Janne joined Watsi on March 20th, 2014. Seven years ago, Janne joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Janne's most recent donation traveled 4,300 miles to support Benjamin, a cheerful motorbike driver from Kenya, to fund a mobility-restoring spinal fusion surgery.
Janne has funded healthcare for 65 patients in 13 countries.
Janne has funded healthcare for 65 patients in 13 countries.
Benjamin is a father of a four-year-old child who works as a motorbike (boda-boda) driver, earning about $3.70USD per day. His income is also inconsistent and depends on the availability of customers. He is the sole breadwinner for his family. Unfortunately, he has no active medical insurance coverage and has had to rely on relatives and friends to settle hospital bills. Benjamin is full of smiles but finds it difficult to sit up while sharing his story. He opts to talk while lying flat on his back. Benjamin is currently immobile, unable to sit and walk, as a result of a road traffic accident from the beginning of the month. When the 25-year-old hitched a ride on his friend's water truck, the vehicle lost control and he was thrown out the window. He immediately experienced severe back pain and lost consciousness. The accident left Benjamin with multiple fractures and wounds that will require several fracture repair and spine surgeries in order for him to sit, walk, and be able to continue with his normal routine roles again. After stays at various hospitals and numerous referrals, Benjamin arrived at our medical partner's care center, Kijabe Hospital, for care on July 17th. One of the obstacles to treatment he had faced at other hospitals was a long waiting list that meant a delay in much-needed care, but fortunately Kijabe is able to offer his needed care more urgently. At Kijabe Hospital, the doctors recommended a spinal fusion procedure for him to help regain his mobility. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,500 for Benjamin's critical surgery, scheduled to take place on July 26th. Benjamin shares, “I just sleep on my back and cannot even sit or walk. I cannot work and fend for my family. I need this surgery to get back to my Boda-boda job and raise my family."
Mohammed is a four-year-old boy from Ethiopia. He is a sweet and playful boy who loves to play with toy cars. He also loves to play with his younger brother. His mom and dad are returnees from Saudi Arabia. He did not start school as a result of COVID-19, but his mom plans to have him start by next year. His mom is a housewife and his dad does business selling socks on the street, but they shared this his income is not enough to meet the needs of the family. Mohammed was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one of the testicles does not descend. If left untreated, Mohammed could have an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. Fortunately, Mohammed is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on March 18th. He will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH). AMH is requesting $754 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. His mom shared, “for my child, I wish a good personality and behavior. I hope he will be a good person and that he will serve his country."
Isack is 34-year-old from Tanzania and the youngest in a family of six children. One of his older brothers passed away last year due to COVID-19, leaving the family in a tough situation. Before his accident, Isack was working as a driver’s assistant in a truck with his brother, who was the driver. Working as a driver's assistant helped Isack make a living and he was able to support himself. In 2019, however, Isack was involved in an accident which left him with an open wound on his right leg. On the day of the accident, Isack was checking on the truck that was being serviced. As the mechanics were working, gas was unknowingly spilt on Isack's trousers. Afterwards, a match stick caught on Isack's right trouser leg starting a fire. Since then, Isack has not been able to work or support himself due to his leg injury. The wound is not healing, making walking very difficult. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Isack receive treatment. On March 19th, surgeons will perform a skin graft procedure to heal his wound and infection. Now, Isack needs help to fund this $747 procedure. Isack shared, "I am not able to work and support myself because of my leg. My family is currently struggling and they too cannot help due to lack of money. Please help me have my leg treated so that I can work."
Guyo is a 2-year-old boy from Ethiopia. He has three siblings. Guyo's parents are from a rural area and make a humble living. His uncle, who brought Guyo to Watsi's Partner Care Center BethanyKids Hospital, helps to raise Guyo. Guyo is a sweet, outgoing boy who loves to play with his friends and siblings. He also loves playing with dogs. Guyo 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, Guyo is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on February 9th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Once recovered, he will no longer have any pain or discomfort and can return to happily playing with his friends. His uncle shared, “I believe if he is treated well, he will be good psychologically in the future. And all the family will be happy. I hope he will be a doctor in the future and help his community.”
