Garry joined Watsi on January 25th, 2014. Two years ago, Garry joined the Universal Fund and became the 598th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 2,363 more people have joined! Garry's most recent donation traveled 8,800 miles to support Panha, a soldier from Cambodia, to fund nerve repair surgery.
Garry has funded healthcare for 33 patients in 9 countries.
Panha is a 28-year-old soldier. In September of 2016, he was involved in a traffic accident, which resulted in paralysis of his left arm, from his shoulder to his fingers. Panha's doctors prescribed intensive physiotherapy while he waited for the paralysis to resolve. However, despite some initial improvement, his arm remains paralyzed. Fortunately, on March 21, surgeons will perform nerve transfer surgery on his left brachial plexus, the structure that transmits signals from the spinal cord to the arm. This will allow Panha to use his arm again. Now, he needs help to fund this $450 procedure.
Iyona is a young herder from Tanzania who has been diagnosed with genu valgus, a condition in which the knees angle inward. This causes pain and difficulty when walking. Iyona began experiencing pain two years ago. His condition makes it difficult for him to carry out day-to-day activities, especially tending to his mother’s cattle. With treatment, however, Iyona should be able to walk without pain and continue herding his mother's livestock. Iyona is the fourth out of six children. He did not attend school for formal education, and instead spent most of his childhood herding. His mother is a widow who is currently putting two of Iyona's siblings through school. She needs help to pay for Iyona's $838 orthopedic surgery, which is scheduled for April 11. Iyona says, “I would really like to keep helping my mother raise my siblings, but I cannot do much. I mostly sit or sleep these days because it is painful when I walk. I request your assistance.”
Ronel is a three-year-old boy from the Philippines. His father works as a sand hauler, and his mother cares for the children. Ronel enjoys playing with his siblings and the other kids in the neighborhood. Ronel has been diagnosed with malnutrition. On February 20, our medical partner, International Care Ministries (ICM), will begin treating him for moderately acute malnutrition. ICM is requesting $184 for the treatment. Ronel's mother shares, "I hope that Ronel will recover from malnutrition and can continue school until he finishes." One out of five children under five in ICM communities is either severely or moderately malnourished. Worldwide, poor nutrition is associated with nearly half of all deaths in young children. In remote communities and urban slums of the Philippines, the lack of clean water and unclean environments add risk to potentially fatal childhood diseases. ICM’s home-based feeding program provides nutrient-enriched food packs to ensure malnourished children get additional food to regain normal weight and achieve optimum physical and mental development. After identifying a child as malnourished, staff and community volunteers make weekly visits to monitor this child’s progress. To help sustain the health of the child, ICM’s professional staff educate the mother, guardian, or other family members about proper nutrition, sanitation, hygiene, and organic vegetable gardening.
Kar Aung is a one-year-old boy from Burma. One of six siblings, he lives with his mother, father, and older brother on a relative’s farm. His mother hopes that he will become a medic when he grows up. Hours after Kar Aung was born in September 2015, his mother noticed an abnormal growth on his nose. A few days later, she took him to a private clinic, where the doctors diagnosed Kar Aung with nasofrontal encephalocele. This neural tube defect, resulting from a failure of the neural tube to fully close during fetal development, causes protrusions of the brain through openings in the skull. Kar Aung and his mother returned to the clinic four times, at great financial cost. Each time, they received medication, but his symptoms never improved. Finally, Kar Aung’s father contacted our medical partner's care center, Mae Tao Clinic (MTC). In March of 2016, six-month-old Kar Aung and his parents made the long, expensive journey to MTC. Upon examination, Kar Aung was diagnosed with tuberculosis and nasofrontal encephalocele. “I worried that my son will not be cured, as I have never seen kids like this in my village,” Kar Aung’s mother says. “I will always love him." Fortunately, Kar Aung is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on January 13. Our medical partner is requesting $1,500 to cover medications, surgery, transportation, and two weeks of hospital stay. When Kar Aung is fully recovered, he should be pain-free and able to see clearly.
Myint is a 21-year-old man from Burma. His family farms beans and radishes in their village, and his parents also work periodically picking fruit. Myint aspires to become a police officer. When Myint was 17 years old, his peripheral vision started to fail. Over the subsequent two years, his vision continued to deteriorate. After an initial diagnosis of nerve inflammation, a CT scan revealed a benign mass on his pituitary gland. Following surgery, his condition improved. However, his vision problems returned six months ago. Now, he can only see shadows. He also experiences memory difficulties. These symptoms prevent him from living independently, studying, or working. Myint traveled to visit our medical partner's care center. On January 11, Myint will undergo an MRI scan, which will enable his doctor to plan further treatment. Myint’s mother is hopeful for her son's recovery, saying, "When my son was healthy, he enjoyed reading. Unlike now, he was very talkative. I hope that he will recover from this medical condition. I want him to graduate from university studies, and then he wants to become a senior police officer."
Pai Lin is a 14-year-old girl from Cambodia. She is the youngest in her family. She likes to read books, sleep, and do housework. When she was younger, Pai Lin developed an ear infection in her right ear that perforated her ear drum. She experiences ear discharge, ringing in the ear, and hearing loss that makes it difficult for her to hear at school. Pai Lin traveled with her aunt to reach our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), for treatment. On January 4, CSC surgeons will perform a myringoplasty on her right ear to repair the perforated eardrum and stop the discharge. Over time, her hearing should improve. Pai Lin says, "I hope that I will have good hearing so that I can go to study."
