Alexander joined Watsi on May 3rd, 2016. Five years ago, Alexander joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Alexander's most recent donation supported Lucy, a 31-year-old preschool teacher from Kenya, to fund a debridement and skin graft procedure.
Alexander has funded healthcare for 64 patients in 11 countries.
Alexander has funded healthcare for 64 patients in 11 countries.
Lucy is a 31-year-old preschool teacher and a mother of two children. Her husband is a boda boda taxi driver who earns about two dollars a day, and the family lives together in their ancestral home. In June 2021, Lucy sustained a vertebral fracture and was admitted to the hospital for observation and spinal decompression. She underwent spine surgery and was discharged back home. At a follow-up appointment, doctors noticed that she was having difficulties breathing and walking, and that her surgical wound was infected. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Lucy receive treatment for the infection. On July 28th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to help her heal and prevent sepsis. Now, Lucy needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Lucy shared, “I am unable to walk and even stopped working due to my condition. I need the surgery to be able to recover and get back to normal.”
Allan is 17-year-old student and an aspiring doctor. He is the fifth born in a family of six children. He shared that he sadly lost his father in 2011 and his mother is elderly. He depends on his older siblings, but they do not have stable jobs. Their family lives in their ancestral home and does small-scale farming to grow food to eat. Allan has a urethral stricture and is currently on dialysis. He feels unwell and his condition has affected his studies. He has visited several healthcare facilities over the past year in search of treatment. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Allan to receive treatment. On July 1, he will undergo an urethroplasty, or urethra repair. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,144 procedure. Allan shared, "I want to be a doctor and I am determined to do so. I even opted to sit for my exams despite the pain and my condition. I hope this sickness does not stop my ambitions.”
Rexa is a 47-year-old mother from Malawi. She has four children, and her sister lives together with their family. Rexa has been selling second-hand clothes called kaunjika locally, but had to pause her business last December due to her health condition. Rexa’s husband is an electrician and is currently unemployed. Two of their children are in college, and they shared that their family is struggling to pay their school fees. Rexa also cares for her mom, who lives in the village. Last December, Rexa started having sharp pains in her abdomen radiating to the back and both legs. Her husband has taken her to many hospitals to figure out the cause of her pain, and it has cost their family a significant amount of money. After being evaluated for peptic ulcers, heart, liver, and kidney problems to no avail, she finally was diagnosed in April with uterine fibroids. Fibroids are abnormal growths that develop in or on a woman's uterus. These growths may become quite large and cause severe abdominal pain and heavy bleeding. If left untreated, fibroids can continue to grow, both in size and number, and could result in increased heavy bleeding or a fatal case of anemia. Rexa was referred to Partners in Hope Medical Center for further review and the gynecologist recommended that she undergo a hysterectomy, which will remove her uterus and cervix and hopefully cure her of this pain. However, she has no insurance and is unable to pay for the cost of her care due to her family's earnings. Rexa will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare. She is scheduled to undergo a hysterectomy on May 28th, and African Mission Healthcare is requesting $1,363 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. After the surgery, Rexa is hopeful that she will stop having abdominal pains and can return to normal life, which can help her resume her business and support her family members again. Rexa's husband shared, “I am excited that finally there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel. When my wife feels pain, I also feel pain and I fail to go and look for work to support the family. I strongly believe that this surgery will bring an end to our misery and sleepless nights. Now we will stop begging relatives for support with even transport money to the hospital, I am very grateful to the donors!”
John is a 16-year-old and a bright seventh grade student. He is the youngest of two children and lives with his grandmother. He's also found a mentor in his church pastor who offers guidance and counseling. His family relies on their local church for food and living expenses. John was born with hypospadias, a congenital abnormality that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH) is helping John to receive treatment. John is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on April 30th at AMH's care center. Now, AMH is requesting $735 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. John’s grandmother shared, “My grandson has had a traumatizing childhood which left him with poor self-esteem. Finding out about this condition made the situation worse, and his low self-esteem is more visible. I am hopeful that through getting this surgery, his self-esteem will improve and slowly but surely my grandson will be happy again.”
Duncan is a 28-year-old man from Kenya. He is currently unemployed. Both of his parents are elderly and are farmers. Because of his current condition, he lives with his relatives who help him visit the hospital regularly for checkups. Duncan currently has tinnitus in his right ear, which causes him to have reduced hearing. His symptoms began in early 2010 after a road traffic accident, which also caused him a spine injury. He is currently still waiting to receive spine surgery. A few weeks after the accident, Duncan started having ear drainage, and visited a local hospital in his hometown for treatment. His ear eventually recovered, but the pain and infection reappeared two years later in 2012. Gradually, Duncan became unable to hear voices well, and currently he is not able to hear using the right ear. Doctors have recommended that he get a hearing aid to restore his hearing to its normal levels and improve his quality of life. However, Duncan cannot afford the cost of the hearing aids. His National Health Insurance Fund coverage cannot cover the cost of both his spine surgery and this treatment for his hearing loss. He currently relies on well-wishers to pay for his medical bills. Duncan appeals for financial support. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Duncan receive his hearing aids on March 31st. This will cost $748, and he needs help raising money. Duncan shared, “I am losing my hearing at a tender age, my mobility is also threatened and I am unable to afford the increasing cost of medical care. I need support to get this treatment so that I may hear well again. Thank you for your support.”
