Jennifer joined Watsi on March 12th, 2013. Seven years ago, Jennifer joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Jennifer's most recent donation traveled 8,300 miles to support Naw En, an expecting mom and village healthcare worker from Burma, to fund a safe c-section delivery for her baby.
Jennifer has funded healthcare for 84 patients in 12 countries.
Jennifer has funded healthcare for 84 patients in 12 countries.
Naw En is a 31-year-old woman who lives with her husband, two sons and parents in a village in Karen State near the border of Burma and Thailand. Her husband and parents are subsistence farmers. Naw En is a village health worker, and her two sons are primary school students in the village. Although she earns around 100,000 kyat (approx. 100 USD) per month to support her family, she does whatever she can to only charge the villagers she treats for medications provided. Those who cannot afford to pay for the cost of medications are provided medication free of charge. Her family also raises chickens and pigs for their family to eat. The income Naw En earns is just enough to cover their daily expenses, but they have to borrow money to pay for anything else, like basic health care. Naw En learned she was pregnant last August 2021. She went to register her pregnancy at nearby Hlaingbwe Hospital, but the doctor told her to go to Hpa-An General Hospital when she told them that she had high blood pressure and previously needed a c-section delivery. When she went to Hpa-An General Hospital, a nurse told her to go to Taw Win Thu Ka Hospital because they were understaffed due to the coup and humanitarian crisis in their area. Finally, she then registered her pregnancy at Taw Win Thu Ka Hospital last November and received an ultrasound, blood test and urine test. The doctor gave her monthly follow-up appointments to check her high blood pressure and to check that her baby is in the right position. In January, Naw En learned that she will have a girl. “I was very happy to hear this as I already have two sons,” she said. Her doctor has now told her that she will need another c-section to ensure a safe delivery and unable to come up with the money needed, Naw En called her friend who works in Mae Sot to ask for help. Her friend told her about our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) and that she may be able to find assistance in accessing her treatment. Currently, Naw En is taking medication for high blood pressure and feels tired when she walks. She can feel her baby kicking. When her blood pressure is high, she feels dizzy. She feels stressed each time she has to travel to the hospital, as it is located four hours from her home and cost 60,000 kyat (approx. 60 USD) just for the round-trip transportation. She is also worried about the cost of her c-section and that they would have to borrow money if they cannot find donors. In the future, she will continue to work as a village health worker. In her free times, she loves to spend time with her two sons and play with them. Naw En said, “I was happy when BCMF staff told me that donors will help pay for my c-section. Thank you so much to the donors for reliving me of my worries.” She also added, “I am very happy and excited to have a baby girl!”
Abdunasir is beautiful toddler from Ethiopia. He loves to play with his mom and dad. They shared that he is already smart and fast, and loves to run and play. Abdulnasir is the first child to his parents. Abdunasir's mom is a homemaker but sometimes she helps washing people’s clothes for income. His dad is a traditional farmer. Their home area has been drought-affected for many years and shared that they can’t sustain the family from their harvest. Their basic needs are supported by well-wishers and support from the government. Abdunasir 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 future complications. His mom is worried and concerned because of his condition. She said “I showed friends and family the case seeking explanation and help. Then I took him to many hospitals. Finally, I found out about BKMCM and brought him here.” Fortunately, Abdunasir is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on May 10th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. His mom told us, “After the treatment I hope my boy will heal. I will feed other poor people if my child heals. And I will bless all those who support us.”
Mab is a 34-year-old electrician. He has two children, with his oldest son is seven years old and his newborn daughter at two months old. In Mab's free time, he enjoys playing volleyball with his friends. Last December, Mab was in a motorcycle accident that caused a brachial plexus injury on his left side. The brachial plexus is the nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Injuries to this nerve network can result in a loss of function and sensation. After the accident, Mab's family took him to a local hospital for treatment; however, his left arm is still immobile, and he has shoulder pain. The doctors referred him to our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), for review, where they determined his shoulder is partially dislocated, and he has no elbow or wrist flexion. CSC is the only treatment center in the country that can help Mab receive the treatment he needs. On April 5th, he will undergo brachial plexus repair surgery that will allow him to use his hand again. CSC is requesting $696 for the cost of this surgery. Mab was able to gather $100 to contribute to his care, as well. Mab says, "I hope my arm will regain strength, and I can return to work."
