Jon joined Watsi on December 31st, 2013. Seven years ago, Jon joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Jon's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Duncan, a strong and optimistic man from Kenya, for pain-relieving spinal fusion surgery.
Jon has funded healthcare for 96 patients in 11 countries.
Jon has funded healthcare for 96 patients in 11 countries.
Duncan is a 28 year old man who is currently single and unable to work due to his condition. Duncan experienced trauma in early 2010 after a road traffic accident that caused spine injury and hearing loss. At the time of the accident, Duncan had a loss of consciousness, memory loss, and was even paraplegic at one point. He also had tinnitus in his right ear but with earlier support from Watsi donors, he got a hearing aid fitted and can now communicate well. Duncan now walks on a crutch, however, his pain worsens with movement, and radiates to his lower limbs. Because of his condition, Duncan has been in and out of hospitals. He is supposed to visit the hospital regularly. For convenience, he currently lives with his relatives nearby in Nairobi. His parents are elderly farmers in his ancestral home in Kisii in rural Kenya. Duncan is currently struggling to walk. An MRI exam identified canal stenosis and bone degeneration, so doctors have recommended surgery. He is scheduled for L4/5, L5/S1 Decompression, and Spine Fusion to avert chances of being immobile for the rest of his life. The hospital is requesting $1,500 to perform his surgery and his health insurance coverage will not cover this care. He currently relies on well-wishers to pay for his medical bills. Duncan told us, “I cannot walk well without support. I am also in pain and very uncomfortable. I hope to get better soon.”
Queen is a six-year-old girl and the first born child in a family of two children. She and her younger brother are cared for by their grandparents as their mother sadly passed away in 2018 and their father is absent. Queen has been happily helping her grandmother with little home chores like washing dishes, sweeping the compound, and sometimes cooking. Both grandparents depend entirely on small scale farming of maize, vegetables, and bananas. As her name suggests, Queen is a nice and charming student who was to join first-grade early this year but unfortunately during the December holidays last year, she was involved in a painful fire accident. One day, Queen was helping her grandmother prepare porridge on a three stone fire place. Unknowingly, her dress caught on fire and badly injured her legs. Her wound healed, but burn scar contractures developed because of the tightened the skin around her legs. As a result, this has limited her ability to stand, walk, and enjoy her daily activities with her grandmother. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Queen receive treatment to relieve her pain. On August 5th, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery to help her walk again. Now, she needs help to fund this $874 procedure. Queen’s uncle says: “She used to be the one helping her grandmother who has already aged up but with her condition right now her grandmother has to help her do everything. Please help my niece.”
Nuriya is 2-year-old toddler from Ethiopia who loves his mom and dad very much and always wants to be with them. Nuriya enjoys chatting and playing with his parents. Now he also has a three-month-old baby sister. His parents are working hard to raise them both. They shared that they went through a lot as a previous immigrant in Saudi Arabia and their family now decided to stay in their home country to raise a family and support it from their homeland. Nuriya's grandparents gave his parents a small piece of land that they are now farming. However, the fruit that they farm is only enough to maintain the daily needs of the family. Nuriya was born with hypospadias, a congenital abnormality that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility. Fortunately, Nuriya is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on July 6th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Nuriya was also born with another birth condition that Watsi donors supported for treatment and his family is tremendously grateful for support. Nuriya's mother is inspired by the care he is receiving, “I hope he will be a doctor in the future. Just as the doctor who treated him and changed his health in the past, I want him to grow and treat so many kids with sickness and disability.”
Justine is a talkative 18-year-old laborer from Kenya. He is the second-born child in a family of five children. He dropped out of school in grade eight after his parents were unable to pay his secondary school fees. Now, Justine drives a motorcycle taxi to help support his siblings. One week ago, Justine was involved in a road accident and fractured the second, third and fourth metatarsals on his right foot. He experiences pain and he cannot walk. He was told that his fracture would require surgery, and in the meantime, he is in a cast. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help. On June 3rd, Justine will undergo a fracture repair procedure called an open reduction and internal fixation. Justine will no longer be in pain, and he will be able to walk and work. Now, AMH is requesting $1,016 to fund his procedure. Justine shared, “if I could be walking now, I could be out there looking for a job and supporting my family. I have faith that I will walk again."
