Margaret joined Watsi on December 3rd, 2019. Two years ago, Margaret joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Margaret's most recent donation traveled 1,900 miles to support Abigail, a three-year-old girl from Haiti, to fund surgery to repair a birth defect in her heart.
Margaret has funded healthcare for 37 patients in 8 countries.
Margaret has funded healthcare for 37 patients in 8 countries.
Abigail is a bright three-year-old girl. She lives with her parents and one older brother in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince, which is the capital of Haiti. Abigail was born with a condition called patent ductus arteriosus. The deformity causes blood to leak through a hole between two major blood vessels near the heart. That makes it difficult for her small heart to function properly and can lead to tiredness, shortness of breath and restricted growth as she gets older. Fortunately, the condition is highly treatable with surgery. Our medical partner Haiti Cardiac Alliance has arranged for Abigail, her family and an escort to travel to the Dominican Republic, where doctors will use a catheter to plug the hole near her heart. Abigail should then be able to go on to live a full, healthy life. Another charity, Gift of Life International, is also contributing $5,000 toward the procedure, which is scheduled to take place on May 24th. This $1,500 will help fund Abigail's life-changing surgery and related care. Abigail's mother says, "We would like to say thank you to everyone who is helping to heal our daughter's heart!"
SokChea is a 57-year-old farmer. She and her husband farm their ancestral land; they have seven children who are all married and help them with the farming. She enjoys spending time with the family and cooking for her grandchildren. When SokChea was about ten years old, she developed chronic ear discharge from both ears. Sometimes she would experience headaches, dizziness, and ringing in her ears. The infection she had caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in both ears to perforate. Now she cannot communicate clearly with others because it is hard for her to hear. She shared that this feels embarrassing for her so she shies away from speaking with strangers. Also, the medications she has used are costly for the family. SokChea traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 10th, she will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in both ears. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforations. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $913 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. "I hope that my hearing will improve and I won't have to spend money to keep buying ear drops," SokChea told us.
Daw Moo is a 58-year-old woman. She moved to Thailand from Burma and lives with her daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughter. She helps with household chores and looking after her granddaughter. She has three other children that study in schools in Burma. In her free time, Daw Moo loves to meditate and pray for her children and her family. In late December, Daw Moo was diagnosed with a cataract in her left eye. She has blurry vision and it is difficult for her to do her daily activities, like cooking, cleaning and washing clothes. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), is helping Daw Moo receive treatment. On March 2nd, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Daw Moo's natural lens and replace it with an intraocular lens implant. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly and go about her daily activities. Now, she needs help raising $1,500 to fund her procedure and care. Daw Moo shared, "I feel uncomfortable seeing with only one eye. I will be very happy to do my daily chores after I have regained vision in my left eye. Thank you to the organizations who found donors for me. Without your help, I could never afford to pay for my surgery. My daughter also cannot pay for me as she has to support her younger siblings’ school fees."
Meet Enock, a twelve-year-old playful boy in grade five. Enock is the youngest in a family of five. His father is an electrician while his mother does maize farming in their village to help support their family. Enock's family lives in a two-roomed iron sheet-built house in their small piece of land. Two months ago, Enock sustained a severe injury while he was playing with friends in school. He was taken to the nearest hospital where a cast was placed and was scheduled for follow-up. Seven weeks later, he was still having pain and he could not even move his leg. That is when his family sought a second opinion at our medical partner's care center Kapsowar Hospital. They visited the hospital and after X-ray imaging, a closed right femur fracture was revealed which needs surgery to heal. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On February 1st, Enock will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. With treatment, Enock will be able to walk again and play with friends at school. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,145 to fund this procedure. Enock's father says, “He has so much pain, I feel sorry for him. I hope he gets treated and feels better and will be well again."
Patrick is a 31-year-old laborer and the fourth born child in a family of eight children. He grew up with his mother and siblings, and sadly, his father passed away when he and his siblings were young. He is married and he and his wife have three children, including two children in public primary school and another who is not yet school aged. He makes a living by digging and weeding on farms. His wife works as a casual laborer, but currently stays at home with their youngest child. The family has a small piece of land where they grow maize, beans, and potatoes for the family's consumption. Recently, Patrick was hit by a motorbike. He injured his right foot in the accident and was taken to a local clinic where an x-ray was taken and a cast was applied. However, over the next few days, his leg became swollen and he was in pain, so he visited a hospital for further evaluation. He was diagnosed with a complex distal tibia fracture and requires surgery. He is currently using crutches because walking is difficult. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help. On December 23rd, Patrick will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help the fracture in his leg to heal properly. After his foot heals, he will be able to return to work. Now, he needs help raising $1,079 to fund his procedure and care. Patrick shared, "I kindly ask for treatment so that I can go back to my daily activities for I'm the breadwinner for my family."
Sakada is a 29-year-old doctor. He's been married for one year and his first baby is due soon. In his free time Sakada enjoys playing football with his friends and colleagues. Two years ago, Sakada had an ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in his right ear to perforate. For this reason, Sakada experiences pain and discharge. He cannot communicate clearly with others, making his job at the hospital difficult. Sakada traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On November 1st, he will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in his right ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $464 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Sakada said, "I hope after the surgery my hearing will improve so I can work easily and be free of pain."