Agai is a nine-month-old baby boy and the youngest child of his mother's five children. Agai's father lives in a remote village where most people are Maasai and keep livestock for a living. His parents sell milk and cattle to support the family. Agai has clubfoot of his left foot, a condition in which his foot is twisted out of shape. His condition may cause him difficulty walking and even wearing shoes in the future. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Agai receive treatment. On March 1st, he will undergo clubfoot repair surgery at AMH's care center. A successful treatment will ensure that he is able to walk easily when he gets older. Now, he and his family need help raising $935 to fund Agai's procedure and care. Agai’s mother shared, "when my stepdaughter told me there is a place where my son can have his foot corrected it was hard to believe. But after seeing other children with a similar condition, I realized it is not just my son."
Melany is a joyful six-year-old girl from Colombia. She lives with her great-grandmother as he mother left when she was two years old. Melany loves to play with her "nana", and laughs a lot. Melany was born with Cerebral Palsy, and her great grandmother has been incredibly supportive in her treatment through the years, ensuring that she has the best possible prognosis. Due to her condition, Melany experiences recurrent hip dislocation and requires corrective surgery to help her walk. Fortunately, our medical partner, Clínica Noel, is helping Melany receive treatment. On February 14th, she will undergo corrective surgery, and, now, she and her family need help raising $1,362 to fund her procedure and care. Melany's great-grandmother shared, "my biggest motivation is seeing her walk by herself, or at least depend a little less on me. I'm afraid to die and leave her alone in a world where she only has me and her uncle."
Votey is a 30-year-old woman who has worked in a factory in her local province of Cambodia until recently. Votey shared that she has experienced difficult tragedy in her family over the past year. She was married with a son and daughter, but her husband and daughter passed away in a road accident in 2020. Then in October 2021, Votey was in a motorbike accident and fractured her left humerus (upper arm). As a result, she has pain and nerve damage in her left hand and wrist and now cannot work or dress on her own. Votey shared that she is trying to care for her 10-year-old son but it has been hard to keep him well fed and in school. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), can help Votey receive the treatment she needs. On January 5th, she will undergo a fracture repair procedure that will heal her fracture so she can use her arm again. CSC is requesting $465 to fund her procedure. Votey said, "After surgery, I hope I can use my arm again. It is very hard to care for my son, and I feel very sad about my life."
Poe is a 45-year-old man who lives with his wife in a hut in a village in Myawaddy Township in Burma. Poe and his wife are agricultural day labourers, but he had to stop working two to three months ago, when his condition worsened. The income she earns is usually just enough to cover their daily expenses, but if she cannot find work, they have to borrow money to make ends meet. Around seven years ago, Poe got bamboo splinters in his left foot while working on a farm. He was able to pick out the splinters and applied traditional medicine to his foot, which healed. A little while later, he developed pain where he had the splinters before and went to a nearby clinic. A nurse checked his foot but told him that she could not find anything wrong with his foot. The nurse gave him pain medication and Poe went back home. After he took the medication, he felt better. Six or seven months later, his pain returned, and he also developed an infection. When he went back to the clinic, the nurse checked his foot and told him to go to a hospital since he signs of a severe infection. The nurse also gave him medication. He then went to Myawaddy General Hospital, where he had the ulcer cleaned with an antiseptic solution and was given medication. When he went home, he felt better. Two years ago, the pain and ulcer returned but in a larger area then previously. He went back to Myawaddy General Hospital, where he received an x-ray. He was told that his foot was infected due to his previous injury. His foot was cleaned again with an antiseptic solution, and he was given antibiotics. After he took the medication, he felt better again. Just a few months ago, Poe’s foot started to hurt again. However, he was not worried about his foot because the last time his foot had hurt, he had had the ulcers drained. When the pain and swelling increased in his foot, he was no longer able to work. Although he wanted to go to the hospital, he did not have enough money to go this time since he was not working. His brother then told him to go to Mawlamyine Christian Leprosy Hospital (MCLH) in nearby Mon State since it is more affordable. When Poe arrived at MCLH at the end of November, he was admitted after the doctor examined his foot. He received another x-ray and was told that the ulcers and an infection had spread to multiple areas. He was also told that because of how advanced his condition is, his foot could never heal fully, and the only option at this point was to amputate his foot. “I’ve been to many hospitals and clinics already,” said Poe. “The doctor told me that if I amputate my foot my condition will no longer return. So I am happy to go ahead with the procedure.” Currently, Poe’s left ankle and feet is swollen and painful. The pain is worse at night and when the temperature drops. He has multiple ulcers in his foot with discharge and he feels extremely uncomfortable. Some areas of his foot are itchy and painful while he has lost sensation in the top of his foot and areas around his ankle. Cannot put any weight on his left foot due to the pain and has to be pushed in a wheelchair since he arrived at MCLH. He's hopeful about feeling better soon and getting back to working. Poe shared, “In the future I want to buy one or two cows to breed and rear them to earn an income. I also want to grow and sell vegetables."
