Ben joined Watsi on June 18th, 2014. Six years ago, Ben became the 220th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,608 more people have become monthly donors! Ben's most recent donation traveled 8,300 miles to support Lay, a day laborer from Burma, to fund glaucoma and cataract treatment.
Ben has funded healthcare for 70 patients in 12 countries.
Lay is a 45-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his family in a village in Karen State. His wife is a homemaker while his son and daughter-in-law work as a day laborers. He also used to work as a day laborer before he stopped two months ago due to his loss of vision in his left eye. He has blurred vision and sometimes he also feels dizzy. When the doctor checked his left eye, he was diagnosed with a cataract as well as glaucoma. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Lay. On March 17th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Lay's natural lens and replace with an intraocular lens implant in his eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Lay said, "Now I am happy that I will receive surgery with the help of donors. Thank you everyone for helping me and I pray for you all with all my heart. I know this surgery will return my vision and will be a great benefit for my family if it will allow me to go back to work.”
Adere is a nice thirteen year old boy who loves to go to school and study. He is in grade six and loves music. He spends his free time listening to country music and also loves to dance with his friends. His parents are farmers of teff and maize. But their harvest from their farm is very limited because of the hot and dry landscape. The population in the area is mostly supported by the government and NGOs for food and other basic needs. His parents have 12 children. Three of them are dependently living and the rest of the children are supported by their parents. Adere was born with congenital anomaly called Bladder Exstrophy. The child’s bladder is open to the air and not within the body. He leaks urine directly to his abdomen. As a result, he has bladder exposed to dirt which can cause infections and injury. Adere suffers from pain from irritation of the bladder, infection, and a bad smell from the continuous urinary leakage for the past years. In his classroom, he sits far from other students in the back alone. He mostly prefers to be alone, psychologically affected by the bad smell. His parents are always very worried and concerned because of his condition. They took him to a clinic in their area when he was a child, and the clinic told them this has to be treated in referral hospital. Their village is very rural that they couldn’t get to a hospital and the parents couldn’t bring him to the capital. Adere's brother said, “I believe he will have a normal life, free from any smell and psychological concerns.”
Neath is a ten year old girl from Cambodia. She has two older brothers, an older sister, and she loves to drink soy milk and eat fried chicken. When she is not studying, her favorite pastimes are reading books, watching television, and going for walks with her friends. Neath was born with congenital scoliosis. She has undergone several treatments in the past to correct her spine as she grows, and a growing rod was placed along her spine to assist with alignment. However, the rod has to be realigned to ensure successful treatment and outcomes for Neath. Surgery will ensure that Neath can grow up without any difficulty and discomfort. "I hope that my daughter's surgery will go well and that she will recover after her surgery." -Neath's Mother
Shwe Win is a 39-year-old man who lives with wife, two daughters, and two sons in Yangon, Burma. Shwe Win used to work as a civil engineer but is currently unemployed. His wife is a teacher and all of his children go to school. Their monthly household income is enough to pay for their expenses and basic health care, but they have to use their savings to pay for all the children’s school fees. In the beginning of 2018, Shwe Win developed severe pain in his waist and back. He went to a local hospital to see a doctor, who ordered an ultrasound, x-rays, a blood test and a urine test. After checking his results, the doctor told him that he has a stone in his left kidney. He was given an injection, and the doctor told him that he would need to be admitted at a hospital to have the stone broken up surgically. Afterwards, Shwe Win would be in pain anytime he lifted anything heavy or sat for longer than 30 minutes. Whenever the pain became unbearable, he would take painkillers. In June 2019, he decided to join a rehabilitation program run by Christian Youth. When he finished the program, he developed severe pain again. This time, neither the painkillers nor the injection worked. He was referred again to the hospital. There he was admitted for five days because he was in so much pain that he vomited and had difficulty breathing. While admitted, he received an ultrasound and was told that he now had stones in both of his kidneys. He would need to have treatment to break up the stones. "I feel thankful that I was able to meet Burma Children Medical Fund. If I hadn’t come here, I wouldn’t have pursued treatment because I don’t want to be a burden on my siblings nor my wife anymore,” shared Shwe Win.
