Jeff joined Watsi on November 27th, 2020. Eleven months ago, Jeff joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Jeff's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Victor, a three-year-old boy from Tanzania, to fund corrective surgery.
Jeff has funded healthcare for 11 patients in 6 countries.
Jeff has funded healthcare for 11 patients in 6 countries.
Victor is a three-year-old boy and the youngest in a family of four children. Victor’s father is the sole provider for the family through his job at a tobacco factory. Victor was diagnosed with bilateral Genu Valgus, which means that his legs have bowed inwards forming knocked knees. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, walking is difficult and painful for him. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Victor to receive treatment. On September 14th, Victor will undergo corrective surgery at AMH's care center and now, AMH is requesting $880 to fund Victor's procedure and care. Treatment will hopefully restore Victor's mobility, allowing him to participate in a variety of activities and greatly decreasing his risk of future complications. Victor’s mother shared, "we have been informed that surgery will correct his legs but the cost is too high for us to afford."
Lightness is a hard-working student and the ninth born child in a family of ten children. Lightness loves to help her mother with home chores and looking after her nieces and nephews. Lightness is currently in technical college where she is studying to be an electrician. Lightness's parents are small-scale farmers and livestock keepers, and her mother also sells vegetables and mandazi, a type of fried bread. Three years ago, Lightness was at the fireplace helping her mother cook mandazi when she lost conscious and fell into the pot of hot oil. Her mother rescued her and rushed her to the hospital. The accident has left Lightness with contractures as a result of the burns around her neck. Contractures are a condition in which the muscles are shortened and hardened, and in Lightness's case they limit her neck movement. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMH), is helping Lightness receive treatment. On August 5th, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery to help her move her neck freely. However, Lightness's family needs help to fund this $639 procedure. Lightness says, "I feel bad seeing myself in this condition, I try to cover my neck because I don’t like how people feel sorry for me. I will be happy and grateful if I can have my neck corrected."
Chum is a 65-year-old farmer and mother from Cambodia. She has one son and four daughters, and many grandchildren. Chum lives with her husband and their eldest daughter. She enjoys taking care of her grandchildren and listening to the monks pray on the radio. Four years ago, Chum developed a cataract in both eyes, causing her sensitivity to light, blurry vision, and tearing. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Chum learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled with her daughter seeking treatment. On June 9th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $425 procedure. Chum shared, "it makes me so happy that after my surgery I will be able to see well. I am looking forward to going outside on my own, helping my daughter plant crops and cook, and take care of my grandchildren."
Mengsim is a 49-year-old tour guide from Cambodia. He is married and lives in the province with his wife and two sons. Mengsim's wife sells soft drinks from their home. In December 2020, Mengsim was in a car accident that caused paralysis of his right hand. This injury, a branchial plexus nerve injury, can cause him to lose feeling and control of his shoulder, arm, and hand. Mengsim is unable to lift his arm and he cannot work. Mengsim traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On June 23rd, he will undergo a brachial plexus repair surgery. After recovery, He will be able to use his arm again. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $696 to fund this procedure. Mengsim shares, "I am thankful that I will be able to return to work when my arm heals so I can support my family."
Veronica is a cheerful, married 29-year-old mother of two children. Veronica shared that she left school in primary school, because her parents could not afford her school fees. Her husband earns a living through helping people lift heavy luggage at a local bus station, and he also does a variety of other jobs when he has the opportunity. Veronica enjoys spending time with her two children, ages two and four; they give her joy and fulfillment as a mother. Her family lives in a one-bedroom rented house. In 2009, Veronica developed a swelling on her neck. She ignored it, thinking it would soon go away, but in 2014, the swelling grew. In 2015, she was diagnosed with a goiter, or enlarged thyroid, and surgery was recommended. As the goiter continues to grow, she has experienced coughing, difficulty breathing and difficulty swallowing. She can no longer sing in church or carry heavy things on her head, and she shared that she can no longer eat hard foods like msima, a Malawian staple. Veronica also told us that the condition has changed her appearance and has impacted her self-esteem. Veronica has visited the government hospital more than 15 times since her diagnosis, but her surgery was always rescheduled. Two weeks ago, she went to a different hospital and was referred to our medical partner's care center, where a surgeon recommended a thyroidectomy. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Veronica receive treatment. On May 25th, Veronica will undergo a thyroidectomy at AMH's care center. Now, AMH is requesting $1,015 to fund her procedure. The surgery is expected to improve her life and heal her symptoms. With a hopeful smile, Veronica shared, “I am overwhelmed with this opportunity to be sponsored for this operation. After the operation, I hope to live normally and care for my children properly. I believe I should be able to eat hard msima [the Malawi staple food] or raw cassava and potatoes which I now miss greatly. I look forward to sleeping without struggles after this surgery, much appreciation!”
