Sharan joined Watsi on February 22nd, 2017. Three months ago, Sharan joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Sharan's most recent donation supported Margaret, a 41-year-old farmer from Kenya, to fund a thyroidectomy.
Sharan has funded healthcare for 40 patients in 9 countries.
Sharan has funded healthcare for 40 patients in 9 countries.
Margaret's smile lights up the room. She is a 41-year-old small scale farmer who is married and has one child. Her husband worked as a taxi driver, but, unfortunately, he lost his job due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Three years ago, Margaret began experiencing troubling symptoms including difficulty swallowing, throat soreness and voice changes. Over time, her symptoms worsened, so she visited a local hospital for further evaluation. She was diagnosed with a multinodular goiter, or an abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland. A thyroidectomy was recommended to treat her condition. If left untreated, the goiter will continue to grow, which could lead to troubling complications like difficulty breathing, heart problems, thyrotoxicosis, or trachea obstruction. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Margaret receive treatment. On December 28th, she will undergo a thyroidectomy at AMH's care center, where surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. Now, she and her family need help raising $657 to fund her procedure and care. Margaret shared, "this problem has affected my daily work and life for a long time, and now I worry I am becoming a bother even to my husband. I am therefore kindly asking for assistance to have this surgery so that I can regain my health."
Namayani is a fourteen-year-old student and the last-born girl in a family of five children. Namayani is social and friendly and has just completed her primary school education. She hopes she will get good grades to enable her to join a prestigious high school. She wishes to become a teacher when she completes her studies. Her parents are livestock keepers and cannot afford the required surgery cost. Namayani was diagnosed with bilateral genu valgus. Her legs bend such that her knees are knocking. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, Namayani says she struggled a lot walking to and from school because she felt pain when walking. The problem started three years ago, but has worsened over the years. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Namayani. The procedure is scheduled to take place on November 9th. Treatment will hopefully restore Namayani's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Namayani says: “I will be happy if I have my legs corrected so that when I join secondary school next year I don’t struggle walking anymore.”
Emily is a kind 26-year-old woman who recently got engaged to her childhood friend. She is the fourth born in a family of 7 and lives with both of her parents. One day in 2008, Emily started to experience severe abdominal pains. The pains kept increasing and she could not pass stool. On the third day, her parents rushed her the hospital where a diagnosis of bowel obstruction was made. She was taken to the operating room and had an ileostomy done as a temporary treatment for the bowel obstruction. An ileostomy is an opening in the abdominal wall that is made during surgery, part of the small intestines are diverted through an opening in the abdomen called a stoma. A special bag is placed over the stoma to collect fecal matter that are unable to pass through the colon out of the body. An ileostomy is reversible since it is only made to provide a temporary passage for the release of stools out of the body while allowing healing of the operated part of the intestines/ bowels. Emily was scheduled for ileostomy reversal in July 2008 and the parents took her back to the hospital where she was admitted. She was later discharged home and the surgery rescheduled since the there were many patients in the waiting list. She has since had more than 7 admissions for the procedure but each time she is discharged and the surgery rescheduled. They kept going to the hospital and in 2011 they gave up since they were not getting help and had already spent a lot on transport and meals. Emily eventually dropped out of school due to discrimination and the stigma associated with the condition. She now uses cheap thin plastic papers as stoma bags as the family cannot afford to buy the all the bags due to financial constraints. She has grown to live with this condition. Despite all that has been in her way, Emily is still very hard working and earns a living from washing clothes at people's homes. This enables her to buy the plastic bags for the stoma. Often, she runs out of money to buy the bags and is forced to stay indoors. Recently, one of their neighbors had a thyroidectomy done at Partners in Hope Hospital under a special program and urged her parents to bring her for assessment. The surgeon reviewed her and indicated that the condition can still be corrected through laparotomy where an ileostomy reversal will be done. This surgery will greatly improve Emily’s life, restore her dignity as a human being and remove the emotional pain and torture that Emily has lived with the past 13 years. Her parents are seeking financial support to help their daughter undergo the surgery. “I remember that when I was young, I used to use the bathroom normally in the pit latrine. I pray that one day I will be able to use the toilet again. I hope that when I get married I will be like all other women and will not have to embarrass my husband with this condition," shared Emily with a shy smile on her face.
Naomi is a single mother of three, all of which are still in school. Naomi earns a living through casual jobs, like washing clothes for her neighbors. In 2018, she started experiencing pain on the right side of her abdomen. She was diagnosed with gallstones and her surgeon has shared that she needs a laparotomy. Unfortunately, she could not afford the surgery until a neighbor, who is one of our supportive staff, told her about the Watsi program. If not treated Naomi will continue to experience pain and may develop an infection or inflammation. Fortunately our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, can help. Now, they are asking for your help to fund this $788 surgery. “When I did not have this condition I was able to provide for my children, but now I have difficulties so I plead for help. I hope to get well so that I can take care of my family,” shared Naomi.
