Laura joined Watsi on November 8th, 2014. Seven years ago, Laura joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Laura's most recent donation traveled 8,800 miles to support Davin, a bright and active 10-year-old student from Cambodia, to fund surgery of his inner ear so he can hear and communicate better.
Laura has funded healthcare for 103 patients in 12 countries.
Laura has funded healthcare for 103 patients in 12 countries.
Davin is a 10-year-old 3rd grade student. He has three older brothers and one older sister. Davin's parents are rice and lemongrass root farmers. Davin told us how much he enjoys playing football. Two years ago, Davin had a severe ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. Now, Davin experiences ear pain, discharge, hearing loss, and tinnitus. He has difficulty hearing his teacher or classmates and is often absent from school due to his ear pain. Fortunately, on June 1st, Davin will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in his left ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $926 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Davin's parents say, "I hope his hearing improves and he can enjoy school again."
Abigail is a bright three-year-old girl. She lives with her parents and one older brother in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince, which is the capital of Haiti. Abigail was born with a condition called patent ductus arteriosus. The deformity causes blood to leak through a hole between two major blood vessels near the heart. That makes it difficult for her small heart to function properly and can lead to tiredness, shortness of breath and restricted growth as she gets older. Fortunately, the condition is highly treatable with surgery. Our medical partner Haiti Cardiac Alliance has arranged for Abigail, her family and an escort to travel to the Dominican Republic, where doctors will use a catheter to plug the hole near her heart. Abigail should then be able to go on to live a full, healthy life. Another charity, Gift of Life International, is also contributing $5,000 toward the procedure, which is scheduled to take place on May 24th. This $1,500 will help fund Abigail's life-changing surgery and related care. Abigail's mother says, "We would like to say thank you to everyone who is helping to heal our daughter's heart!"
Thein is a 56-year-old man who lives with his family in a refugee camp. Two of his daughters and his son-in-law work as seasonal workers outside of the camp, while Thein and his wife look after their three grandchildren, send them to school, and care for the household chores. In January, Thein was diagnosed with a cataract in his right eye and an early cataract in his left eye. Currently, he cannot see with his right eye, as his vision is blurry, and the vision in his left eye is also beginning to blur. As a result, Thein cannot walk easily and relies on a bamboo staff to help stabilize him as he tries to avoid tripping on any objects in his path. He shared that he feels discomforted and like he is living in darkness. Fortunately, Thein was able to visit our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), and they can help him heal. On March 8th, doctors will perform a lens replacement. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Thein shared, “When I recover from surgery, I will help my family plant and water vegetables around the house. It can save us money from buying the vegetables. I can help send my grandchildren to school and pick them up in the evening. I will also be able to visit my friend.”
Sa is a 36-year-old woman who likes to sew clothes. She also enjoys doing household chores and making delicious curries. Her husband is a nightguard at a hospital. Since 2015, Sa started to experience pain in her back and her pelvic area. Since December, her pain has worsened which makes it hard for her to sleep. She shared that she is feeling increasingly worried and depressed since she first experienced the pain and realized that she was unwell. Watsi donors helped support a CT scan and doctors have now diagnosed her with bilateral ovarian cancer. To help treat her condition, her doctors advised Sa to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Sa's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Sa is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on February 25th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she is hopeful that she'll no longer be in pain and will have a better shot at recovering from cancer. Sa said, "I was very worried when I heard that I needed surgery and that it would cost a lot of money. I was worried that if the donors stopped helping me, where would I come up with enough money to pay for my surgery. I could not sleep last night, constantly worrying about my treatment cost. When I called BCMF's staff and they told me that donors could pay for my surgery, I felt so much better. Thank you everyone for helping me."
Ko Myo lives with his mother in a village in Burma. He used to be a motorcycle taxi driver but stopped working two months ago when his health deteriorated. His mother and wife currently care for him, washing clothes and working in a clothing factory in Yangon, earning income to support their family. With the help of Watsi donors, Ko Myo underwent his second round of laser treatment in January 2020, at Mae Sot Hospital in Thailand, to breakup stones in his left kidney. He was scheduled to undergo a third round of laser treatment however, when the Thai-Burma border closed in March 2020 due to increasing COVID-19 cases, Ko Myo was not able to go back to the hospital. He felt better until the first week of December 2021 when he started experiencing a lot of pain in his waist when he sat for a long time. With the border still closed and without enough money to go to a hospital, Ko Myo sought advice. He then went with our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, in Yangon to a clinic in January 2022 and was able to visit our partner's care center, Shin Par Ku Hospital. The doctor has told him he will need surgery on his left kidney to remove the stone and has scheduled him to have the procedure on February 6th. Currently, Ko Myo has little appetite and experiences pain in the left side of his back. He is eagerly awaiting surgery. He shared, "I pity my wife because she has to work hard and support me. Now, I am so happy that I will receive surgery soon," he said. "One day I want to open my own shop in the market and sew children's clothing."
