Jim joined Watsi on November 5th, 2014. Five years ago, Jim became the 376th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,416 more people have become monthly donors! Jim's most recent donation traveled 1,900 miles to support Starlex, a second grade student from Haiti, to fund prep and transport for cardiac surgery.
Jim has funded healthcare for 63 patients in 14 countries.
Starlex is a student from Haiti. He lives with his parents and two younger brothers in Cap Haitien, a city in northern Haiti. His father is a taxi driver. He is in the second grade and likes going to school and playing with his friends. Starlex has a cardiac condition called Tetralogy of Fallot. This condition involves several related defects including a hole between the two lower chambers of the heart, and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. Starlex will fly to Canada to receive treatment. On April 1st, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will close the hole in his heart with a patch, and remove the muscular blockage from his valve. Another organization, The Herbie Fund, is contributing $25,000 to pay for surgery. Starlex's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep and transport. 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 Starlex's family overseas. Starlex's father shared, "My family is looking forward to the day when our son can be healthy and normal!"
Immaculate is fast asleep on her mother’s lap. She was woken quite early to come to the hospital. A little bump, almost invisible, sits on her fontanel. Following results from CT scan, little Immaculate has been diagnosed with a dermoid cyst, a sac-like growth, that is present at birth and a craniotomy surgery is recommended. According to the doctor, the cyst sits on a very sensitive vein and if it ruptures Immaculate risks death. Surgery to close it will minimize such risks especially as she grows older, is more active, and playing with children who may accidentally hit the bump and cause the rupture. Immaculate lives with her parents and siblings in a one-room house in Central Kenya. The surgery is a cost that Immaculate’s parents cannot bear. They both are employed casually in a neighbor’s farm with an irregular daily wage of around Kes200 each. Immaculate’s elder brother is a student in class one and doing fine. With a very menial income, they are not able to raise the funds needed. “I will be glad if we get help,” says Immaculate’s mother.
Mary is a smart fifth grade girl from Kenya who aspires to be a pilot. She was diagnosed with adenoids at age one. Her mother would take her daughter to the local hospital and would be given medicine which did not improve her condition. Around July this year, a friend advised that they visit Kijabe Hospital where Mary was diagnosed with adenoids and tonsils and surgery recommended. The surgery, however, was a cost Mary’s parents could not bear. They resigned to fate but hoped someday they would get help. Mary’s parents are both casual cleaners at a company close to where they live with a monthly pay of Kes. 7000 each. The income is barely enough to cater for their family's basic needs. The family of two children lives in a one-room rental house in Nairobi. They hope that their daughter will get the treatment she so needs to improve on her breathing and clogging of her nasal airway. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $779 to fund an adenotonsillectomy for Mary, which is scheduled to take place on December 13th. Surgeons will remove her tonsils and adenoids, hopefully relieving Mary of her symptoms and helping her live more comfortably. “I want to be a pilot in future,” shared Mary.
Ngwe is a 46-year-old from Burma. She lives with her husband and 16-year-old son in Winkabar Village, Kyain Seikgyi Township, Karen State. Her son studies in grade 6 while her husband works as a day labour tapping rubber trees. Ngwe stopped working three years ago because of her health problems. Ngwe was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of the mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. Currently, Ngwe feels tired and sometimes she has heart palpitation when she is active. She cannot walk long distances. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Ngwe. The treatment is scheduled to take place on October 31st and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. “When I recover fully, I want to meditate [at the temple]. I also want to help out with household chores and make merit through various activities,” said Ngwe.
Due is a 26-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his family in Hlaingbwe Township, Karen State. Due is a farmer while his wife looks after their four-month-old son. In 2018, Due Bay noticed a lump the size of the tip of his thumb on his right breast. He did not seek treatment until the lump slowly increased in size. He then went to a hospital in Hpa-An in early January 2019. At the hospital, he received an x-ray and was told that he would need surgery to remove the mass. Because he had no money to pay for the surgery, he just went home. Currently, the lump on Due’s breast is itchy. Sometimes, he feels like the muscle in his right chest as well as in his armpit are tight. He is very worried about his condition and now he cannot work or carry heavy things. If he tries to carry anything heavy, he feels uncomfortable because of the tightness in his chest and armpit. Doctors want Due to undergo a CT scan, a procedure in which x-ray images taken from several angles are combined to produce cross-sectional images of the body. This scan will hopefully help doctors diagnose his condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Due's CT scan and care, scheduled for September 12. He said, “I miss my son already and cannot wait to see him. I hope that I can receive surgery as soon as possible so that I can return home to see my son and my family.”