Phuon is a 27-year-old tuk tuk driver. He's married and has three sons. In his free time, Phuon shared that he enjoys listening to romantic music and pop songs, playing volleyball, and relaxing at home. On March 14th, Phuon was shocked on both hands in an accident with electrical wires. This badly damaged the tissue and after three days in a government hospital he ran out of money to cover treatment. He is in pain and cannot use his hands to hold anything. When Phuon learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for two and a half hours seeking treatment. On April 22nd, surgeons at Children's Surgical Centre will perform a debridement procedure to remove the dead tissue to preserve and return the function of his hands. Now, he needs help to fund this $787 procedure. Phuon shared, "I hope after surgery I can use my hands again and get back to work to support my family."
Say is a four-year-old boy who lives with his mother, brother, sister, and grandfather in a refugee camp on the border of Thailand. His father returned to Burma to visit his village last year. When Thailand closed its borders because of the COVID-19 outbreak, his father could not come back to the camp. Say's grandfather is an assistant pastor in the camp and he receives his income through donations when he visits his church members for home prayers. Say goes to nursery school while both of his siblings go to primary school. His mother does all the household chores. Every month, their household receives some funding to purchase rations in the camp, which is just enough for their basic needs. They receive free healthcare and education in the camp, but specialized procedures like the care that Say needs are often not possible. In early February 2021, Say developed an inguinal hernia on his right side, which has resulted in swelling and pain. His mother has noticed that since he developed the hernia, his appetite has decreased, as eating more can sometimes cause additional discomfort. Fortunately, on March 25th, he 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 Say's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on March 25th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Say's mother said, "When I heard that my son needs surgery, I became so worried because he is the youngest in our family." She is eager for the surgery to be complete and for Say to have healed.
Saw Wah is a 16-month-old boy who lives with his parents, two sisters, and three aunts in a refugee camp in Thailand. His mother looks after the household chores while his father works as a security guard in the camp. Despite having free basic health care and education in the camp, their family is working hard each month to make end meets. When Saw Wah was three months old, his mother noticed a bulge on the left side of his groin, which was more pronounced whenever he cried. Two to three days after she noticed the bulge, it disappeared. Earlier this month, Saw Wah's abdomen became distended and his left groin grew swollen. He developed a fever, started to vomit, and was constipated. At first, the swelling started to come down but three days later, the swelling stopped decreasing in size. Doctors want to perform 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 Saw Wah's condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Saw Wah's mother shared, "I just want him to be freed from this pain."
Tuhirirwe and her husband are small-scale farmers from Uganda. She is a mother to four children with two boys and two girls, all are married and are small scale farmers. She dropped school at primary six but never proceeded due to lack of school fees. Three years ago, Tuhirirwe began experiencing abnormal abdominal pain. She has been diagnosed with cervical polyp, premalignant cervical lesion, and left oophritis. She needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $219 to fund Tuhirirwe's surgery. On August 18th, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Tuhirirwe will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain. Tuhirirwe says, “I hope that all will be well once I undergo surgery with your support. I expect better health and hope to resume with farming after I have fully recovered.”
Tho is 47-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She and her husband have four daughters together. Two of her daughters are married, and Tho now has three grandchildren in primary school. She works in the fields with her husband and her two unmarried daughters. She loves to cook, and uses the vegetables from her garden. Tho was in a motor accident eight years ago, resulting in a fractured left tibia. She went to a provincial hospital to receive treatment, but her fracture never healed correctly. The condition of her leg has deteriorated over time and now she can no longer walk unaided. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On June 3rd, Tho will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. With a successful surgery, the bone will heal properly and she will regain her ability to walk. Tho said, "After this surgery, I hope that my leg will finally be better, and I will be strong enough to walk by myself. I don't like to have my family take care of me all the time, so with no more pain, I can help them again."
Jane is a 70-year-old kiosk owner from Kenya. She is a former civil servant who was released from government duty in 2000. Since then, she has since been running a small kiosk that sells vegetables and other groceries. In March 2019, Jane suffered a fracture on her left distal femur with intraarticular extension, meaning the break crossed into the surface of a joint. To remedy this, she underwent surgery with a locking plate. However, the fracture has not healed properly, which threatens her mobility. Doctors are now recommending a another fracture repair surgery to prevent future complications of her condition, including inability to walk. However, this procedure is costly for Jane. The profit she earns from her small business is not enough to cover her basic needs, let alone her medical bills. Jane has been relying on a small government pension to get by. She separated from her husband over 30 years ago and has since been raising her only son alone. Her son is an adult, but lacks a stable job and works as a casual laborer to make ends meet. Thus, Jane is appealing for financial help. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On November 11th, Jane will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. After recovering, she will no longer have difficulties in walking or be in constant pain. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Jane shared, “I need this surgery to get back on my feet. I am the one taking care of my grandkids since my son has no job. This procedure will help me be able to go get vegetables from the market so that I can sell and continue my business.”