Samrach is a 27-year-old clothing factory worker. He's is married with two small children. His daughter is six years old and just starting the first grade, and his son is nine months old. His wife is also a factory worker in their province. He likes to play with his children and listen to music. Ten months ago, on his way home from the factory, Samrach was in a motorcycle crash. He suffered fractures of the femur, clavicle, forearm, and multiple other injuries. He lost his left leg below the knee due to the trauma injury, and spent three months in a provincial hospital. A local taxi driver told him about the specialty care at our medical partner Children's Surgical Center (CSC). Doctors have diagnosed him with a brachial plexus injury on his left side. The brachial plexus is a nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Injuries to this nerve network can result in loss of function and sensation. He cannot lift his left shoulder, bend his elbow, or use his hand. He feels unwell and shared that he often feels very depressed that he cannot work or support his family. Samrach traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On January 6th, he will undergo a brachial plexus repair surgery. After recovery, he hopes to regain the use of his arm so he can find work in the factory again. Our medical partner is requesting $696 to fund this life-changing procedure. Samrach said: "I hope this surgery will work for me, and I can start working again to have money to feed my children and make sure they go to school."
Sheila is a 13-year-old bright and outgoing girl. She is a partial orphan who lives with a guardian that helped to rescue her from a difficult situation growing up. Sheila lives at a special place alongside 10 other children who come from a similar background. Her guardian says that Sheila's clubfoot condition limits her from her potential. Sheila was born with clubfoot and the condition has affected her mobility and lowered her self-esteem in a way that she cannot connect with her peers. Her guardian and family are not financially able to support the surgery and are appealing for financial assistance. Fortunately, Sheila traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on December 6th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund Sheila's clubfoot repair. After treatment, Sheila will be able to easily interact with her peers and have a high self-esteem. Her guardian says, “I would very much appreciate the support that may be provided for Sheila's care. She will be able to explore her full potential.”
Jhonatan Mercado is a creative four-year-old from Venezuela. A year ago his family moved to Medellin in Colombia seeking for a better future for their kids. Jhonatan is an older brother in a family of two children, his little brother is one year old. Jhonatan he loves to play with his mom with Legos. He already loves soccer too. Jhonatan Mercado 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, Jhonatan Mercado's family traveled to visit our Medical Partner Clínica Noel. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on December 20th. Our medical partner, Clínica Noel, is requesting $1500 to fund Jhonatan Mercado's bilateral clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk without pain or further complications. His mother said "We are really glad that finally we found help, we have been in different treatments since he was 6 months old but now we have a lot of faith in this procedure and in Doctor Miguel."
Vibol is an 18-year-old gasoline attendant from Cambodia. He has one younger sister. His father works a motor taxi driver and his mother is a housewife. In his free time, he enjoys meeting his friends to play football or volleyball and listening to music. A year ago, Vibol was in a motor vehicle crash where he fractured his left tibia. He had surgery at a local government hospital where a plate and screws were placed to help the fracture heal. Now that the fracture site has healed, he has full function of his leg, however it is uncomfortable for him to have hardware in his leg and he needs it removed to limit the risk of infection. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On September 16th, Vibol will undergo a hardware removal procedure, which will cost $230. During the procedure, surgeons will remove the hardware that has caused him discomfort. Vibol shared that he hopes the hardware will be easy to remove and the wound will heal quickly so he can return to work and do the things he enjoys.
Boaz is a small baby boy and the last born in a family of three children. Boaz’s father is a teacher and his mother is a housewife. Boaz was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition he was born with. If left untreated, Boaz has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. Fortunately, Boaz is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on September 6th. Boaz will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). AMHF is requesting $646 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care so he can grow up healthy. Boaz’s mother says, “When we heard that we were not in a position to be covered with support for his surgery, we had no choice but to go back and gather some funds which would take a long time. We are grateful for your help.”
Panha is a 7-year-old student from Cambodia. He lives in Kampongcham Province with his parents and is an only child. His father is a driver and his mother sells soft drinks and vegetables out of their home. Panha is learning writing in school, and loves listening to stories. Outside of school, he likes to play with his large group of friends, or walk with his mother. Three years ago, Panha received poorly administered injections, causing a flexion contracture in both knees. He is unable to fully straighten his knee, which limits his mobility greatly. When Panha's family learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, they traveled there seeking treatment. On July 7th, surgeons at Children's Surgical Centre will perform a quadricepsplasty procedure on his left leg to improve his knee flexion and help him walk again. Now, Panha's family needs help to fund this $430 procedure. Panha shared, "I want to walk with my mother and my friends easily again."
Nuriya is 2-year-old toddler from Ethiopia who loves his mom and dad very much and always wants to be with them. Nuriya enjoys chatting and playing with his parents. Now he also has a three-month-old baby sister. His parents are working hard to raise them both. They shared that they went through a lot as a previous immigrant in Saudi Arabia and their family now decided to stay in their home country to raise a family and support it from their homeland. Nuriya's grandparents gave his parents a small piece of land that they are now farming. However, the fruit that they farm is only enough to maintain the daily needs of the family. Nuriya 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, Nuriya is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on July 6th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Nuriya was also born with another birth condition that Watsi donors supported for treatment and his family is tremendously grateful for support. Nuriya's mother is inspired by the care he is receiving, “I hope he will be a doctor in the future. Just as the doctor who treated him and changed his health in the past, I want him to grow and treat so many kids with sickness and disability.”