Ilana J SegallUNIVERSAL FUND MEMBER
Ilana's Story

Ilana joined Watsi on December 31st, 2018. Four years ago, Ilana joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Ilana's most recent donation supported Kiya, a two-month-old infant from Ethiopia, to fund surgery to restore bodily functions.

Impact

Ilana has funded healthcare for 54 patients in 11 countries.

Patients funded by Ilana

Kiya is a beautiful two-month-old baby girl, the only child of her parents who live in Ethiopia. She enjoys playing with her mum and breastfeeding. Kiya's father works as a day laborer at a construction site, and her mother also worked as a day laborer before Kiya's birth. Both her parents did not complete their education as desired; her mother completed high school but was unable to pursue further education after her own mother passed away, and her father went to school up to grade seven. Their combined income is barely enough to meet the family's basic needs, often leading to skipped meals. Consequently, they struggle to afford medical bills. Kiya was born with an anorectal malformation, a condition in which the anus and rectum (the lower end of the digestive tract) do not develop properly, and can lead to a partial or complete intestinal blockage. Upon learning of Kiya's condition, her parents were devastated. They sought help at a local hospital, and were referred to our medical partner's care center, BethanyKids Myungsung Christian Medical Center. Despite their fears of traveling a long distance, a social worker from BKMCM guided them. The community rallied to support them with transport funds, and a kind stranger helped them with motel expenses, allowing them to reach the hospital for Kiya's treatment. They were warmly received at the hospital and underwent immediate assessment where it was determined that Kiya needed to undergo a series of procedures to correct the condition. Kiya has undergone a colostomy which has significantly eased her discomfort. She is scheduled to undergo another procedure to correct her condition on June 6th. After recovery, Kiya will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Kiya's procedure and care. Her parents are hopeful for a full recovery. Kiya's mother says, "I am optimistic that she will make a full recovery from her condition and we can return to our home. After recovery, I hope to take the time to educate her and help her build a promising future."

$854raised
$646to go

Nay is a 31-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his mother, two sisters, two brothers-in-law, two nephews, and two nieces in a village in Karen State along the Burma border. Nay works in Thailand as a day laborer, spending one week working in Mae Sot and then returning for two days to his village. Nay’s mother is retired and one of his sisters is a homemaker, taking care of her children. The other sister and two brothers-in-law are day laborers on a farm in Karen State. They also grow vegetables for family consumption. His nephews and one niece go to school. Their monthly income is enough for basic needs and they make an effort to pay for basic health care. In his free time, Nay enjoys helping in his community and fixing electronic items. In July 2023, Nay began to experience blurred vision in his right eye. He has intermittent pain and discharge. These symptoms have made it increasingly difficult for him to see clearly. Nay feels uncomfortable seeing only with his left eye and feels sad and depressed about his condition. Nay was diagnosed with retinal detachment, a condition in which the retina pulls away from the supportive tissue in the eye, resulting in vision loss. If left untreated, he could lose vision entirely in the right eye. Nay is scheduled to undergo surgery to reattach his retina on January 18th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the cost of this procedure and care. After the surgery, Nay's vision will hopefully be restored, and he will resume his daily activities comfortably. Nay said “I was stuck and hopeless while the doctor was telling me that I would need a surgery. I don’t even know how to explain about my health problem to my family. I worry they will feel so sad and worry about me. I am unhappy and feel tired emotionally. After learning that I have donors who will help me paying for my treatment in Chiang Mai, I feel like my hope has returned and I'm wishing my vision would repair and I'll be able to continue my career in the future."

$1,500raised
Fully funded

Asiyatu is a married mother of two children aged 8 and 3 years. Her first child is in 3rd grade and the youngest is in nursery school. She is a homemakerwhile her husband is an Airtel money branch manager earning about $208.72 per month from his business and he takes care of all the bills at home. They live in a three-bedroomed rented house costing $29.82 per month. Asiyatu likes chatting with her children and enjoys eating chips and vegetables. Asiyatu was well until 2020 after the delivery of her second child when she noted a small lump on her left breast that was not painful. She visited a nearby hospital but did not receive help. The husband took her to Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) after noting that the lump was getting bigger as time passed. She was brought to Partners in Hope Medical Center (PIH) for a lumpectomy which is a surgery that removes cancer from the breast through the removal of a tumor and a small rim of normal tissues around it, and a sample was sent for histology. In September, she reported back to PIH for histology results that revealed an Invasive Breast Carcinoma requiring a mastectomy. She was then referred back to KCH for surgery since the husband could no longer manage to pay for the surgery as he did with the previous one. She was scheduled for surgery the next year. Lately, Asiyatu has been experiencing needle-pricking pain that is becoming unbearable without pain-relieving medications, affecting her household chores. As a result of her pain, her husband took her back to the hospital in November for support where she was then referred back to PIH for urgent surgery seeking support under the Watsi program. Doctors at PIH confirmed the need for a modified radical mastectomy, a surgery. Their family is able to commit $89.45 to support her care and their family is raising the remaining funds. Asiyatu believes the surgical operation will help her get back home in good condition and continue taking care of her children and her caring husband. Asiyatu said, “I am ready to live with one breast as I hope to get rid of all my pains and have my perfect life back again.”

$1,194raised
Fully funded

Babi is a cute toddler from Ethiopia. He is an only child and loves to play with toy cars; he pushes the toy making the sound 'uuuuuvvvv', saying it's a car. His father, who has a 5th-grade education, used to work in the horticulture industry as a laborer, but he lost his wife a year back to tuberculosis and has been trying to balance everything on his own. After his mom's death, Babi had no one to take care of him besides his dad, so his dad decided to leave his job to take care of his child and try to get him the necessary treatment. Babi experienced a bowel obstruction, and he got three surgeries at Negele Arsi General Hospital, but he still had complications with his bowel. There is a small window for corrective surgery, but colostomy closure is preferred since the opening is too small. Babi's father has suffered with the whole process and feels he is highly affected psychologically as Babi cannot make a stool in a normal way. Earlier, Babi underwent a colostomy, in which the end of the colon is brought through an opening in the abdominal wall. This surgery is often performed to bypass bowel malformations, but colostomies are usually temporary and may call for closure. In Babi's case, his colostomy requires closure to restore bowel function and prevent future complications. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,009 to cover Babi's colostomy closure cost. Once completed, he can grow up more comfortably and confidently. Babi's dad said, "After he gets the treatment and heals, I hope he will go to school and lead a good life in the future."

$1,009raised
Fully funded