Charles joined Watsi on September 9th, 2014. Six years ago, Charles became the 304th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,704 more people have become monthly donors! Charles' most recent donation traveled 8,300 miles to support Kham, a teenager from Burma, to fund cardiac surgery.
Charles has funded healthcare for 71 patients in 12 countries.
Kham is a 14-year-old student from Burma. She lives with her father, paternal grandparents, four paternal uncles, an aunt-in-law, and a cousin in Kachin State. Kham is in the ninth grade and her cousin also goes to school. Her grandmother is a seamstress. Her grandfather is retired, and her father is unemployed and looks after her. All of her uncles are mechanics in an automobile repair shop, but they do not share their income with the rest of the family. During her free time, she helps her cousin with his homework, and she loves teaching. Kham was born with 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 her sick and short of breath. Kham is scheduled to undergo heart surgery on August 9th to correct her condition and improve her quality of life. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Kham's procedure and care. “I would like to become a teacher because I feel happy teaching children that I know,” Kham shared with us.
Nay Kaw is an 11-year-old student from Burma. He lives with his parents, two older brothers and two younger sisters. He is currently in first grade since he left monkhood last year. His father is a farmer and his mother is a homemaker who looks after his youngest sister at home, the other sister is also a student like Nay Kaw. Nay Kaw, along with his two brothers, help with household chores and in his free time, he likes to play cane ball and hunt. Since birth, Nay Kaw has a had a mass on his right wrist. When he turned three years old, the mass increased in size but was still not painful. But by the time he was ten years old, the mass increased in size again, and became swollen and painful. His mother took him to a traditional healer but the medicine he received did not help. Fortunately our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, can help. He is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on July 9th. This surgery will relieve him of his pain and discomfort. He needs your help to cover the $1,500 cost of his procedure and care. Nay Kaw shared, “I would like to be a teacher because I would like to teach children like my friends who are not able to go to school to study.”
Joseph is a 19-year-old joyful boy who hails from the Mount Elgon area in Kenya. He shared that he is known around the village as the guy with the large mass due to his protruding hernia on his abdomen. In February 2019, Joseph was involved in a road traffic accident when he was headed home from his daily labor. He sustained injuries in his stomach where he was rushed to a hospital and an exploratory laparotomy was done. A few days later, Joseph was discharged from hospital and as his wounds were healing he started developing a mass on his stomach. Joseph feared to go to the hospital again because he didn’t want to be in pain. As the mass grew bigger, Joseph started worrying about his life. He went to his church pastor where the church raised money to send him to the capital city to get it removed but they were told he needed a specialist who demanded a lot of money which they could not afford. Joseph had given up on the possibility of getting treated. It was not until a friend asked his pastor to bring him to our hospital, where he was diagnosed with an incisional hernia that he was happy to be told that his condition can be treated. Joseph's father died of illness while he was young. He dropped out of school in Grade 4 because his mother re-married and she didn't have money to send him to school, so he began to work in farms to help get money for his daily needs like food. Joseph works in the farms and gardens and enjoys planting and farming. He wants to be able to have a big farm and grow lots of vegetables, corn, and millet. Joseph has gone to other doctors to help with his mass but everyone said it wasn’t operable. He is most disturbed by the way people who stare at him. Joseph is a very practical man and looks forward to going back to his farm and working hard to have a good crop and harvest and have a good life. Joseph is worried that he might not get a wife due to his condition. He is also facing stigma by people talking about his condition and has been denied work. If he is not treated, his condition will continue to worsen and his future plans feel bleak to him if he does not get treatment. Joseph told us, “I just want to be able to find a girl to marry and have a family.”
Everheart is a primary school student from central Kenya. His hearing has always been low since he was young. His family thought it was his tonsils that had problems and, after he received a tonsillectomy when he was 4 years old, they thought he would recover. Unfortunately, he did not improve as expected. The family has been going from one hospital to another seeking assistance before a friend recommended they visit Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Kijabe Hospital. When he came to Kijabe, Everheart had an ABR test done, and hearing aids were recommended. He struggles to hear in class but hopes that hearing aids will improve his hearing and learning. Everheart is the youngest child in his family. He had two siblings, but unfortunately, he lost his eldest brother. He lives with his sister’s family since he lost his mother and his father has neglected them. His sister is a general worker in a tea plantation with limited income to meet the cost of treatment as well as their family's basic needs. Everheart’s sister says, “Please help my brother with the aids. I am confident that they will assist him greatly.”
Jimmy is the first born of two children and lives in Makadara rehabilitation center. Jimmy was brought to Watsi's Partner CURE Hospital by Elijah, a social worker at Makadara Rehab Center. The rehab center supports street children and their families. They rescue, rehabilitate, and cater for the basic needs and facilitate placement either in regular schools or special schools or rehabilitation homes. Jimmy was a street child and was rescued in January 2018. He had fled home in Kayole, Soweto slum where his single mother lives in a difficult state. Fortunately, he was rescued and enrolled in school. He recently finished his class 8 final exam and scored good grades that will enable him to join a national high school. Jimmy joined the street family in 2016. He fell in 2017 and injured his elbow so that to this day he cannot stretch out. He has lived like that since then and complains of pain and discomfort. Jimmy is afraid that his education might be affected and his aspiration of becoming an engineer might come to an end. Jimmy is scheduled to undergo right elbow interposition arthroplasty to realign the bones so that he can be able to stretch his hand and use it fully. On behalf of the Makadara Rehab Center, Elijah, a social worker requested for support because they have so many children who need different care and attention and they cannot meet the cost of this treatment. “I request for support to undergo surgery so that I can play basketball and even do other things like washing and writing which I am currently not able to,” Jimmy told us.