Komson is a 35-year-old cane juice seller from Cambodia. He has been married for 11 years and lives with his wife and two daughters. The oldest child is nine years old in grade 3, while his younger child is not yet in school. When Komson is not working, he likes listening to the radio, watching TV, and helping around the house with cleaning, cooking, and caring for his daughters. On January 3rd, 2021, Komson was involved in a motor vehicle crash involving a dog. This accident caused him to fracture his right femur. His family decided on a Khmer traditional treatment, where a bamboo stalk is placed on the affected leg to support the femur. He took some medications and went home. After a few days, his family took him to the provincial hospital near their home for an X-ray, where he was referred to Children's Surgical Centre. There, they assessed his fracture and saw that his broken leg is much shorter than his other leg. His leg is swollen and very painful, and it is difficult for him to walk. Surgeons decided to put him in traction for 5 days and then conduct an open reduction internal fixation (ORIF) of his right femur. On January 18th, Komson will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. This procedure will help him walk again so that he can continue to work and support his family. He wants to make sure he has enough money to send his daughters to school. Komson shared, "I hope that after surgery, my right femur will be repaired and I will no longer have pain or swelling. I am anxious to get back to my job and supporting my family."
Maxwell is a 10-month-old from Kenya. His mother shared that he's already a playful and jovial boy together with his twin. Unfortunately, she said, his curiosity accidentally caused him to get a burn on his chest, abdomen, right arm and his feet. If left untreated, he could suffer from long-term tissue damage, prolonged pain, and infections. Maxwell requires a split-thickness skin graft surgery to help heal the burns and reduce the infections. On December 3rd, Maxwell was playing with his twin brother when he pulled down a cup containing hot tea from the table. The hot beverage spilled and burned his body. He was rushed to St Joseph Hospital in their home village of Kangemi and was treated in the emergency phase, and was later referred to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Kijabe Hospital the additional care he needs. At Kijabe Hospital, Maxwell has had debridement and endoscopy procedures. However, he still requires skin grafting which is scheduled at the end of the week. Since admission, Maxwell has already accrued a bill that his family is working hard to raise, but they are having difficulties. They are requesting Watsi's assistance for his his skin graft surgery. Maxwell has three other siblings and his mother stays at home watching them and taking care of their daily tasks. Their family relies on their father's income for survival and upkeep. Maxwell's father is a taxi driver in Kangemi, who earns a daily allowance depending on the availability of work. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Maxwell receive treatment. On December 17th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to The surgery will reduce the chances of infection. Now, Maxwell needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Maxwell's mother says, “My baby has been in pain since the unfortunate accident occurred. I know he misses playing with his brother because they are very jovial together. We already have a huge bill that we are unable to afford. We need help with this surgery.”
Brighton is three-year-old boy and the youngest in his family of nine children. Brighton is a friendly and playful boy. Brighton's parents have been wanting to enroll him in school and start kindergarten but they are concerned because Brighton's right foot is deformed after being involved in a fire accident two years ago, making walking for him difficult. Brighton was left at home sleeping while his mother went out to fetch water. His older siblings were inside the house playing and one of them took a matchbox and started playing with it. The fire caught the bed in which Brighton was sleeping in. The oldest child seeing the fire ran and called their mother who rushed in to save Brighton. He was saved, though he sustained burns on his right foot and was rushed to the hospital. Thankfully Brighton was treated, his wound healed, and was able to walk. However as time went on the scars around his foot contracted to pull on his toes, deforming his foot and making it difficult for him to walk well. His parents tried to seek treatment for him but the cost turned out to be expensive for them to afford. Both parents are small scale farmers and their income is not enough to support the family and cover Brighton's treatment cost. They are asking for help. Brighton’s mother says, “We would love to see our son’s foot well so that he can be able to walk like other normal children, but the cost of treatment is too high for us to afford. Please help us.”
Noel is a 3-year-old boy from Tanzania and the only child to his single mother. He is a happy, friendly, and cheerful boy. Noel's mom shared that his father left them when he was young and does not offer support, leaving her struggling to raise him all by herself. Last year, Noel fell over a pot of hot porridge which has left him with scars on his face. The skin around his face is now contracting and pulling the skin up impacting his mouth. Due to this, he can’t speak well and if this is not corrected the condition will continue to worsen. Noel's mother does not have a stable job; she seeks casual labor like house cleaning and washing clothes in order to get money to support herself and her baby. She is unable to afford her child's treatment cost thus she is asking for help and support. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Noel receive treatment. On October 12th, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery and he will be better able to talk properly after treatment. Now, their family needs help to fund this $874 procedure. Noel’s mother says: “With no job, I am struggling to even feed my son well. I won’t be able to afford his surgery cost, please help us.”
