Chris joined Watsi on May 16th, 2014. Eight years ago, Chris joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Chris' most recent donation traveled 8,800 miles to support Heng Ly, a 66-year-old vegetable seller from Cambodia, to fund cataract surgery to improve his vision.
Chris has funded healthcare for 104 patients in 12 countries.
Chris has funded healthcare for 104 patients in 12 countries.
Heng Ly is a 66-year-old vegetable seller. He is married and has one son, one daughter, and two grandchildren. Heng Ly lives with his wife, who is also a vegetable seller, and their daughter, who is a teacher. In his free time, he likes to watch the news on television. One year ago, Heng Ly developed a cataract in his left eye, causing him blurry vision, sensitivity to light, and tearing. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, including colors and faces, and is worried about falling when walking, so he is not able to go places on his own. When Heng Ly learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for an hour seeking treatment. On March 2nd, doctors will perform a small incision cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in his left eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $229 procedure. Heng Ly shared, "I hope I can see clearly again so I can look after my grandchildren."
Hla is a 40-year-old woman living with her husband and adopted daughter in a refugee camp on the Thai-Burma border. Hla and her family fled their village in Burma, due to fighting in the area. In January, Hla learned that she was pregnant for the first time after ten years of marriage. Then in March, Hla had to flee with her husband and daughter due to the fighting near her village. They moved in with her uncle, who lives in a refugee camp. Once there, she sought prenatal care at a clinic in the camp, where she was told that she had a breech baby, which would require a Caesarean section in order for her baby to be delivered safely. The C-section is scheduled for May 11th at nearby Mae Sot Hospital (MSH). When Hla told a friend that she does not have the money to pay for her hospital stay, her friend referred her to our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), for help with paying for her care. Currently, Hla is eight months pregnant and is worried about her condition and the health of her baby. Burma Children Medical Fund is seeking $1,500 to cover the costs of Hla's treatment, and for the safe delivery of her baby. Hla said, "I was very worried when I heard that I will need an expensive C-section. I could not think of anyone to help pay for my surgery, and I felt stressed about giving birth through a C-section. After I heard from BCMF staff that donors could help pay for my surgery, I started to feel so much more relaxed and less worried. I still worry about my baby being born healthy."
Joan is a 36-year-old woman and a mother of three teenage children. Joan used to help tend a farm, but the work availability was inconsistent and could not support her family's needs. Her fracture makes it impossible for her to work at this time, and she is currently staying with her mother. Joan's husband works on a construction site. In January, Joan slipped while doing chores outside her home and broke her hand. She was rushed to a local hospital, where she was given a cast for six weeks, followed by an arm sling. Since her pain never subsided, she visited Kijabe Hospital for further review. The doctors noticed a deformity at the fracture site and conducted an X-ray, which revealed a fracture in her upper arm. They determined that Joan will need to undergo surgery to heal. Currently, Joan cannot use her left arm, and it's affecting her family's livelihood. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help Joan receive treatment. On April 13th, she will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation, that will allow her to use her arm again. AMH is requesting $1,500 to help fund this procedure. Joan shared, "I have been in prolonged pain for a lengthy period of time. My hand is broken, and I can no longer use my hand to work. This surgery will help me get back to my work and raise my family."
Serah is a hard-working farmer and mother. Sadly, she has been widowed for over 30 years but is happy to have a loving family of seven children who are now adults that live with their own families. She has a small quarter-acre tea farm, but largely depends on her children for support in her older age. In December 2021, Serah found a painless lump that worried her. She visited a local health center where additional testing was recommended. She was diagnosed with breast cancer and a mastectomy, or a surgery to remove breast tissue, was recommended to rid her body of the cancer and to prevent the cancer from metastasizing. Without treatment, the cancer could spread to other organs. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Serah receive treatment. On January 25th, she will undergo a mastectomy at AMH's care center. After treatment, Serah will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Now, AMH is requesting $1,110 to cover the cost of her procedure and care. Serah shared, "all my life I have had the privilege of good health. We thank God. The news of cancer and surgery came as a surprise to me considering I am an old lady and fragile. I need this surgery to save my life from the jaws of this fatal disease."
Rosemary is a loving grandmother and a single mother of five children, who have all grown now. Because of Rosemary's medical condition, she has not been able to work and therefore has no current source of income. She is currently staying with her sister who is taking care of her. Four months ago, Rosemary was hit by a car and has been confined to a wheelchair ever since. An X-ray revealed that her femur/thigh bone that connects to the hip socket is broken affecting her mobility. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On March 14th, Rosemary will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation, to help heal her condition and hopefully be able to walk again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure and care. Rosemary shared, "I used to be well, and I could use my legs well. But after the accident, I am just confined to this wheelchair and cannot do anything without help. I hope this treatment will help me get back to my feet.”
Meet Jonah, a 31-year-old quiet man. Jonah is the 2nd eldest in a family of three. His siblings and him were raised by a single mother who makes a modest living as a farmer. Earlier, Jonah left secondary school studies to find work to help support his family. Jonah has a history of a growing cheek mass that has recently increased in size. Jonah's condition is uncomfortable and often causes people to stare, which Jonah finds upsetting and is impacting his self esteem. Jonah received a scan of his cheek at AIC Kapsowar Hospital and was subsequently diagnosed with a submandibular tumor. Doctors recommended that the mass be removed and the procedure is scheduled for February 14th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare is helping Jonah raise the $1,196 he needs to undergo this life altering surgery. Jonah shared, “I have waited for this moment in my life for so long. My mother has tried to take me to so many hospitals but we lacked means because they requested too much from us.”
