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Andrew Gowen

MONTHLY DONOR

Andrew's Story

Andrew joined Watsi on August 29th, 2013. Six months ago, Andrew joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Andrew's most recent donation supported Paw, a 21-year-old refugee from Thailand, to fund fracture repair surgery.

Impact

Andrew has funded healthcare for 27 patients in 11 countries.

All patients funded by Andrew

Paw

Paw is a 21-year-old who lives with her parents, a brother, three sisters, a daughter and a niece in a refugee camp. Her father used to be an agricultural day laborer, but had to stop working due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Her sisters go to school and her brother is unemployed. Paw looks after her daughter and niece, who are too young to go to school, while her mother looks after the household chores. In her free time, Paw likes to play with her daughter and visit her friends. On March 9th, Paw left the camp alone to collect firewood. While climbing a hill, she slipped, falling onto her right shin. She was in so much pain that she could not stand up. She got herself to a nearby road where a motorcyclist drove her back to the camp. At home, Paw was treated by a traditional healer, and a couple of days later, a second traditional healer told her family that Paw had fractured her leg. Paw's father made a bamboo brace for her leg, and carried her to the hospital in the camp run by International Rescue Committee (IRC). Knowing that she would need surgery, IRC staff referred her to Burma Children Medical Fund to receive treatment at a local hospital. Currently, Paw experiences a lot of pain when moving her right leg. She cannot stand up by herself and she cannot sleep at night when the pain is severe. Since she injured her leg, she feels more tired and she has lost her appetite. 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 will help her walk and live pain-free. The procedure is scheduled for March 12th and will cost $1,500. Paw shared, "once recovered, I will take care of my parents. I will work and save money for my daughter, so that I can make sure that she has food and clothes."

86% funded

86%funded
$1,300raised
$200to go
James

James is a 52-year-old boda-boda driver from Kenya. He is a father to four children, all of whom are adults. His wife is a homemaker, and he is the sole breadwinner for the family. On February 5th, 2021, James was in a road traffic accident and sustained a burst fracture of T12 spinal cord transection. Immediately after the accident, he was aware of the intensity of the injury because he could not use his lower limbs and had a sharp pain in the mid-back. He was assisted by well-wishers and was rushed to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Kijabe Hospital, where the orthopaedic team ran x-rays and other tests. Now, James needs to undergo a posterior spinal instrumentation and fusion, a procedure that is aimed at stabilizing his spine and avoiding future complications. However, James does not have medical coverage and is therefore required to raise the full deposit for his surgery. He has raised some financial contributions from friends and relatives, but needs additional support for his care. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping James receive treatment. He is scheduled to undergo a spinal fusion procedure on February 10th at our medical partner's care center. This procedure will cost $1,500, and will hopefully allow James' legs to heal and regain some mobility. James shared, “I hope I will be able use my legs again. I need help both surgically and financially given that the cost of the surgery is high and I am unable to afford.”

100% funded

$1,500raised
Fully funded
Komson

Komson is a 35-year-old cane juice seller from Cambodia. He has been married for 11 years and lives with his wife and two daughters. The oldest child is nine years old in grade 3, while his younger child is not yet in school. When Komson is not working, he likes listening to the radio, watching TV, and helping around the house with cleaning, cooking, and caring for his daughters. On January 3rd, 2021, Komson was involved in a motor vehicle crash involving a dog. This accident caused him to fracture his right femur. His family decided on a Khmer traditional treatment, where a bamboo stalk is placed on the affected leg to support the femur. He took some medications and went home. After a few days, his family took him to the provincial hospital near their home for an X-ray, where he was referred to Children's Surgical Centre. There, they assessed his fracture and saw that his broken leg is much shorter than his other leg. His leg is swollen and very painful, and it is difficult for him to walk. Surgeons decided to put him in traction for 5 days and then conduct an open reduction internal fixation (ORIF) of his right femur. On January 18th, Komson will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. This procedure will help him walk again so that he can continue to work and support his family. He wants to make sure he has enough money to send his daughters to school. Komson shared, "I hope that after surgery, my right femur will be repaired and I will no longer have pain or swelling. I am anxious to get back to my job and supporting my family."

100% funded

$465raised
Fully funded
Periya

Periya is a baby boy from Tanzania. He is the youngest in a family of three children. Periya was born at home because the hospital is very far from where they live. His mother had no problems when giving birth, but she was caught by surprise when she saw that her baby's right foot was not normal. At first, she thought that massaging Periya's foot would bring it back to normal, but as time went by, there was still no change. Though her husband did not think it necessary, Periya's mother kept asking relatives where she could get her son treated, and she was eventually directed to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center ALMC-The Plaster House. There, Periya was diagnosed with clubfoot of his right foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. However, the treatment he needs is costly for their family. Periya's father sells traditional herbal medicines, while his mother is a homemaker and mostly herds cattle. They are not able to afford the treatment and appeal for financial help. On December 15th, surgeons at our medical partner's care center will perform clubfoot repair surgery on Periya. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Periya's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk more easily and his quality of life will significantly improve. Periya’s mother shared, “I would like for my baby's foot to be straightened so that he can stand and walk properly when the time comes.”

