Dick joined Watsi on August 14th, 2015. Five years ago, Dick became the 1419th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,039 more people have become monthly donors! Dick's most recent donation supported Rhoda, a girl from Kenya, to fund mobility-restoring leg surgery.
Dick has funded healthcare for 61 patients in 10 countries.
Rhoda was born at her home in 2012 and the next day she was taken to the clinic for vaccinations. The doctor examined her, and she was found to be healthy. She had all her required vaccines at the right time until she was five years. Rhoda has been healthy, and her family shares that she rarely got sick, only the common cold which did not require her to see the doctor. Rhoda started her schooling when she turned five and really enjoys being at school. Equally, she likes the company of her teachers and her agemates during class time and playtime. At the age of six her parents realized that Rhoda was always left behind to and from school. Her friends reported to the parents that Rhoda often falls and that’s why they usually leave her behind. The parents observed Rhoda and realized that one of her legs was not okay. Rhoda twists her leg when she moves. Her ankle continued to worsen until Rhoda couldn’t move far before she fell. She is an active and restless girl, but her twisting ankle keeps bringing her down. The problem has stressed her and affected her socialization with other children and friends. Often, she cries when she falls especially when she notices that people are observing and talking about her shorter leg. It is even saddening to hear other children give her bad names because of her limping. Her parents took her to various hospitals without success. Some health officers thought it was polio and thus there was nothing they could do. The family had difficulties accessing specialists due to their income. Rhoda's father is unemployed and her mother who is the only breadwinner who just got a teaching job. After hert mother got the job and got a National Health Insurance (NHIF) card they took Rhoda to Kikuyu Hospital. However, the NHIF card could not cover the cost for treating her there. It was after the unsuccessful attempt to seek medical care at other facilities that they heard about Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Cure International Hospital. They visited, as they said, trusting God that their lovely daughter will receive treatment and grow up happily just as other children. Rhoda's family shared, “Any help to enable Rhoda to receive treatment will be greatly appreciated.”
Min lives with his wife, son, and daughter in a village in Tak Province, Thailand. He moved from Burma to Thailand nine months ago in search of better job opportunities. His daughter is still too young to go to school and his wife and son work as day laborers on a farm, each earning 150 baht (approx. 5 USD) per day. Min had to stop working with his wife and son three months ago because of his condition. Their monthly household income of 3,000 baht (approx. 100 USD) is not enough to cover their daily expenses. Sometimes, they have to borrow money from their relatives to meet their basic needs. Four years ago, Min used to work as a construction worker in Bangkok. One day, he started to experience pain in the left side of his abdomen. He went to a clinic twice and was diagnosed with a kidney stone in his left kidney after receiving an ultrasound. The doctor told him that he would need to undergo laser treatment at a hospital to break up the stone. The next day, Min went to a hospital in Bangkok. He received another ultrasound and underwent laser treatment which he did not have to pay for because he had health insurance at that time. When he returned for his follow-up appointment, he underwent another round of laser treatment, followed by more oral medications to take home. Min was not able to return to the hospital because his father passed away before his next appointment and he had to go back to Burma for the funeral. Before he had a chance to return to Bangkok, his mother also passed away. After spending money on the two funerals, Min did not have enough money to return to Bangkok. He moved back in with his wife and children and started working as a day laborer on a farm with his wife in their village. In May 2019, Min started experiencing pain again in his left lower abdomen. He would also pass small stones about twice a month while urinating. He went to a clinic where he received oral medication as well as an ultrasound. The doctor told him that he has a stone in his left kidney as well as small stones in his urethra. Min went back to the same clinic several times for his follow-up appointments, where he received oral medication each time for his abdominal pain. By September 2019, he was feeling much better and was no longer in pain. He was also no longer passing stones when urinating. Min then stopped going back to the clinic and stopped taking medication. Later in December 2019, Min and his family moved to their current home in Thailand and in May 2020, the pain in Min’s lower abdomen returned. He has pain when urinating and has started to pass small stones again about every two weeks. He went to a local hospital in the beginning of May with his wife, and he received an ultrasound. The ultrasound showed that he now has stones in both of his kidneys in addition to a bladder stone. The doctor referred him to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for treatment, but his family was not able to afford the estimated cost so he returned home. At home, Min told his friend about his condition and his lack of funds to pay for it. His friend told him to seek help at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) and with Watsi's Medical Parter Burma Children Medical Fund. Surgery is now scheduled for August 14th. Min shared, “I had to sell my phone to pay for my treatment [the ultrasounds and oral medications] and my transportation when I sought treatment. For the past few days, we don’t have enough rice and we also don’t have any money to buy more food. So we have to eat rice porridge. I feel so sad for my family.”
