catherine joined Watsi on November 24th, 2016. Three years ago, catherine became the 2619th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 3,342 more people have become monthly donors! catherine's most recent donation supported Esther, a mother of six from Kenya, to fund surgery for her acute appendicitis.
catherine has funded healthcare for 43 patients in 11 countries.
Esther is a small-scale farmer who has two children and also takes care of her sister's four children because her sister unfortunately passed away. She is now the sole provider of six children and pays for their school fees all by herself. They live together in a 2 bedroom house. Esther started to experience abdominal pain 3 years ago. Due to the severity of the pain, she recently visited our medical partner's care facility. She will undergo surgery for her acute appendicitis. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $646 to cover the cost of Esther's curative laparatomy. This surgery will hopefully relieve her pain and enable her to live life more comfortably and confidently. "I would really appreciate treatment because I am the sole breadwinner for my family," shared Esther.
Thi is a 31-year-old woman who lives with her husband, father-in-law, nephew and daughter in Shwepythar Town in the Yangon Division of Burma. Thi is a homemaker while her husband is an electrician. Thi’s nephew and her daughter are students. In mid-February 2019, Thi developed a fever, a cough, and difficulty breathing. She went to the nearest clinic where she received an injection and oral medication to treat her fever and cough. When she took the medication she felt better, but the next day, she had difficulty breathing, felt tired, had a sharp pain in her chest, and a rapid heartbeat. She then went to a hospital in Yangon, where she received another injection, oral medication, and an x-ray. After the doctor diagnosed her with asthma, she also received a nebulizer for her asthma. Once the doctor checking her had the x-ray results, the doctor told her that her heart is enlarged and referred her to another hospital for further investigation. There she received an echocardiogram (echo) and another x-ray. After her results came in, the doctor told her that her heart valves are not working well and that she might have to replace two of the valves in her heart. She was diagnosed with mitral valve stenosis, mitral valve regurgitation, aortic valve stenosis, and aortic valve regurgitation. The doctor also told her that the surgery would cost 2.5 million kyat (approx. 2,500 USD). Thi could not afford to pay such a large amount and when she told the doctor this, the doctor provided her with oral medication every month. She did not feel better after she took the medication. Last month, Thi’s husband was setting up the electricity in his friend’s house when he met a cardiologist. The doctor had come to look after his friend’s sister, who has a heart condition. Thi’s husband had told his friend about Thi’s heart condition and his friend introduced him to the cardiologist. After he told the doctor about Thi’s condition, the doctor told him to bring her in to his office with her medical records. After they came into his office and doctor reviewed her medical records, he referred her to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Pinlon Hospital to finally receive the treatment she needs. Currently, Thi feels tired, has difficulty breathing and cannot walk long distances. Aside from her symptoms, she is very stressed and upset about her financial situation. In her free time, Thi likes to do housework and bring her daughter to and from school. In the future, when she is fully recovered, she would like to work as a seamstress and save money for her family. Thi said, “I think too much about my condition and worry about the treatment’s cost. So, I cannot sleep at night and I have a small appetite.” Thi’s husband said, “I have to accompany her whenever my wife visits the hospital. My daughter and I have had to stop working and attending school whenever she is sick. I feel bad for my wife because she cries every night since she found out that she needs to receive surgery.” Thi added, “I am very afraid to die and to lose my family as my daughter is still young.”
Chea is a 57-year-old food seller from Cambodia. He has three children, and enjoys chatting with his friends and watching Khmer boxing on television. One year ago, Chea developed a cataract in his right eye, causing him blurry vision. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Chea learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for two and a half hours seeking treatment. On November 6th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in his right eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $211 procedure. Chea said, "I hope that I will be able to see clearly again so I can go outside on my own and cook food again"
Gracious is a one-month-old infant from Tanzania. Gracious is a first-born child to her young parents. Both Gracious' parents are not permanently employed yet, but they are working as casual laborers. Her father works as a school bus driver and her mother is a teacher who teaches extra classes outside of school hours. Gracious has clubfoot of both her feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Gracious traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on February 14th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $890 to fund Gracious's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily and wear shoes when she is older. Gracious’ parents say, “Please help us get our daughter this treatment so that she may be able to walk well when she grows up.”
Tabitha is a business lady from Kenya. She is a single mother of three children. Tabitha sells camel soup in the capital to make a living for herself and her three children. Two of her children are in school, which demands school fees. From her small business, she makes about $5 daily, which she saves to meet the her family's needs. Tabitha has been recently diagnosed with breast cancer. Without treatment, the cancer may spread to other organs. A mastectomy, a surgery to remove breast tissue, has been suggested to rid her body of breast cancer and to prevent the cancer from metastasizing. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $816 to cover the cost of a mastectomy for Tabitha. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 20. After treatment, Tabitha will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Tabitha says, “I wish to be treated and be free from the stressful experience I am in.”