100% funded

$935raised
Fully funded
Brighton

Brighton is three-year-old boy and the youngest in his family of nine children. Brighton is a friendly and playful boy. Brighton's parents have been wanting to enroll him in school and start kindergarten but they are concerned because Brighton's right foot is deformed after being involved in a fire accident two years ago, making walking for him difficult. Brighton was left at home sleeping while his mother went out to fetch water. His older siblings were inside the house playing and one of them took a matchbox and started playing with it. The fire caught the bed in which Brighton was sleeping in. The oldest child seeing the fire ran and called their mother who rushed in to save Brighton. He was saved, though he sustained burns on his right foot and was rushed to the hospital. Thankfully Brighton was treated, his wound healed, and was able to walk. However as time went on the scars around his foot contracted to pull on his toes, deforming his foot and making it difficult for him to walk well. His parents tried to seek treatment for him but the cost turned out to be expensive for them to afford. Both parents are small scale farmers and their income is not enough to support the family and cover Brighton's treatment cost. They are asking for help. Brighton’s mother says, “We would love to see our son’s foot well so that he can be able to walk like other normal children, but the cost of treatment is too high for us to afford. Please help us.”

100% funded

$1,088raised
Fully funded
Tabitha

Tabitha is a middle-aged woman from Kenya and a very jovial lady. She is a single mother with two children. In December 2019, Tabitha started feeling some swollen tissue in her breast. A few days later, she went to a nearby hospital to seek care. In the facility, a scan was done and she was given some medication. As time went by, the tissue in her breast continued to grow and worried Tabitha greatly. She returned to the facility to seek further treatment, but beyond a biopsy test and another scan, the facility told her they could not offer her additional treatment. When a family member paid her a visit, Tabitha shared her story and was referred to Kijabe Hospital. Upon arrival, she was examined and diagnosed with breast cancer. The doctors recommended a mastectomy to remove the lump in her breast. Without treatment, the cancer may metastasize to other organs. Tabitha has struggled financially to raise both of her children. To earn a living, she makes and repairs fishing nets and hooks and later sells them. One of her children has joined her in this business, and the other one does casual jobs to earn a living. Tabitha is not able to raise or source funds to pay for this surgery and appeals for financial help. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $857 to cover the cost of a mastectomy for Tabitha. The procedure is scheduled to take place on October 15th. After treatment, Tabitha will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Tabitha says, “Having heard from the doctor that the swollen tissue might be cancerous, I am very much worried about my health. On the other hand, I am happy that the tissue can be removed. I am hopeful that I will receive treatment very soon despite having no money for the surgery.”

100% funded

$857raised
Fully funded
Khin

Khin is a 39-year-old woman who lives with her family in Hpa-An Township, Karen State, Burma. Both her children are in preschool. She and her husband are subsistence farmers, growing rice during the rainy season on rented land. The rest of the year, her husband collects leaves used to make roofs, works as a daily labourer or collects branches to sell. Khin was born with a scar the size of an ant bite on her upper lip. Her parents thought that it would disappear or heal on its own but the scar developed into a growth and increased in size. Her parents passed away when she was young and after that she went to live with her brother’s family. By the time she was around 20 years old, the growth had become large and soft, covering the area between her upper lips and her nose. When the pain became unbearable in 2005, her uncle dropped her off at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) in Thailand, a free clinic close to where her uncle used to work. At this point, the growth had become so large that dragged her upper lip down and extended into her nostrils. At MTC, she was seen by doctors and medics, before she was diagnosed with a hemangioma. At this point, the growth had worsened, and she was bleeding from her lips. In April 2006, Khin went to Chiang Mai Hospital and had the hemangioma removed surgically. The growth later has returned. Overtime, the hemangioma has increased in size and become hard. It has now expanded into Khin’s nostrils, especially her left nostril, which causes her to have difficulty breathing at times. She feels uncomfortable but is not in pain. Sometimes she also feels like she has a blood clot in her nostrils during her nosebleeds. Because the nosebleed can start at any time and can last anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes, her life revolves around managing her nosebleeds. She is unable to work or sleep properly, and if she is about to have a nosebleed, she is unable to eat. The nosebleeds have also affected her ability to earn an income for her children and continues to impact her social life. “When I socialise, I do not feel comfortable and some people think I have a disease that I can infect them with,” said Khin. “So, I hope to get better after surgery, and I hope I will no longer have nosebleeds. I don’t want to bleed, and I want to socialise with my friends and family happily. [Right now] my friends won’t even touch me.”

100% funded

$1,500raised
Fully funded