Kaitlyn joined Watsi on July 16th, 2015. Five years ago, Kaitlyn became the 1354th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,139 more people have become monthly donors! Kaitlyn's most recent donation supported Zephania, a third grade student from Tanzania, to fund a leg fracture surgery so he can walk again.
Kaitlyn has funded healthcare for 63 patients in 12 countries.
Zephania is a third grade student from Tanzania and the sixth born in a family of seven children. His family hails from Kabarawo village, which is known to be rural area with limited access to medical and social services. Zephania comes from a humble background and his family lives in a community land area in a grass-thatched house on a temporary basis. His father was a guard who lost his job due to Coronavirus and his mother has a grocery shop at a small centre in their village. Since his father lost his job, life hasn’t been easy for their family and they depend mostly on his mother's earnings, which they shared are very low. One week ago, Zephania was playing with his friends when he fell into a ditch after a push by one of his friends. He fell from a high height and sustained trauma with injuries on his left leg. He is in pain and cannot walk. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On September 15th, Zephania will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will allow him to heal well and be able to walk on his own and without pain. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,016 to fund this procedure. Jane, Zephania’s mother, shared with us: “He has been in pain and I feel sorry for him. He can’t move his leg, I hope he will receive treatment soon. I want to see him walk again.”
Zin Oo is a 36-year-old man who lives with his mother, younger sister, and his seven-year-old son in Mawlamyine, Burma. He is an assistant truck driver and he earns 4,000 kyat (approx. 4 USD) per day. Since the outbreak of CVOID-19, there is less work and he is only able to earn 64,000 kyat (approx. 64 USD) in a month. Zin Oo's son goes to primary school and his wife passed away last year. His mother goes house to house to see if anyone would hire her to wash their clothes. His younger sister lost her job at the factory after the outbreak of COVID-19 in Yangon. Since April, she looks after the household chores and she also works as a day laborer when she can find work. Zin Oo’s combined household income of 124,000 kyat (approx. 150 USD) in a month is just enough for their daily expenses and they cannot afford to pay the costs of basic healthcare. On August 3rd, Zin Oo was cutting firewood with an axe. While cutting the logs, his aim was off and he hit his fingers on his right hand against the log. His fingers became swollen and red after the accident, especially his small and index fingers. Without enough money to go to the hospital, Zin Oo bought traditional medicine and applied it to his fingers. He felt like his middle and ring fingers healed but his small and index fingers became more swollen and painful. Eventually when he noticed pus on his fingers, he told his friend about his problem and his friend suggested he go to Mawlamyine Christian Leprosy Hospital (MCLH), where treatment often cost less than other hospitals. At MLCH, the doctor completed a detailed assessment of his right hand and diagnosed him with cellulitis, a serious bacterial skin infection. The doctor told him that because of poor blood supply, he would need to amputate his small finger and probably his index finger as well. When Zin Oo told the doctor that he does not have any money to pay for the surgery, the doctor referred him to Watsi's Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for assistance accessing treatment. Currently, the fingers on Zin Oo’s right hand are red, swollen, and warm to the touch. His fingers hurt a lot, especially his small and index finger. He cannot sleep at night without taking pain medication. He is not able to eat food with his right hand and he feels uncomfortable eating with his left hand since he is right-handed. Aside from this, Zin Oo feels stressed about his condition. He cannot work and his mother has to help look after him since he was admitted at the hospital. His mother then has no income while he receives treatment. They are worried that they will not have enough money for food and for Zin Oo’s treatment. In the future, Zin Oo wants to work as a truck driver to earn money for his family. Once he has fully recovered, he will accept any work he can find as he looks for a job as a truck driver. Zin Oo’s younger sister shared with us, “Now, I have to take care of my nephew while my mother accompanies my brother [Zin Oo] at the hospital. I cannot work and our family is worried about money. We owe our neighbor 50,000 kyat [approx. 50 USD] and we have to pay it back with 20% interest.”
Dismus is a small child from Uganda. He is the second born in a family of two children and his parents are eager to see their son get treated. His father works in a local tea farm and his mother is a casual laborer who mostly washes clothes for neighbors. Dismus 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. Dismus is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on July 16th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Dismus's procedure and care. After his recovery, Dismus will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Dismus’ father shared, “I will be grateful for any financial help offered.”
Alex is a 22-month-old boy from Tanzania. He is the youngest of two children. His parents depend entirely on small-scale farming for a living. Alex’s father decided to travel to neighboring Kenya to seek small jobs in order to supplement the little harvest they are able to currently get from their farm. Alex was born with spina bifida, a type of neural tube defect in which the spine does not properly close around the spinal cord. Without treatment, Alex is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,063 to cover the cost of Alex's spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on June 15th. This procedure will hopefully protect Alex from the risks associated with his condition, allowing him to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Alex's mother says, “I will be very happy to see my son walk by himself like his sibling. Please help us as the cost is too high for us to afford."
