Mahesh joined Watsi on January 27th, 2015. Six years ago, Mahesh joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Mahesh's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Kelvin, an active 2nd grader from Kenya, for foot surgery so he can walk more easily.
Mahesh has funded healthcare for 74 patients in 12 countries.
Mahesh has funded healthcare for 74 patients in 12 countries.
Kelvin is a bright second grade student and the last born in a family of five. His mother told us that Kelvin likes playing football, reading, and running together with his friends. Kelvin's mother is now a single mom after she separated from her husband many years ago after he engaged in drugs and frequent drinking. “He could not provide for the family anymore...” Kelvin's mother told us. Currently, Kelvin's mother has a small makeshift hotel, known as a Kibanda, where she sells tea, porridge, and mandazi (doughnuts) which is just enough to sustain her children and pay for their house rent. Kelvin has a hemiplegic cerebral palsy condition. When Kelvin was one year old, his mother noticed a bending of the left foot, and as he continued to grow his left foot worsened. Recently, while Kelvin was passing by the market in the village, a lady spotted him and inquired about where he lived. She later called Kelvin's mother and advised her to visit CURE hospital. At the hospital, Kelvin was scheduled to undergo surgery. Fortunately, Kelvin traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 19th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund Kelvin's treatment. After treatment, he will be able to walk well and play with friends. He will also be able to continue with his studies uninterrupted. Kelvin's mother said, “I am seeking support because I cannot pay the hospital bill, if I can be helped, I will be grateful to see my son walking normally.”
Ku is a seven-year-old boy who lives with his parents and two younger sisters in a refugee camp in Northern Thailand. Ku's mother weaves shirts that she sells, and Ku's father helps weave, too. Ku is a primary school student, while one of his sisters is in nursing school, and his youngest sister is too young to go to school. On June 6th, Ku and two of his friends were playing in a tamarind tree when they all fell out of the tree. Ku injured his left arm in the fall and his father carried him to the camp hospital for an exam. The medic there told Ku's father that his elbow might be broken. After they bandaged his arm, Ku visited another hospital for an x-ray and was diagnosed with a left elbow fracture. Ku is in pain and cannot bend his arm or lift anything. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Ku will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for June 9th and will cost $1,500. After surgery, Ku will no longer be in pain and he will be able to go back to school. He will regain full mobility in his arm. Ku's father shared, "Ku is an active boy who loves school and reading a lot. He always says that he wants to become a health worker to look after his family and others when he grows up. I want him to recover and go back to school soon."
Meet Nahashion: a playful, four-year-old boy in kindergarten. Nahashion is the only child in his family. His mother gave birth to Nahashion when she was very young, so she had to drop out of school to take care of her baby. His father is a maize farmer, but he also does odd-jobs like working on other peoples’ farms to supplement his maize farm. Both parents did not finish primary education (eight years), which poses difficulty when trying to find better paying jobs. The young family lives in a rental house in a small town. After giving birth to Nahashion, his mother was told by a doctor that her child had hypospadias, a disease causing urinary dysfunction. She was very worried about it because it was the first time she heard about such a case. Without treatment, Nahashion will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility when he grows up. A few months afterwards, she started searching for treatment and could not find a specialist in the many hospitals she visited. Finally, Nahashion traveled with his parent's many miles from their hometown to arrive at Kapsowar Hospital, where he was seen by a visiting surgeon. They had heard about the specialist after hearing an advertisement on the radio of the urology clinic that is taking place at Kapsowar. Fortunately, now Nahashion is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on June 24th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $631 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Nahashion’s mother is optimistic and strong. She says, “I am really not sure what is going to happen, but I am confident that my child will be able to proceed well after the surgery.”
Man is a 53-year-old fisherman with one son, three daughters, and four grandchildren. Man lives with his wife and their youngest daughter who works in a garment factory. Man enjoys listening to comedy shows and football on TV and visiting the mosque with his wife. Two years ago, the retina of Man's left eye detached, causing him blurry vision and partial blindness. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Man learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for five hours with his wife seeking treatment. On May 26th, eye surgeons will perform a retinal detachment repair procedure in his left eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, Man needs help to fund this $648 procedure. Man shared, "I hope after surgery my eye can see better so I can go back to the sea and fish again."
