Robert joined Watsi on February 19th, 2017. Four years ago, Robert joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Robert's most recent donation traveled 6,600 miles to support Dorn, a hardworking farmer from Cambodia, to fund surgery to treat her perforated ear drum.
Robert has funded healthcare for 62 patients in 9 countries.
Robert has funded healthcare for 62 patients in 9 countries.
Dorn is a 41-year-old farmer who lives in the Kampong Cham province of Cambodia with her family. Her husband is a construction worker. They have one daughter and one son together, both of whom are in public high school. When she is not working, she spends her time cooking, watching TV, and visiting her neighbors. Three months ago, Dorn had a severe ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in her right ear to perforate. For this reason, Dorn experiences pain, feelings of pressure, discharge and hearing loss. She cannot communicate clearly with others. Dorn traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On August 17th, she will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in her right ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation and relieve Dorn's pain. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $464 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and in-patient care. Dorn said, "I am happy that I will soon feel no more pain in my ear and I will be able to hear my family clearly."
Byereta is a 58-year-old farmer and policeman, and a married father to seven children. Two of his daughters are married, while the other five are still studying in school. His wife is a small scale farmer. He shared that because of having many children in school, he had to acquire loans to pay their school fees and support their family. In February of 2020, Byereta visited the hospital with a swelling that caused him unbearable pain. He was diagnosed with a right inguinal hernia and it was recommended that he have surgery, but he was called for training and never underwent the procedure. After his training, he was re-examined and surgery was again recommended to ensure a complete recovery. Because of the hernia, Byereta has difficulty bending down or carrying out any strenuous activity. If not treated, the hernia may become strangulated. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Byereta to receive treatment. Fortunately, on May 22nd, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at AMH's care center. Now, AMH is requesting $230 to fund Byereta's surgery. Once complete, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Byereta shared, “I have suffered a lot with this condition because my finances can't enable me pay for my bill on my own due to overwhelming bank loans and the little balance I receive. I use it to buy soap, salt, and paraffin to light the lamp at home. My situation is getting worse yet my entire family looks up to me. I kindly ask for your support so that I can regain my health and continue working effectively for the betterment for my health and my family.”
Paw is a 59-year-old woman who lives with her husband, son, daughter-in-law and two granddaughters in a refugee camp. In her free time, Paw like to feed her three chickens and sing gospel songs. She also loves looking after her granddaughters at home when their mother is teaching. On a late evening earlier this month, Paw was walking home in the rain when she slipped and fell on the muddy road. She accidentally hit her forehead against a tree stump and tried to break her fall by sticking out her right arm. Right after she fell, Paw experienced a sharp pain in her right arm and forehead. Her son and daughter-in-law brought her to the camp hospital, where Paw was given stitches for her forehead as well as pain medication, and her arm was put in a splint and a sling. The medic then referred her to another hospital, where she was finally admitted at two days later when a car became available to take her. At the hospital, Paw received a X-Ray and was told that her right wrist is broken and requires surgery. With her hand wrapped in a bandage, she was referred to our medical partner's care center, Chiang Mai Hospital, for further treatment. Currently, Paw cannot move her right wrist, not even to lift her hand. Without more pain medication, her hand and forearm experience severe pain with any movement, so Paw has to be careful to keep her right hand straight. Because of this, Paw cannot complete her daily chores nor look after her grandchildren. Fortunately, with the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Paw will undergo surgery to reset her fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for July 23rd and will cost $1,500. This surgery will help Paw move her hand around and resume her daily activities again with ease. “I want to get well soon so that I can go back to taking care of my grandchildren,” Paw said. “They are waiting for me at home to go back to my daily life. Now, I have to come for my treatment and there's nobody look after them. It is hard for my daughter in-law.”
Makara is a 32-year-old optometrist, however his office has been closed recently due to a pandemic lockdown in his city. He is married and has one three-year-old son. Makara's wife works in a garment factory. Now, he is staying at home at taking care of his son. One year ago, Makara developed a pterygium in his right eye, causing him itchiness, tearing, and sensitivity to light. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. Makara needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent recurrence. The total cost of his procedure is $216, which covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for May 4th. Makara shared, "thank you for helping me have this surgery. I hope I can be well again and return to work once lockdown ends."
Hillary is a three-year-old boy and the only child to his single mother. Hillary's mother works at a local safari company as a receptionist and through this work she is able to earn enough to support Hillary. Hillary has been diagnosed with genu varus, which means that his legs bow outwards. The condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, Hillary has difficulty walking and is unable to walk long distances. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Hillary. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 7th. It will hopefully restore Hillary's mobility, allowing him to participate in a variety of activities and greatly reducing his risk of future complications. Hillary’s mother shared, "my son needs this treatment but we are stranded because his insurance cannot cover the surgery cost. Please help since I don’t think I will ever be able to save enough to afford the treatment cost."
Ko is a 37-year-old father of five who lives with his wife, three daughters and two sons in a refugee camp in Thailand. His family receives a cash card every month from an organization, but this is not enough to cover their expenses. Therefore, he also works as an agricultural day laborer in a nearby Thai village. In his free time, Ko enjoys playing cane ball and spending time with his friends. On December 11, 2020, Ko slipped and fell onto rocks outside of the camp. When he tried to get up, Ko could tell that his leg was broken. He went to the hospital in the refugee camp run by Malteser International (MI). He was eventually referred to a hospital where he underwent surgery to insert a metal rod into his leg on December 25, 2020. When he went back to the hospital for his follow-up appointment on February 3, 2021, the doctor observed that the surgical wound was infected and he underwent surgery to clean his wound. When the wound still did not heal, the doctor referred him to another hospital, where the doctor told him he would need an additional surgery to remove necrotic tissue and replace the rod in his leg. Currently, Ko is experiencing a lot of pain. It is difficult for him to walk and he is worried about his family in the camp. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Ko will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and finally heal. This procedure will allow Ko to walk and his leg to heal properly. The procedure is scheduled for March 12th and will cost $1,500. Ko shared, “I really want to work to support my family as soon as possible. I cannot imagine what life would be like for my family if my leg never heals.”
