Chien joined Watsi on September 19th, 2016. Five years ago, Chien joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Chien's most recent donation supported Veronica, a 50-year-old small-scale farmer from Kenya, to fund a thyroidectomy.
Chien has funded healthcare for 67 patients in 13 countries.
Chien has funded healthcare for 67 patients in 13 countries.
Veronica is a 50-year-old small-scale farmer. She has a contagious smile and an optimism for life despite the challenges she has encountered. She is a mother of six children and lives with her husband who is a boda boda (motorcycle taxi) driver. She grows maize for home consumption and sells the surplus for additional income. 10 years ago, Veronica began experiencing troubling symptoms, including a small mass on her neck. She visited several hospitals for lab tests and medication, but nothing seemed to help and the mass has grown. She has also gained weight and experiences shortness of breath and a fast heart. A friend told her about our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH) and she visited AMH's care center hoping for a clear diagnosis and treatment. She was diagnosed with an enlarged thyroid and surgery is recommended to prevent her symptoms from worsening. On October 19th, she will undergo a thyroidectomy at AMH's care center, where surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $936, and she and her family need help raising money. Veronica shared, "this condition is making me weak and I can’t work like before. I want to be strong for my children so that they can receive education and get their daily needs."
Samiri is a four-year-old boy and the only child of his single mother. His father is married to another woman and has two other children. Samiri's mother provides for their family through her work as a tailor. Samiri has not started school yet, but his mother would like to enroll him in kindergarten next year. Her hope is that Samiri's condition will be treated before he joins school. Samiri has been diagnosed with bilateral Genu Varus, which means that his legs are angled inwards at the knees. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, Samiri has difficulty walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Samiri. The procedure is scheduled to take place on September 14th. Treatment will hopefully restore Samiri's mobility, allowing him to participate in a variety of activities and greatly decreasing his risk of future complications. Samiri’s mother shared, "I can never find the money needed to cover my son’s treatment cost. I am struggling to even put food on the table for my son. Please help him."
Elsa is a 9-year-old boy from Ethiopia. He loves to play football with his dad and other kids. He is the first born in a family of three. His father is a daily laborer and his mother takes care of their house and family. Elsa and his family live in a rented house. Their family shared with us that Elsa does not go to school because his father hides him from the community for fear of gossip and stigma due to his birth condition. His parents are highly affected psychologically as a result of his affliction. His father is planning to send him to school in September after his surgery and recovery. Elsa was born with hypospadias, a congenital abnormality. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility. Elsa had his first stage of hypospadias repair surgery in January and is now planned for a second stage surgery. He will be healthy and active after this treatment. Elsa is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on August 31st. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. His father said, “I hope my child goes to school after the treatment. I hope he will mingle and play with other children and that will make him happy, break his isolation, and resolve the tension in his mind. If God wills he will be a doctor.”
Maria Jose is a cute and intelligent baby from Colombia. She lives with her single mother, Sandra, and her godmother and aunt. Sandra only has good wishes for her daughter, and works really hard to see her baby happy. Maria Jose has clubfoot on both feet, a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This will cause difficulty walking and even wearing shoes in the future. Fortunately, Maria Jose's family traveled to visit our medical partner, Clínica Noel. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 31th. Our partner is requesting $1,500 to fund Maria Jose's bilateral clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to crawl, walk and run with ease. Sandra shares her hopes for Maria Jose's development, "I really wish to see her grow as a normal child, and enjoy every step of her life. After the surgery I deeply want to see her crawl, walk, run, and play with other kids."
