Sarah AndrusMONTHLY DONOR
Sarah's Story

Sarah joined Watsi on December 30th, 2020. One year ago, Sarah joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Sarah's most recent donation supported Velonica, a loving mother from Malawi, to fund thyroid surgery.

Impact

Sarah has funded healthcare for 13 patients in 5 countries.

All patients funded by Sarah

Velonica is a 43-year-old woman and a mother of three living children. She shared that she lost a set of twins just a few days after birth some 15 years ago but still holds fond memories of her lovely tiny twins. Her children are aged between 25 and 8 years old and they are all in school. The oldest daughter is at a teachers' training college and the youngest in 4th grade in primary school. Velonica lives with her children and husband in Dowa about 40 kilometers away from the city of Lilongwe in Malawi. She and her husband are subsistent farmers, although they usually don’t have enough food for the year and they seek support from her husband’s relatives that live in the same village. In 2013, Velonica developed a swelling on her neck. She visited different hospitals and finally was referred to Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) where a diagnosis of goiter was made. A partial thyroidectomy was done at the facility in 2014. However, in 2019 her neck swelling resurfaced again. She started feeling pain, having sleepless nights, difficulties in swallowing, feeling neck tightness, and headaches. She reported again to Kamuzu Central Hospital and a rescan was recommended but unfortunately, it was not done at the time. While seeking alternatives, Velonica came to Partners in Hope Medical Center. She was seen by a surgeon who, after laboratory tests and a scan, concluded that her goiter has recurred. He recommended surgery to remove the enlarged thyroid gland in a procedure called a total thyroidectomy. Velonica is currently unable to help her husband on the farm and has challenges in performing daily duties. She is unable to lift water on her head or to carry other heavy loads. Velonica feels the condition is interfering with her life and is looking forward to living her normal life again soon. Velonica said, “I live at my husband’s village among my in-laws and it has been about 2 years now of failing to do the things that every woman does, this is threatening my marriage and makes me feel bad. I hope this operation will bring an end to all this and I will be able to do my household chores again.”

69%funded
$707raised
$308to go

Kyaw is a seven-year-old boy who lives with his mother and two older brothers in a refugee camp in Tak Province, Thailand. Kyaw is a student in grade two but unfortunately, due to the outbreak of Covid-19 in camp, all schools in the camp have been closed since July 1st. His oldest brother is unemployed and his mother is homemaker. Kyaw’s family receives 1,240 baht (approx. 41.30 USD) per month which is just enough for their monthly expenses. Kyaw’s mother also grows vegetables in a small garden just for themselves. In his free time, Kyaw like to watches movies and play with his friends. Kyaw also like to watch and listen to fairy tales before he falls asleep. At noon on October 24th, Kyaw climbed a tamarind tree to collect its fruits, carrying a bag with his favorite toy inside. He hung the bag on a tree branch, but his toy fell out when he accidentally bumped into his bag with his shoulder. While climbing down to retrieve his toy, his foot slipped, and he fell out of the tree onto his right arm. He immediately experienced severe pain in his right wrist and saw that it looked deformed. The next day, International Rescue Committee (IRC) referred Kyaw and his mother to nearby Mae Sot Hospital. There Kyaw received an x-ray and a doctor told Kyaw and his mother that Kyaw’s right wrist was fractured and that he would need to undergo surgery for it to heal properly. Currently, Kyaw is experiencing severe pain in his right hand, and his right wrist is swollen and looks deformed. He cannot grab anything with his right hand, and he cannot raise his arm above his head. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Kyaw will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for October 27th and will cost $1,500. This treatment will help Kyaw be able to use his hand again and he will no longer be in pain after surgery. Kyaw said, “I am so happy to receive support from the organization and I am thankful to the donors who will support me. I am so happy to have a chance to undergo surgery to repair my wrist. I want my hand to heal and be like before so that I can grab anything I want to.”

$1,500raised
Fully funded

Than is a 42-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband, three daughters, three sons, son-in-law and granddaughter. Than and her family moved from Burma to Thailand ten years ago in search of better job opportunities. Her husband, her oldest daughter, one son, and her son-in-law work as day labourers on their employer’s farm, growing and harvesting tapioca, corn, and cabbage. Her two other sons go to school, while her youngest daughter and her granddaughter are too young to go to school. Than and her second oldest daughter are homemakers. On November 7th, 2020, Than discovered that she had an incisional hernia. Currently, Than experiences abdominal pain throughout the week and has to take pain medication to decrease her pain. She feels uncomfortable when she sits, and when she is in pain, she has to walk or lie down for the pain to ease. Fortunately, on January 28th, she will undergo hernia repair surgery at Mae Sot General Hospital, our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Than's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 28th and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably and go about her daily activities normally. Than shared, “I was so happy when I learned that I was to go to Mae Tao Clinic [and later Mae Sot Hospital] for treatment. My children are also happy that I will receive treatment with help from donors.”

$1,500raised
Fully funded