Nehimia is a 1-year-old from Ethiopia. He is a sweet, playful boy and the first child to his parents. Nehimia loves listening to music, and watching animation movies. His dad is a gym trainer, but his income was affected as a result of the closure of gyms during the pandemic. His mom is a housewife and also has been unable to work during the pandemic, though she used to work in a small boutique. His family lives together in a government house and they pay a small fee for rent. Nehimia was born with hypospadias, a congenital abnormality that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility. Fortunately, Nehimia is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on March 4th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Nehimia's mother shared, “I hope my child will heal and grow and become a minister in the house of God.”
Kyaw is a one-year-old boy from Thailand. He lives with his father, grandmother, uncle and brother in a village in Tak Province, Thailand. His father and uncle are day laborers while his grandmother is a homemaker. Kyaw’s 13-year-old brother also helps out with household chores. In the middle of November 2020, Kyaw developed a fever, cough and difficulty breathing. His grandmother treated him with traditional medicine but Kyaw did not get better. His grandmother then took him to a clinic in the village, where he received oral medication for a week. Once he completed the medication, Kyaw still was not better. His grandmother then took him to another clinic where he received a blood test, fluid through an intravenous (IV) infusion, and oxygen. After the doctor checked his results, Kyaw was diagnosed with anemia and he was admitted. He received a blood transfusion, but Kyaw still did not get better. The medic then referred him to another hospital where he was also admitted and received tests and treatment. When Kyaw did not get better, the doctor referred him to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH). After Kyaw arrived at MSH in an ambulance in early December, he was admitted. At the hospital, Kyaw received an x-ray, oxygen and antibiotics. After checking his x-ray result, the doctor diagnosed Kyaw with congenital pulmonary airway malformation (CPAM), where a mass forms during pregnancy in one of the lungs of the fetus. The doctor told Kyaw’s grandmother that Kyaw could have a mass or cyst in his right lung in addition to a build-up of fluid in that lung. The doctor then inserted a tube into his right lung which was connected to a bag to drain the fluid. After the procedure, the doctor told Kyaw’s grandmother that they would remove the tube when no more fluid would drain from his lungs. When Kyaw did not get better, the doctor referred him to Chiang Mai Hospital for further treatment. Doctors want Kyaw 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. After a long journey and many treatments, this scan will hopefully help doctors diagnose his condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $693 to cover the cost of Kyaw's CT scan and hospital care, scheduled for February 1st. “I want to see him free from this suffering,” said Kyaw’s grandmother. “Once Kyaw recovers and is older, I will send him to school. I want him to become an educated person because I do not want him to work as a day labourer and work under the hot sun like his father.”
Horn is a 55-year-old father of four. He has been married for 33 years and together they have one son, three daughters, and seven grandchildren. Horn's wife is also a farmer. In his free time Horn enjoys doing exercises, taking care of his grandchildren, and doing house work. When he was young Horn fell off a truck and never saw a doctor after the accident. Over time, his right hip pain worsened and Khmer traditional medicine treatments did not improve his condition. When Horn arrived at our medical partner Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), doctors noted his leg lengths are unequal and his right leg has limited range of motion. He cannot walk and is in pain. Fortunately, at CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Horn of his pain and allow him to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for December 24th, and Horn needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. Horn said, "I hope I can finally walk again after surgery so I can work without pain and support my family."
Gabriel is a 46-year-old refugee from South Sudan. He is a father of six children aged between 2-19 years old. Currently, Gabriel and his family are staying in the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya fleeing civil conflict in their home country. In June 2020, Gabriel had an accident and broke his arm. He underwent surgery in his hometown of Juba in the same month and was discharged home from the hospital. However, his left arm started developing further complications, and he was forced to seek treatment in Kenya after his family left Sudan. Gabriel has chronic osteomyelitis of the left humerus and infected hardware in his arm. Gabriel has undergone 3 surgeries, including humeral debridement, hardware removal, and bone cementing. Doctors recommend another urgent sequestrectomy surgery on his left humerus to remove the infected hardware. If left untreated, he risks impediment of blood circulation within the bone leading to bone death and even amputation. Unfortunately, this procedure is costly for Gabriel and his family. He does not currently have a job, nor any medical coverage. Due to the support of well-wishers, friends, and family, Gabriel has been able to raise some money for his earlier medical and surgical concerns. However, he was forced to postpone his surgery due to lack of funds. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Gabriel receive treatment. He is scheduled to undergo a sequestrectomy on December 2nd at our medical partner's care center. This procedure will cost $1,500, and he appeals for financial help to fund the cost of his care. Gabriel shared, “I am in so much pain and there have been so many surgeries for me. I need assistance on this one.”
