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Michael Duchen

MONTHLY DONORCancer Survivor Trying to Give Back To Others

Michael's Story

Michael joined Watsi on January 20th, 2015. Five years ago, Michael became the 823rd member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,133 more people have become monthly donors! Michael's most recent donation supported Wai, a student from Thailand, to fund eye surgery.

Impact

Michael has funded healthcare for 64 patients in 12 countries.

All patients funded by Michael

Wai

Wai is a 14-year-old student from Thailand. He temporarily lives with his grandparents and great grandmother in Huay Ka Lote Village in Thailand, but Wai usually lives with his parents across the border in Burma. He came to visit his grandparents during his school break in mid-March 2020 after completing seventh grade, however, he was unable to return to his parents and home when Thailand closed it borders due to COVID-19. His parents are subsistence farmers and they also raise a few chickens, pigs, and goats to sustain their livelihood. When they need money to buy clothes or pay for healthcare, they sell some of their livestock. Meanwhile, his grandparents look after a landowner’s garden and land for 2,000 baht (approx. 67 USD) per month. The income that Wai’s grandparents earn from the landowner is just enough for their daily expenses. Wai is diagnosed with cataract and currently he has lost most of the vision in his right eye and is only able to see light. His right eye also looks red. Aside from that, he has no other symptoms and his eye does not hurt. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Wai. On June 16th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Wai's natural lens and replace it with an intraocular lens implant. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. “I want to become a farmer when I grow up and follow in my parent’s footsteps, but I also want to become a nurse if I receive a chance to do so. I overheard my parents say that they don’t have enough money to continue supporting my studies once I graduate from grade eight, so I’m not so sure whether I’ll be able to continue my studies after next year,” said Wai.

77% funded

77%funded
$1,165raised
$335to go
Jackson

Jackson is an eighteen year old and the firstborn child in a family of six children in Tanzania. He never had a chance to go to school since his parents could not afford the cost of educating him. He is hardworking and helps his father in looking after their cattle and working on their farm. Jackson started having leg problems four years ago. Over the years his legs have curved inward making him struggle to walk and go through pain when he walks for a long distance. He can’t go too far with his father’s cattle or work on the farm. His father didn’t have the money to take him for a check-up in a hospital. They tried herbal medicines but none have helped to straighten his legs. When our outreach team visited their village they got to know about Jackson’s condition and referred him for treatment at our hospital. He has been diagnosed with bilateral genu valgus which need to be corrected surgically but his parents can’t afford the treatment cost. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $838 to fund corrective surgery for Jackson. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 10th. Treatment will hopefully restore Jackson's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Jackson says, “I will be so happy if I can get this treatment and be able to walk normally again without the difficulty I am going through.”

100% funded

$838raised
Fully funded
Chan

Chan is a 36-year-old woman who lives with her husband and father-in-law in Shwepyithar Town, Yangon Division. Chan’s husband works as a day labourer on a construction site, while Chan is a seamstress who works from home. In 2010, Chan started to feel tired, had a rapid heartbeat and developed joint pain. She went to the clinic in Thaton, where she lived at that time, and received an an echocardiogram (echo) and x-ray. The doctor also told her that, if her heart became too enlarged, she would not be able to control her condition with oral medication and she would not be able to have a baby. She then received oral medication for a week which made her feel better for a while. In September 2019, when she went back for her follow-up appointment, she received another echo. Following this, the doctor explained to her that her condition could no longer be stabilized with medication. As he knew that Chan could not afford to pay for her surgery, he referred her to Pinlon Hospital. On 17th September 2019, she met the staff at Pin Long Hospital and who then referred her to Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). Currently, Chan suffers from chest pain, has difficulty breathing, has a rapid heartbeat and has lost weight. In her free times Chan likes to sew, cook and do housework. “When I’m fully recovered, I will continue to work as a seamstress, save money and live happily with family,” said Chan. “Once I have enough money, my husband and I have decided to adopt one child. And I want to do charity work and help poor people as much as I can.”

83% funded

83%funded
$1,249raised
$251to go