bruce joined Watsi on January 14th, 2015. Seven years ago, bruce joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. bruce's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Taraja, a five-year-old girl from Tanzania, to fund clubfoot surgery so that she can walk and start school.
bruce has funded healthcare for 81 patients in 11 countries.
bruce has funded healthcare for 81 patients in 11 countries.
Taraja is a charming five-year-old girl from Southwestern Tanzania and the oldest child in her family. Taraja has not started school yet, but her parents hope that once her condition is treated, she can enroll in kindergarten. Taraja’s parents grow maize, vegetables, and sorghum for a living. They get most of their food from their farm and her father also takes casual laboring jobs, like working on other peoples’ farms and carrying luggage, to supplement the family's income. Taraja has clubfoot of both feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape causing difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Taraja receive treatment. On October 8th, Taraja will undergo clubfoot repair surgery at AMH's care center. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily and wear shoes. Now, AMH is requesting $935 to fund Taraja's procedure and care. Taraja’s mother shared, "it was very strange to see our daughter’s feet in this position. We tried to find treatment for her but we were advised to go to a big hospital, something we couldn’t afford to do. Please help us if it’s possible."
Alex is a social seven-year-old boy and the oldest child in a family of three children. His parents rely on small scale farming for food and other basic needs. Alex has been diagnosed with left varus and right valgus on his legs. When Alex learned to walk, his parents noticed his condition and they thought it would subside as he got older. The larger bone, or tibia, in his left calf is misaligned with the larger bone in his thigh, or femur, while the bone at the knee joint of the right leg is angled out and away from the body's midline. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, Alex experiences pain and difficulty in walking. He has not yet joined school, mainly because the only school in his family's village is far from home and he cannot walk all the way there due to his condition. When Alex and his parents visited his grandfather, he was deeply concerned by Alex's condition and brought him to the care center of our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), for treatment. Alex is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on September 10th. Treatment will hopefully restore Alex's mobility, allowing him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decreasing his risk of future complications. Now, AMH, is requesting $880 to fund Alex's surgery. Alex’s grandfather shared, "I felt really bad seeing how my grandson‘s legs have been deformed. I know his parents are not financially stable and neither am I. I remember the team from your hospital that visited our village to educate us on treatable disability and the possibility of him getting treatment and I am hopeful that he will be well. Please help him."
Grace is a beautiful, charming, and smiley 15-month-old baby. Grace's parents are small scale farmers and have one other child. They grow and sell maize and vegetables. Grace's mother sells fresh vegetables to her surrounding neighbors to make a living while, her father works at a carwash to support their family. Grace has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of her condition, Grace has been experiencing vomiting and high fevers. Without treatment, Grace will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of surgery for Grace that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on August 9th and will drain the excess fluid from Grace's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Grace should grow and develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Grace’s mother says, "Our baby is usually very active and playful but as days go by, her condition worsens, causing her weakness, vomiting and high fevers. Please help us."
Venance is a five year old boy and the second born child in a family of four children. Venance is a friendly boy who is currently in kindergarten. Venance and his siblings are being raised by their mother, who does small scale farming where she gets most of the food her children need. She also seeks day laboring jobs like working on other peoples farms or laundry to help make ends meet. Venance was diagnosed with Bilateral Genu Valgus, a condition that causes bones to bend. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, Venance now has pain after a long day of play and walks to and from school. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Venance. The procedure is scheduled to take place on July 9th. Treatment will hopefully restore Venance's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Venance mother says, "Please help my son."
Ku is a seven-year-old boy who lives with his parents and two younger sisters in a refugee camp in Northern Thailand. Ku's mother weaves shirts that she sells, and Ku's father helps weave, too. Ku is a primary school student, while one of his sisters is in nursing school, and his youngest sister is too young to go to school. On June 6th, Ku and two of his friends were playing in a tamarind tree when they all fell out of the tree. Ku injured his left arm in the fall and his father carried him to the camp hospital for an exam. The medic there told Ku's father that his elbow might be broken. After they bandaged his arm, Ku visited another hospital for an x-ray and was diagnosed with a left elbow fracture. Ku is in pain and cannot bend his arm or lift anything. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Ku will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for June 9th and will cost $1,500. After surgery, Ku will no longer be in pain and he will be able to go back to school. He will regain full mobility in his arm. Ku's father shared, "Ku is an active boy who loves school and reading a lot. He always says that he wants to become a health worker to look after his family and others when he grows up. I want him to recover and go back to school soon."
Vivian is a fifth-grade student and the eldest of two children in her family. Vivian is a friendly and a hard working girl both at school and at home. She loves to help her mother with house chores and enjoys learning new things. In 2019, Vivian was involved in a fire accident which has left her with burns and contracture on her right side. As a result, her range of movement is limited and it is difficult for her to use her right side of her body freely. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Vivian receive treatment. On May 11th, surgeons will perform a skin graft procedure to repair her injury and increase mobility on that side of her body. Now, Vivian's family needs help to fund this $747 procedure. Vivian’s mother shared, "After her first surgery, she could use her arm well but over the year it has started contracting again. She has been scheduled for another surgery which we cannot afford. Please help."
