Pius joined Watsi on March 30th, 2016. Five years ago, Pius joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Pius' most recent donation supported Kelvin, a 12-year-old boy from Tanzania, to fund corrective surgery.
Pius has funded healthcare for 66 patients in 12 countries.
Pius has funded healthcare for 66 patients in 12 countries.
Kelvin is a 12-year-old boy and the youngest of nine children in his family. Two of his older siblings have already finished high school and are now married. His mother is a small-scale farmer who sells maize and beans. His parents separated a long time ago and his father does not support their family. They rely on help from their local church. Kelvin was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles remains undescended. If left untreated, Kelvin will have an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, or fertility problems in the future. Kelvin is receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH). He is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on June 8th and AMH is requesting $561 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Kelvin’s mother shared, “I am happy that one of my sons noticed this early enough, but at the same time I’m sad that I cannot afford to cater for his surgery. I am requesting any financial help that can help my son get treated.”
Dylan is a bright 12-year-old student who enjoys reading and playing football. He is the only child in his family and his mother is a single mom who works for the county government part-time. In 2015, Dylan's left foot began to bend slightly. As Dylan has grown, the leg has worsened, affecting his mobility. When playing with friends and running around during football, he often falls. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help. On June 6th, Dylan is scheduled to undergo angular deformity correction surgery. After the surgery, he will be able to walk well and play again without any difficulty. Now, AMH is requesting $1,224 to fund Dylan's surgery. Dylan's mother shared,“ I am appealing for support to help my son undergo surgery, thank you so much."
Sut is a 30-year-old who lives with his family in a refugee camp. His mother is a shop vendor who sells snacks in front of their home. Sut and his brother-in-law used to work as agriculture day laborers, but can no longer leave the camp to find work since the camp is on lockdown after the outbreak of COVID-19. Since then, Sut has been helping out with household chores and looks after his nephew. The income they receive from selling snacks in addition to the food card they receive from a support organization is just enough to cover their daily needs. He and his family receive free basic health care in the camp. Since April 2020, Sut has had an inguinal hernia. This hernia causes him pain in the right side of his groin and he feels a burning sensation when he urinates. If he walks for a longer period of time, he will experience pain in the right side of his groin. Occasionally, when the pain worsens, he is not able to help out with household chores. Fortunately, on April 29th, Sut will undergo hernia repair surgery at Mae Sot General Hospital, our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Sut's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on April 29th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Sut shared, "Sometimes I experience such severe pain that I cannot bear it anymore. I cannot do anything and I cannot help my family with anything due to my condition. My wife left me because of my condition and I do not have anyone that can help me. When I learned that a donor could help pay for my surgery, I felt like they had saved me from death."
Salim is an 18-year-old student and the oldest in a family of two children, with a younger sister who is seven years old. His mother hawks mandazi (fried dough) for a living and sometimes sells cosmetics to supplement the family's income. Their family lives together in a single room. Salim has profound hearing loss in his right ear and severe sensorineural hearing loss in his left ear. When he was two years old, Salim's mother discovered that he was unable to speak well and that he had a small wound on his right ear. Salim has visited several healthcare facilities through the years for treatment and speech therapy, but he still has difficulty hearing and communicating. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Salim to get a hearing aid for his left ear. He is scheduled to receive his treatment and be fitted for the hearing aid on March 23rd. Now, his family needs help raising $748 to fund the cost of this care and device. Salim's mother shared, “his hearing condition and speech problem are affecting his studies, and he is always sad and secluded. He is suspicious and scared of making friends. He needs this hearing aid to hear his teachers in school.”
In late January, the Muinde family from Kenya was blessed with their firstborn child, a daughter they named Emmaculate. Emmaculate's mother works in a mobile money shop and Emmaculate's father has a small electronics shop. They live in a small rented house in Nakuru, and are able to use their income to cover most of their family's basic needs. They learned that Emmaculate was born with a rare form of craniosynostosis, which meant that her eyes were not fully formed and her pupil was not visible in both of her eyes. A few days after her birth, Emmaculate was reviewed at her local clinic, and the doctor referred Emmaculate to a nearby facility for further examination. Ultimately, Emmaculate was seen by the doctors at our Medical Partner Care Center BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital (BKKH). On March 1st, Emmaculate will undergo a craniotomy in order to release the pressure in her brain. However, Emmaculate’s parents are not able to cover the amount needed for her surgery. Emmaculate’s father says, “When I was told about my child’s condition and the treatment required, my heart sank as we could not afford any of this treatment. As a family, we are requesting financial help.”