David is a small scale farmer from Nazareth, Kenya. He is married, with six children. David does not work as much as he used to but does farming on his small piece of land. However he hasn't been able to do this since his fall. David was referred to our medical partner's care center, Nazareth Hospital, by his neighbor, who is one of the support staff there. The staff reported that David had fallen and broken his leg, to which the doctor advised an ORIF repair surgery to heal his leg. David says that bad luck is following him. In 2018, he had also fallen and sustained a closed fracture on his femur. On May 21st of this year, he fell again and sustained a closed fracture tibia on the same leg. David is experiencing pain and is unable to use his right leg. If not treated, he may develop malunion or healing with deformity. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help. On June 17th, David will undergo a fracture repair procedure (ORIF), so that David can be relieved of the pain, walk with ease, and farm. Now, AMH is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. “If my neighbor did not help me come to Nazareth and access this help, I don’t know what would have happened to my leg. My family still depends on me so I humbly request for help, to see myself walking again. I will appreciate,” said David.
Jeremiah is a 26-year-old construction worker and a married father a two-year-old. His wife works at a local tea plantation, while he works at a construction site. On May 8th, Jeremiah was involved in a traffic accident on the highway. He had visited a local market and was on a motorbike on his way home. As they were turning a corner, they collided head-on with a car. He suffered fractures in his tibia and femur. He is not able to stand or walk without support, and he is in severe pain. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help. On May 13th, Jeremiah will undergo a fracture repair procedure called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him walk easily again. Now, AMH is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Jeremiah shared, “the accident was sudden and caught me off guard. I do not have enough savings considering we almost live from hand to mouth. This surgery is important to me to walk again.”
Lucas is a playful four-month-old baby boy and the youngest child in a family of five children from his mother. His parents are small scale farmers of maize and vegetables for their food and they also keep livestock for a living, which allows them to get milk. Given the remoteness of their village, they shared that life is very difficult; meeting basic needs and access to health services are big challenges. Lucas has clubfoot of both feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Lucas traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, where surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on April 2nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $935 to fund Lucas's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily and wear shoes when he grows up. Lucas’s father shared, "we have no means of raising money to afford our son’s treatment cost. We will be very grateful if you can help correct his feet."
Em is a 25-year-old Chinese language teacher with two brothers and four sisters. Em's parents are farmers in the province. One year ago, Em started a job in the city teaching Chinese at a primary school. In his free time, he enjoys watching Youtube, fishing, and visiting his parents to help on the farm. When he was 10, Em 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, Em experiences hearing loss, headache, and discharge. It is difficult for him to hear and communicate with his students. Em traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 15th, 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 $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Em said, "I hope after surgery my ear will be better so I can be free of my headaches and pain."
Naw Kwee Moo is a 54-year-old woman from the Karen region in Burma, who lives with her husband and their family in a refugee camp. Of her children, three daughters and three sons still live in the refugee camp along with them near the Thai-Burma border. Naw Kwee is a homemaker and her husband is currently too ill to work. Five of their children go to school in the camp, four other children have moved away, and her second oldest son graduated from a post-secondary program in May 2020. He worked as an agricultural day laborer at a nearby Thai village until mid-December 2020. Due to Covid-19 travel restrictions, he was no longer allowed to leave the camp. Naw Kwe’s household receives a monthly cash card to purchase basic rations. Although they receive free education and basic health care in the camp, they shared how hard it is to make ends meet. Starting four years ago, Naw Kwee often went to the camp’s hospital run by Malteser International (MI) Thailand to receive treatment for urinary tract infections (UTI). Most of the time, she would feel better after taking medication, but she was no longer able to work as an agricultural day laborer because of her pain. Over the next few years, she was diagnosed with chronic UTI. “I think my condition was caused from consuming dirty water,” she said. “When I worked as a day laborer, we had no access to clean water.” Naw Kwee received antibiotics through an intravenous (IV) line at the camp’s hospital. When her condition did not improve, a doctor at the camp’s hospital referred her again to Mae Sariang Hospital in March 2020. There she received a urine test and an x-ray of her kidneys, ureters and bladder. She was finally diagnosed with a right kidney stone. After multiple visits, the doctor at Mae Sariang Hospital referred her to Chiang Mai Hospital (CMH) for further treatment. However, Naw Kwee could not travel to CMH for a while due to travel restrictions after the outbreak of Covid-19. Finally, last June medical staff from her camp were able to bring Naw Kwee to Chiang Mai. During her appointment, the doctor scheduled her to undergo an intravenous pyelogram on July 16th, 2020. After she received a diagnostic test, she returned to CMH for her follow-up appointment on November 19th, 2020. During her appointment, she received more tests and it was at her next appointment Naw Kwee was told she needed to undergo multiple rounds of laser treatment to break up the stone in her kidney. She received her first round of laser treatment on February 11th, 2021. Two days later, she developed a fever and could only pass a bit of urine. She also started to experience severe back pain and other troubling symptoms. MI staff took her back to the hospital where she received an ultrasound. The nurse shared with her that after her laser treatment, the stones had broken up and many of them where now stuck in her ureter, creating a blockage. She now needs emergency surgery to remove the stones. Our Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund is seeking $1,500 to support her surgery and finally relieve her of her painful condition.
