Ian joined Watsi on March 12th, 2013. Six years ago, Ian became the 72nd member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 6,404 more people have become monthly donors! Ian's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Florian, a hardworking young man from Tanzania, to fund hydrocephalus treatment.
Ian has funded healthcare for 121 patients in 16 countries.
Florian is a 20-year-old farmer from Tanzania. He is sixth born in a family of nine children. He is a very hard working young man and helps his mother working in the family farms. He also helps his mother to look after his young brothers and sisters and assist with putting them through school. Florian was not fortunate to proceed with the school after graduating from his primary school education since his father passed away shortly after and he was forced to join his two brothers in helping their mother. Florian’s father passed away five years ago and his mother is a subsistence farmer. Florian 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, Florian has been experiencing severe headaches and dizziness. Without treatment, Florian will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of surgery for Florian that will treat his hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on September 9th and will drain the excess fluid from Florian's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Florian will hopefully continue to develop into a strong, healthy young man. Florian says, “Please help me get this treatment, my family is not able to pay for my needed surgery. Please help me so that I may get well.”
Ye lives with his wife and daughter on the Thai-Burma border. He used to work as a carpenter but had to stop working two years ago when his health deteriorated. His wife is a homemaker and his daughter works as a vendor selling mobile phones. Her monthly income of 10,000 baht (approx. 335 USD) is just enough to cover their family's daily needs. In the beginning of 2018, Ye started to experience swelling in his hands and feet, pain in his lower back, and difficulty passing urine. At first he thought that it was caused by overworking and would disappear over time. Six months later, when he still felt unwell, Ye finally decided to go see a doctor. He went to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) where the doctor conducted tests and concluded that he had high blood pressure. The doctor also sent him to another hospital for an ultrasound because at that time the ultrasound machine was broken at MSH. When Ye returned to MSH with his ultrasound results, the doctor diagnosed him with stones in both of his kidneys. He was told to drink lots of water and was provided with oral medication. When Ye returned for his follow-up appointment, he received another ultrasound and more oral medication. As his condition went on, he received a catheter in both of his kidneys while admitted at the hospital. Ye kept returning regularly for his follow-up appointments. Up until 2020, he had the catheter replaced a number of times and also asked the doctor twice if he could receive surgery. However, both times the doctor told him that he would have to wait because there were too many patients on the waiting list. Eventually in the beginning of 2020, Ye was scheduled to receive surgery. When he was admitted in the middle of March 2020, he first received treatment for a urinary tract infection before he received surgery to remove the stone from his right kidney. After surgery, Ye had difficulty breathing and was placed in the intensive care unit for four days. By the time he was discharged, he was left with a 127,000 baht (approx. 4,233 USD) hospital bill. Ye paid what he could by selling all their jewelry and using up their saving. However, most of his bill was paid by borrowing money from his relatives in Burma. Before he was discharged, the doctor told him that he will need to receive laser treatment to breakup the stone in his left kidney. However, if the procedure was not successful he would need surgery to remove the stone. His daughter was no longer able to pay for his laser treatment so a nurse at MSH told him to ask for help at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC). When Ye went to the clinic and told the medic that they cannot afford to pay for his laser treatment, the medic referred him to Watsi's Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund for assistance accessing further treatment and we now are raising $1500 to support his care. “I am very depressed, and I feel stressed about my health condition. I have used up all my savings for my treatment. Now I have to rely on my daughter’s income and I feel really feel bad as she works hard," said Ye.