Rashid is a casual laborer from Kenya. He is the first born in a family of three. Rashid comes from a very poor family from Western Kenya, and came to Central Kenya (Limuru) to try and find a living. He has never been to school and so he searches for any casual work available especially in construction sites. About three months ago, when he was up a building he slipped and fell from the third floor of a building they were constructing and sustained fracture of the left humerus and a sprain on the back bone. He is unable to work or use his left hand. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On September 4th, Rashid will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help his hand heal well and he will be able to work again Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $998 to fund this procedure.
Farkia is a baby from Tanzania. Farkia is a second born child in a family of two children, her mother says she is a happy and very active baby. Farkia’s father works as a casual labor looking for day jobs and her mother is a stay home mother. Farkia has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of her condition, Farkia has been experiencing an increasing head circumference. Without treatment, Farkia will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,238 to cover the cost of surgery for Farkia that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on September 2nd and will drain the excess fluid from Farkia's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Farkia will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Farkia’s mother says, “I got so worried once I heard that I could not deliver normal, I knew then that something is wrong. I know that my child needs this surgery but I cannot afford to give her that, please help me be able to save my daughter’s life."
Ali is a baby from Ethiopia. He 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. Ali is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on August 1. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Ali's procedure and care. After his recovery, Ali will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future.
Lucito is a boy from Haiti. He was born with a cardiac condition called double outlet right ventricle, in which the aorta connects to the wrong chamber of the heart, causing the heart to pump oxygen-depleted blood to his body. He will require an open-heart surgery to correct this condition. Lucito lives in a small city in western Haiti with his parents and four siblings. He has not yet started school because of his cardiac problems, but is studying at home with his mother. Lucito will fly to India to receive treatment. On August 7, he will undergo cardiac surgery. Another organization, Rotary International, is contributing $8,000 to pay for surgery. His 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 his family overseas.
Ethan is a toddler from Kenya. He has had inguinal hernia. Fortunately, on May 23, he will undergo repair surgery at our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $423 to fund Ethan's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. “My child is in much anguish. We cannot raise the needed funds and I am therefore requesting for your assistance,” says Ethan’s mother.
Kerhi is a student from Haiti. He lives with his parents and two brothers in Gonaives, a city on the west coast of Haiti. His father is a bus driver, and his mother works in the market. He is in the fifth grade and enjoys math and science. Kerhi has a cardiac condition called patent ductus arteriosus. A blood vessel between the pulmonary artery and the aorta that normally closes soon after birth instead remains open. Blood flows through it, bypassing the lungs and depriving the body of the oxygen it needs. Kerhi underwent a surgery two years ago to tie off the duct, but unfortunately the defect has re-opened; he will now undergo a different type of procedure called cardiac catheterization to close it in a way that makes it very unlikely to ever reopen again. Kerhi will fly to the United States to receive treatment. On May 2, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will use a device attached to the tip of a catheter to block the leaking duct. Another organization, Gift of Life New York, is contributing $6,000 to pay for surgery. Kerhi'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 Kerhi's family overseas. He says, "I am excited to fly on a plane for the first time and visit a new country!"
Somab is a woman from Cambodia. Somab really likes to cook and go for walks with her family in her free time. She developed a curve in her lower spine about two months ago, which is progressing, making it difficult to sit for long periods, and causing a lot of discomfort. Surgery can help correct the position of her spine, and prevent further worsening of the condition. Surgery is scheduled for Mach 13 and will cost $930. She says, "I hope that after my surgery, I am able to go back to work and take care of my family without having any pain or difficulty."