Thu is a 11-year-old student from Burma. He lives with his mother, sister, brother-in-law, twin brother and an older brother. He and his family moved to Thailand from Burma five months ago in search of better job opportunities. Thu’s mother and older brother are agricultural day laborers. Thu and his twin brother are fourth graders at a Burmese migrant school. In his free time, Thu likes to play football with his friends. On July 12th Thu, his twin, and his friends were climbing guava trees near their school to pick up guavas. He fell out of the tree and onto his left arm. An x-ray revealed that he had broken his left elbow. Currently, his left arm is swollen, painful, and cannot be bent. He feels uncomfortable when he lays down and he cannot sleep at night. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Thu will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for July 15th and will cost $1,500. Thu’s mother shared, “I’m very worried and sad that I don’t have enough money to pay for my son’s treatment.” Thu also said, “I’m sad that I broke my hand and that I won’t be able to climb trees again. I don’t want to carry my hand in a sling.”
Kyaw is a 23-year-old young man from Burma. He lives with his mother, younger brother, and sister in Mawlamyine City. He and his mother own a small plot of land where they plant different fruit trees, such as mango, rambutan, durian, lime and others. They sell the fruit at the market and in total make around 200,000 kyat (approx. 200 USD) per month. His younger sister is in her final year as a university student, while his younger brother is in grade nine. Kyaw used to work as a day laborer sometimes when he was well, but now his symptoms prevent him from working. In his free time, he loves to read newspapers and listen to music at home. Kyaw was born with a 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 him feeling sick and short of breath. Kyaw is scheduled to undergo heart surgery on June 14th to correct his condition and improve her quality of life. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Kyaw's procedure and care. Kyaw's mother said, “My son is a good man and he always works hard for the family. When he gets sick, he hides it because he is worried that I would feel stressed about him. He does not go out much and enjoy himself. He always helps me in the garden.”
Dane is the youngest child of her family, and her parents are rice farmers. Since she cannot spend much time outside, she enjoys painting, watching movies on TV, and listening to the stories her brothers read to her from their books. When she was born, Dane had scoliosis that is causing her spine to curve, affecting her ability to walk normally. Though she does not feel pain, she has difficulty moving around the house by herself, and she requires extra care from her family, who must also spend a lot of time working on their farm. Her mother is also worried about her confidence and independence as she gets older. After getting a recommendation from a neighbor, Dane's parents brought her directly to Watsi's Partner Children's Surgical Centre to get treatment. Doctors will perform spinal surgery to correct the curve of Dane's spine, allowing it to develop normally. After recovery, she will have increased mobility and normal posture. Her mother said, "I worried about my daughter's spine since she was born, but I know that when she gets surgery, her back will be stronger and she will be more confident."
Hannah is a mother of two children, the firstborn being eight years old and the youngest is two years old. Hannah is a housewife, caring for their children. Her husband, the only breadwinner in the family, works in a butchery to make ends meet. Last November, after weaning her baby, Hannah noted a breast lump but dismissed it as a result of weaning. However, with the lump persisting, Hannah sought medical consult. She went to Kijabe Hospital where she had a series of tests, including a mammogram, biopsy, and ultrasound imaging. She was finally diagnosed with breast cancer and mastectomy is recommended. If not treated, Hannah risks having metastatic cancer which would further endanger her health and cause premature death. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $816 to cover the cost of a mastectomy for Hannah. The procedure is scheduled to take place on March 11th. After treatment, Hannah will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Hannah says, "I have full confidence of completing my treatment and being cancer free. Please help me."
Hla is a 41-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her family in a village in Kawkareik Township in Karen State. Hla is a homemaker, raises livestock, and looks after her niece while her sister teaches at a nursery school in the village. Her two younger sons and her brother-in-law are subsistence farmers who grow rice on rented land. Hla’s oldest son is a distance education student in university. One year ago, Hla felt a painless growth when she touched her lower abdomen. That same day, she went to see a traditional birth attendant (TBA) about this. The TBA told her that she had a gastric problem. The next day, Hla went to see a traditional healer receive blessed water in the hopes it would make the growth disappear. Although she drank the blessed water for around two months, the growth remained. As she did not think that the growth would make her seriously ill, she did not go to a clinic. In January 2020, Hla felt like the growth was increasing in size. She decided to visit Kawkareik Private Clinic where the doctor performed an ultrasound. She was told that she had a mass in her uterus. The doctor provided her with painkillers and she was told to only take it when she is in pain. Hla has been experiencing back pain and the mass increases in size day by day. She has been diagnosed with a uterine mass and has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Hla's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Hla is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on March 13th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience back pain and she will be able continue working and helping out at home. Hla said, "I'm very scared when I heard that I need to receive surgery. When I got home, my family and friends encouraged me to not be afraid because there were many other people who had the same condition who recovered and became healthy again."