Scholastica is a 6-month-old baby girl from Tanzania. She is the last born in a family of six children. Scholastica was born a healthy child but, at four months of age, her mother noticed her head was growing very fast and she was not able to support it. They could not afford the cost of seeking care at the regional hospital at the time. Scholastica's parents are small scale farmers and work hard to make ends meet with their income. Eventually, they were able to get some money from relatives and took her back to the regional hospital. There, Scholastica was diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. Without treatment, Scholastica will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Unfortunately, she was not able to get an appointment at the regional hospital for a long time. As time went on, Scholastica's condition grew worse. Her head increased in size and her eyes began rolling down. Though they were concerned, her parents could not raise money to seek an alternative hospital for care. Eventually, their friend referred them to our medical partner's care center, ALMC Plaster House. Their friends and neighbours supported them with bus fare for the two-day journey to the hospital. Now, she is scheduled for an ETV surgery to treat her condition, and the family appeals for financial support for this procedure. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of ETV surgery for Scholastica that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 25th and will drain the excess fluid from Scholastica's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. It will also reduce the likelihood of severe fevers, vomiting, and potential brain damage. With proper treatment, Scholastica will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Scholastica’s mother shared, "We travelled for two days because we were told there is hope for my daughter to get help. Please help save her.”
Joan is a 15-year-old student from Kenya. She is the third born in a family of five children, and is very calm and tends to be quiet. Joan is a hard-working, optimistic girl who hopes to excel in school, and she is currently in Grade Seven. Her dream is to become a teacher in future. In the second week of December, Joan was involved in a road accident as a pillion passenger which almost cost her her life. Her vehicle came into a head-on collision with a car, and she lost consciousness for more than three hours. Ultimately, Joan suffered a severe femur fracture and skin lacerations. Because she could not lift her leg, she was put on traction to bring stability to her leg. She is in pain on her right leg and unable to walk. Now, she needs to undergo a fracture repair procedure to heal her injury and avoid risk of further complications. Unfortunately, this procedure is costly for Joan and her family. Her mother is a potato farmer, while her father is ill and currently unable to work in the farm. Joan's mother is the sole breadwinner of the family, and she has found it hard to educate her children due to the family's income. Joan and her family live in a mud-built house that is not in good condition and they are unable to repair it due to lack of money. The family has raised some money for the surgery thus far, but needs more financial support to raise the total cost. They appeal for financial help. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On December 17th, Joan will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. After she is fully recovered, Joan will be able to walk with ease and will be able to pursue her dream of becoming a teacher. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,016 to fund this procedure. Joan shared, "My prayer is to finish school, have a good job and support my mum and my siblings."
Jackline is a 13-year-old girl from Kenya and the fifth born in a family of six children. Her father works as a farmer, while her mother is a housewife. In school, Jackline is a humble and hardworking Class 8 student. She aspires to be a doctor in the future so that she can be of help to her village, where the community feels they are marginalized and lack facilities like hospitals and schools. Jackline was born with a condition known as bilateral genu valgum, or knock knees. This condition has severely affected her mobility. She cannot walk for a long distance or play with her friends, and this has greatly affected her self-esteem. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner's care center can help. On December 1st, Jackline is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on her left leg, and then will subsequently undergo surgery on her right leg. The surgery will be of great impact because, once recovered, she will be able to walk well without pain and discomfort. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,224 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Jackline shared, "I will be very happy if my legs are corrected and I can walk to school like my friends." Hellen, Jackline's mother, added, “We are appealing for help from well-wishers so that our daughter can walk normally.”
