Eric joined Watsi on December 3rd, 2014. Seven years ago, Eric joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Eric's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Happiness, a bright 15-year-old student from Tanzania, to fund leg surgery so she can walk more easily.
Eric has funded healthcare for 89 patients in 11 countries.
Eric has funded healthcare for 89 patients in 11 countries.
Happiness is a 15-year-old girl who lives with her widowed mother - a small scale farmer - and six siblings. She is in class six at school. Happiness has many academic strengths, and she is always among the top ten students in her class, where her best subjects are Swahili, mathematics, social studies and history. She hopes to learn English someday, and she would like to be a teacher when she completes her studies. Her father used to sell cattle for a living, but he passed away when she was six years old. Happiness was diagnosed with right genu varus, which causes her right leg to bow outward at the knee. This condition is often caused by contaminated drinking water. Initially, both of her legs were affected, but before her father died, he was able to find treatment for Happiness' left leg. Her right leg is now severely impacted, making walking painful. And, because she is self-conscious of her leg, Happiness always wears long dresses to keep it covered. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Happiness. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 10th. Treatment should restore Happiness's mobility, alleviate her discomfort, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Happiness says “Walking is hard and painful for me. I would like to have normal legs so that I can walk well."
Thaung is a 31-year-old man who is married with one daughter. His wife and him work together as agricultural day laborers. Thaung's monthly income is just enough to meet their daily needs. He shared that he had to borrow money for food from his neighbor when he was out of work due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the military coup in Burma, and he is working to pay them back. In October 2021, Thaung noticed a small ulcer and went to see a retired army doctor who lives in his village. He received some medication, and his ulcer healed. However, a few months later, the growth returned. Thuang and his family were able to fundraise through their church to visit a local hospital. Upon review, he was diagnosed with cancer and the doctor informed him that he would need to undergo surgery. Currently, Thaung is in pain and has difficulty working and sleeping. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), can help Thaung receive treatment. On April 11th, he is scheduled to undergo surgery. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Thaung shared, “When I recover from surgery, I will work hard to pay back my debt to the neighbors we borrowed money from. I want to live with my family for a long time, and I want to support my family as much as I can.”
Thein is a 56-year-old man who lives with his family in a refugee camp. Two of his daughters and his son-in-law work as seasonal workers outside of the camp, while Thein and his wife look after their three grandchildren, send them to school, and care for the household chores. In January, Thein was diagnosed with a cataract in his right eye and an early cataract in his left eye. Currently, he cannot see with his right eye, as his vision is blurry, and the vision in his left eye is also beginning to blur. As a result, Thein cannot walk easily and relies on a bamboo staff to help stabilize him as he tries to avoid tripping on any objects in his path. He shared that he feels discomforted and like he is living in darkness. Fortunately, Thein was able to visit our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), and they can help him heal. On March 8th, doctors will perform a lens replacement. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Thein shared, “When I recover from surgery, I will help my family plant and water vegetables around the house. It can save us money from buying the vegetables. I can help send my grandchildren to school and pick them up in the evening. I will also be able to visit my friend.”
Angel is 10-month-old baby girl. She lives in a small rental house in Nairobi, Kenya with her parents and older sibling. Angel’s parents do not currently have stable jobs. Her mother used to sell fruits, however had to stop to take care of Angel. Her father, now the sole wage earner of the house, is a tailor but does not earn much. The earnings they receive are just enough to take care of the family. As a result, they can not raise the money that is needed to cater for Angel’s hospital bill. Angel has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. Over the December holidays, Angel and her family visited her grandparents, however during this time she became persistently unwell, which caused her parents' concern to grow. They took her to a facility nearby and along the way her grandmother noticed that her head looked bigger than normal, and her eyes were not as they used to be. Upon arrival, the doctor immediately referred them to another specialist. facility in Nairobi. She was then examined and booked for surgery in April of this year. After returning home, the parents continued to watch as Angel grew weaker day by day. A family friend heard about their child’s condition and referred them to our medical partner's care center, BethanyKids Hospital. On arrival, she received another examination and was promptly scheduled for a shunt insertion surgery. If not treated, Angel will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $720 to cover the cost of Angel's surgery to treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on February 9th, during which surgeons will drain the excess fluid from her brain. This will relieve the pressure inside her head, and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Angel will have the chance to develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Angel’s father says, “This is a condition that we have never heard of before and didn’t know how to go about getting her care. It is very difficult for a parent to see their child in a situation when they do not have finances to help them.”
Samrach is a 27-year-old clothing factory worker. He's is married with two small children. His daughter is six years old and just starting the first grade, and his son is nine months old. His wife is also a factory worker in their province. He likes to play with his children and listen to music. Ten months ago, on his way home from the factory, Samrach was in a motorcycle crash. He suffered fractures of the femur, clavicle, forearm, and multiple other injuries. He lost his left leg below the knee due to the trauma injury, and spent three months in a provincial hospital. A local taxi driver told him about the specialty care at our medical partner Children's Surgical Center (CSC). Doctors have diagnosed him with a brachial plexus injury on his left side. The brachial plexus is a nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Injuries to this nerve network can result in loss of function and sensation. He cannot lift his left shoulder, bend his elbow, or use his hand. He feels unwell and shared that he often feels very depressed that he cannot work or support his family. Samrach traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On January 6th, he will undergo a brachial plexus repair surgery. After recovery, he hopes to regain the use of his arm so he can find work in the factory again. Our medical partner is requesting $696 to fund this life-changing procedure. Samrach said: "I hope this surgery will work for me, and I can start working again to have money to feed my children and make sure they go to school."