Ye lives with his wife and daughter on the Thai-Burma border. He used to work as a carpenter but had to stop working two years ago when his health deteriorated. His wife is a homemaker and his daughter works as a vendor selling mobile phones. Her monthly income of 10,000 baht (approx. 335 USD) is just enough to cover their family's daily needs. In the beginning of 2018, Ye started to experience swelling in his hands and feet, pain in his lower back, and difficulty passing urine. At first he thought that it was caused by overworking and would disappear over time. Six months later, when he still felt unwell, Ye finally decided to go see a doctor. He went to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) where the doctor conducted tests and concluded that he had high blood pressure. The doctor also sent him to another hospital for an ultrasound because at that time the ultrasound machine was broken at MSH. When Ye returned to MSH with his ultrasound results, the doctor diagnosed him with stones in both of his kidneys. He was told to drink lots of water and was provided with oral medication. When Ye returned for his follow-up appointment, he received another ultrasound and more oral medication. As his condition went on, he received a catheter in both of his kidneys while admitted at the hospital. Ye kept returning regularly for his follow-up appointments. Up until 2020, he had the catheter replaced a number of times and also asked the doctor twice if he could receive surgery. However, both times the doctor told him that he would have to wait because there were too many patients on the waiting list. Eventually in the beginning of 2020, Ye was scheduled to receive surgery. When he was admitted in the middle of March 2020, he first received treatment for a urinary tract infection before he received surgery to remove the stone from his right kidney. After surgery, Ye had difficulty breathing and was placed in the intensive care unit for four days. By the time he was discharged, he was left with a 127,000 baht (approx. 4,233 USD) hospital bill. Ye paid what he could by selling all their jewelry and using up their saving. However, most of his bill was paid by borrowing money from his relatives in Burma. Before he was discharged, the doctor told him that he will need to receive laser treatment to breakup the stone in his left kidney. However, if the procedure was not successful he would need surgery to remove the stone. His daughter was no longer able to pay for his laser treatment so a nurse at MSH told him to ask for help at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC). When Ye went to the clinic and told the medic that they cannot afford to pay for his laser treatment, the medic referred him to Watsi's Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund for assistance accessing further treatment and we now are raising $1500 to support his care. “I am very depressed, and I feel stressed about my health condition. I have used up all my savings for my treatment. Now I have to rely on my daughter’s income and I feel really feel bad as she works hard," said Ye.
Winfred is a young teenage girl from Kenya. She is the first born in a family of three children and lives with her mother and aunt. Her mother sells groceries and her aunt is a cleaner in a local dispensary. Winfred 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 which has made her life very difficult. Winfred is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on July 20th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,393 to cover the total cost of Winfred's procedure and care. After her recovery, Winfred will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Winfred’s aunt shared, “I will be grateful to see that Winfred gets treated.”
Gilbert is a calm and polite boy. He is the second born in a family of four children and hails from Dagoretti in Nairobi county. He is in 3rd grade at a primary school in Nairobi and aspires to be a pilot. Gilbert was brought to our hospital by his mother because he was experiencing pain and could not walk long distances. He has had this condition since he was three years old and it has significantly impacted his ability to go to school. Gilbert's mother shared that, “I sometimes carry him to school as his knees knock against each other which hinders his movement. But when I have money, I will pay for a motorbike to take him and his brother to school.” His mother works part-time cleaning houses, washing clothes, and performing other household work she may be given. Gibert's father is a street pastor and works as a street vendor. The family lives in a one-bedroom rental house in Nairobi and they shared with us that they feel life is hard because they do not have the resources to buy everything they need. Gilbert was able to already have his right leg treated which is now healed. He now needs support for the surgery on his left knee. With both knees healed, Gilbert will be able to walk comfortably and continue with his studies.
Joshua is a two-month-old baby and the youngest in a family of three children from Tanzania. His parents are small-scale farmers; his father owns a few cattle and they also have a small farm where they plant food for home consumption. Joshua has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Joshua has been experiencing challenges since birth. Without treatment, Joshua will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,362 to cover the cost of surgery for Joshua that will treat his hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 20th and will drain the excess fluid from Joshua's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Joshua will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Joshua's father shared, "Please help treat our baby, he needs to undergo a surgery which due to financial challenges, we are not able to afford. Please help us."