Angel is a 22-month-old girl who lives with her grandparents in a small bamboo house. They source water from a deep well and share electricity with a neighbor. Her mother is a single mother who is a farm laborer. Angel loves to play house. Angel has been diagnosed with severe acute malnutrition. Malnutrition threatens her growth and development and could even be fatal if not addressed. Fortunately, she will begin $268 malnutrition treatment on February 23. Angel will be treated by International Care Ministries (ICM), a Watsi medical partner. One out of five children under five in ICM communities is either severely or moderately malnourished. Worldwide, poor nutrition is associated with nearly half of all deaths in young children. In remote communities and urban slums of the Philippines, the lack of clean water and unclean environments add risk to potentially fatal childhood diseases. ICM’s home-based feeding program provides nutrient-enriched food packs to ensure malnourished children get additional food to regain normal weight and achieve optimum physical and mental development. After identifying a child as malnourished, staff and community volunteers make weekly visits to monitor this child’s progress. To help sustain the health of the child, ICM’s professional staff educate the mother, guardian, or other family members about proper nutrition, sanitation, hygiene, and organic vegetable gardening. Her mother hopes that Angel will gain weight and become healthy. She also hopes that Angel becomes a successful teacher someday.
Sarorn is a 63-year-old farmer from Cambodia. She is married with four sons and three daughters. In her free time, she enjoys looking after her grandchildren. For the last two years, Sarorn has experienced pain and swelling in her left knee due to tuberculous arthritis. Over the past two months, the pain has worsened, preventing her from walking. A relative told Sarorn about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC). She traveled with her son to CSC for a consultation. On January 24, surgeons will perform an arthrodesis procedure on Sarorn's left knee. The joint fusion surgery will relieve her of pain and allow her to walk more easily. CSC is requesting $450 to fund her care.
Juan is a ten-month-old boy from Guatemala. His mother has had trouble affording foods rich in calories, protein, and nutrients. He has been diagnosed with acute malnutrition. This means he has little energy to grow, and his immune system is weak and vulnerable to illness. He is also at risk of chronic disease and delayed development. Fortunately, Juan began malnutrition treatment on November 28, 2016. Juan loves to play with his toy cars and eat squash. He lives with his three older siblings and his mother in an adobe house with a tin roof. His mother is raising her children alone, and she is currently unemployed. She cannot afford this $512 treatment. While malnutrition can have devastating effects, it is also very treatable. Growth monitoring, micronutrients, and food supplementation will help Juan recover. He will gain weight and grow taller to catch up with other children his age, and his immune system will grow stronger. Community health workers will teach his mother about creating a nutrient-rich diet from limited resources. Treatment will give Juan a chance to grow healthy and strong.
Kim Seng is a 7-year-old second grader from Cambodia with two sisters. He likes to stay at home, watch movies on TV, and draw pictures. Kim Seng's mother heard about CSC from people in their village. He traveled with his mother for three hours to reach CSC for treatment. Kim Seng received a poorly administered injection in his left thigh about four years ago. This caused his thigh muscles to contract and the tissue to scar. Now Kim Seng cannot bend his leg. Surgeons at CSC will perform a quadricepsplasty procedure on his left leg to release the contracted muscle tissue and allow him to walk easily. Kim Seng says, "After the operation, I hope I can walk properly and without pain."
Math is a 57-year-old farmer from Cambodia. He is married with four sons and one daughter. In his free time, Math enjoys reading books and watching television at home. Math fractured his right tibia in a moto accident, making it difficult to walk due to the pain. He was treated in an emergency room where he had pins put in his leg, but the surgery was unsuccessful in healing Math's fracture. In order to seek additional care, Math traveled five hours with his wife to reach Watsi's medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC). Surgeons at CSC will perform an open reduction internal fixation surgery, removing the existing pins and realigning Math's fractured bone. They will then fix the bone in place using a frame. Let's help Math raise the $405 he needs to cover his surgery. After the procedure, he will once again be able to walk without pain.
"I have not enough words to express my gratitude to people contributing to support my care. May God bless you abundantly," says Slyvia, a 45-year-old woman from Uganda. Over the past two years, Slyvia has dealt with an increasingly painful hernia-- a condition in which intestinal tissue protrudes through the abdominal wall. Slyvia already received a hernia operation in 2010, but her current hernia has developed in the same location. Due to her discomfort, she has difficulty working and eats very little food. When she eats larger amounts she feels substantial pain. Slyvia is married to Yonam, and together they have six children. Four of the children attend school. Slyvia is a hard-working woman who does not like to stay at home. She grows beans, maize, bananas, millet, pumpkins, and, more recently, tea. During her free time, Slyvia takes her tea leaves to various collection points and enjoys talking with the other people bringing tea leaves. She also likes listening to the farmers' program that is aired once a week on the radio. While she is contributing $8 for her surgery, Slyvia cannot afford the $208 hernia repair procedure that will return the herniated intestinal tissue to the abdominal cavity. Doctors will mend the weakness in her abdominal wall, preventing future recurrences and alleviating Slyvia's pain. "I hope to do activities that do not require a lot of energy and strain my body again," says Slyvia. "I will make sure that I grow enough food for my family." Let's help fund the procedure that will improve Slyvia's quality of life and her ability to provide for her family.