United States • Born on December 21st
Priska joined Watsi on October 13th, 2016. Six years ago, Priska joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Priska's most recent donation traveled 1,900 miles to support Michael, a precious 20-month-old baby from Haiti, to fund the costs for heart surgery.
Priska has funded healthcare for 79 patients in 11 countries.
Priska has funded healthcare for 79 patients in 11 countries.
Michael is a beautiful baby who likes playing with blocks and waving his arms in time to music. Michael has a cardiac condition called tricuspid atresia: he was born without one of the four valves that is normally present in the heart. As a result, blood cannot flow through his lungs and body normally, leaving him sick and short of breath. On March 1st, Michael will undergo cardiac surgery, during which doctors will perform a technique called a Glenn procedure to create a conduit to allow blood to bypass the missing valve and more easily circulate through Michael's body. Another organization, Gift of Life International, is contributing $5,000 to pay for surgery, but Michael's family is still in need of $1,500 and have turned to the Watsi community for support. Michael's mother says: "It has been very frightening to see my son have such difficulty breathing, and I am so glad we can finally find a way to help him."
Malaika lives on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince in Haiti with her parents and four siblings; she is in the third grade and likes her science and reading classes. She was both with a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect, in which a hole exists between the two lower chambers of her heart. Blood leaks through this hole without passing through her lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving her weak and short of breath. The surgery she needs is not available in Haiti, but fortunately for Malaika, doctors at the Clinica Corominas in the Dominican Republic will be able to perform an interventional heart catherization procedure to fix her condition. During the procedure, doctors will insert a catheter into her heart to plug the hole with a device. Now, her family needs $1,500 to help pay the costs of the procedure and travel. Another organization Gift of Life International is also contributing to her life-saving care. Malaika's mother says: "Our family is very hopeful that our daughter will be healthier and happier after her heart is fixed."
Nigel is a beautiful 9-month-old baby girl. She and her twin sibling are the firstborn in their family. Her father works as a day laborer at construction sites earning daily wages that enable him to provide for his family, but are limited to basic needs. Nigel's mother says it has been hard balancing paying for basic needs, and paying for medical bills. Nigel was born with clubfoot of both her feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Nigel's family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on December 2nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Nigel's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily and to wear shoes as she grows up. Nigel’s father says, “It hurts me seeing her twin crawl while Nigel is struggling. I hope she will soon be able to play with her sibling.”
Jayden is a baby from Tanzania. He is being raised by a single mother working hard to provide for her family. Jayden's father is not in their life, and his mother has no remaining family members. She has no stable job and she always seeks different jobs, like washing clothes. Jayden was born with his fingers on both of his hands being attached together. His mother tried to seek treatment, however she could not afford to pay for surgery to correct his fingers. Due to his condition, Jayden cannot use his fingers separately. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Jayden receive treatment. On October 13, surgeons at the care center will perform a surgery to help separate his fingers for easier use. Now, their family needs help to fund this $639 procedure. Jayden’s mother says, “I have struggled for a while with my son, I am glad that I have found people who are willing to help him.”
Meet Agnes, a hardworking 39-year-old farmer and strong single mother. Two of her children live with her brother in a rural area of the country, while her other children live with Agnes in a house in a small shopping center. Agnes works hard to sustain her family. She does laundry in her neighborhood during the day, while selling vegetables in the evening. During the planting, weeding and harvesting seasons, Agnes goes to the village and works on people's farms. Sometimes she is paid with money, and sometimes she is given food in return for her work. Nine months ago, she was pricked by a maize stalk on her lower left limb. She was walking with difficulty because of the pain that resulted from the wound, and she ended up falling. Agnes traveled to a local facility because of pain and swelling in her leg, and was provided with pain medication and bandages. However, Agnes was referred on to another hospital, where her leg could be X-rayed. The X-ray revealed that Agnes had sustained a fracture in her lower leg. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, can help. On September 1st, Agnes will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation, at AIC Kapsowar Hospital. After this procedure, Agnes will be able to walk without pain and swelling, enabling her to return to her daily activities, and the work that she needs to do in order to earn an income. African Mission Healthcare Foundation is seeking $941 to fund her procedure and medical care. Agnes says: "My family depends on me in everything. With my condition, I cannot work and am afraid that my children will suffer. Kindly help me get through my treatment and be able to provide for them.”
Saw Hsar is a 21-year-old man who lives with his mother, stepfather, and sister in a refugee camp in Hong Son Province. He used to live with his father in Burma, but he moved back to live with his mother in 2018 and hoped to receive treatment for an eye injury. His stepfather is a homemaker, while his mother weaves traditional Karen sarongs to sell. Saw Hsar stopped studying after he graduated from grade four, when he injured his eye. Currently, he is unemployed. In 2018, Saw Hsar began to experience blurry vision, and an inability to clearly see the objects around him. While he is comfortable moving around in his home, he needs someone with him when he leaves home, as he is afraid of tripping over unseen objects in his way, given his increasing inability to see clearly. Saw Hsar was diagnosed with a detached retina, which means that his retina has pulled away from the supporting tissue in his eye. Without the proper treatment, Saw Hsar could completely lose the vision in his eye. Saw Hsar is scheduled to undergo surgery to reattach his retina on September 3rd, at Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the cost of Saw Hsar's procedure and care. After surgery, Saw Hsar's vision will hopefully be restored, and he will be able to resume his daily activities without his current limitations. He said, “I would like to see clearly like before. In the future, I will find a job and earn a living. I want to grow rice or vegetables on a farm, save money and support my family.”
