ariel joined Watsi on August 21st, 2014. Seven years ago, ariel joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. ariel's most recent donation traveled 8,600 miles to support Di, a mother from Thailand, to fund a hernia repair surgery.
ariel has funded healthcare for 68 patients in 14 countries.
ariel has funded healthcare for 68 patients in 14 countries.
Di is a 40-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her parents, her husband, her brother, and her two children in Mae La Refugee Camp in Tak Province. Di and her family work hard to make ends meet. Her family runs a small shop selling kitchen utensils. Di's husband is a religious teacher, and he does not earn regular income. Her brother is unemployed, and her parents are retired. Di helps with the family shop while her daughter goes to the community school that is led by volunteers. Her youngest son is too young to go to school. She shared that their family income is enough for family expenses, but they are not able to save any money. Around two years ago, Di was diagnosed with an umbilical hernia. Currently, she experiences pain under her chest and her abdominal around umbilical is swollen and pain. Di is not able to do any household chores because of her condition. The pain worsens after she has meals or constipation, and her stomach will feel as hard as a stone. Fortunately, on January 19th, Di 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 Di's hernia repair surgery. Once completed, the procedure will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably and be well enough to care for her family. Di shared, “Once I am better, I will try my best to take care of my family and my children's education. I want them to study in Thai school. They need to be educated, so I need to be healthy."
U Win is a 54-year-old man who lives with his wife and youngest son in the Ayeyarwaddy Division in Burma. He has three sons and three daughters, with five of his children already married and working. His 17-year-old son left school because they were unable to pay school fees, and worked as a day laborer until COVID-19 happened. U Win used to work as a day laborer as well, but stopped working around two years ago due to his health condition. His family survives on 60,000 kyat (approx. 60 USD) each month that U Win's three other daughters and another son send them, enough to cover their basic expenses. In January 2012, U Win felt tired, had a headache, suffered from heart palpitations, and a rapid heartbeat. He went to a clinic where the doctor listened to his heart with a stethoscope and checked his blood pressure. U Win was told that he has high blood pressure and that he would need to take oral medication for a long time. He received an injection, oral medication, and another appointment for more medication. After he took the medication, he felt better and he went back to work. However, U Win continued to experience worsening symptoms over the next few years, returning to clinics and receiving the same treatment. He was told at one point to visit a cardiologist, but did not do so until later on. In August 2020, during another clinic visit in Yangon, the doctor diagnosed U Win with an atrial septal defect, and said that he would need to receive surgery to repair this hole in his heart. If not treated, the condition could weaken his heart further and cause lung problems later on. He was unable to receive surgery in November due to an upsurge in COVID-19 cases, and was also told the procedure would cost about 3,000,000 kyat (approx. 3,000 USD). Luckily, U Win’s wife remembered that there is a charity group in Yangon that might be able to help. The group told him about our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, to look for assistance with accessing the treatment he needed. U Win currently experiences chest pain and back pain, has no appetite, and cannot sleep well at night. He appeals for financial support for his cost of care. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On December 20th, U Win will undergo an atrial septal defect closure procedure. Once recovered, his quality of life will significantly improve and he will be able to return to work. Now, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. U Win shared, “I want to get better soon so that I can work for my family again. I am worried about my family’s future because we cannot find work in the village. My son also cannot go to Yangon to find another job because of COVID-19 travel restrictions.”
Leang Sim is a seven-year-old 1st grade student. She has one older brother who is 11 years old and in the 6th grade. Their father sells vegetables at the market and their mother is a vegetable farmer. When Leang Sim is not at school she likes to play with toys with her brother, read books, watch TV, and go outside with her parents. When Leang Sim was one, her mother first noticed she had a curved spine. Doctors have now diagnosed Leang Sim with thoracolumbar scoliosis. She arrived at Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) with a curved spine reporting difficulty walking, sleeping, and trouble breathing after strenuous activity. Surgeons at CSC will place an extending rod inside Leang Sim's back to help improve her condition now and as she grows, the rod will be extended to alleviate her scoliosis. Leang Sim's mother is hopeful for the surgery and said, "I hope my daughter can walk well after surgery."
Johnelson is a young boy from Kenya. His mother brought him and his sister to Nandi County, Kenya, to live with his grandmother while she looked for work. In August 2020, while at home playing with other children in the kitchen area, Johnelson accidentally fell in the three stone firewood cooking stove where his grandmother had just removed boiling water and left the fire to cool. Having fallen with the back of his head first in the fire, Johnelson was unable to pull himself out. Hearing Johnelson's playmates' cries, his grandmother rushed back from helping a local medical practitioner who was attending Johnelson’s sick grandfather. Johnelson suffered severe scalp burns. Though she was advised to take him to the hospital, his grandmother was not able to raise the funds required to take him to the hospital for care. One month later, after talking to friends and some relatives, she took him to a nearby facility. She had not yet informed Johnelson's mother, fearing she would be angry. Upon arrival, Johnelson was admitted for a few days for washing and dressing to reduce the risk of infection as the wounds were in a bad state. A few weeks later, during the burial of his grandfather, Johnelson’s mother and other relatives learnt about his worsened condition. His mother brought him to Watsi's Medical Partner's Care Center Kijabe Hospital, where the doctor examined him and recommended a debridement and skin grafting surgery to be performed on the back of his head. Without treatment, he will remain in constant pain and his wounds may become infected. Johnelson's surgery is a large financial burden for his family and they are unable to personally raise the amount needed to fund the procedure. His mother mostly does laundry for people. When she can’t find work, she does any other work she comes across to support her mother and her two children. Johnelson’s grandmother is a farmer and relies on the produce she gets from the farm and from Johnelson’s mother. They are appealing for financial help. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Johnelson receive treatment. On October 19th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure on his scalp. This will help limit the risk of wound infection. Now, Johnelson needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Johnelson’s mother says, “Having to take care of my son in this condition, it really pains me to know that I cannot do anything for him to get the required treatment. Any financial help will be very much appreciated.”