Lightness is a hard-working student and the ninth born child in a family of ten children. Lightness loves to help her mother with home chores and looking after her nieces and nephews. Lightness is currently in technical college where she is studying to be an electrician. Lightness's parents are small-scale farmers and livestock keepers, and her mother also sells vegetables and mandazi, a type of fried bread. Three years ago, Lightness was at the fireplace helping her mother cook mandazi when she lost conscious and fell into the pot of hot oil. Her mother rescued her and rushed her to the hospital. The accident has left Lightness with contractures as a result of the burns around her neck. Contractures are a condition in which the muscles are shortened and hardened, and in Lightness's case they limit her neck movement. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMH), is helping Lightness receive treatment. On August 5th, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery to help her move her neck freely. However, Lightness's family needs help to fund this $639 procedure. Lightness says, "I feel bad seeing myself in this condition, I try to cover my neck because I don’t like how people feel sorry for me. I will be happy and grateful if I can have my neck corrected."
Nancy is a middle-aged mother from Kawaida village in Kenya. She separated from her husband and has been raising their two children on her own. Her daughter is married and her son lives with Nancy but has not started working yet. Nancy works jobs when she can find them, such as helping in the neighboring tea farms or washing clothes, to support her family. Nancy loves singing at her church, but now her condition forces her to remain indoors and in bed. Five years ago, Nancy began experiencing worrying symptoms. She has been diagnosed with uterine fibroids and needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $755 to fund Nancy's surgery. On July 2nd, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Nancy will be able to resume her daily activities free from pain. Nancy is eager to recover so she can continue her working and pursuing her musical passion: “If this bleeding continues I feel like it will be more challenging for me to continue working for my family. My children look unto me and so I really hope for help so that I can be well again, take care of them and be able to sing as I used to do."
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."
Juma is a 15-year-old boy and the youngest of nine children born to his mother. He is an intelligent boy who completed primary school with good marks, but unfortunately, his father couldn't afford to send him to secondary school. Juma stays home and helps his mother work on the farm where they grow maize, vegetables, and cassava. Juma's dream is to become a teacher. Since childhood, Juma has had a right inguinal hernia that causes him pain. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Juma receive treatment. On May 4th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at AMH's care center. Now, AMH is requesting $566 to fund Juma's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Juma shared, "please help me with this condition because as I grow older the pain keeps becoming worse which is a sign it's getting worse."
Charity is a 28-year-old woman from Kenya. She is the eldest in her family and is now married and has a newborn baby who is two months old. Her husband works as a clerk at a local dairy factory, where he earns enough to feed their family. Charity was working at the same factory, but was laid off from her job due to the COVID-19 pandemic. She is not currently working and spends her time at home taking care of her child. Since August 2020, when Charity was pregnant, she started experiencing pain in her upper abdomen that radiated to the back. Charity had visited several different health centers but showed no improvement, and later decided to come to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Nazareth Hospital. She underwent a scan, which showed that she has a large gallstone. The doctor recommended that she undergo a cholecystectomy. Without treatment, Charity's condition may become more complicated and cause her gall bladder inflammation, or a blocked bile duct or pancreatic duct. However, Charity is unable to meet the cost of her care and appeals for financial support. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare. is helping Charity receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a cholecystectomy on March 9th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove the gallbladder due to the gallstone causing pain and possibly infection. This procedure will cost $788, and she and her family need help raising money. Charity shared, "The pain is too much at times and I feel some relief when I vomit. I am hoping to get support so that I can be well and be at peace to nurse my baby."