Naw Say is a 33-year-old woman who lives with her husband and daughter in a refugee camp on the border area of Thailand. Naw Say is a teacher in the refugee camp while her husband looks after their daughter. During her free time, she loves to weave and embroider traditional Karen shirts. Naw Say is currently expecting her second child. Her doctors recommend that she deliver via a caesarean section to ensure the safety of her and her baby. Malteser International staff - who help run the refugee camp - referred her to our medical partner's Mae Sariang Hospital for care. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is helping Naw Say undergo a C-Section on January 12th. This procedure will cost $1500, and Naw Say needs your support. Naw Say said, “I wanted a baby boy as my first child is a girl. However, I was told during the ultrasound that this baby is also a girl. When I told my husband about this, he said that another girl is good and that she will have friends to play with. We love her already.”
Erick works as a tout, earning a daily wage, which is inconsistent. His wife is a hawker selling second-hand clothes for a living. Their family lives in a single room rental house costing USD 17.74 per month. Given his health, Erick currently depends on his relatives and wife for support. Erick has been on and off to different medical facilities due to stomach distress. This has depleted his resources and affected his ability to work. Without medical insurance, he is not able to cover the surgical procedure he needs and pay family bills. Erick has been unwell for about two years. An MRI showed a large mass on his pancreas and he is now scheduled for laparotomy to help ease the discomfort and pain. Erick says, "I have failed to provide for my family due to this condition. We rely on my wife for survival but her income is low and not enough. I need this treatment to be able to work and support my family.”
Nathan is a seven-year-old 2nd grade student. His favorite subjects are math and science. He has two older brothers and his father is a vegetable farmer. Nathan likes to drink coconuts and play football with his friends. He wants to a policeman when he grows up. Nathan hasn't been feeling well for five days after he put tamarind seeds in his ear. Nathan's father took him to the pharmacy but they could not help. He's now in pain and it is hard for him to sleep. Nathan's family traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On October 29th, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), will remove the foreign body. Now, Nathan's family needs help to raise $231 to fund this procedure. Nathan's father said, "I hope doctors can remove the seeds and Nathan can get better and return to school."
Taw is a 30-year-old woman who lives with her family in a refugee camp in Thailand. Originally from Burma, Taw fled to the refugee camp with her father in 2008 due to a civil war in her village. She used to work as a midwife in the hospital in the refugee camp but became a homemaker after getting married in 2017. Her father is unemployed, while her niece, nephew, and son go to school. Her husband worked as a day laborer outside the refugee camp. However, since COVID-19 cases were detected in the camp and there was an increase in cases in Thailand, schools were closed, and her husband can no longer leave the camp for work. The family shared that they rely on support from a local organization called the Border Consortium, which is not enough for their daily needs, so they must stretch the income until the end of each month. In her free time, Taw loves to play with her son and cook her favorite foods. Taw is expecting her second child soon. Due to her first delivery via Cesarean section and complications during birth, Taw’s doctors recommended that she deliver by a Cesarean section to ensure her and the baby’s safety. On November 15th, Taw will undergo a Cesarean section at our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). BMCF is requesting $1500 to fund this procedure. Taw shared, “I have one son now, so I would like to have a girl this time. After I have weaned my baby, I want to work as a midwife again at the hospital.”
Edna is a 48-year-old single mother and small-scale farmer who grows food crops for home use. Her four children range in age from 17 to 29 years and have been depending on her. Unfortunately, Edna is now unable to walk due to lower limb weakness. She has been suffering from goiter for over 15 years and the thyroid malignancy has now spread to her spine impacting her mobility. Accompanied by her daughter, who had to push her in a wheelchair, Edna recently visited our medical partner's care center AIC Kijabe Hospital for help. She has been to other facilities but still hadn't been able to get the help she needs due to a lack of funds. After a multi-disciplinary team meeting comprising of Head & Neck and Ortho surgeons, she has been scheduled for a Total Thyroidectomy, Neck Dissection, and Spine Decompression and Fusion to help her heal and walk again. Our medical partner African Mission Healthcare (AMH) is requesting $1,500 to cover this intensive procedure, a ten-day stay at the hospital, and wheelchair adjustments, tests, and physical therapy for Edna. Edna says, “I lost my ability to walk after this disease attacked me. I am afraid if not attended to I may be confined to a wheelchair for good. But my hope is up and alive now that doctors have scheduled me for surgery. This treatment is meant to rectify the situation and help me to walk again.”
Soriya is a 49-year-old seller of children's cookies. She lives with her husband who is a policeman. Together they have two children: one son and one daughter. Her son is married, while her daughter still lives at home. She likes to cook, exercise, and watch Khmer movies on TV in her free time. Two years ago, Soriya had a severe ear infection. The infection caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. For this reason, Soriya experiences severe ear aches, ear discharge, and pain. She visited a private hospital and received ear drops, but her symptoms did not improve and it is difficult for her to hear and communicate. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is helping Soriya to receive treatment. She traveled to visit CSC's care center where, on September 14th, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in her left ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Now, CSC is requesting $925 to fund her procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Soriya shared that she hopes that the ear infection will finally stop and her hearing will improve.