Neang is a 67-year-old retired rice farmer, living with her husband and their youngest daughter. Altogether, Neang and her husband have one son, three daughters, and five grandchildren. One year ago, Neang developed a cataract in her left eye, causing her blurry vision, tearing, and sensitivity to light. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, including colors and faces, and is unable to go places on her own. Neang traveled for three and a half hours to our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, to seek treatment. On May 17th, doctors at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre will perform cataract surgery, and implant an intraocular lens in her left eye. This procedure will enable Neang to see clearly, and to become independent again. She is raising $253 to fund her surgery. Neang says: "I hope after surgery my eye can see clearly. I want to help my daughter with housework and take care of my grandchildren well."
Anjelina is a beautiful two-year-old baby from Tanzania. She is the youngest of three children in her family. Both of her parents do small-scale farming of maize, beans, and other vegetables, which they grow to feed their family. To help earn money, her father sometimes works as a casual laborer. Anjelina was born at a local hospital where her parents were informed that their daughter has clubfoot of both feet. Clubfoot is a condition where the foot is twisted out of shape, causing difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Although the doctor notified them that their daughter's condition could be corrected at a referral hospital, the hospital was over an eight-hour bus ride away, and they could not fund the transportation due to financial constraints. Fortunately, Anjelina's family was able to travel to our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on July 15th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Anjelina's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily. Anjelina’s mother shares, “We tried to correct her feet using a local doctor, but there was not much improvement, and we couldn't afford to go to the referral hospital.”
Miriam is a hardworking 52-year-old woman who finds work as a laborer or doing housework. She is a single mother of six children and cares for her family single-handedly. Due to the lack of help, it was not easy for Miriam to give her children a good education. However, two of her kids are still in school and one works selling phone covers in Nairobi, Kenya's capital. At the beginning of June, Miriam started having concerning symptoms. After seeking medical help, Miriam was diagnosed with having multiple fibroids, meaning she has multiple tumors growing on her uterus. In order to eliminate her condition, she needs to undergo a hysterectomy–a procedure where surgeons will remove her uterus. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $755 to fund Miriam's surgery. On July 1st, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Miriam will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain. Miriam shared, “I have always been okay, but this bleeding shocked me. I kindly ask for help so that I can be confident in my life tomorrow. My children depend fully on me for their support and guidance. I hope to have successful surgery so that I can get well and be there for my children.”
Myo Htay is a 22-year-old who lives with his parents and younger brother in the border region of Burma. His parents work as day laborers at a gold mine, carrying dirt and debris. Myo used to work with his parents but stopped last November when his health deteriorated. Because the gold mine closes during the rainy season, his parents only have work for six months out of the year. The rest of the time they try to live off of their savings. Around six months ago, Myo started to feel tired when he worked. At first he thought he was tired from working too hard. When he continued to feel tired for over a month, he thought that he needed to see a doctor. However, because of their limited funds, he did not want his parents to spend what they had on a trip to a clinic or a hospital. Around the middle of April, his condition worsened. He had difficulty breathing, experienced chest pain, and also heart palpitations. His parents brought him to a nearby hospital where he was diagnosed with a heart disease. The doctor told them to bring him to Yangon for further treatment. After Myo's parents borrowed money, they went to Yangon and took him to two different hospitals. At the last hospital, Myo was admitted for five days as he was unwell at that time. He received a follow-up appointment for two weeks later, but was brought back on April 30th when he developed rapid breathing, heart palpitations, chest pain and oedema (swelling) in both his legs. Myo was readmitted to the hospital, and the doctor told Myo's parents that his surgery would cost 20,000,000 kyat (approx. $11,000 USD). When they told the doctor that they cannot afford to pay for his surgery, a nurse gave them the phone number of an abbot in Yangon. After they called the abbot and told him what the doctor had said, the abbot referred Myo to our medical parter Burma Children Medical Fund for the assistance accessing the cardiac treatment he needs. Currently, Myo is on oxygen. If he does not receive oxygen, he has difficulty breathing as well as heart palpitations. He cannot walk for more than three minutes and if he does, he feels extremely tired. His whole family is worried about his condition. Fortunately, Myo's surgery has been scheduled for May 8th. He will have both valves of his heart replaced. His family needs $1,500 to help with the total cost of his surgery and care. Myo’s mother said, “I would give up everything to save my son’s life. I would sleep on the ground if we had no home to live in. I only wish to see my son getting better.”
Mao is a 22-year-old welder. He has two older sisters and enjoys fishing and playing football with his friends. When he was young, Mao had a severe ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or his ear drum, to perforate. Now, Mao experiences hearing loss, ear discharge, pain, and tinnitus. He shared that he can't communicate clearly with others. Mao traveled to our medical partner's care center hoping to receive treatment. On May 3rd, he will undergo a myringoplasty procedure. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforations. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $487 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Mao says, "I want to get healthy and be free of pain and discharge."
Margaret is a humble and quiet 13-year-old student, and the youngest child of three children in her family. She enjoys school, and reading in particular. Her mother works as a casual laborer at a flower farm in the area, and she is separated from Margaret's father. Margaret has clubfoot of both feet, a condition in which her feet are twisted out of shape. This causes her difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Margaret receive treatment. On April 11th, she will undergo clubfoot repair surgery at AMH's care center. After treatment, she will no longer use a wheelchair while in school, and she will be able to walk on her own. Now, Margaret and her family need help raising $1,286 to fund Margaret's procedure and care. Margaret's mother shared, "I will not be able to afford the estimated hospital bill despite my love for my daughter and my wish to see her walking on her feet. I request help for my daughter to undergo surgery and resume her normal life."