About six months ago, Thidar started to feel very tired and could not sleep well due to difficulty breathing. After multiple tests and blood tranfusions, Thidar was diagnosed with mitral valve stenosis, mitral valve regurgitation, aortic valve stenosis, and aortic valve regurgitation. Seeing that both of her heart valves need to be replaced surgically, the doctor told her, “You have a heart problem and you must undergo surgery as soon as possible.” When Thidar told him that she cannot afford to pay for surgery, the doctor told her about a monk who lives just outside of Yangon and who might be able to help her. She was given his phone number and when she called the monk, he referred her to Watsi partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for assistance in accessing the treatment she needs. Currently, Thidar feels very tired and has no energy to walk long distances. She cannot sleep well, and she has no appetite. She said, “In the future, I will stay in my village and look out for my family. I would like to send my children to school until they graduate.”
Meet Nicodemus a 14 year-old boy. He is social and likes inventing new things. Nicodemus is the 4th born in a family of 5 children. He is class 8 candidate at Daystar Primary School in Athi River. The family hails from Athi River in Machakos County. His mother is a vendor and widowed. She sells porridge and chapatis in the construction sites. His mother noticed a sudden change in his walking style last year. Nicodemus also complained of his knees knocking each other a situation which was giving him a rough time to walk and play with her friends at school. He currently feels pain as he walks as the left knee knock the right. He is currently using crutches to walk and his condition is worsening. “I would love to walk like other people, I am not comfortable with walking using crutches and I would like to achieve my passion of becoming an engineer. Any kind of support will be highly appreciated.” Nicodemus informed us.
Yonase is a young boy from Ethiopia. Yonase is a handsome and playful boy who loves playing football. He comes from a humble family. His mother does menial jobs to sustain the family including laundry for wages. Yonase was born with hypospadias, a birth defect that disrupts the normal flow of urine. His mother did not know of the defect and was told by a neighbour. He is not able to pass urine while standing like any other boy. If not treated, Yonase will be at risk of infertility and social stigma. He was reviewed in our facility where surgery to correct the defect was recommended. With limited income, the mother is afraid he will not be able to receive surgery. She is stressed with her son's conditions. She appeals for financial assistance. Fortunately, Yonase is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on October 17th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,231 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Yonase's mother says, "I am now hopeful that he will get the surgery and that he will be ok."
Aung is a 30-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his wife, daughter and sister in an internally displaced persons (IDP) camp which is close to the Chinese-Burma border town of Lweje in Momauk Township, Kachin State. Today, his wife works as a mathematics teacher at a middle school in the IDP camp. His sister is a student in the IDP camp while his daughter is still too young to go to school. He used to work as a English teacher. Later on, he stopped working in June 2019 due to his poor health. feels exhausted and he is not able to walk for longer than 30 minutes, or he feels tired. His heartbeat is rapid, he has blue lips and sometimes he feels like he is not able to get enough oxygen. He has no appetite and he is not able to sleep well, worrying over his health condition, the cost of his surgery and his inability to access it. Aung was born with 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 his lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving his sick and short of breath. Aung is scheduled to undergo heart surgery on September 15th to correct his condition and improve his quality of life. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Aung's procedure and care. Aung said, "Even if I could go someplace else, I wouldn’t be able to do any hard labour due to my condition. And I can’t go to China because I can only speak a little bit of Chinese.”
San is a 64-year-old Monk from Cambodia. He has eight children, six grandchildren, and enjoys reading Buddhist text in his free time. Six months ago, San developed a cataract in each eye, causing him blurry and cloudy vision. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When San learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for two hours seeking treatment. On August 12, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $398 procedure. He says, "I hope that I will be able to see better and can recognize people, and will be able to go outside and read again."
Keziah is a farmer from Kenya. For one year, Keziah has been experiencing irregular bleeding, back pain and continuous fatigue. She has been diagnosed with cervical cancer. She needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $756 to fund Keziah's surgery. On July 9, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Keziah will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain. Keziah says, “My hope and prayer is to have treatment and reduce chances of cancer spread. I wish to age gracefully."
Esther was born with a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect, in which a hole exists between the two lower chambers of her heart. Blood leaks through this hole without passing through her lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving her sick and short of breath. Esther lives in Port-au-Prince with her parents; she likes listening to music and going to church with her parents. Esther will fly to India to receive treatment. On August 6, she will undergo cardiac surgery. Another organization, Rotary International, is contributing $8,000 to pay for surgery. Her 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 her family overseas.