine. Currently, Joyce has trouble balancing while she walks and has experienced lower self-esteem. Surgery will correct the curve in her spine, improve her confidence, and enable her to continue her education and achieve her aspiration of becoming a doctor. Joyce's family has raised funds for half of the cost of her surgery with the help of friends and well-wishers. They are asking for Watsi's support to cover the remaining cost of their daughter's surgery. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to cover the remaining cost of her surgery and care. “My joy would be to get treated so that I can continue with my studies without needing to hide my back,” Joyce shared. Her parents also expressed, “We are pleading for support so that our daughter can undergo surgery and continue with her normal life like other children.”
Mom is a 34-year-old importer from Cambodia. She imports products from Thailand to sell in Battambang. Mom's favorite hobby is to take photos of the city to upload and share on Facebook. She has one son and one daughter. Three months ago, the retina of Mom's left eye detached, causing her blurry vision, a reduced field of vision, and perceived flashes of light. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going outside on her own. When Mom learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for six-and-a-half hours seeking treatment. On May 12th, eye surgeons will perform a retinal detachment repair procedure in her left eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $648 procedure. Mom said, "With my eye problem, I cannot do anything I like to do, not even cooking food for my children. I want to keep my business going, and support my family."
Meskafera is a baby boy from Ethiopia. He already loves to play and laugh with his mom and is exclusively fed breast milk. Meskafera has three older brothers and two older sisters. His mom is a house wife. His dad is a farmer who plants sweet potatoes in their garden to feed his children, with limited income. Meskafera 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. Meskafera is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on March 19th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Meskafera's procedure and care. After his recovery, Meskafera will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Meskafera's mom said, “It is my hope that my baby will get treated and be like other people. I will raise him well and educate him. ”
Bethwel is 9-year-old shy boy in Grade 3. Bethwel was well until last week when he fell on a hard ground while playing with his friends in school and sustained an injury on his right upper limb. Bethwel was brought to Watsi's Medical Partner's hospital with complaints of pain on his right hand. On arrival, an X-ray was done which showed that Bethwel had broken his right radius ulna. He has a swollen hand and he cannot lift nor use his hand. Bethwel is the second born child of his family. His mother is a single parent and dropped out of school at grade seven. She does maize farming and life is difficult for her family due to low yields that have led to insufficient food in the family and low income. Bethwel’s mother gets help and support from her brothers but she wants to be able to be a strong woman for her kids and provide well for them. Bethwel’s mother says, “I want my son to be treated so that he is not in pain anymore and can join his friends at school.”
Adere is a nice thirteen year old boy who loves to go to school and study. He is in grade six and loves music. He spends his free time listening to country music and also loves to dance with his friends. His parents are farmers of teff and maize. But their harvest from their farm is very limited because of the hot and dry landscape. The population in the area is mostly supported by the government and NGOs for food and other basic needs. His parents have 12 children. Three of them are dependently living and the rest of the children are supported by their parents. Adere was born with congenital anomaly called Bladder Exstrophy. The child’s bladder is open to the air and not within the body. He leaks urine directly to his abdomen. As a result, he has bladder exposed to dirt which can cause infections and injury. Adere suffers from pain from irritation of the bladder, infection, and a bad smell from the continuous urinary leakage for the past years. In his classroom, he sits far from other students in the back alone. He mostly prefers to be alone, psychologically affected by the bad smell. His parents are always very worried and concerned because of his condition. They took him to a clinic in their area when he was a child, and the clinic told them this has to be treated in referral hospital. Their village is very rural that they couldn’t get to a hospital and the parents couldn’t bring him to the capital. Adere's brother said, “I believe he will have a normal life, free from any smell and psychological concerns.”
Eight years ago, Elizabeth noticed that her left ear could barely grasp a sound. Over the years, the hearing loss has spread to the right ear. She received eardrops from a local clinic but that did not help the situation. Instead, the condition got worse. Elizabeth’s daughter advised that they visit Kijabe hospital where a test was done and hearing aids recommended. Elizabeth has a difficult time communicating with her husband with whom she stays with. She can also barely use a phone, attend church or gatherings. Together, Elizabeth and her husband have twelve children all grown and living off on their own. They depend on two of their children who have done well for themselves. One of them is employed casually as a clerk and the other one a private school teacher in the village. They are not able to raise the funds needed and thus appealing for help. “I will appreciate any help accorded towards my treatment,” says Elizabeth.