D is a 38-year-old man who lives by himself and used to wash cars in a mechanic's shop until his accident. Unfortunately, he had to quit his job because of his condition and he has had no income since. On April 2nd, his friends asked him to pick mangos. After climbing up the tree, the branch he was holding onto suddenly broke and he fell onto a rock. He broke his right lower leg in the fall. Unable to stand up by himself, his two friends supported him and arranged for his transportation to a local hospital. At the hospital, he received an x-ray and the doctor wrapped his lower leg in a bandage. He scheduled a follow-up appointment for the following week and went home. However, D did not go back to the hospital because he had no money. Two weeks later, he visited a local clinic because he was still in pain. He was referred to our medical partner's care center where an x-ray showed that he had broken both of the bones in his right lower leg and he was told that he would need surgery. Currently, he cannot walk and experiences pain in his lower right leg when he moves. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, D will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for May 23rd and will cost $1,500. This surgery will help D walk again and he will be able to find work after he has made a full recovery. D shared, "I lost my job after my leg was injured. I no longer have an income or a place to live. I do not have anyone I can depend on and I feel like I have no more hope living with this condition."
James is a casual laborer who works hard to get any work he can. He is 34 years old and not yet married. He grew up as an orphan and has been brought up by his uncle, a small scale farmer with his own family. His mother died when he was very small, and his only sibling was a brother who also died about three years ago. Currently, James works picking tea at the neighbors’ farm. James was injured in an accident between a vehicle and a motorbike on 24th December 2020. He was a passerby and was hit on the left leg. Upon x-ray, he was found to have a closed fracture tibia/fibula. He was admitted to the hospital and open reduction internal fixation (ORIF) surgery was performed. Unfortunately, after about two weeks, the plate dislodged and opened the skin, and it became infected. If not treated, the infection may result in amputation of his leg. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On February 11th, James will undergo a new fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him heal well and walk easily again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. "I am so worried because I can only cry to my Uncle. I know he cannot pay for another surgery. I kindly ask for help so that I can be well and stop depending on others,” said James.
Titus is a shy 12-year-old boy and the oldest of three siblings. His mother is a single mother who works in the laundry business. His mother's work has unfortunately been affected by the pandemic, so recently Titus has been staying with his aunt as she is able to provide the family with some extra support. On Wednesday, April 14th, Titus sustained a severe injury to his left fingers after a machete fell while he was fetching firewood from the forest with his friends. His aunt brought him to the hospital where he received an X-ray, which revealed a fracture. A cast was placed to stabilize the fracture and realign the normal position of the bone as he waits for surgery. Titus requires help so that he can undergo surgery. His family is asking anyone reading his son’s story to support her raise the amount needed for his treatment. Titus's aunt said, “Titus is in a lot of pain, I hope he gets treated and feels better and is well again.”
Sreng is a 61-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She has six siblings, and currently lives with her niece who is also a farmer. At the end of harvest season, Sreng helps her niece plant vegetables to sell to support her family. She enjoys the end of her day by listening to the radio and visiting the neighborhood pagoda to listen to the monks chanting. One year ago, Sreng developed a cataract in her left eye, causing her sensitivity to light and glare, poor night vision, and difficulty carrying out her normal activities. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Sreng learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three and a half hours with her niece seeking treatment. On February 1st, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and place an intraocular lens implant in her left eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $229 procedure. Sreng shared, "I hope after surgery I can see again, help my niece to look after the grandchildren, and visit the pagoda to hear the monks."
Alex is a 20-year-old high school student from Haiti. He lives with his parents and younger brother in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. When he's healthy, he enjoys dancing and playing drums in church. Before his most recent illness, he was in his final year of high school. Alex has a cardiac condition called mitral regurgitation. When Alex was a child, he became infected with rheumatic fever which severely damaged one of his heart valves so that it could no longer pump blood through his body. Four years ago, surgeons in the Cayman Islands repaired Alex's existing heart valve in order to avoid replacing it with an artificial valve. This repaired valve worked well for three years, but then began to have difficulty pumping blood as well. Doctors now need to implant an artificial valve to replace the valve that is no longer working well. Alex will fly to the Cayman Islands to receive treatment. On April 7th, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will remove Alex's damaged valve and implant a mechanical replacement valve. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman Islands, is contributing $20,000 to pay for surgery. Alex's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Alex's family overseas. Alex shared, "I am looking forward to this surgery so that I can get back to attending school and going to church."
Say is a 66-year-old mechanic from Cambodia. He has two daughters and two sons. Now that he is older, he is not able to work anymore. Say lives alone, as his wife passed away three years ago from hypertension. In his free time, he enjoys listening to monks preaching and news on the radio. One year ago, Say developed a cataract in his right eye, causing him itchiness, tearing, and blurry vision. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Say learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for four and a half hours on rough roads with his son seeking treatment. On January 7th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and place an intraocular lens implant in his right eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $229 procedure. Say shared, "I hope after my surgery that I can see again and go do things by myself. I will take care of myself and I look forward to going to the pagoda."