Rathana is a 25-year-old microfinance credit officer. He is the only child in his family, and his parents passed away when he was young. Now he lives with his uncle, who works as a farmer. In this free time, Rathana likes to play football with his friends. In October, Rathana was in a motor vehicle accident that caused a closed fracture of his left forearm. After the accident, he received a bamboo splint from a Khmer traditional healer. Rathana continues to experience chronic pain and difficulty moving his arm, so his neighbor recommended visiting our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre (CSC). On November 2nd, Rathana will undergo a fracture repair procedure at CSC. After surgery, he will be able to move his arm easily again. CSC is requesting $465 to help fund this procedure. Rathana shared, “I hope my left arm heals soon so I can return to work and be free of pain.”
Greyson is a 2-week-old baby boy. Greyson’s mother is a stay-at-home mother, and his father is a salesman employed in a small motorcycle spare shop. Greyson 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, Greyson 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, is requesting $1,015 to cover the cost of Greyson's spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on November 29th. This procedure will hopefully spare Greyson from the risks associated with his condition, instead allowing him to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Greyson’s mother says, “Please help us save our child’s life. I have never seen a child with spina bifida before and I am scared for my son. Please help us.”
Bekalu is a 5-year-old boy from Ethiopia. He loves sweets and playing football. He also loves his dad very much and is a good listener to him. Bekalu is the first child of his parents and he has a younger sister. His dad works as a health information technician in a government clinic. Bekalu’s mother ran a small vegetable business in the neighborhood before she gave birth to their second child. His dad’s income is significantly lower than the needs of the family so having money for healthcare costs is very challenging. Bekalu has been diagnosed with a condition called cryptorchidism. If left untreated, Bekalu has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. Bekalu will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). Fortunately, he is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on October 28th. AMHF is requesting $754 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Bekalu's dad said: “I am so happy for him getting such a medical chance. I lost my hope before I came to this hospital. I was thinking ‘What will happen to this boy?’ We couldn’t get him to school as a result of this condition. But it was beyond our expectation to get this service. Once the treatment is finalized and he is as any other boy, me and his mom will have renewed hope and we will educate him well.”
Dinavence is a small scale farmer. She is married but lives alone and her husband, who is also a small-scale farmer, lives in another district with their children. Dinavence is a mother of seven, with only three living children. 30 years ago, Dinavence began to experience troubling symptoms, including a painless neck swelling that has progressively been increasing in size. She has never visited a doctor for medical attention because she never knew that the condition was treatable. Currently, Dinavence can no longer carry a heavy load on her head such as agricultural produce, and feels uncomfortable while climbing steep slopes and hills. She experiences severe airway blockage while sleeping. One of her friends recently got treated for a similar issue and was able to refer her to Rushoroza Hospital. There Dinavence was diagnosed with a non-toxic goitre and after a review by the surgeon, a thyroidectomy is recommended. She needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse, but her family cannot afford the cost. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Dinavence receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on October 5th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $333, and she and her family need help raising money. Dinavence says, "I had lost hope of living a normal life again. I pray that I may be considered for treatment so that I may have another chance to live comfortably like others and be able to continue farming.”
Jane is a 35-year-old farmer, a single mother of two, and the 5th born child in a family of twelve. Due to the size of their family and how close-knit they are, Jane's mother commented, “all my daughters (6) have been married, gotten children, and then have come back home. I never even remember who is who and who follows the other." Jane was born with a disability and never able to attend school. Jane's mother helps to take care of her. Earlier this month, Jane was working and going through her daily activities when she slipped and fell, sustaining a fractured clavicle on her right side. Jane is in severe pain, and she is not able to go about her normal activities. Jane came to the hospital accompanied by her elderly mother and her niece, and Jane's mother shared her story with the hospital staff. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On September 16th, Jane will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF). Following the procedure, Jane will not experience pain, the fracture will heal well and she will be able to work and take care of her children as normal. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. Jane’s mother said, “I am desperate and Jane has been a great challenge to take care of even before she was sick. I kindly request help so that at least she can be well and assist herself where she can. I also wish she can be relieved of this pain.”
Isaack is an energetic 21-year-old from Kiambu County in Kenya. He is the fourth born in a family of seven. His mother works as a housewife and his father works as a small businessman and lives in western Kenya. Isaack works on construction sites and enjoys playing football during his free time. Last Sunday, Isaack was playing football with his friends when he bumped into a fellow player and fell. Instantly they knew his injury was serious because his tibial shaft assumed a C-like shape and begun to swell. Isaack was brought to Nazareth Hospital. The fracture was stabilized with a splint. Isaack was instructed to go home and await for potential surgery while the swelling went down. Upon review by the surgeon, an implant is recommended to ensure he heals. When Isaack was informed of the money required for surgery he asked the surgeon if there was any other treatment option because he had no way to raise the funds necessary and his family was not in a position to contribute to his bill. The surgeon explained that the nature of the fracture requires surgery for proper healing and referred him to the Watsi-AMH program. If not treated the fracture on Isaack’s left leg may heal with a deformity leading to reduced functionality of his left lower limb, thus affecting his mobility, which is an important for allowing him to work and earn money to support himself and his family. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner AMH can help. On September 2nd, Isaack will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. If treated, the fracture on Isaack’s left leg will heal without any deformity and allow him to walk with ease. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. Isaack remarked, “I look forward to the day I will be able to play on the football field again and go to work with ease so that I can fend for myself as I am used to.”