Naomi is an energetic but shy 4-year-old She is the fifth born in a family of six children. Naomi's parents do farm work growing some maize, beans, and cassava for food. When the harvest is good they sell the extra for an income. Her mother also sells some vegetables in the market. What they earn is not enough to cover the cost of treatment that their daughter needs. Naomi was diagnosed with genu valgus, where her legs bow inwards. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, She cannot walk easily and without pain. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Naomi. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 3rd. Treatment will hopefully restore Naomi's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Naomi’s mother says, “I would really like for my daughter to walk without having pain. Please help us be able to get her this surgery.”
Jayden is a quiet, shy two-year-old boy. He is the youngest in a family of three children. His mother works as a waitress in a local hotel while his father recently took on a new job as an uber driver. Jayden was born with hypospadias, a congenital condition that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and be at risk of infertility. Jayden's parents learned about our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), through a local television station. When Jayden turned two, his parents brought him to AMH's care center for examination. On November 8th, Jayden will undergo corrective surgery. AHM is requesting $847 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Jayden’s mother shared, “As a family, we are really looking forward to Jayden being able to have treatment.”
Duncan is a 23-year-old mechanic. He's a lively man who likes cracking jokes with friends to cheer everyone up. Duncan is the second born in a family of six and he is married with two children. He lives in a rented house at his local center with his family. He completed his high school studies but did not proceed to college because of a lack of school fees. He has always had to do a lot to take care of his siblings and provide for their needs, like school fees. Duncan learned mechanical skills from his local center by watching what the mechanics there were doing. He now hopes to study mechanical engineering to improve his skills but he is unable because of the financial burden he has of taking care of his siblings and young family. Despite this, he is still hopeful that he will manage to do so in the future. Two days ago, Duncan was involved in a severe accident and sustained a fracture on his right leg. He was riding a motorcycle in the evening from his place of work when it lost control and fell into a ditch. He was rushed to a nearby health facility for immediate care from where he was referred to our hospital. An X-Ray confirmed a right femur fracture. He also has chest pains hence needing hospital admission for management and to plan for his surgery. He is unable to walk, has pain, and feels all he can do is lie in bed and wait for help. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On October 8th, Duncan will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This surgery will relieve him of the pain and help him walk again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1145 to fund this procedure. Duncan says, “We are facing a difficult moment as a family, my parents cannot find money to buy food for the family without my assistance. There’s nothing else that matters other than seeing my family happy. I want to get healed and go back home to support their needs.”
Jade is an 18-month old baby girl from Haiti. She lives with her mother and father in a small city in Southwestern Haiti where her mother is a nurse at the local hospital and her father is a teacher. Jade was born with a condition called patent ductus arteriosus (PDA), in which blood leaks between the major artery and vein connected to the heart. This has led to heart failure, which has left Jade sick and short of breath. Fortunately, our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is helping Jade to receive treatment. On September 9th, doctors will use a catheter to plug the hole between the artery and the vein so that blood can flow normally. Now, Jade's family needs help to raise $1,500 towards the cost of Jade's procedure and care. Jade's mother shared, "thank you to everyone who is helping to heal our daughter's heart!"
Victor is a newborn baby and the youngest child in a family of six children. His parents are both casual laborers who sell groceries for a living. When Victor and his mom arrived home from the hospital after his birth, he was crying often and his mother and aunt became concerned. They examined him and noticed that his stomach was swollen and he was not able to pass his stool. Upon examination, he was scheduled for an urgent colostomy surgery the next day. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH) is helping Victor to receive treatment. On August 11th, he will undergo surgery at AMH's care center. Now, AMH is requesting $1,152 to fund Victor's life-saving procedure and care. Victor’s mother shared, “Victor’s condition is a big blow to us. It’s new to us and what’s worrying is that he cannot survive without surgery being done and we are not in a position to cater for that.”
Htoo is a 12-year-old girl who lives with her parents, two older sisters, an older brother and a younger brother in a refugee camp on the Thai-Burma border. Htoo’s father works as a construction worker while Htoo's mother is a homemaker and looks after Htoo's younger brother who is too young to go to school. Htoo and her older siblings study in the camp. Every month, the family receives oil, rice and charcoal rations, but they shared that the rations are unfortunately not enough to cover their daily needs. They also receive free basic health care and education in the refugee camp. In her free time, Htoo likes to play with her friends and help her mother clean. Htoo was born with a small mass in a sensitive area. At the time, Htoo's mother was told not to worry about the mass. However, beginning in 2016, Htoo noticed the mass increasing in size and she could no longer pass urine comfortably. A medic at the camp's hospital examined the mass and determined that it is benign and recommends it is surgically treated for Htoo's comfort and peace of mind. Htoo is receiving treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) and she is scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on June 6th. Now, their family is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Htoo shared, “in the future, I want to finish my schooling and become a teacher in the camp. I want to teach Karen [language].”
Mathayo is a 17-month-old baby and the only child of his parents. They are small scale farmers who grow mainly maize and vegetables for their food at home. They try to also make extra income through the father seeking casual laboring day jobs. Beginning three months ago, Mathayo developed an inguinal hernia. This hernia causes him pain and, if not treated, the hernia may result in intestinal tissue death or damage. Fortunately, on May 10th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $566 to fund Mathayo's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Mathayo’s mother says, "My baby cries a lot due to the pain and the condition is getting worse as days go by. Please help my son."