Gerard joined Watsi on January 17th, 2014. Seven years ago, Gerard joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Gerard's most recent donation traveled 8,300 miles to support Ni, a farmer from Burma, to fund gallstone treatment.
Gerard has funded healthcare for 33 patients in 8 countries.
Gerard has funded healthcare for 33 patients in 8 countries.
Ni is a 38-year-old mother of two sons and wife. Her children are currently in school, while she works with her husband grow corn on their land at home. Ni also cares for her mother-in-law, who is paralyzed from the waist down. In August of this year, Ni began experiencing stomach pain. She visited a clinic in her village and was prescribed medication to alleviate her symptoms. Ni's condition did not improve, so she visited a private clinic. Her treatment was once again unsuccessful. Ni's neighbor suggested she seek treatment at another clinic, and there, she was diagnosed with gallstones. She was referred to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH), a Watsi care center where doctors recommended she have surgery. She will need $1,500 to fund her procedure, a biliary obstruction repair scheduled for September 12. Ni is looks forward to being healthy again so she can provide a bright future for her sons.
Yar is a 40-year-old woman from Burma. She is unemployed and lives with her 70-year-old father. After experiencing severe stomach pains, Yar recently underwent abdominal surgery at a local hospital. A few days into recovery, she noticed that her incision did not appear to be healing properly. She returned to the hospital, where they discovered that her intestine was protruding through the wound. On July 19, surgeons will operate on Yar's abdomen to address the improperly healing wound. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, requests $1,500 to cover her treatment. In the future, Yar looks forward to recovering and regaining independence. "I hope to raise pigs and chickens for a source of income once I am recovered," she says.
Maria is a farmer from Malawi. She recently traveled to our medical partner’s care center, Kabudula Community Hospital. Kabudula is a rural community outside of the capital city of Lilongwe. The health catchment area serves roughly 350,000 people, but the health centers and the hospital are often poorly stocked and staffed. One of Maria’s teeth has been causing her bothersome symptoms. Diet is an issue for dental health in Malawi, where sugarcane is prevalent. Also, there is little to no oral health education in Malawi and limited access to a dental professional. In fact, there are fewer than 20 dentists across the country. Fortunately, a visiting dentist will perform a dental extraction. A dental extraction is a simple procedure with few risks, and it will result in a significant reduction in her symptoms. Maria is scheduled to undergo treatment on July 17. Our medical partner, World Altering Medicine, is requesting just $28 to fund the procedure.
María is a 52-year-old weaver from Guatemala who suffers from asthma. She has eight children and makes a living by weaving and selling the traditional Mayan textiles of her village. Ten years ago, María began to notice the onset of asthmatic symptoms. She experienced increased difficulty while breathing, had daily coughing fits, and tired easily from walking. Due to the treatment's expenses, María has never been able to see a doctor for her asthma. On June 9, María will receive treatment for acute asthma. Our medical partner, Wuqu’ Kawoq, is requesting $422 to fund this treatment, which includes consultation and medications. This treatment will relieve María of her fatigue and coughing fits, thereby helping her work comfortably and take care of her family. María says, “I wish to be well and live for many more years so that I can see my grandchildren grow up and graduate from school.”
David is a nine-year-old boy from Cambodia. He is currently studying in the third grade and has a sister and a brother. David loves reading his school books and also loves to play football. In his spare time, he likes to watch action movies on TV. David was administered injections in his left leg when he was two years old. The injections were not administered properly, causing a contracture of the rectus femoris muscle, a muscle in the quadriceps of his left leg. As a result, he has pain in his left leg and finds it difficult to walk. David's parents learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), from David's cousin. David and his mother travelled four hours to visit CSC for treatment. On May 10, David will undergo a quadriceplasty, a surgical procedure to release the rectus femoris muscle. This will help David walk comfortably again. Our medical partner, CSC, is requesting $425 to fund this procedure. The requested $425 pays for surgical materials, medication, ten nights of hospital stay, followup, and physiotherapy.
EnDea is an eight-year-old student in the second grade from Cambodia. He has three sisters and two brothers, and he enjoys reading his school books and playing with other children around his home. EnDea was born with a left clubfoot. It is difficult for him to walk, and he is in pain. On February 27, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), will perform a tendoachilles lengthening procedure and a tendon transfer to repair EnDea's clubfoot. CSC is requesting $304 to fund the procedure. After recovery, EnDea will be able to to walk easily.
