Mario joined Watsi on October 17th, 2016. Five years ago, Mario joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Mario's most recent donation traveled 5,300 miles to support Thi, a 37-year-old factory worker from Thailand, to fund a hysterectomy to heal her ovarian tumor.
Mario has funded healthcare for 44 patients in 10 countries.
Mario has funded healthcare for 44 patients in 10 countries.
Thi is a 37-year-old woman who lives and works at a garment factory in Tak Province near the Thai border with Burma. Through her work, she receives free meals and board in addition to 4,000 baht (approx. 133 USD) per month. In her free time, she likes to watch political news and read books. She is also learning Thai to help her communicate with others in Thailand. Since April 17, Thi has been experiencing severe pain due to a mass in her ovary. She feels very unwell and often has a headache. She has been diagnosed with an ovarian tumor and has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Thi's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Thi is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on June 14th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, Thi will be no longer in pain and will be able to work without feeling pain. Thi said, "I want to receive surgery as soon as possible so that I can return to my work after I am fully recovered."
Poe is a 43-year-old man who lives alone in Bangkok and works as a construction contractor. He supports his wife and son in Burma, but has been unable to work for the past four months since his health deteriorated. Currently, he is getting by on money his friends have given him. Poe was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of the mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. Currently, he has edema (swelling) in both of his legs. If he walks short distances, he feels tired, experiences shortness of breath, and heart palpitations. He cannot sleep if he lays down and has to sleep in a sitting position. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Poe. The treatment is scheduled to take place on May 6th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. "After I recover from surgery, I will go back to work. I will save the money to pay back my debts. After that I will save money to support my son and wife. I want my son to go to school, and I want him to become an educated man," said Poe.
Joy is a curious, active, and happy six-year-old girl. Joy's father works at a construction site, and her mother is unwell and unable to work. She also has a twin sister, and both girls attend school. The family lives in their ancestral home. Joy has been diagnosed with severe to profound bilateral hearing loss and needs to be fitted for a hearing aid so that she can hear well. She is currently unable to speak and while she is able to attend school, she is unable to sit for exams due to her hearing loss. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Joy to get treatment and fitted for hearing aids. On April 8th, she will undergo the fitting and afterwards, her hearing should improve. Now, she and her family need help raising $1,171 to fund her care. Joy's mother shared, "our baby is so curious and anxious to go to school. Although she is unable to hear, she insists on accompanying her twin to school."
Margaret arrived at the hospital with visible yellow eyes and prolonged discomforts that is causing her worries. The medical team has scheduled her for a binary reconstruction to help heal her condition. As a mother of three, she has been visiting different faculties for medical care since 2009. These frequent visits have depleted her family's resources and exhausted her health coverage. Margaret's husband is a Boda-Boda taxi driver, but the income he earns goes to rent and other basics for their family. Margaret told us, "My eyes are turning yellow and they making me very uncomfortable and scared. I need this surgery to help me get well.”
Elias is a two-year-old boy who is already playful and curious. He loves to ask questions about anything he doesn’t understand. He wants to know about almost everything around him. Elias and his older brother live with their mother after their parents separated about one year ago due to family conflicts. His mother earns a living by selling vegetables, while his father works as a mechanic, and sends money on occasion for care and support. When Elias was about one year old, he was outside playing with his older brother when he accidentally stepped into hot charcoal and sustained burns. Burn scar contractures have developed as he healed, which entails the tightening of the skin around his burns. As a result, Elias feels a lot of pain when he wears shoes on his left foot. Fortunately, on February 10th, surgeons at our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre, will perform a burn contracture release surgery. With treatment, Elias will no longer be in pain, and will be able to wear shoes comfortably. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is asking for $639 to help fund Elias's procedure. Elias’s mother says, “He now does not enjoy wearing closed shoes due to the pain he goes through. Please help my son.”
Mercy is a hardworking laborer and a widow. Her husband died 17 years ago when she was pregnant with her only child. The same year she gave birth to her son prematurely. She has worked hard to raise her son alone and he is currently in secondary school. Mercy doesn’t have a stable job, but engages in casual jobs within her village where she does cleaning to provide for her son. She likes being in the company of her son and they live in a small rented room in their small town. Around 17 years ago, Mercy began to experience troubling symptoms, including a neck swelling that developed when she gave birth to her son. She has had a difficult journey looking for treatment for her condition and has been to different hospitals where doctors have recommended surgery. She has never gotten the chance to have the surgery due to a lack of finances. Mercy has muscle weakness and gets fatigued easily. She was diagnosed with a multinodular goiter for which she reported to Kapsowar Hospital seeking support. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Mercy receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on January 12th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $936, and she and her family need help raising money. Mercy says, "I have lost weight, I am weak and cannot work like before. My hope in life is to get treated and continue supporting my son. He is the only family I got.”