Korb is a 34-year-old mother of two from Cambodia. She has one son and one daughter, she enjoys cooking for her family, cleaning the house, and playing with her children. Three years ago, Korb had a serious 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, Korb experiences ear discharge, pain, itchiness, and headaches. She cannot hear others clearly and has been unable to find any work. Korb traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 9th, 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 $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. "I hope that after surgery, the infection will stop and my hearing will improve and my family will not have to worry anymore," she said.
Bernard is a father of four from Kenya who came to our facility with a left knee injury he sustained after falling on a rock, a few days ago. Unable to raise funds required, he could not come for orthopaedic review. A week later, Bernard received support from his brother who paid for his transportation to our hospital. He had x-ray imaging done and diagnosed with closed knee fracture of his left patella. He walks in pain and his knee is swollen. Bernard operates a tractor after missing out on studies due to financial constraints. His monthly income is quite negligible to meet the cost of surgery. His wife sells at a grocery shop in the local market to provide for their our children. With the fracture, Bernard is not able to provide for his family. They appeal for help. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On January 22nd, Bernard will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. The surgery will reduce chances of further complications on the fracture and allow him to walk with ease. Bernard was able to contribute $50 toward his treatment, but does not have the funds for the full treatment. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $771 to fund this procedure. Bernard says, “I want to get treated so that I can go out to provide for my family. There is no one to help them now when I am injured. I am looking forward to stepping on my feet again.”
Chheng is a 50-year-old clothes seller from Cambodia. She enjoys cooking for her family, including one son and one daughter, and likes to watch television in her free time. For the last ten years, Chheng has suffered from swelling and pain in her left knee. She was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in her left knee and cannot stand for a long period of time, and now has difficulty walking comfortably. Fortunately, Chheng learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. At CSC, surgeons can perform a total knee replacement to relieve Chheng of her pain and allow her to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for January 6th, and Chheng needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. I hope that I will no longer be in any pain, and I will be able to walk well again and return to my work," Chheng said.
Sophea is a 29-year-old tailor from Cambodia. In her free time, she enjoys listening to music and watching movies on television. When she was three years old, Sophea 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, Sophea experiences hearing loss, headache, ear infection, discharge, and itchiness. She is unable to hear others and finds it difficult to communicate with those around her. Sophea 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. Sophea said, "I hope that after the operation, my hearing will improve and the ear infection will stop."
Yonase is a young boy from Ethiopia. Yonase is a handsome and playful boy who loves playing football. He comes from a humble family. His mother does menial jobs to sustain the family including laundry for wages. Yonase was born with hypospadias, a birth defect that disrupts the normal flow of urine. His mother did not know of the defect and was told by a neighbour. He is not able to pass urine while standing like any other boy. If not treated, Yonase will be at risk of infertility and social stigma. He was reviewed in our facility where surgery to correct the defect was recommended. With limited income, the mother is afraid he will not be able to receive surgery. She is stressed with her son's conditions. She appeals for financial assistance. Fortunately, Yonase is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on October 17th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,231 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Yonase's mother says, "I am now hopeful that he will get the surgery and that he will be ok."
Zin is a 37-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her husband, son and two daughters in Myawaddy, Karen State. Her 17-year-old son and 13-year-old daughter go to school while her youngest daughter stays home as she is still very young. To make a living, Zin used to make different Burmese snacks and sell them at the nearby villages. But she recently stopped working due to her health condition. Sometimes, her husband works as a day labourer but Zin said she does not know how much he earns from that. Six months ago, Zin started to experience stomach-ache so she went to a clinic. The doctor there did not do any investigations, instead, just prescribed her oral medication. Although Zin felt better with the medications she received at the clinic, her symptom returned after two months and she went back to see the same doctor. The doctor again prescribed her medications, but they only relieved her symptoms for a short time. In early September, Zin felt like her stomach-ache has worsened. She had it more often and the medications that she received at the clinic did not help her anymore. On 12 September 2019, Zin had a severe stomach-ache and for the last time, she returned to see the same doctor. On this visit, the doctor performed an ultrasound and said that there are stones in her common bile duct (CBD), a duct that carries bile from the gallbladder and liver into the duodenum (upper part of the small intestine). Zin has been advised to undergo a biliary obstruction repair, a procedure to repair the blockage of the bile ducts, which carry bile from the liver to the gallbladder. If left untreated, Zin's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. After seeking treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Zin is scheduled to undergo her biliary obstruction repair on October 03. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Zin's procedure and care. Zin said, “I cannot do anything now. I want to get well soon and start working again. If not, my family will not have enough food”.
Alphatina is a mother of two children from Kenya. She loves their presence and since leaving the hospital, she has grown even more fond of them. Alphatina used to trade in second-hand clothes as well as potatoes supplementing what his husband brought from his carpentry job. Alphatina suffered burns when the kerosene stove she was using blew up in July 2016. She had burns on part of her trunk, hands and neck. She suffers from frequent infections. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Alphatina receive treatment. On August 22nd, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to help her heal well and reduce the risk of sepsis. Now, Alphatina needs help to fund this $1,129 procedure. Alphatina says, “I am grateful for continued help from Watsi. I want to fully recover and be able to raise my children”.