Watsi announced today that it has helped more than 5,000 patients from around the world receive funding for their medical treatment. To mark this occasion, the nonprofit organization says it’s starting a five-day campaign to raise additional funds and will match all donations made through its site through Monday. To date, $5 million has been donated to the program, with an average donation of $55.
“Our goal after raising our seed donation round two years ago was to prove the Watsi concept,” said cofounder and chief executive Chase Adam. “5,000 patients marks the success of that. Our next challenge is figuring out how to continue growing Watsi 100% every year.”
Dubbed by some as the “Kickstarter for third-world medical care,” Watsi makes it easy to donate to people around the world who are in need of medical treatment. The organization came to the attention of Silicon Valley and the technology industry in 2013 as the first nonprofit to ever be accepted by Y Combinator.
But how significant a number is 5,000? To put it into context, when Watsi graduated from Y Combinator two years ago, it funded operations for 250 people. And the company told me the number of patients it funds is doubling each year.
The majority of patients come from Cambodia, Kenya, Tanzania, Guatemala, and Nepal, but that’s just five of the 20 countries where Watsi is helping people. 170 different procedures have been successfully paid for over the past couple of years and not just minor procedures — Watsi has donated treatment for brain tumors, cancer care, sight-restoring cataract surgery, and helped to battle malnutrition.
If you’re interested in donating to help someone in need or medical care, you can visit Watsi’s website and make a contribution there.
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