Ruth is a 15-year-old from Kenya who has special needs. She is a student at Limuru Cheshire Home (a center for girls with physical/mental disabilities) and was admitted to the institute in 2019. She was born into a family of two, being the firstborn followed by a brother who lives with her aunt. Her mother, who was a single mom, died when Ruth and her brother were young. This led to the two being separated and since Ruth is more vulnerable, she was left under the care of their grandmother. Together they live in a two-roomed house and they depend on the local community for upkeep. Life has become more difficult now that Ruth's grandmother cannot move around even for firewood since she has to ensure Ruth’s safety. Ruth has clubfoot that makes her walking extremely difficult. Last year she was brought to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center CURE Hospital, where she was recommended for surgery. Since her grandmother cannot afford the treatment, her surgery has not yet taken place. The surgery would highly enhance Ruth's mobility as well as improve her self-esteem and ability to socialize with her peers. Fortunately, surgeons at our partner hospital will perform clubfoot repair surgery on October 12th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund Ruth's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily. “I will appreciate any kind of support give to make my granddaughter walk comfortably,” Ruth’s grandmother told us.
Soe is a 13-year-old from Burma. She lives with her parents and two siblings in a village in Taninthary Division. Her brother goes to school while her little sister is still too young to go. Soe was not able to go back to school this year, after she completed grade seven, due to her illness. Her father works as a tenant on Soe grandparents’ farm and gets to keep half of the harvest. Soe's mother used to be a vegetable vendor but has stopped working to look after Soe. In May 2019, Soe fell sick with a high fever and a severe cough. She was brought to a clinic where she received a physical examination. The doctor informed Soe's mother that she has a heart condition and urged them to go to a hospital in Yangon. Her mother followed the doctor’s advice and took her to Bahosi Hospital in Yangon on June 25th, 2019. There she received an echocardiogram (echo), x-ray, and a blood test. After her results came in, the doctor diagnosed her with mitral valve regurgitation, a problem with one of the valves in her heart, and told Soe's mother that she needs to have surgery that will cost 8,000,000 kyat (approx. 8,000 USD). Unable to afford her treatment, Soe instead received medication for the next four months. Although she took the medication, Soe did not feel better. One day, their neighbor told them to bring Soe to another hospital in Yangon. Soe's mother followed their advice and took her to Vitoria Hospital in Yangon. Soe received another echo, blood test, and an x-ray. A doctor at the hospital then told Soe's mother to come back the next month, without explaining why. When they traveled back in January 2020 for her appointment, the doctor told them to meet a cardiac nurse at another hospital in Yangon. When meeting that nurse, she told them about Watsi's Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) and that they may be able to assist her in accessing further treatment. With the help of BCMF, Soe went to Chiang Mai in March 2020. She was admitted at Lampang Hospital on July 25th, 2020 and received surgery to repair her mitral valve two days later. She was discharged home in August and received a follow-up appointment for a month later. When she returned for her follow-up appointment, she was readmitted to the hospital. She received a number of tests including an echo and an electrocardiogram. Once the doctor reviewed her test results, she was told that the sutures from her surgery were loose and that she would need to receive surgery to replace her mitral valve. Since her first surgery, Soe no longer has a cough. However, she is pale. Her mother is worried because Soe has not gained weight nor has her condition gradually improved like other heart patients after surgery. “After she recovers, I want to send her to school until she becomes a teacher," said Soe's mother. "When she plays with her friends, she pretends she is a teacher and that she is teaching her friends. Even when she felt sick, she would try to go to school and she always studied a lot. Her teacher loves her. But Soe is always worried that she will fail her exams.”
Emily is a small business woman from Kajiando County in Kenya. She is a widow with two children; one in primary school and the other in secondary school. Emily sells street food to be able to raise her children well and meet their family's daily needs. In 2012, Emily began to experience troubling symptoms, including loss of weight and she gets exhausted very quickly. She was diagnosed with a goitre, an abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland and needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Emily receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on September 7th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $657, and she and her family need help raising money. “It has been years of waiting and worry. The goitre is now big and I am worried it will extend. I hope for help and successful treatment so that I can live a normal life again taking care of my children. I am their only hope,” said Emily.