Yong joined Watsi on June 27th, 2013. Nine years ago, Yong joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Yong's most recent donation traveled 6,600 miles to support Salmin, a newborn from Tanzania, to fund surgery so he can walk easily as he grows.
Yong has funded healthcare for 108 patients in 13 countries.
Yong has funded healthcare for 108 patients in 13 countries.
Meet Salmin, an adored newborn baby from Tanzania and the youngest in his family of four children. His father is a soldier and must spend most of his time away from home, and his mother is a teacher. Salmin was born with clubfoot on his right foot and hyperextension on his left knee. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape, which causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Salmin’s parents want to ensure he receives the best care to grow up to live a healthy and fulfilling life. When they learned about our medical partner’s care center, they brought him in for assessment and treatment. Salmin will first receive non-surgical care that involves gentle manipulation and casting of his right foot. Over the course of several weeks, Salmin’s foot angle will gradually improve; then, he will undergo tenotomy surgery on May 16th. After treatment, Salmin will be able to walk easily as he grows and reaches the walking stage. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $935 to fund Salmin’s surgery. Salmin’s mother said: “I have been constantly worried since I got news of my son’s condition. I am hopeful that with the right treatment, he will be fine.”
Moses is a playful four-year-old boy from Nyandarua County in Kenya. He is the seventh and youngest child in his family. Both of his parents are peasant farmers. Moses was a healthy child at birth. However, last year his mother noticed an unusual bending of his legs towards each other, known as knock knees. At that time, Moses' mother was told to wait until Moses was older before considering treatment. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,224 to fund hemiepiphysiodesis surgery for Moses, which is scheduled for April 18th at AIC Cure International Hospital. This procedure, also known as guided growth, will gradually correct Moses' angular limb deformity, enabling him to walk comfortably as he grows older. “I will appreciate any kind of support purposed to help my boy walk normally like other children.” Moses’s mother told us.
Negash, who is five years old, is the youngest of the six children in his family. Their family lives in rural Ethiopia, where his parents are farmers who grow wheat and barley. Additionally, they work as daily laborers on government construction projects to earn extra money to support their family. A few years ago, Negash's parents learned that he had been born with hypospadias, a congenital condition that causes urinary dysfunction. The doctors at the hospital in Sekota told the family that Negash would need to return for treatment when he turned four years old. As the hospital in Sekota could not perform the procedure required to address Negash's condition, a social worker accompanied the family to Addis Ababa, helping to cover all of their travel costs. However, the family needs money to pay for the surgery that Negash must have in order to prevent him from higher risk of cancer and infertility, and other worrying symptoms in the future. Fortunately, Negash is now scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on March 30th at BethanyKids Myungsung Christian Medical Centre. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Negash's father said: “I want my son to be completely well. I hope he will be well educated and become a president.”
Sam Neang is a 50-year-old Tuk Tuk driver, who lives with his wife and three children in Cambodia. His wife is a homemaker, caring for their children, who are still in school. After he finishes work for the day, Sam Neang likes playing cards with his friends and spending time with his family. In 2008, a large stone fell on Sam Neang's back. Despite the medications he takes, Sam Neang lives in constant pain and would like to find a way to permanently ease his suffering Sam Neang learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, and sought their help. On February 1st, surgeons at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre will perform an L5-S1 fusion procedure, which will secure Sam Neang's spine, improve his mobility, and decrease his level of pain. Now, Sam Neang needs your help to fund this $1,035 procedure. Sam Neang says: "I don't want to be in pain anymore."
Rose is a 44-year-old wife and mother of two children from Haiti. She lives in a small town in central Haiti with her husband, two children, and her sister and her sister's children. Unfortunately, she has been too unwell to work for over five years, but previously sold electronics in a local market. Rose has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation. One of the four valves of her heart was severely damaged as a result of rheumatic fever a number of years ago. Her heart cannot adequately pump blood through her body, leaving her tired and short of breath. Fortunately, our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA), is helping Rose receive treatment. She will fly to the Dominican Republic for her surgery. On January 27th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will remove her diseased mitral valve and implant an artificial replacement. HCA is contributing $12,000 to cover the cost of Rose's procedure, but she and her family also need help funding the costs of surgery prep. Rose and her family need help raising $1,500 to cover labs, medicine, check-ups and follow-up appointments. This money will also support passport obtainment and the social workers from HCA that will accompany Rose's family overseas. Rose shared, "I have felt very sick for a very long time, and I am very hopeful that this surgery will bring me relief and new energy!"
Norelien is a 7 month old baby boy from Haiti who comes from a loving family. Norelien was diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Norelien has been experiencing headaches, irritability and increasing head circumference. He had a shunt placed in his head to help treat his condition, but he now urgently needs a new one. Without this treatment, Norelien will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, Project Medishare, is requesting $957 to cover the cost of surgery for Norelien at Hospital Bernard Mevs, the only hospital in the country where this care is currently available. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 29th. This critical treatment will replace the shunt and drain the excess fluid from Norelien's brain to reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Norelien will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. The family is hopeful that their child's shunt will work once again and that Norelien's condition will improve.
