David joined Watsi on September 28th, 2015. Five years ago, David became the 1513th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 4,516 more people have become monthly donors! David's most recent donation traveled 4,300 miles to support Phebe, an accounting student from Haiti, to fund cardiac care for her pacemaker.
David has funded healthcare for 59 patients in 11 countries.
Phebe is a young woman from Haiti who underwent surgery in 2010 to close a hole between the two lower chambers of her heart. Although the surgery was successful in closing the hole, it left her with a condition in which her heart muscle was no longer able to properly transmit electrical pulses so that it could beat normally. To protect her heart, a pacemaker was implanted after surgery. The pacemaker has now reached the end of its life, and parts of it need to be replaced. Phebe lives in Port-au-Prince with her older brother, his wife, and their family; she is a university student studying accounting. For this treatment, she and a family member will travel to northern Haiti where a hospital has the ability to safely host the surgical procedure for Phebe, which will take place on July 23rd. Phebe shared, "I am very glad to know that my pacemaker will be able to be fixed here in Haiti, because I have been very worried about it!"
Neang is a 4-year-old child from Cambodia. She is the youngest child in a family of five. Her father is a farmer, while her mother sells goods at the local market. Neang has not yet started school, but when she is at home, she likes to paint pictures in watercolor and play with her brother. When she was two years old, Neang had a serious ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in both ears to perforate. For this reason, Neang experiences hearing loss, severe ear pain, and a persistent discharge from both ears. Her infections have been recurring and resistant to medicine. Her hearing loss has prevented her from communicating effectively with others, and the pain causes her distress. Neang's mother has had to spend more time caring for her, resulting in a loss of income for the family. Neang traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On June 2nd, she will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in both ears. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforations. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $913 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Her father said, "I am sad when I think about the pain she feels in both her ears, and I want her to be able to talk normally and clearly with us, and do the things she likes as a child."
Htet is a 24-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her grandparents, her uncle, her uncle’s wife, her niece, her aunt, and her aunt’s husband in Yangon, Burma. Her parents passed away when she was 19 years old. Htet's uncle is still searching for work and is currently unemployed, while his wife is a homemaker. Her niece is still too young to enroll in school. Htet works as shop vender at a construction store. Htet’s aunt is a homemaker while her husband is a day laborer. Htet’s grandparents are retired. Their family's combined incomes are is just enough for their daily expense and for basic healthcare needs. Htet was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of the mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. Currently, Htet feels very tired and cannot walk long distances. Sometimes, she has chest pains. She often has a headache and shared that she feels stressed and unhappy all the time. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Htet. The treatment is scheduled to take place on May 31st and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. Htet said, “In the future if I recover, I would like to become a makeup artist. In my free time, I try to make my own makeup.”
Dina is a 69-year-old mother of seven from Kenya. She plants maize and beans on her farm left by her late husband. She lost her husband in the year 2014 after suffering from stomach cancer. Despite all the challenges she faced, Dina has been a strong woman for her children. She has worked hard to educate her children and provide basic needs for them through farming. The family stays together in a grass-roofed house. Dina came to our hospital recently with a severe fracture on her right femur. X-ray imaging confirmed a closed femur fracture. Dina, who is unable to walk and has severe pain, was admitted for skin traction and requires an ORIF surgery with a plate to heal her broken femur. Dina is unable to attend to her daily duties because of her broken leg. She is worried about being dependent on her children who also need her. She is requesting anybody reading her story to support her raise funds for her surgery of $968.00. On January 22nd, Dina will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. The surgery will allow Dina walk with ease and reduce chances of further complications. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $968 to fund this procedure. Dina says, “I want to get back on my feet and resume my normal duties farming so that I can be able to raise school fees for my son who is in college.”
Tunai is a farmer from Kenya. Her smile and her optimism about life despite the many challenges she goes through will make you appreciate every little thing about life. As a wife and a mother of 7 children, Tunai does so well taking care of her large family and especially her last born child who is physically challenged. Tunai and her husband are small-scale farmers. They plant vegetables and potatoes for consumption. Her husband does casual jobs for other people earning approximately $75 a month. Their last born child who is physically challenged and in a special school also requires a lot of care. Since 38 years ago, Tunai began to experience troubling symptoms, including a large neck mass and difficulty swallowing. She was diagnosed with a goiter, an abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland. She needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Tunai receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on March 9th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $641, and she and her family need help raising money. Tunai says, “I am appealing to anyone to help me pay for my surgery so that I can continue taking care of my family and especially my youngest child who needs absolute care.”
Marvens lives in a rural area in northwestern Haiti with his aunt and uncle and their family. He has not yet started school due to his cardiac illness. He has a condition called Tetralogy of Fallot, which involves several related defects including a hole between the two lower chambers of the heart, and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. Marvens will fly to Jamaica to receive treatment. On March 4th, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which doctors will close the hole in his heart with a patch, and remove the muscular blockage. Another organization, Chain of Hope UK, is contributing $6,000 to help pay for surgery. Marvens'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 Marvens's family overseas. His uncle said, "We are hopeful that after this surgery Marvens will become stronger and gain weight so that he can be enrolled in school."