Khun is a 17-year-old from Cambodia. He enjoys listening to music, exercising, and he hopes to become a businessman when he gets older. Since 2015, Khun has experienced debilitating pain in both of his hips caused by osteoarthritis. He has to walk with crutches and dropped out of school because he was unable to sit in class for long periods of time. Fortunately, Khun learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. At CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Khun of his pain and allow him to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for November 5th, and Khun needs help raising $1,025 to pay for this procedure. Khun's mother said, "I hope that after surgery, my son will be able to sit and walk without any difficulties, and I won't have to worry about his condition anymore."
Khu is a 22-month-old boy from Burma. He lives with his parents, grandmother and an older sister in Ei Tu Hta Internally Displaced Camp in Hpa-pun Township, Karen State. Since birth, Khu has had an inguinal hernia. When he turned one and a half years old, he started to learn to speak. Since then, whenever he cried, he touched his scrotum and said that it was painful. His parents were very sad to see Khu in pain but they could not do anything for him. Fortunately, on October 10, he 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 Khu's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on October 10 and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Khu's mother said, “When Khu is in pain, he would ask me to carry him on my back. If I do not do it, he would cry a lot. I feel very sorry that I cannot help him”. Khu loves playing with his older sister and friends when he is not in pain. His father said, “I want to see him playing happily."
John is a student from Haiti. He lives with his parents and three siblings in a coastal city in northwest Haiti. He is about to start the second grade. John has a cardiac condition called Tetralogy of Fallot. This condition involves several related defects including a hole between the two lower chambers of the heart, and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. These defects prevent his body from getting the oxygen it needs. John will fly to Cayman Islands to receive treatment. On September 12, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which Surgeons will close the hole in his heart with a patch, and remove the muscular blockage from his valve.. Another organization, Have a Heart Cayman, is contributing $15000.0 to pay for surgery. John'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 John's family overseas. From John's father: "We are hopeful that our son will be able to live more normally once his surgery is over."
Geoffrey is a motorcycle driver from Kenya. He is married and has three children. In April, he slipped on his motorcycle and sustained a fracture of the tibia and fibula of his right leg. He is not able to walk without support. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On August 19, Geoffrey will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him walk easily again and be able to go back to work. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $998 to fund this procedure. He says, “I am only praying God to touch Watsi team to support me. I hope to be well soon to go back and work to support my family that fully depends on me."
Thaw is a 44-year-old woman from Burma. She lives in Hpa-An, Karen State with her friends. She is a Christian missionary. Thaw has a mass in her uterus. She has been diagnosed with a myoma. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Thaw's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Thaw is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on July 1. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. After surgery, Thaw will be able to return home and continue her work as a missionary.
Bopha is a teenager from Cambodia. At just 21 days old, Bopha suffered from a severe soft tissue infection that left her back deformed and with thick scarring. Since 2017, she has undergone several skin grafts to expand the skin around the affected area. In March of 2019, she was fitted with a halo gravity traction for three months, which reduced the curvature in her spine. Spinal surgery will help correct the position of her spine, and prevent further worsening of the condition. Surgery is scheduled for June 7 and will cost $1,500. Bopha enjoys reading books, listening to music, and watching television in her free time. She looks forward to returning to school and her friends as soon as possible.
Hellen is a farmer from Kenya. She has seven children. Ten years ago, Hellen began to experience troubling symptoms, including coughs, difficulty breathing, and increased sweating. She was diagnosed with a toxic goiter. She needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Hellen receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on May 15 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. Hellen says, “I am asking for your support so that I can get medication as well as surgery. This condition is making me weaker each day. My children still need my assistance."
Kaung is a two-year-old boy from Thailand. He lives with his parents in Ban San Kwan, Mae Sot District, Tak Province. They moved there from Bago Division, Burma, in search of better job opportunities. Kaung’s parents work as agricultural day laborers. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Kaung. On April 19, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Kaung's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Kaung’s mother says, “We are very stressed, and I have had to stop working to look after him. As my husband is the only one working, his income is not enough to cover our daily expenses.”