Phebe is a young woman from Haiti who underwent cardiac surgery in 2010 to close a hole between the two lower chambers of her heart. Although the surgery was successful in closing the hole, it left her with a condition in which her heart muscle was no longer able to properly transmit electrical pulses so that it could beat normally. To protect her heart, a pacemaker was implanted. Last month, the pacemaker was partially replaced with a new one because its battery had been depleted; following the procedure, however, she developed an infection that has rendered the pacemaker non-sterile, and as a result, the pacemaker and associated wires have to be taken out and replaced. Phebe will travel to the north of the country to Hospital Sacre-Coeur where they can safely carry out the pacemaker implantation. Phebe lives in Port-au-Prince with her older brother, his wife, and their family; she is a university student studying accounting. Phebe shared with us, "I would like to thank everyone for continuing to support me so that I can get completely healthy!"
Zakayo is a one-year-old baby from Tanzania. He is the last born child in a family of three children. He is playful, smiley, and a very friendly boy. His parents are small-scale farmers of maize, bean, and vegetable. They depend entirely on what they harvest for their survival and supporting their children. Zakayo has clubfoot of his right foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Zakayo traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre, and receive care. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 18th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $890 to fund Zakayo's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily and wear shoes. Zakayo’s mother says, “Please help correct my son’s foot so that he is able to walk like his siblings and lead a normal life. The cost is too high for us to afford it.”
Winfred is a young teenage girl from Kenya. She is the first born in a family of three children and lives with her mother and aunt. Her mother sells groceries and her aunt is a cleaner in a local dispensary. Winfred was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. She needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction which has made her life very difficult. Winfred is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on July 20th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,393 to cover the total cost of Winfred's procedure and care. After her recovery, Winfred will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Winfred’s aunt shared, “I will be grateful to see that Winfred gets treated.”
Esther is a small-scale farmer who has two children and also takes care of her sister's four children because her sister unfortunately passed away. She is now the sole provider of six children and pays for their school fees all by herself. They live together in a 2 bedroom house. Esther started to experience abdominal pain 3 years ago. Due to the severity of the pain, she recently visited our medical partner's care facility. She will undergo surgery for her acute appendicitis. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $646 to cover the cost of Esther's curative laparatomy. This surgery will hopefully relieve her pain and enable her to live life more comfortably and confidently. "I would really appreciate treatment because I am the sole breadwinner for my family," shared Esther.
12-year-old Joy Nyagathu is in the hospital. Joy came accompanied by her father. She is a polite girl and likes playing with other friends at school. She shared that reading storybooks is her favorite hobby. Joy is the oldest in a family of 3 children and a seventh grader at Ol Donyo Sabuk Academy. Her family hails from Mountain View, near Thika Town in Kiambu County, Kenya. Joy was born with clubfoot which was corrected when she was an infant. She has lived well until last year when the parents noticed an unusual curve on her back developing. Her father heard about Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center CURE Hospital and came for a consultation. Joy was diagnosed with congenital scoliosis and was scheduled to undergo an instrumented spine fusion surgery. Currently, Joy experiences a lot of pain and discomfort while at school. She sometimes needs to skip her studies as a result of pain. Surgery will be of great help to her as she will be able to continue with her studies and her life without any difficulty. Joy's father is a businessman as a greengrocer, while her mother is a housewife. The surgery is expensive for their family and they cannot raise the amount needed. “I would like to be assisted because I am not able to raise the funds on my own. My desire is to see my daughter walking and pursuing her studies like other girls without any hardship. God bless Watsi for what they are doing,” Joy’s father expressed with gratitude.
Lemayan is an active little boy from Tanzania. He is the fourth born to his mother, who is the eldest wife to her husband and has five children. Lemayan's father has two wives and a total of six children. Both wives live together in the same homestead, but each one has their own mud house. They live in harmony, mainly keeping livestock - cows, goats and sheep. Three of the children are currently going to school. Lemayan was diagnosed with genu varus, meaning his legs are curved outward. 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 a difficult time walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $838 to fund corrective surgery for Lemayan. The procedure is scheduled to take place on March 10th. Treatment will hopefully restore Lemayan's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Lemayan’s father says, “I wish my son to get treatment and later on join school."
Michael is a baby from Tanzania, and the last born child in a family of five. He is a jovial boy and happy most of the time. Michael’s father has been away to a different city working as night guard while the mother is a stay home wife looking after their five children. His father is able to send some little money every month to help support the family. Michael has clubfoot of his left foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Michael traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on February 11th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $890 to fund Michael's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk without difficulty. Michael’s mother says, “Please help correct my child's foot so that he can learn how to walk like other children.”
Wim is a 48-year-old monk from Burma. He lives in a monastery in Taungoo, Bago Division. He became a monk three years ago, after he got divorced. Wim was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of the mitral valve, 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, Wim feels tired and cannot walk long distance. Sometimes, he has back pain and he feels like he cannot breathe well. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Wim. The treatment is scheduled to take place on October 06 and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Wim said, “I would to remain a monk and study Buddhism. I would really like to thank the donors, BCMF and the doctors for helping me receive surgery [in the future]. I am very happy right now.”