Phol is a five-year-old preschool student from Cambodia. He has one older sister and one older brother. Phol's parents work in a factory. When he is not at school Phol enjoys playing football, playing with toys, and dancing and singing. Three days ago Phol accidentally swallowed a small fish bone while eating. The bone is lodged in his throat and needs to be extracted. He is in pain and at risk for an infection. Phol's family traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On December 22nd, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), will remove the mass. Now, Phol needs help to raise $231 to fund this procedure. Phol's mother said, "We are so happy you can help remove the bone so he can feel well again."
Miseyek is a young boy from Tanzania. He is the last born child in a family of five children. Miseyek is a hard-working boy who helps his parents with daily home chores. He mostly helps his father look after their cattle which he takes out for grazing every day. Miseyek never had a chance to join school due to his parents financial constraints. His parents depend entirely on their livestock and small-scale farming to make a living. Miseyek was diagnosed with genu valgus. His legs bow inward so that his knees touch when he walks. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he is experiencing discomfort and has difficulty walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Miseyek. The procedure is scheduled to take place on July 23rd. Treatment will hopefully restore Miseyek's mobility and allow him to participate in a variety of activities, while also greatly decreasing his risk of future complications. Miseyek says, “Please help me get treated. I would like to be able to walk with ease and without pain so that I can help my parents.”
Aaron is a five-year-old boy, the 3rd and last born child in his family. Aaron is talkative and likes playing with other children. His father is a farmer while his mother is a housewife and also a farmer. They live in a one-roomed traditional grass-thatched house in Kenya. Aaron has a condition called clubfoot on his right foot, which causes his foot to be twisted out of shape. This condition causes difficulty with walking and even with wearing shoes. Fortunately, Aaron traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital, to seek care. On November 15th, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on Aaron. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund his clubfoot repair procedure. After treatment, Aaron will be able to walk easily and wear shoes normally and comfortably. Josphat, Aaron's father, shared, “I am humbly requesting for help to enable my son to undergo surgery. We would love to see him walk like other children.”
Thu is a 11-year-old student from Burma. He lives with his mother, sister, brother-in-law, twin brother and an older brother. He and his family moved to Thailand from Burma five months ago in search of better job opportunities. Thu’s mother and older brother are agricultural day laborers. Thu and his twin brother are fourth graders at a Burmese migrant school. In his free time, Thu likes to play football with his friends. On July 12th Thu, his twin, and his friends were climbing guava trees near their school to pick up guavas. He fell out of the tree and onto his left arm. An x-ray revealed that he had broken his left elbow. Currently, his left arm is swollen, painful, and cannot be bent. He feels uncomfortable when he lays down and he cannot sleep at night. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Thu will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for July 15th and will cost $1,500. Thu’s mother shared, “I’m very worried and sad that I don’t have enough money to pay for my son’s treatment.” Thu also said, “I’m sad that I broke my hand and that I won’t be able to climb trees again. I don’t want to carry my hand in a sling.”
Arinda is a 20-month-old baby from Uganda and the only child to his parents. His mother is a roadside trader who sells onions, tomatoes, and fresh beans. His father is a bicycle mechanic and they live together in a single-roomed rental house deep in the village. Since birth, Arinda has had an inguinal scrotal hernia. Arinda is in pain and if not treated, it may result in intestinal tissue damage. Fortunately, on September 8th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $230 to fund Arinda's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently as he grows up. Arinda's mother says, “I hope that by surgery my child will get well to have proper growth like all the others.”
Jarred is an infant from Kenya. He has been diagnosed with encephalocoele, a type of neural tube defect in which brain tissues and overlying membranes protrude through openings in the skull. Encephalocoele usually results from a failure of the neural tube to completely close during fetal development. Without treatment, Jarred is at risk of developmental delays, brain damage, or premature death. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $929 to fund encephalocoele repair surgery for Jarred. The procedure is scheduled to take place on June 12. Hopefully, the repair of this condition will allow Jarred to grow up healthy. Jarred’s mother says, “My prayer is to have my son treated and grow upright with less medical issues."
Winslove is a student from Haiti. She lives in the outskirts of Port-au-Prince with her parents, grandparents, and two sisters. She is in the sixth grade and likes drawing and art. Winslove has a cardiac condition called atrial septal defect. A hole exists between the two upper chambers of her heart; blood leaks through this hole, leaving her sick and short of breath. Winslove will fly to the United States to receive treatment. On August 9, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will sew a patch over the hole so blood no longer leaks through it. Another organization, HeartGift Foundation, is contributing $18,000 to pay for surgery. Winslove's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Winslove's family overseas. She says, "I am very happy to get my heart healed and have better health!"
Sreymean is a first grade student from Cambodia. She likes to watch television and read books, and hopes to become an English teacher when she grows up. Sreymean was born with a condition known as nevus, affecting her face and both lower and upper body. She has large patches of darkened skin and hair due to the proliferation of melanocytes, and is at risk for the condition to expand over time with the potential to turn malignant. When Sreymean learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for half an hour seeking treatment. On June 18, surgeons at CSC will perform giant nevus excision to remove the nevus from her skin, preventing its expansion and growth. Now, she needs help to fund this $606 procedure. Her mother says, "I hope that my daughter's surgery goes well so that she will be able to look better and so that I will not have to worry about her condition anymore."