Chit is a 39-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her daughter, mother-in-law, and her sister-in-law’s three children. Her husband has recently left the village to work in Bangkok so he could increase his income, especially since her condition has worsened. Since she became ill, she feels bored because she is unable to work. Around five months ago, Chit started to feel unwell with a stiff neck, headaches, and pain in her right eye. Soon after, she noticed that the black part of her right eye started to move inward toward the middle of her face, becoming crossed eyed. As soon as she noticed a change in her right eye, she went to a hospital to see a doctor about her condition. At the hospital, she underwent a CT scan of her head which showed normal findings. Therefore, the doctor just gave her an injection and oral medications. A week later, she decided to go see a local medic in her village because she felt like the medications were not helping. The medic looked at her medical test results, assessed her and said she might have a neurological condition. The medic gave her oral medication and another injection. She took the medication she received from the medic, and her symptoms subsided gradually. Chit's symptoms disappeared completely about 20 days ago, but this only lasted around 10 days because she noticed that the black part of her right eye had started to become white and the rest of her eye, normally white, started to turn red. She bought eye drops at a local medication stall, but they did not help. A few days later, she learned about Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), a charitable clinic, from one of her nephews. On January 11th, Chit visited MTC regarding her condition, and a medic explained that unfortunately her eye was not functional anymore and that it needed to be removed due to a severe infection. The medic also explained that if her right eye was not removed, the infection could spread to her left eye and cause the same problem. MTC then brought Chit to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) and the doctor there confirmed that her eye needs to be removed as soon as possible. Chit said, "It's upsetting to know that I need to have one of my eyes removed. But then, I feel that since the eye is bad, there is no sense in keeping it. In the future, if possible, I want to get a prosthetic eye."
Koemsrorn is a two-year-old from Cambodia. He is an only child from Kampong Cham Province, any enjoys playing with his toys in the village. When he was four months old, Koemsrorn had an ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. For this reason, Koemsrorn experiences consistent fevers and hearing loss. He is often upset and has a difficult time hearing others and sleeping due to discomfort. Koemsrorn traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On November 19, he will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in his right ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $842 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Koemsrorn's mother said, "I hope that my son will recover from his illness and no longer have any more pain or hearing loss."
U Chit is a 55-year-old man from Myawaddy Township, Karen State, Burma. He divorced his wife seven years ago and has two daughters and three sons. His youngest daughter lives with his ex-wife in Yangon and their other children live in Myawaddy Township. In March 2019, he entered into monkhood. Now, he receives alms from laypeople and from his children. In February 2019, U Chit began to experience back pain and a burning sensation when urinating. To treat his symptoms, he bought medication from a nearby pharmacy. However, after taking the medicine, he did not feel any better. He later went to a local clinic where he received more medication for his symptoms. They suggested that he go to Myawadday Hospital to receive an ultrasound scan. However, he did not go to the hospital because he did not think he would be able to pay for the cost of the scan. Instead, he continued taking the medicine that the doctor had prescribed. Unfortunately, his pain when urinating did not get better. Finally, U Chit decided to visit Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), where he got his hernia treated four years ago, to seek treatment. U Chit arrived at MTC on April 24th, 2019, where an ultrasound scan revealed that he had a bladder stone. The next day, he was sent to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) where he received an injection and oral medication. On May 16th, 2019, he received an Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP) test for further investigation. After the IVP test, the doctor told him that he requires surgery and is scheduled for 20th November 2019. Currently, U Chit experiences back pain and he continues to feel a burning sensation when urinating. Aside from his concerns about his condition, he is worried about financial problems because he is a monk and does not have a regular income. U Chit likes reading Buddhist texts and newspapers in his free time. He said, “I want to cure my condition as soon as possible and I would like to focus on religious activities. After I am cured, I also would like to help find treatment for my daughter who has suffered from a stroke.”
Kaung is a three-year-old boy from Thailand. He lives with his parents and grandmother. His mother works in a sewing factory and his father as a day labourer while his grandmother taking care of him at home. On October 16th, around 10 in the morning, Kaung was playing with a stick after breakfast. While his grandmother went to wash the dishes, after feeding him, Kaung tried to climb up onto the fence but fell off onto the ground and broke his right humerus bone. Currently, Kaung is in pain and he cannot lift up his right hand. He cries a lot and his grandmother has to carry him around in her arms. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Kaung will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for October 16th and will cost $1,500. This surgery will help Kaung to be able to use his hand again without pain. His grandmother said, "I am very worried for my grandson when I see that his hand is broken. I don't know what to do to help him. I just know that I am worried as we do not have money to seek treatment for him."
Mary walks into my office with the top of her cardigan covering her chin. She sits on the chair opposite me with one hand clasping the top of her black cardigan to veil the swell running from her jawline to her neck. The lower lip protrudes with a peeping swelling attached in so that her upper lip cannot touch the lower one. This has been Mary’s life for over 6 months. Late last year, Mary developed a small swelling on her jaw. It was not painful and therefore she did not think of it as serious. As time passed, the swell grew in size. Mary who could eat just about anything now has restrictions on what she can eat. There is pain when she bends and this has also obstructed her working. Mary is married with two children. She was a subsistence farmer before the condition restricted her activities. Mary and her husband depend on one of their daughter who sells second-hand clothes. Besides helping her parents, she has four children under her care. Mary says, “Please help me because I can barely eat."
Ivona is a baby from Tanzania. Early last month, Ivona’s mother noticed a small swelling on her neck. Her neck mass was increasing in size and causing her pain. Ivona traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On July 29, surgeons will remove the mass. Now, Ivona's family needs help to raise $689 to fund this procedure. Ivona’s father says, “Please help us fund her treatment cost we have no means of coming up with this kind of money.”