Swe lives with her parents and her son in a village in northern Burma. Her father is subsistence farmer, her mother owns a small weaving business where traditional Burmese blankets and sarongs are hand woven. Her son goes to school and Swe is a homemaker. In her free time, she enjoys visiting and talking to her friends in their village. In December 2021, Swe began to experience fatigue, sweatiness, vomiting and difficulty breathing. She also had a headache and a stiff neck. At first she could not travel due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, but eventually went to Mandalay in August to seek help. At a hospital, she received an echocardiogram and was diagnosed with mitral valve stenosis and aortic valve regurgitation. She was told she would need surgery costing 15 million kyat (approx. $15,000 USD), but she could not afford to pay for it. She then went to Yangon with her son, in the hopes of finding another hospital that cost operate on her for less money. While in Yangon, her condition deteriorated and her son rushed her to a hospital. The doctor there confirmed her diagnosis and her need for surgery, but told her it would cost 20 million kyat (approx. $20,000 USD). When Swe told the doctor that she could not afford to pay such a large sum, the doctor referred her to an abbot, who in turn referred her to our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for financial assistance accessing treatment. Currently, Swe cannot walk for more than 10 minutes or she feels very tired and short of breathe. She has a rapid heartbeat, dizziness and headache. She said, "I want to say thank you so much to BCMF and all the donors to help me with my treatment cost.”
Ma Win is an 18-year-old girl who lives with her parents, sister and brother-in-law in Yangon, Burma. Ma Win’s sister works at a clothing factory, while her brother-in-law works as a day laborer. Her parents are homemakers. Before Ma Win's current illness, she also worked at a factory. When Ma Win was four years old, she experienced a bout of high fever, and was brought to the local clinic. She received an injection, and the doctor informed her parents that she was born with a heart problem. However, she was too young at the time for corrective surgery. Instead, she was sent home with medication, and appeared to be doing well until this past year. In April, Ma Win began experiencing chest pains, high fever and difficulty breathing. She went to a clinic, and received an x-ray and an echocardiogram. After the doctor checked her results, she was diagnosed with an opening between two major blood vessels leading from the heart. The doctor told her and her family that she would need to have surgery. When Ma Win explained to the doctor that her family could not afford to pay for the surgery, she was referred to the abbot of a local monastery, who provided the family with information about our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. Now Ma Win is scheduled for cardiac surgery on October 23rd at Pun Hlaing Hospital. After she has recovered, she should no longer experience chest pains or difficulty breathing, and she won't have to worry any longer about her condition. She will also be able to return to work, which will help ease her family's financial burdens. Now she needs your help to raise $1,500 to cover the cost of her procedure. Ma Win said: “I am scared to receive surgery, but my mother tries to encourage me. However, I am very happy that I will be able to receive treatment with your help. I would like to say thank you so much to all the donors.”
Meet Britney, a sociable, six year old girl, living in a village in rural Kenya. Britney is an only child, and is currently in school. Her mother is unemployed, and relies on family to support her and Britney. While Britney was born a healthy child, her legs began to bow out when she turned two. While her mother, who suffers from the same condition, brought her to various doctors, Britney's condition continued to deteriorate. Well wishers, who noticed Britney's condition, brought her to the AIC Cure International Hospital for further evaluation. Thanks to our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, Britney will undergo surgery on September 27th, to help correct her bowed legs. This procedure will enable Britney to walk more easily, and to live without pain. Britney and her family are seeking $1,224 to fund the operation. "I will be grateful to see my daughter growing and walking well like other children,” Britney’s mother told us.
Thomas is a sweet three-week-old baby from Kenya. He is the youngest in a family of four children. His father works as a luggage carrier, and his mother does laundry and other house chores for people to help provide for their family. Thomas was born at a hospital near their home. At birth, he was diagnosed with spina bifida, as well as clubfoot. Spina bifida is a type of neural tube condition in which the spine does not properly close around the spinal cord. Without treatment, Thomas is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,151 to cover the cost of Thomas's spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on August 31st. This procedure will hopefully spare Thomas from the risks associated with his condition, instead allowing him to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Thomas’s father says, “Currently, we are very stressed because of our child’s condition. We are requesting for any help to see him become well.”
Alison is a sweet 6-year-old from Bolivia who loves princesses and coloring in coloring books! She lives with her parents in a small town on the border between Bolivia and Argentina. Her father is a minibus taxi driver, and her mother is currently finishing her university studies. Alison also attends school and recently finished first grade. Alison was born with a ventricular septal defect, a cardiac condition in which a hole exists between the two lower chambers of the heart. Blood leaks through this hole without first passing through the lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving her feeling weak and short of breath. Fortunately, Alison is scheduled to undergo heart surgery on July 26th with the support of our long-standing medical partner Haiti Cardiac Alliance, which is now growing and expanding into Bolivia. Surgeons will close the hole with a patch, allowing blood to properly flow through her body and improving her quality of life. Another organization, Gift of Life International, is contributing $2,500 to pay for a portion of Alison's procedure costs. Our medical partner is requesting $1,500 to cover the remaining costs, which funds surgical expenses, cardiac exams, medications, and travel fees so Alison and her family can travel to receive her life-changing cardiac procedure in La Paz. Alison's mother shares, "Our family is so grateful for this opportunity to save our daughter's life!"
Wilna is a 13-year-old student from Haiti. Her family lives in a rural area in northwest Haiti, as Wilna's parents both work as farmers. Wilna is in the sixth grade and enjoys her math and social studies classes. Wilna has a cardiac condition called severe mitral regurgitation, which means one of Wilna's heart valves was damaged due to an infection she experienced earlier in childhood. As a result, Wilna's heart is not adequately pumping blood through her body. The care that she needs is not available in Haiti, but fortunately, Wilna will fly to the Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On July 26th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will either repair her damaged heart valve or implant an artificial replacement, so that her heart can pump blood normally. Wilna's family is requesting assistance to cover the costs of her surgery prep, as our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA), is contributing the funds to cover the cost of surgery. HCA is requesting $1,500 to cover Wilna's surgery prep, which includes all labs, medication, check-up and follow-up appointments, and the passports needed for HCA's social workers to accompany Wilna and her family overseas. Wilna shared, "I am glad to be having this surgery so that I will be able to walk without feeling tired."