Netsanet is a 5-month-old baby girl from Ethiopia. She has seven siblings and loves to play with all of them along with her mom and dad. Netsanet's dad is a traditional farmer. He has no land of his own, but farms another person's land and shares the fruit with the owner. He also does labor work in his free time to earn more for their family. Most of the kids in the house attend school, but the oldest ones have also started working to support their family. Netsanet was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. She needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction and reduce the risk of serious complications. Netsanet is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on April 13th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Netsanet's procedure and care. After her recovery, Netsanet will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Netsanet's dad shared, “After receiving this treatment, I hope my baby will be able to use the bathroom comfortably.”
Daudi is a happy 10-year-old boy from Kenya. He is the youngest of three children in his family. Daudi's mother sells vegetables as a street vendor in the village. She and her husband are separated. She is the sole provider of the family and Daudi requires a lot of attention. Daudi has clubfoot of both feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Daudi's feet are rigid and he cannot walk or stand, so he relies on his mother who often carries him. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH) is helping Daudi receive treatment. Daudi and his mother traveled to AMH's care center where surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on March 16th. AMH is requesting $1,286 to fund Daudi's clubfoot repair. The surgery will be very impactful for him, because he will be able to walk and stand on his own. Daudi's mother shared, “I am appealing to people of goodwill to help my son undergo surgery so that he can be independent. God bless you!"
Phorn is a 40-year-old construction worker with three children: two sons and one daughter. They all are now in school. Phorn is not working now but his wife is a factory worker. His parents live with his family and he supports them. For over two years, he has had pain in both hips. He feels his left side is much worse than the right. He describes his current health as generally very poor because he is in such pain. When he has pain, he has traditionally been able to buy pain medication from the pharmacy, but it has lately become unbearable. Doctors diagnosed his condition as avascular necrosis (death of bone tissue due to lack of blood circulation) of both hips. Fortunately, Phorn learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. At CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Phorn of his pain and allow him to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for February 9th, and Phorn needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. He hopes after surgery, his left hip will not have pain, he can walk without help, and go back to work as before.
Thea is a 39-year-old gendarmerie (military policeman) from Cambodia. He has been proudly married for 7 years and has 3 daughters. Thea's first two children are in school. In his free time, he likes to exercise, play football, listen to music and news, read books, and take care of his children. Five years ago, Thea had a severe fall and subsequently developed right hip pain. He was diagnosed with avascular necrosis of the hip, a painful condition that occurs when the blood supply to the head of the femur (thighbone) is disrupted. Because bone cells need a steady supply of blood to stay healthy, it can ultimately lead to destruction of the hip joint and severe arthritis. After his accident, he was given pain medication, but the medication only helped for a short time. He continues to have chronic pain and needs to have his condition treated. Fortunately, Thea learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC). At CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Thea of his pain and allow him to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for January 6th, and Thea needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. Thea shared, "I hope that after my operation, I will be able to walk without pain and can do my job easily again."
Heavenlight is a young girl from Tanzania who is almost two years old. She is a beautiful, cheerful, and friendly girl, and the last born child in her family. Heavenlight lives together with her one sibling and their single mother. Her father left her family when her mother was two months pregnant and, since then, her mother has raised Heavenlight and her sister by herself. She works at a local food restaurant and earns just enough to support their daily needs. In September 2020, Heavenlight fell on a hot pot of water, which her mother had boiled to bathe her. While her mother briefly left to fetch another bucket, Heavnlight slipped and fell with her left hand landing inside the hot water. She suffered burns on her left hand, which later healed with severe burn contractures that limit her range of motion for her hand. Heavenlight's mother could not afford to bring her to the hospital, so she treated Heavenlight's wounds at home. She noticed the contractures, but did not know what to do. Fortunately, a stranger who passed their home and saw Heavenlight's hand advised them to seek treatment at our medical partner's care center, ALMC Hospital. Fortunately they came to the hospital and our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Heavenlight receive treatment. On December 11th, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery to allow her utilize her hand with ease, and return to daily life activities. Now, she needs help to fund this $874 procedure. Heavenlight’s mother shared, “Please help my daughter get this treatment so that she may be able to use her hand.”
Alice is a 47-year-old woman from Kenya. Sheis a single mother of 2 children, and her children live with their grandmother in their home village. Alice was an active and healthy woman who was able to use her legs normally. However, in early November 2017, she was involved in a road traffic accident that rendered her immobile. Alice was rushed to the hospital to undergo treatment and surgery. Although she was discharged, her troubles with the leg continued, and she developed more pain and complications. After returning to the same facility for treatment and not showing signs of improvement, Alice visited Kijabe Hospital. There, she has since undergone several other surgeries, including post-open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) repair and debridement after the skin overlying the fracture site was compromised and infected. Alice's doctors have scheduled her for a sequestrectomy procedure and IM nail removal on November 12th. The sequestrectomy will remove any fragment of dead bone or other tissue that has separated from healthy tissue in her wound. Ultimately, they aim to prevent further infection of the hardware in her leg. Alice is currently ambulating in crutches and, if not treated, she might not be able to walk or properly use her leg in the future. Unfortunately, this procedure is costly for Alice and her family. Alice owns a small green grocery in Mukaa Town where she sells vegetables and tomatoes. Her total monthly profit is barely able to cover her basic needs, rent, and kids' needs; let alone pay for her necessary surgeries. She has depended on the National Hospital Insurance Fund and support from friends to help cover her several medical and surgical trips to different facilities. Alice is appealing for financial help so she can get the care she needs. Alice shared, "My problems never seem to come to an end after the accident. I have been through a lot of surgeries, and I still need more to be able to walk again. Thank you for your support."