Jim joined Watsi on November 5th, 2014. Six years ago, Jim became the 376th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 6,074 more people have become monthly donors! Jim's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Sifa, a three-month-old from Tanzania, to fund surgery for his spina bifida condition.
Jim has funded healthcare for 69 patients in 14 countries.
Sifa is a baby from Tanzania. Sifa is a three months old baby boy and the youngest child in a family of four children. Sifa's parents come from the central part of Tanzania where most people depend on farming for their living. His parents own a small piece of land from which they are able to grow maize and sunflowers. Their income is not much and barely enough to support their family. Sifa was born with spina bifida, a type of neural tube defect in which the spine does not properly close around the spinal cord. Without treatment, Sifa is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,015 to cover the cost of Sifa's spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on August 24th. This procedure will hopefully spare Sifa from the risks associated with his condition, allowing him to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Sifa’s mother says, “Please help my son."
Hellen is a mother of five from Kenya. She is a dairy farmer and also brews alcohol to make a living. A few months ago, Hellen unfortunately lost her husband. She lives in a one room house with her five children. Three of her children have already dropped out of school due financial problems and her two younger sons might also drop out because she is unable to pay for their fees. A week ago, Hellen sought care at our hospital for injuries on her right leg and ankle. She sustained these injuries during an altercation. Now, it is difficult for her to walk, and she is in chronic pain. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On August 4th, Hellen will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help her walk easily again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,016 to fund this procedure. Hellen is currently having a difficult time and she hopes that in the future she can have a better business to support her family. She shared, “I want to live a better life and be strong for my children after healing from this fracture.”
Vuthy is a 31-year-old construction worker from Cambodia and the youngest of three siblings. He lives with his sister near his parents' farm in Kampong Cham province. He and his sister help with their family farm work. Eight months ago, Vuthy developed tuberculosis arthritis in his left hip. He has taken medication to control the condition, but in the last four months, his condition has worsened. He has constant hip pain and must walk with crutches. His muscles in his left thigh have atrophied, and range of motion of his left leg has contracted by 60 degrees. Due to all of this, he now cannot work or do his daily activities. Fortunately, Vuthy learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. At CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Vuthy of his pain and allow him to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for July 1st, and Vuthy needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. Vuthy said, "Since I had this problem, I have not been able to work or get any money for my family, and they have to take care of me. I want to get better so I can do my part to support my parents."
Nelson is a small business owner from Kenya and a father of four children aged between 1 and 16 years. He operates a butchery in Komarock where he has employed someone to help him after the accident. The wife and children are currently living with his parents in Muranga. His wife is not in any employment and their family solely depends on his business. Nelson lives in a rental house in Komarock and his earnings are not sufficient to meet the cost of living and pay for his surgery. In 2017 Nelson was involved in a road traffic accident in Komarock as he was coming from work. He was rushed to KNH hospital where he underwent surgery. Later his surgical site got an infection and a plan for nail placement to help his fracture was agreed on. He went to St Peter’s Uthiru in 2018 where he underwent the surgery and it was successful. He didn’t heal well so he came to Kijabe Hosopital for clinic where he was booked for surgery. He underwent a 1st stage and 2nd stage bone transport in 2019 and this was funded by the national health insurance fund. Currently, he has an infection and is due for urgent debridement and washout to ensure he can heal. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Nelson receive treatment. On June 3rd, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure. If not treated, Nelson will be at risk of further wound infection that could lead to amputation. Now, Nelson needs help to fund this $1,242 procedure. ‘I will be happy to go back to work being the sole breadwinner of our family.’ Nelson said.
Theav is a 24-year-old Khmer teacher from Cambodia. She has six siblings and is the third child. Since finishing high school, she has gone to teach Khmer language in her community everyday. She enjoys listening to music and planting flowers around home in her free time. When Theav was just a child her leg had a swelling and redness that caused her mom to take her to a Khmer traditional healer. They were able to improve the condition of her leg so she could walk, but about 14 years later she noticed problems with the same leg. It became painful and she had to start walking with a crutch. Doctors have examined her leg and discovered a non-union tibia fracture. Going in public with her condition is upsetting to her and makes her shy. Presently, the pain is bad enough to prevent her from walking at all. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On April 28th, Theav will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. The procedure will help her leg straighten allowing her to walk without any pain in the future. "I hope that I will be able to walk better. I will continue my study at university and want to become a teacher of Khmer literature when I graduate," Theav said.
Nwe is a 36-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her family in Thingangkuun Township in Yangon Division. Nwe works as a seamstress at home while her husband works in a factory. In her free time, Nwe likes to play with her nephew who lives close by and also loves to watch movies at home. Nwe 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, Nwe experiences tiredness especially when she walks for longer periods of time. If she feels tired, she also experiences heart palpitations. Sometimes, she also suffers from dizziness. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Nwe. The treatment is scheduled to take place on March 24th and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. Nwe shared, “I feel stressed about my condition. I am afraid to have surgery but there is no other option. I hope that after I have fully recovered from my surgery, I will be able to work as seamstress again.” Nwe’s husband is also worried for her and he has had to take time off from work to accompany her to all her appointments. He said, “I get paid daily for my work and if I do not work regularly then I have less income. Before, we were able to save some money from our work but since my wife was diagnosed with a heart problem and started to see the doctor for tests and medications, we can no longer save any money.”
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.