Naomi is a 15-year-old girl from Kenya. She is a very fun, talkative, and outgoing girl. In school, she is in Grade 5 and is among some of the best students in her class. Naomi is the sixth born in a family of seven children. Some of her siblings are in college with different sponsorship programs, while others are in high school and primary school. Naomi’s father works hard finding labor jobs to provide for their family. Her mother currently stays at home to mainly take care of Naomi, as she is not able to go to school at the moment. Naomi has a history of spina bifida and hydrocephalus. In 2019, when her shunt that was helping treat her hydrocephalus unfortunately started malfunctioning, her mother brought her to a facility to see a neurosurgeon. At the facility, Naomi was admitted as an emergency case and was operated on successfully. After the surgery, she had a lengthy stay at the facility and was in and out of the Intensive Care Unit several times. During this time, Naomi was bedridden and developed two pressure sores in the process; one on the sacral and the other one on the right gluteal region. The medical practitioners in the facility were not able to offer any treatment for her pressure sores. As time went by, the pressure sores worsened and grew deeper. One medical practitioner advised Naomi’s mother to dress the wounds with vinegar and honey on a daily basis. Her mother tried this and noticed some small improvement. Until she had enough money to take Naomi to the hospital, she continued with this home treatment. Eventually, Naomi was brought to our Medical Partner Kijabe Hospital, where doctors examined her. Now, Naomi will undergo a colostomy conducted by the pediatric surgery team to divert the stool and avoid infection. Later, she will undergo debridement and flap reconstruction with the plastic surgery team to help her heal. However, Naomi's parents are unable to afford the cost of her care. Their family has a National Health Insurance Fund coverage that will help fund her later reconstruction procedures, but they need help raising money for the procedures Naomi must undergo now. Naomi’s mother appeals for financial support. Naomi will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare. She is scheduled to undergo her colostomy surgery on April 13th. African Mission Healthcare is requesting $592 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will be free of pain and will be able to return to her studies again. Naomi’s mother shared, “Since Naomi was born, I knew that this was a God-given responsibility to take care of her and be with her throughout her treatment. Over the years, it is been difficult because of the cost of treatment as a result of several trips to seek care. She really needs this surgery but sadly we are I am unable to facilitate for it.”
Alex is a 20-year-old high school student from Haiti. He lives with his parents and younger brother in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. When he's healthy, he enjoys dancing and playing drums in church. Before his most recent illness, he was in his final year of high school. Alex has a cardiac condition called mitral regurgitation. When Alex was a child, he became infected with rheumatic fever which severely damaged one of his heart valves so that it could no longer pump blood through his body. Four years ago, surgeons in the Cayman Islands repaired Alex's existing heart valve in order to avoid replacing it with an artificial valve. This repaired valve worked well for three years, but then began to have difficulty pumping blood as well. Doctors now need to implant an artificial valve to replace the valve that is no longer working well. Alex will fly to the Cayman Islands to receive treatment. On April 7th, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will remove Alex's damaged valve and implant a mechanical replacement valve. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman Islands, is contributing $20,000 to pay for surgery. Alex'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 Alex's family overseas. Alex shared, "I am looking forward to this surgery so that I can get back to attending school and going to church."
Tun is a 73-year-old man who lives with his three daughters in Umpiem Mai Refugee Camp in Thailand. Each month, Tun's household receives a small cash card to purchase rations in the camp, and their monthly household income is just enough to cover daily expenses. In his free time, Tun loves to read books and loves telling stories to his neighbours’ children. He is always welcoming, giving the children snacks and telling them stories from his home. Tun also loves to grow different types of vegetables around his house, sharing the harvest with his neighbours who cannot afford to buy vegetables. Before he felt unwell, Tun used to volunteer, organising cleaning groups in the camp and helping with road repairs. Currently, Tun experiences on and off pain in his upper abdomen. He also has a slight fever and often feels nauseous. Over time, his appetite has gradually decreased, and he has lost weight. Tun has been advised to undergo a cholecystectomy, the surgical removal of the gallbladder. If his condition is left untreated, Tun's symptoms will continue to worsen and he will be at risk for further health complications in the future. After seeking treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Tun is scheduled to undergo his cholecystectomy on February 16th. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Tun's procedure and care. Once recovered, he will able to resume gardening, volunteering, and socializing with others in the camp. Tun shared, “I love volunteering and I am happy to help the community with whatever I can. But since I got sick, I cannot participate, and I cannot go to the monastery to help clean nor can I meditate. If I ever feel better again, I will continue to help my community with whatever I can do and I will also continue to grow vegetables around my house for my family and for my neighbours.”
Rebecca is a 1-year-old girl from Tanzania. She is the last born in a family of two children and has started to grow into a strong and beautiful girl. Both of her parents depend on small scale farming to support their family. Rebecca was initially brought to the hospital by her parents seeking treatment to help correct her spina bifida condition. Spina bifida is a birth defect that occurs when the spine and spinal cord fail to form properly. This puts a child in danger of limb paralyses or death in case of a severe infection. At the time, Rebecca's parents could not afford the proposed surgery. Luckily, one of their friends advised them to seek help at our medical partner's care center, ALMC Plaster House. Through Watsi funding, Rebecca’s life was saved and she has been growing well since then. However, a few weeks ago, Rebecca's mother noticed her daughter's head was increasing in size at a very fast rate and she was complaining of headaches. Her parents had worked hard to save some money and got a health insurance card for their baby, so they decided to take her to the hospital to seek treatment. There, Rebecca was diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. She needs to have an ETV surgery that will help relieve her of the pressure build-up, which would otherwise lead to brain damage. Unfortunately, their insurance has not matured enough to cover this kind of major surgery, so Rebecca's parents are appealing for financial support to help her. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of surgery for Rebecca that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 25th and will drain the excess fluid from Rebecca's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Rebecca will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Rebecca’s mother shared, “My daughter’s head is increasing in size and it is making her sick. She needs surgery but the insurance we got for her cannot cover the cost. Please help once more if it is possible because we don’t know where to run to for help besides all of you.”