Degenet is an eight-month-old baby boy from Ethiopia and the third child born to his parents. He is curious and loves juice, eggs, and playing with his mom. His father is a day worker and a student, while his mom is a homemaker. Degenet 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. Degenet is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on May 4th. After his recovery, he will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Degenet's procedure and care. Degenet's mother shared, “I hope our baby gets as normal as other boys. I hope he will be educated and do good work in the future. And it is my hope he will serve God becoming a good Christian.”
Htoo is a 6-year-old boy from Thailand. He lives with his parents, brother and two sisters in a refugee camp on the border of Thailand and Burma. Htoo and his siblings were born in the refugee camp. Htoo’s mother is a homemaker, while Htoo’s older brother and sisters go to primary school and Htoo attends kindergarten. His father used to work as a day labourer, but has been unemployed since the pandemic began. Currently, they have no income and receive some financial support for their daily expenses. Luckily, Htoo's family receives free basic healthcare and education in the camp. In late October 2020, Htoo was diagnosed with an inguinal hernia. If he stands up for a short period of time, or walks, the right side of his private area will swell. Around twice a week, Htoo shares with his parents that this area is hurting him and he feels uncomfortable. Fortunately, on April 8th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at Mae Sot General Hospital, our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Htoo's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on April 8th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Htoo's father shared, “Most of the time, my son is very active and playful. He will only rest when he complains about the pain.”
Phorn is a 40-year-old construction worker with three children: two sons and one daughter. They all are now in school. Phorn is not working now but his wife is a factory worker. His parents live with his family and he supports them. For over two years, he has had pain in both hips. He feels his left side is much worse than the right. He describes his current health as generally very poor because he is in such pain. When he has pain, he has traditionally been able to buy pain medication from the pharmacy, but it has lately become unbearable. Doctors diagnosed his condition as avascular necrosis (death of bone tissue due to lack of blood circulation) of both hips. Fortunately, Phorn learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. At CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Phorn of his pain and allow him to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for February 9th, and Phorn needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. He hopes after surgery, his left hip will not have pain, he can walk without help, and go back to work as before.
Myo is a 16-year-old boy from Burma. He lives with his parents and four brothers in northern Rakhine State. Myo is a student in grade nine and his four brothers also go to school. However, they have been unable to study since the Covid-19 pandemic shut all schools. Myo’s parents are day laborers, and their family's combined income is just enough to cover their daily expenses since Myo and his brothers’ schooling is free. To survive with limited income, they forage for vegetables and fish. If they fall ill, they use traditional medicine, which is more affordable then going to a clinic or a hospital. Myo was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of the mitral valve, which is the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. Currently, Myo cannot walk long distances or climb stairs because of his tiredness. Sometimes, he cannot breathe very well. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Myo. The treatment is scheduled to take place on February 7th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Myo shared, “I am worried about my health and I feel sorry for my parents. Because of my health problems, my father had to work more days to earn more money. Also, my mother cannot work because she accompanies me and has to take care of me. I hope my school will reopen soon so that I can go back to school. One day I hope that I can become a teacher. I want to teach because there are not enough teachers in my village.”
James is a very playful and jovial boy. He loves to play with his friends and, his grandmother shared, they would play with anything because toys are hard to come by. One day James and his friends found a calabash and chose to play with it. While they were playing, one of them took the calabash and threw it to James. The calabash hit James at his right hip and he fell down. He struggled to stand up and immediately started limping and crying out of pain. He was rushed home to his grandmother where she took him to a nearby facility. James was given some pain medication and then sent home. His grandmother shared that a few days down the line his situation was not getting any better and he could not walk. James's grandmother sourced some funds and brought him to Kijabe Hospital for examination. Upon review, the doctor requested scans to develop a treatment plan, but due to lack of money to pay for the scan, his grandmother decided to go back home and look for money. While at home, it was took her a long time to raise the required amount for the scans. One day their church pastor visited to check on how they are adapting to life after the death of James’s mother. During the visit, he noticed that James was barely moving. He was concerned and asked his grandmother what was wrong. James's grandmother explained what happened and the current situation they are in. The pastor brought James back to Kijabe Hospital for the scans. When the doctor reviewed the scans, they immediately admitted James as an emergency case and a surgery was done helping to save his leg. During a regular clinic follow-up yesterday, his doctor noticed that the wound was oozing and was concerned about an infection. An x-ray was done and showed that his leg again needs emergency surgery to treat his condition. James is the youngest of four children. His father separated with his mother, and left James and his siblings to his mother. A few years later, James's mother died and his grandmother has taken full responsibility of the four children. To earn a living, his grandmother does laundry and ploughs farms for their neighbors. She does not have another source of income. James's first surgery was supported by Friends of Kijabe Hospital, but his grandmother is appealing for financial help for the surgery that is now needed for James. James’ grandmother shared, “At home after the first surgery, I was very happy to see James slowly trying to play with his friends again. Those were happy moments that I never thought James would experience again. I am requesting for financial help to put back a smile on his face."