Naw Aye is a 4-year-old primary school student from Thailand. She lives with her family in a refugee camp in northern Thailand. In 2003, her parents fled to the camp due to the unstable situations between the local armed group and the government army near their village in Burma. Their family receives 2,169 baht (approx. 72 USD) as part of their camp food support from an organization called The Border Consortium. Despite receiving food support as well as free basic health care and education in the camp, Naw Aye’s father has had to earn additional income to cover their expanses. Therefore, he has opened a small shop in front of their home, through which he earns 1,000 baht (approx. 33 USD) in a month. On 29 June 2020, Naw Aye was playing outside when she fell down and landed on her left elbow. Immediately after Naw Aye’s father took her to the camp's clinic. The doctor examined Naw Aye and suspected she had broken her elbow but would need to receive an x-ray to confirm the diagnosis. She received an x-ray that confirmed the fracture and was referred to our partner Burma Children Medical Fund in order to access treatment. Currently, Naw Aye's left arm is in pain and she cannot bend it or lift anything. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Naw Aye will undergo surgery to reset her fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for July 10th and will cost $1,500. After she receives surgery, she will be no longer be in pain and she will be able to use her left arm again. Once she returns home she will be able to continue her studies. Naw Aye's father shared, "Naw Aye loves to play outside. She also likes to color and draw when she comes home from school. When she gets bored of playing outside with her friends and drawing, she likes to watch cartoon clips."
Anna is a farmer from Kenya. Anna previously worked as a cook in a private primary school located in her village. Her occupational options are now extremely limited after she was let go due to hard economic times. Anna currently does maize farming in her parent’s land. She also does casual jobs across the village like working in other people’s farms to earn a living. Anna lives in a two-roomed iron-roofed house with her mother in the upcountry. Ten days ago, Anna experienced an extremely painful accident after she was involved in a road traffic accident. She was a pedestrian when she was struck by a motorbike which was moving in a high speed. She sustained multiple severe injuries, left multiple rib fractures with a pneumothorax and lower lip full-thickness laceration. She is in severe pain and now cannot walk. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On June 10th, Anna will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help her heal well and she will be able to walk easily again Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,065 to fund this procedure. Anna says, “My hope is to be healed get out of hospital bed and be on my foot again so that I can continue with my daily duties."
Penninah is a manual laborer from Kenya. She is a mother of four children, whom she has raised alone after her husband left her. The children are now grown up; the firstborn is 32 years of age while the last born is 18 years old. Penninah did not go to secondary school and so her life has been a difficult one, doing any manual job such as cleaning clothes for neighbors. Her children are also manual workers. Four years ago, Penninah began to experience troubling symptoms, including headaches, dry cough and difficulty in swallowing and feeling like choking at night. She was diagnosed with a multinodular goitre, an abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland. She needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Penninah receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on May 11th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $688, and she and her family need help raising money. “Whenever darkness comes I fear how I am going to sleep because of choking. I kindly seek for help. I hope my treatment will be successful so that I can regain my normal life,” said Penninah.
Margaret is a university student in her second year of studies. However, since 2018, she has not been to school after suffering a road accident in the capital, Nairobi. She was hit by a vehicle while crossing the road, fracturing her right femur and suffering body lacerations. She spent a lengthy stay in a national hospital and received surgery. She required physiotherapy sessions which she could not start due to financial constraints. Last July, she noted an open wound on her surgical site which was painful and septic. Since then, she had been cleaning it with salty water. Margaret was brought by her friend to Watsi's partner Kijabe Hospital and diagnosed with chronic osteomyelitis, a bone infection. Doctors recommend she have a sequestrectomy and hardware removal surgery to treat her condition. Successful surgery will allow Margaret to be able to ambulate with ease and less pain. Margaret is the firstborn child in her family. Her two siblings and parents live in a three-roomed rental house in the city’s outskirts. Her father is a construction site laborer while her mother relies on casual jobs such as laundry in the estate. The family is not able to pay the required hospital bill of $1,500. Margaret says, “My hope is to go back to school once treated so that I can help my younger siblings.”
Lewis is a playful and social student from Kenya. Lewis is the brother to Jonah, who also needs clubfoot repair, and is the 6th born in a family of 8 children. He aspires to be in the Special Forces as a Military Officer in future. The family hails from Iteria village in Meru County. His single mother used to be farmer but she currently stays at home. She recently underwent an amputation on her leg after suffering from diabetes. Lewis has clubfoot of both of his feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Lewis traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on March 16th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,224 to fund Lewis's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk well and no longer be in pain. “We request your support. I cannot be able to raise the estimated bill. Please help,” Lewis’s mother pleaded with us.