Samwel is a 14-month baby boy from Tanzania, the third born in a family of three children. He was born healthy but after one week his parents started noticing that his head was growing significantly. They took him to several hospitals where he was given medication but his condition was worsening. They were referred to another hospital in another city where Samwel was diagnosed with hydrocephalus and a VP Shunt was placed for him when he was three months old. He was discharged home doing well until a week ago when he started getting regular fevers. His mother noticed that there was a wound on his stomach and they could see the tube that was placed when he was three months old. Samwel’s father heard about treatment for children with hydrocephalus at Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center ALMC from our outreach team and when his son got sick he reached out for treatment and support. Samwel’s father is a subsistence farmer and his mother is a housewife. They do not earn enough to be able to afford Samwel’s needed treatment. Samwel has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Samwel has been experiencing increased head circumference and frequent fevers. Without treatment, Samwel will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,362 to cover the cost of surgery for Samwel that will treat his hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 13th and will drain the excess fluid from Samwel's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Samwel will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Samwel's father says, "I have been to several places for my son's treatment, right now I cannot afford this other surgery he needs. Please help him get this needed treatment."
Justin is a jovial 7-year-old girl from Kenya. She is a class 1 pupil at Kisisi Primary School and her family hails from Igoji village in Meru County. Justin is an only child, her mother stays at home with Justin’s elderly grandmother while their aunt is a peasant farmer. Justin 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, Justin traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on April 6th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,224 to fund Justin's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily without the deformity. “My joy is to see Justin walking like other children. I am pleading for support that will make her undergo surgery and continue with her studies uninterrupted.” --Joyce, Justin’s aunt told us.
Oliva is a baby from Tanzania and is the first born child in her small family. Since Olivia’s mother is a stay-at-home mother and her father is a subsistence farmer, they are not able to afford Oliva’s needed treatment. Oliva has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of her condition, Oliva has been experiencing vomiting and irritability. Without treatment, Oliva will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,238 to cover the cost of surgery for Oliva that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on March 11th and will drain the excess fluid from Oliva's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Oliva will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Oliva’s mother says, “After my daughter had her VPS shunt placed earlier she got better but due to her shunt having failed her head is increasing and she is having fevers and vomiting a lot. Please help my daughter."
Yarm is a 74-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She has five daughters, one son, and twelve grandchildren. She enjoys listening to the monks pray on the radio in her spare time. Two years ago, Yarm developed a cataract in each eye, causing her photophobia, blurry and cloudy vision. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Yarm learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three and a half hours seeking treatment. On January 6th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $425 procedure. "I hope that I will be able to go outside on my own again and return to visiting the pagoda," Yarm shared.
Kheang has one son, and enjoys playing soccer, feeding the animals, helping cook food, and listening to the radio. Six days ago, Kheang fell four meters off the roof of his house and fractured his lower spine. He has lost sensation of his lower limbs and he is now unable to take care of himself on his own. Surgery will help to fuse his fractured spinal vertebrae into place, securing the bones and allowing them to heal together. Surgery will give him the chance to return to his normal activities again without difficulty. He shared, "I hope that I will be able to walk again and work the same as before."
Meet Nicodemus a 14 year-old boy. He is social and likes inventing new things. Nicodemus is the 4th born in a family of 5 children. He is class 8 candidate at Daystar Primary School in Athi River. The family hails from Athi River in Machakos County. His mother is a vendor and widowed. She sells porridge and chapatis in the construction sites. His mother noticed a sudden change in his walking style last year. Nicodemus also complained of his knees knocking each other a situation which was giving him a rough time to walk and play with her friends at school. He currently feels pain as he walks as the left knee knock the right. He is currently using crutches to walk and his condition is worsening. “I would love to walk like other people, I am not comfortable with walking using crutches and I would like to achieve my passion of becoming an engineer. Any kind of support will be highly appreciated.” Nicodemus informed us.
So is a 40-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his family in Myawaddy Township, Karen State. He is a carpenter while his wife is a homemaker. His mother is retired, and his son goes to school. In his free time, So loves to read the newspaper and magazines, as well as going to the pagoda. In mid-2016, So felt lightheaded one day while working. His friend rushed him to the nearest clinic where the doctor completed a physical examination. He was told that his lightheartedness was caused by the hot weather and he was told to drink more water. The following day, So felt lightheaded and developed a headache. He went to the clinic near his house, where he received an injection and oral medication. This time the doctor told him that his symptoms were due to hypertension and told him to come back to the clinic if he did not feel better. So underwent MRI on 14th of September 2019. The result of MRI shows that there is extraaxial mass with rim calcification along right frontal convexity. The doctor told So that he requires surgery to remove the mass. Presently, So still experiences frequent headaches and bouts of dizziness. He cannot sleep well, and he has trouble focusing. So sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. he is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on October 24th. He is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. So said, "I am ready for surgery. I believe that I will be healthy after that. Now, after taking medications from the hospital, I feel like I have less headache and less dizziness."
Kakada is sixteen years old and enjoys reading books, playing soccer, and listening to music. Since the age of five, Kakada started showing signs of a curve in his spine. Over time, the curve has worsened, and now the spine deformity causes difficulty breathing, sleeping, walking, and an overall uncomfortable life. Surgery will help to straighten out and realign his spine, allowing him to breath without difficulty and create a less straining posture while he walks, eliminating discomfort. Kakada's favorite subject in school is Khmer literature, and he hopes to become a doctor when he grows up. "I hope that after surgery, I will not have to worry about my son's spine getting any worse and I will be happy that he can return to his normal activities again." -Kakada's Mother