Humphrey is a young boy from Tanzania. Humphrey is four years old and an only child to his single mother. He has been staying with his aunt because his mother works at a local food joint commonly known as "mama ntilie" (mum serve me) and can't afford to get help to stay with him. Humphrey's father tries to offer support whenever he can, but doesn't have a regular income as he is a small-scale farmer. Humphrey was diagnosed with genu valgus. His legs bow inward so that his knees touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he has difficulty walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Humphrey. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 4th. Treatment will hopefully restore Humphrey's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Humphrey’s mother shared, “Please help my son so that he can be well and be able to walk without difficulty."
Eustase is a 40-year-old man from Kenya. He is married and has three children aged 16, 10, and 5 years of age. All of his children are currently in school. Eustase was involved in a tragic road accident while on a boda-boda (motocycle taxi) drive. Rushing to pick up a client, Eustase was sandwiched between a lorry and a matatu (public service van) on a highway a few kilometres from his home town. The driver was trying to pass Eustase when the lorry hit him. He sustained serious injuries that rendered him unconscious. Well-wishers rushed him to a nearby hospital for first aid and review and later to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Kijabe Hospital. After several tests and an x-ray, he was diagnosed with a right tibia fracture. Doctors recommended a series of surgeries by both orthopaedic and plastic surgery teams. So far, Eustase has gone through three surgeries. Unless he undergoes the complete series of surgeries scheduled, he is at risk of not being able to walk or work. Eustase has already undergone right femur IM nailing and tibia ex-fix; debridement of his wounds and skin grafting; and 1st stage bone transport surgeries in an attempt to normalize his life. Currently, he is able to walk with crutches, and has been under close review by the plastic and orthopaedic teams. Next, Eustase is scheduled to undergo a second stage bone transport to enable his bones to heal normally and allow him to gain strength to walk. However, these procedures are very costly for Eustase and his family. He runs a boda-boda business to make a living and feed his family, but his daily wage is low and he does not have enough to pay for the surgeries. Their family depends on this sole source of income for survival. He has not been able to work since his motorbike was destroyed during the accident. Eustase has been relying on his national health insurance medical coverage, but has depleted his funding allocation and is therefore unable to get additional help. His friends and relatives have helped supplement his rising medical costs. Eustase requests for assistance to meet the cost of his planned surgery. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to fund Eustase's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to regain his ability to walk and significantly improve his quality of life. Eustace shared, “This procedure will help me be able to get back to normal and even walk again. My family depends on me, and with this fracture, I am not able to work or even take care of them.“
Mgosi is a 17-month-old baby girl from Tanzania. She is a beautiful, friendly, and playful girl. She is the last born to her mother, who has three children, and shared that Mgosi's father is polygamous with three wives and a total of twelve children. Mgosi was born with a right clubfoot that has made her not able to learn how to walk until now. Mgosi was born at home with the help of a midwife and her parents were informed about her condition and advised to seek treatment for her. Due to financial challenges, they have not been able to do so. Both of her parents are small-scale farmers and sell a small amount of their harvest in order to buy other basic commodities. Our medical partner's outreach team visited their village and Mgosi’s parents got to hear about ALMC Hospital and The Plaster House. They decided to seek help for her. Mgosi has been diagnosed with right clubfoot and an umbilical hernia, which both need to be corrected. For her clubfoot, she will start with manipulation and casting to help corrected her foot enabling her to be able to walk like her age mates and save her from the challenges she is going through at the moment. Thereafter, she will be able to have her umbilical hernia corrected. Mgosi's family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre where surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on October 9th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Mgosi's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to ambulate with ease. Mgosi’s mother shared, “I would love to see my daughter walk like other children of her age please help my daughter. The cost is too high for us to afford it.”