Godwin is a toddler from Kenya. His single mother of two children is employed casually as a retail shop attendant. Godwin and his elder brother are both enrolled in learning institutions and doing well. Her daily average pay is $2, which can barely sustain their basic needs. Godwin 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, Godwin is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on February 3rd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $700 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. “I want to be an engineer in future,” says Godwin
Meet Josephine, a 15-year-old girl from Mbembani Village in Kenya. Josephine likes socializing and playing with her friends both at home and at school. Josephine is the 3rd born in a family of 6 children, 2 of her siblings (Musau Muasya & Maureen Mwikali) have physical impairments and have been previously supported by Watsi. Josephine was born partially blind and with additional congenital abnormalities. She is a class four student at Joy Town Special School in Thika. Besides being partially blind, Josephine walks by herself, she seems not to like people who pity her but those who play with her and encourage her. Her mother does household and farm work at their neighbor’s home. This job entails fetching water, washing clothes, as well as going to the shamba. Her husband fled home 3 years ago and has never returned leaving his family in a very difficult state. Treatment will be of great benefit to her as she will walk without straining. Her mother cannot afford to pay for surgery and hence requested for support. Her mother shared, "First, I wish to thank Watsi for the help they have rendered to my two children Musau and Maureen, God bless you so much for the support and I hope you will not get tired in helping my daughter Josephine as well. God bless you so much.”
Joe is a 12-year-old student from Thailand. He moved to Mae Sot in early 2019, in search for better education. He now lives at a boarding house while studying at a migrant learning center. Joe noticed his blurred vision since he was five years old. Although he told his parents about it, his parents thought it was not that serious; they just told him that his eye sight will get better with time. As Joe did not experience any pain, aside from blurry vision, Joe stopped complaining about his problem to his parents. Joe continue to have a blurred vision, especially in his left eye. After he moved to Mae Sot, he told his uncle about his eye sight. His uncle made arrangements for him to meet with a medic, who later found that Joe has a cataract on his left eye and that it needs to be fixed in order for Joe to regain a clear vision in his left eye. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Joe. On December 10th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Joe's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Joe said, “I don’t know yet of what I want to be in the future, but all I’m looking forward to is to ride a bicycle and play with my friends without any difficulty seeing.”
Jean is a student from Haiti. He lives with his parents and brothers in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. He is in the eight grade, and before becoming sick he enjoyed playing soccer regularly. Jean has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral and aortic regurgitation. Two of the four valves of his heart were severely damaged by a rheumatic fever he suffered in childhood, and can no longer adequately pump blood through his body. Jean will fly to the Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On October 28th, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will attempt to repair his two damaged valves; if they are unable to do so, they will implant artificial replacements. Another organization, The Mitral Foundation, is contributing $7500 to pay for surgery. Jean's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Jean's family overseas. Jean said, "I am very excited to have this chance to get my heart fixed!"
Nuriya is a cute child from Ethiopia. Nuriya's mother was in Saudi Arabia for four years doing domestic work and her employers did not pay her during this time. She asked for her salary several times but they refused to pay her. Finally she decided to go home and they send her home without her payment. Nuriya’s father was also immigrant in Saudi Arabia for eight years. He went to Saudi Arabia illegally by sea and was caught and deported back to Ethiopia several times but he kept using his savings to go back. Once Nuriya’s parents were back in Ethiopia, they decided to stay and start a family. Their families have decided to help them and accommodate them until they find work. Nuriya’s father has not found work and now he plans to buy oxen and start farming. Nuriya 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. Nuriya is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on October 07. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Nuriya's procedure and care. After his recovery, Nuriya will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Nuriya’s mother said “We can’t afford the medical bill. We are here through the support of another organization. We are living under the support of our relatives. Nuriya’s colostomy operation was done by the government. I believe the child will get better soon."