Khaing is a 27-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband and a three-year-old son in a village in Tak Province. Originally from Karen State, Burma, they moved to their current home three years ago in search of better job opportunities. Her husband is a day laborer and she is homemaker. Ten years ago, Khaing started feeling like her nose was blocked and that she could not breathe well. She also had a runny nose and saw a small mass in her nostril while looking at her reflection in the mirror. At the time, Khaing did not go to see a doctor because she could not afford to pay for treatment, and she thought that she would feel better over time. However, four years ago she noticed that the mass had grown. Khaing went to her local hospital in Burma, where the doctor confirmed she had a mass in her nostril and gave her medication for a week. She did not go back to her follow-up appointment as she had run out of money. She then tried to treat herself with traditional medicine unsuccessfully as the mass continued to increase in size. In the beginning of May 2020, Khaing developed a severe headache and pain in her nose. The area around her nose also became swollen. She went to Mae Tao Clinic for treatment, where the medic found large masses in both of her nasal cavities. She was then taken to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. At MSH, she received an x-ray of her nose and the doctor told her that the masses were large and surrounded by a lot of pus. After a CT scan, the doctor diagnosed her with a nasal polyp and scheduled her for surgery on December 28th, 2020. Currently, the area around her nose is swollen and painful. Her nostrils feel itchy, her nose is blocked, and has to breathe through her mouth. She still has a headache, though since she received pain medication from the doctor at MSH, this has been less severe. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On December 28th, Khaing will undergo an endoscopic sinus surgery. Once recovered, she will be able to breathe normally again and her quality of life will significantly improve. Now, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Khaing shared, "I really want to have surgery and feel better. I am not scared because I believe that the surgery will help me be free from headaches and breathe well again."
Vireak is an 18-year-old student. He is the elder brother to two younger sisters. Both of Vireak's parents work in construction. In his free time, Vireak enjoys reading books, exercising, listening to music, and helping his family with cooking and taking care of his younger sisters. Vireak has been diagnosed with lumbar scoliosis. He has a curved spine causing back pain and has difficulty walking and sitting. On November 12th, surgeons at the Children's Surgical Centre (CSC) will perform an orthopedic repair surgery on Vireak to alleviate his scoliosis pain. Our medical partner is requesting $1,500 to fund his spinal surgery. Once recovered, his quality of life will significantly improve and he will be able to return to life as normal. Vireak shared, "I hope after my surgery my back gets better and I can have a straight spine and be free of discomfort."
Mary is a businesswoman from Kenya. She is married and is a mother of three adult children. Two months ago, while relaxing at home, Mary felt a lump in her breast with a burning sensation. She ignored it at first, but it gradually became painful. Worried, she visited Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Kijabe Hospital in mid-September for medical attention and care. After review, doctors ordered a CT scan and a core biopsy, which confirmed her worst fear - that she had breast cancer. The biopsy test found an infiltrating ductal carcinoma, but luckily she had no metastasis yet. Doctors recommend she undergo a mastectomy procedure as soon as possible to prevent the spread of the deadly cancerous cells. Although she is struggling to come to terms with the shocking news, Mary's main worry now is the high, unaffordable cost of the surgery. She runs a small kiosk that generates little profit each day. Her husband is a small-scale farmer who owns one cow. The family relies on the proceeds from their eatery and milk sales to survive. Sadly, they had to sell their only cow to raise money for Mary’s treatment. However, the money from the sale is barely enough to cover the cost of mastectomy surgery. Her kids do not have stable jobs, and Mary says they are struggling. She has no national health insurance or any medical coverage, and is thus appealing for financial help. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $857 to cover the cost of a mastectomy for Mary. The procedure is scheduled to take place on October 23rd. After treatment, Mary will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Mary shared, “I am shocked that I was diagnosed with this deadly cancer. But I am more worried that I am unable to afford the only procedure that can stop the spread of the disease. I wasn’t prepared for a procedure of this magnitude. I appreciate any support you can provide.”
Samnang is a 14-year-old ninth grade student from Cambodia. She is the only child for her parents who are both farmers. She enjoys reading books, doing her school work, listening to music, and watching TV. Her favorite meal is fried rice and coke and her favorite subject in school in math. She wants to be a pharmacist when she grows up! In November 2019, Samnang fell down from a stage and injured her right elbow. After that she went to a Khmer traditional healer but is not better and now she has come to Watsi's Medical Partner Children's Surgical Centre (CSC). They have started her treatment and found that she has an aneurysmal bone cyst that needs treatment. Fortunately, surgeons at Children's Surgical Centre can help. On September 24th, Samnang will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. This procedure will help the bone in her arm heal and she will be able to use her hand again. Samnang shared that she is hopeful that her hand will be ok and that she can use it easily again once she has surgery.