Juliana is a farmer from Kenya and a single mother of 9 children, the youngest being 9 months old. Their family hails from Kapkoder village in Elgeyo Marakwet County. Juliana shared that her husband left the family almost two years ago and now she is the breadwinner. Seven of her children are all in school and she is unable to pay their school fees as well as putting food to the table. From her small scale farming and firewood harvesting Juliana is able to raise approximately $30 per month which is not meeting their family needs. On a sunny January evening, Juliana injured her right leg while she was going home from her daily duties. She didn’t know that she had broken her leg until when she stood up she had a sharp pain on her right leg. Now she is not able to walk on her own and is in severe pain. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On January 18th, Juliana will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This treatment will help her heal well and walk easily again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,016 to fund her procedure. Juliana is feeling mostly worried for her children and is hoping that she gets treated quickly for fast recovery and can go on to support her family
Kevin is a very playful 5-year-old from Kiambu County, Kenya. He is the only child to his mother, and was born when she was 17 years old so they decided to give him his grandmother's surname. His mother has been able to find casual jobs like working in neighbors farms and washing clothes. They also depend on Kevins’ grandmother who is a small scale farmer. Last week, while playing, Kevin slipped and fell. He sustained a closed fracture of his left hand (radius and ulna) and is unable to move his hand. He was brought to the hospital and the doctor advised he needs an ORIF procedure to correct the fractures. Kevin’s mother and grandmother could not raise the fee required and need help. If not treated Kevins’ hand may heal with a deformity or may have delayed healing or malunion. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On December 17th, Kevin will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This surgery will help him move his hand easily, reduce the pain and be free from future complications. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. “My child had just started school and I had high hopes of seeing him grow up like other children. I kindly ask for help so that he can be well again and continue to play as he enjoys. We are desperate and can’t get the money required,” said Kevin’s mother.
Jane is a 70-year-old kiosk owner from Kenya. She is a former civil servant who was released from government duty in 2000. Since then, she has since been running a small kiosk that sells vegetables and other groceries. In March 2019, Jane suffered a fracture on her left distal femur with intraarticular extension, meaning the break crossed into the surface of a joint. To remedy this, she underwent surgery with a locking plate. However, the fracture has not healed properly, which threatens her mobility. Doctors are now recommending a another fracture repair surgery to prevent future complications of her condition, including inability to walk. However, this procedure is costly for Jane. The profit she earns from her small business is not enough to cover her basic needs, let alone her medical bills. Jane has been relying on a small government pension to get by. She separated from her husband over 30 years ago and has since been raising her only son alone. Her son is an adult, but lacks a stable job and works as a casual laborer to make ends meet. Thus, Jane is appealing for financial help. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On November 11th, Jane will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. After recovering, she will no longer have difficulties in walking or be in constant pain. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Jane shared, “I need this surgery to get back on my feet. I am the one taking care of my grandkids since my son has no job. This procedure will help me be able to go get vegetables from the market so that I can sell and continue my business.”