Sopheaktra is a six-year-old girl from Cambodia who is currently a student in the first grade. She has two sisters and two brothers. In her free time, Sopheaktra likes to play around her home and spend time with her grandmother. On June 16, 2016, Sopheaktra sustained a gasoline burn, which resulted in severe burns to her face, both arms, and both legs. She initially went to a hospital in Phnom Penh for three months of treatment, but her wounds did not fully heal. Sopheaktra first came to our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), on September 19, 2016. Surgeons successfully performed a skin graft procedure on her legs and arms. She has returned to CSC to continue her burn treatments. On March 17, surgeons will perform a face lift and a burn contracture release procedure on both knees. These procedures will help Sopheaktra feel more comfortable and walk more easily. CSC is requesting $378 for Sopheaktra's treatment.
Hoeun is a 66-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. He is married with two sons, a daughter, and seven grandchildren. When he is not working, he likes to watch TV. In the last year, Hoeun has developed a cataract in each eye. His vision became blurred, and the cataracts caused tearing and irritation of his eyes. His symptoms continue to worsen, making it hard to work and relax. Hoeun has traveled with his daughter-in-law to our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), for treatment. Doctors at CSC have recommended a small incision cataract surgery and intraocular lens implant in each eye. These procedures will remove the natural lenses in Hoeun's eyes and replace them with clear, artificial lenses. CSC is requesting $292 for his procedure on February 21. After recovery, his vision will improve.
Sumaya is a student and an expectant mother from Uganda. In 2014, she delivered her first child through an emergency C-section. At the age of 24, Sumaya is pregnant with her second child. Due to her previous C-section, her doctors expect complications with this birth. Thus, her pregnancy is considered high-risk. She will check into the hospital on December 20, where doctors will provide care and monitor her situation as she gives birth. Our medical partner, the Kellermann Foundation, is asking for $241 to help fund this treatment. Sumaya aspires to be both a loving mother and to continue her studies to provide a better future for her child. “I wish to thank the people that are supporting me to have a safe birth," she says.
Lukas is a three-year-old boy from Kenya. He is the only child of his father, who sells clothes along the streets of Nairobi. Lukas's parents are separated, so he lives with his grandmother. He loves to spend time with his father. Lukas was born with a birth defect called hypospadias, which causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he was at risk of urinary tract infections and continuing discomfort. Lukas's father brought him to a national hospital, but the waitlist for surgery was prohibitively long. Fortunately, a friend of his father advised him to visit our medical partner's facility, Bethany Kids Kijabe Hospital. On December 16, Lukas underwent a hypospadias repair surgery. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $700 to fund this procedure.
Tina is a 28-year-old farmer who is married and has one son. He likes to watch boxing on TV and feed his chickens at home. In May, Tina was in a motor vehicle accident that caused a brachial plexus injury (BPI) on his right side. A BPI occurs when nerves in the back are damaged or ripped from the spinal cord. Tina went to a hospital in Phnom Penh for treatment, but his symptoms did not improve. He became unable to extend his right elbow and wrist, and he was in pain. Tina was referred to our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), by the hospital in Phnom Penh. He traveled for five hours with his older brother to reach CSC for treatment. On December 13, surgeons performed a BPI repair surgery on Tina's right side to allow him to use his arm easily again. Now, CSC is requesting $450 to fund this procedure. "I hope that my right arm can function well again," says Tina.
Silvia is a 22-month-old girl from Guatemala. Her family is worried because she frequently falls ill. She has been diagnosed with acute malnutrition. She has little energy to grow, and her immune system is weak and vulnerable to illness. She is also at risk of chronic disease and delayed development. Fortunately, Silvia began malnutrition treatment on November 28, 2016. Silvia is a happy child who loves to play with her toy doll. She lives with her parents and siblings in rural Guatemala. Her father works as a day laborer in the fields, and her mother washes clothes for other families. While Silvia’s parents want the best for their daughter, their limited resources are already stretched thin. The whole family often eats only tortillas for several days. They cannot afford this $512 treatment. While malnutrition can have devastating effects, it is also very treatable. Growth monitoring, micronutrients, and food supplementation will help Silvia recover. She will gain weight and grow taller to catch up with other children her age, and her immune system will grow stronger. Community health workers will teach her mother about creating a nutrient-rich diet from limited resources. Treatment will give Silvia a chance to grow healthy and strong. "I looked for your help," says Silvia's mother, "because I want my daughter to grow up healthy and be able to study and graduate as a nurse."