Haikaeli is a 3-month-old baby and the last born child in a family of four children. Her parents are both small-scale farmers who depend entirely on what they harvest for their living. With the rains delayed in their region of Tanzania, food is becoming scarce and making life difficult. Haikaeli 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, Haikaeli has been experiencing her head increasing in size significantly and as days go by her health keeps deteriorating. Without treatment, Haikaeli will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $765 to cover the cost of surgery for Haikaeli that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 14th and will drain the excess fluid from Haikaeli's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Haikaeli will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Haikaeli’s mother says “My daughter worsens as days go by, she cannot eat well anymore. Please help her.”
Shwe Win is a 39-year-old man who lives with wife, two daughters, and two sons in Yangon, Burma. Shwe Win used to work as a civil engineer but is currently unemployed. His wife is a teacher and all of his children go to school. Their monthly household income is enough to pay for their expenses and basic health care, but they have to use their savings to pay for all the children’s school fees. In the beginning of 2018, Shwe Win developed severe pain in his waist and back. He went to a local hospital to see a doctor, who ordered an ultrasound, x-rays, a blood test and a urine test. After checking his results, the doctor told him that he has a stone in his left kidney. He was given an injection, and the doctor told him that he would need to be admitted at a hospital to have the stone broken up surgically. Afterwards, Shwe Win would be in pain anytime he lifted anything heavy or sat for longer than 30 minutes. Whenever the pain became unbearable, he would take painkillers. In June 2019, he decided to join a rehabilitation program run by Christian Youth. When he finished the program, he developed severe pain again. This time, neither the painkillers nor the injection worked. He was referred again to the hospital. There he was admitted for five days because he was in so much pain that he vomited and had difficulty breathing. While admitted, he received an ultrasound and was told that he now had stones in both of his kidneys. He would need to have treatment to break up the stones. "I feel thankful that I was able to meet Burma Children Medical Fund. If I hadn’t come here, I wouldn’t have pursued treatment because I don’t want to be a burden on my siblings nor my wife anymore,” shared Shwe Win.
Clifterson was born with a heart condition called double outlet right ventricle, in which the aorta connects to the heart in a different place than it normally does. This prevents the heart from pumping oxygen-rich blood to his body, leaving him sick and short of breath. If untreated, it would be fatal. Clifterson lives in a rural area of southwest Haiti with his mother who is a farmer. Clifferson's mother says, "I am so happy to know that there is a chance for my child to become healthy!"
Mee is a 53-years-old woman who lives with her husband and two daughters who are studying in grade nine and six at a local high school. Mee’s husband is a carpenter and she is a homemaker. Their income is not enough to cover their expenses. About ten years ago, Mee had joint pain and swollen knees. She went to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) where she received blood test and vital signs. The results showed Mee has hypertension as well as arthritis. She also found out that she has a goiter related problem. She received one month worth of medication for all three conditions. Since then, Mee went back to MTC every month for follow-up appointment and to received medication. After three years of taking medication, Mee was told that she does not need to take medication for goiter anymore. Up until now, Mee has been going back to the same clinic for regular medication for her goiter. Meanwhile, Mee feels like her goiter has grown bigger. One day, she happened to meet a health worker in her village who told her to go and seek treatment at MTC. So Mee, along with her friend, went to MTC. From there, she was told to go to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. Mee then went to MSH the following day and she received blood tests and an ultrasound. With the results, the doctor confirmed Mee has a goiter. He said Mee needs to undergo surgery because oral medication or injection would not decrease the size of her goiter. Currently, Mee cannot sleep well but she can eat well. Sometimes, when she carries heavy things, she feels pain in her neck.
Patrick is a young student from Kenya. Patrick is the 2nd born in a family of 3 children. He is a class 1 pupil and he likes reading, drawing and playing with other kids at school and at home. The father is a farmer while the mother is a housewife. Patrick has clubfoot of his left foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Patrick traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on September 12th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,224 to fund Patrick's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily. “We are kindly appealing for help of the 2nd surgery. Any kind of assistance will be appreciated." said Patrick’s father.
Zakayo is a baby from Tanzania. He 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. Fortunately, Zakayo's family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 16. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $890 to fund Zakayo's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily. Zakayo’s mother says, “My son and I are being discriminated due to this condition please help treat my son so he can lead a normal life.”