Naw Mar is a 35-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband, two daughters and two sons in a refugee camp on the Thai-Burma border. Four years ago, Naw Mar started to suffer from pain in the right side of her abdomen. At first, she thought the pain would disappear after she rested. When it did not, she went to the hospital in the camp run by Malteser International Thailand (MI). She received medications which helped for a bit. Two years later, the pain became severe and the right side of her abdomen also became swollen. After more medication and follow-up appointments, she was eventually admitted to Mae Sariang Hospital and received an ultrasound. The ultrasound showed that she had multiple gallstones, and she was given more medication. However, the medication did not help her much. In early June 2020, the pain in Naw Mar’s right abdomen increased. After she went to the camp’s hospital, the doctor referred her to Mae Sariang Hospital again, where the doctor told her that she would need to have surgery to remove the gallstones. Since Mae Sariang Hospital doctors could not perform this surgery, she was again referred her to Chiang Mai Hospital. However, the high cost of surgery proved difficult, so she was referred to our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), for assistance with accessing treatment. Currently, Naw Mar has constant pain in her right abdomen that is only manageable through pain medication. Her right abdomen is also swollen, and she suffers from back pain as well. When the pain in her abdomen is excruciating, she develops a headache and high blood pressure. Naw Mar is a homemaker, while her two daughters and her youngest son go to school. Her oldest son helps her with household chores. Her husband works as an agricultural day laborer, but has been unable to find work for the past month. While their family does receive a cash card each month for food support, it is not enough to cover their daily expenses and they struggle to make ends meet despite receiving free health care and education in the refugee camp. Their family is appealing for financial support. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Naw Mar's surgery. On October 25th, she will undergo a cholecystectomy at our medical partner’s care center. Once recovered, Naw Mar will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain and her quality of life will improve. Naw Mar shared, "After I receive treatment, I want to work for an organisation [NGO] in the camp so that we [my family] can have an income. Right now, I have no pocket money and I cannot borrow money from any one because we have no way of paying them back. I appreciate any support you can provide.”
Su is 14-year-old girl from Thailand. She lives with her parents in a village in Take Province, Thailand. After Su completed grade five she was unable to continue her schooling since there are no middle or high schools in their area and her parents could not afford to send her to school in nearby Burma. Today she and her parents are agricultural day laborers, each earning 150 baht (approx. 5 USD) per day. In the past, they used to have enough work but for the past four months they are not able to work as much as they would like to. Due to COVID-19 restrictions on the number of people who can gather, employers are only able to hire five to seven workers in a day. To ensure that everyone has a chance to work in their community, all the day laborers take turns working in a week. Around April or May 2020, Su noticed that she was not feeling well. When she explained how she felt to her mother, she was reassured that this was normal. However, around September 15th, Su started to suffer from terrible lower back and abdominal pain. When she went to Mae Tao Clinic she received an ultrasound which indicated a mass in her uterus. She was then referred to Mae Sot Hospital where she received another ultrasound and physical examination. The doctor then confirmed there was a growing mass in her uterus. The doctor told her they will be able to remove the mass with surgery. Su sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. She is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on October 1st and is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once she recovers, Su hopes to help her parents out financially. “I will go back to work with my mother and I will save money,” she said. “I will build my parents a new house on our land in Burma. I will also learn to sew and do that [becoming a seamstress] for the rest of my life in my own shop."
Meet Esther, a 13-year-old girl, from a village in Kenya who is in need of treatment for genu varus, a knee condition that impacts her ability to walk. Her aunt told us that Esther likes reading and is very active at home. She helps her mother in doing household chores. Esther came to the hospital with her aunt, her grandmother, and a friend from the village. They told us that her mother could not make it to the hospital since she has a young child and she also has a disability on her feet. Esther is the oldest in a family of two children, with her family hailing from a village in Machakos County. Her mother is a housewife while her father is a farmer. They shared that their family lives in a two-roomed mud-house. Esther was born a healthy child, however at the age of one years old, her family noticed un unusual bowing of her legs. She could also feel pain. Since then her condition has continued to worsen. Currently, Esther is a sixth grade student. She often feels pain while walking, she cannot walk far or carry heavy loads. Her self esteem has also been very low which has affected her studies as well. Surgery will be of great impact to her because she will be able to walk, continue with her education, help her mother, and most of it all her self esteem will improve meaning she will be able to interact with other children comfortably. “If there is any kind of help to help our girl, we will gladly appreciate it,” Esther’s aunt told us.
Chan is a 20-year-old clothing factory worker from Cambodia. He has four older brothers and two older sisters. After work, he enjoys listening to music and helping his family with the housework. Three months ago, Chan was in a motorcycle accident where he fractured his right leg. His leg is now swollen and painful, and he cannot walk without support. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On March 10th, Chan will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. This procedure will allow Chan's injuries to heal properly and he will be able to walk again. "I hope that my leg will get better after surgery and it will heal completely," he said.