Saroeun is a 31-year old corn bread baker from Cambodia. In her free time, she enjoys looking after her two daughters and cooking for her family. When she was 12 years old, Saroeun 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, Saroeun experiences headaches, infection, discharge, tinnitus, and itchiness. It is difficult for her to listen clearly to others and cannot communicate well. Saroeun traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On November 18th, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in her 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. Saroeun said, "I hope that after my surgery, the ear infection will stop and my hearing will improve."
Aimidiwe is a three month old baby girl from Tanzania and the second-born child in a family of two children. She was born at a local hospital with a cleft palate and was referred to Watsi Medical Partner ALMC hospital to seek treatment. She was admitted to the hospital since she couldn’t feed well and was having regular seizures. Her family was advised to return for regular check-ups and observation but the parents couldn’t afford the transport money and the consultation fee since they had used up all their saving for the period she had been admitted, thus they hadn't returned. A few weeks later, she started vomiting and her head was increasing in size so her family had to find money and take Aimidiwe back to ALMC hospital. Her father is a shop attendant with a meager income and they had to borrow money to take Aimidiwe back to the hospital. At the hospital Aimidiwe needed to have CT scan done but the parents couldn’t afford it thus when they were referred to our funding and support program. Aimidiwe has now been diagnosed with cleft palate and hydrocephalus, and she will need to have the hydrocephalus condition corrected first to save her from the pain and danger of brain damage. Thereafter, doctors will correct her cleft palate condition. Her parents are asking for help and support since they can’t afford the treatment cost. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,238 to cover the cost of surgery for Aimidiwe that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 13th and will drain the excess fluid from Aimidiwe's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Aimidiwe will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Ahimidiwe’s mother says, “Our daughter needs two very important surgeries none of which we can afford, kindly help us.”
Lowasa is a three-year-old boy from Tanzania and the firstborn child in his family. At two years of age, his knees started curving inwardly forming knocked knees. His parents thought it was a normal ricket condition that would end with time. With time, the swell kept worsening and made walking painful and difficult for Lowasa. He would sit most part of the days while his friends played. Lowasa was referred to our facility by a friend. He was diagnosed with knocked knees and surgery recommended. Upon successful surgery, he will be able to walk with ease and less pain. His parents are livestock keepers who rely on selling them to make ends meet. The only money they had was exhausted in a different facility to relieve Lowasa the swelling on his legs. They are not able to afford the planned surgery and are requesting help. Fortunately, Lowasa traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform surgery on December 10th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $890 to fund Lowasa's treatment. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily and with less pain. Lowasa's parents say, “His legs keep worsening as days go by and we are unable to afford the cost. Please help our son if it’s possible.”
Dachena is a student from Haiti. She lives with her parents, grandparents, and siblings in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. She likes going to school and singing in her church choir. Dachena has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation. One of the four valves of her heart was severely damaged by a rheumatic fever she suffered in childhood, and can no longer adequately pump blood through her body. Dachena will fly to the Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On October 29th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will attempt to repair her valve; if they are unable to do so, they will implant an artificial replacement. Another organization, The Mitral Foundation, is contributing $7500 to pay for surgery. Dachena'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 Dachena's family overseas. Dachena said, "I hope that after surgery I will have more energy to do the things I enjoy!"
Nuriya is a cute child from Ethiopia. Nuriya's mother was in Saudi Arabia for four years doing domestic work and her employers did not pay her during this time. She asked for her salary several times but they refused to pay her. Finally she decided to go home and they send her home without her payment. Nuriya’s father was also immigrant in Saudi Arabia for eight years. He went to Saudi Arabia illegally by sea and was caught and deported back to Ethiopia several times but he kept using his savings to go back. Once Nuriya’s parents were back in Ethiopia, they decided to stay and start a family. Their families have decided to help them and accommodate them until they find work. Nuriya’s father has not found work and now he plans to buy oxen and start farming. Nuriya was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. He needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. Nuriya is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on October 07. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Nuriya's procedure and care. After his recovery, Nuriya will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Nuriya’s mother said “We can’t afford the medical bill. We are here through the support of another organization. We are living under the support of our relatives. Nuriya’s colostomy operation was done by the government. I believe the child will get better soon."