chirag joined Watsi on October 9th, 2014. Four years ago, chirag became the 2402nd member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 3,545 more people have become monthly donors! chirag's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Suzana, a kindergartener from Tanzania, to fund hydrocephalus treatment.
chirag has funded healthcare for 51 patients in 11 countries.
Suzana is a kindergartener from Tanzania. She is five years old and the only child to her single mother. She was born a healthy child and has been developing well until earlier this year in March. Her mother started noting her dragging her right leg when walking and lacking strength mostly on the right side of her body. Previously she could run and play freely. She would walk to her kindergarten school with her friends with ease. However, she started having difficulties in all these activities, which made her mom worried. Suzana’s mother is a single mother working as a cleaner at a local university to make a living. Her husband left them when Suzana was just two years old. Her mom shared that it has not been easy for her to support Suzana on her own and things are now even harder given Suzana’s condition. It took Suzana’s mother a few months to be able to save some money and take Suzana to Arusha district hospital where she was referred to Watsi's Medical Partner ALMC hospital for a diagnosis. At ALMC hospital, Suzana was diagnosed with hydrocephalus which has caused a tumor in her head. She needs to have surgery to help drain the fluids accumulating and thereafter have the tumor excised if possible. Her mother is unable to afford the treatment cost and she is asking for help and support. Suzana has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of her condition, Suzana has been experiencing general weakness on her right side of the body and dragging her legs. Without treatment, Suzana will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $802 to cover the cost of surgery for Suzana that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on June 17th and will drain the excess fluid from Suzana's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Suzana will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Suzana's mother shared, “I would love to see my daughter walk well again, resume school and be able to get back to normal. The cost of the surgery is something I can’t afford. Please find a place in your hearts and help my daughter."
Ree is a 44-year-old man who lives with his wife, two sons, and his daughter in Mae Ra Ma Laung Refugee Camp in Thailand. Ree and his family used to live in a village in Hpa-pun Township in Karen State, Burma. However, due to conflict between armed groups in his area, they fled to the refugee camp in 2006. Every month Ree’s family receives 1,244 baht (approx. 42 USD) from The Border Consortium (TBC), an organization that provides support to refugees in camps. He also works as a caregiver for the elderly in the camp, for the organization Catholic Office for Emergency Relief and Refugees. He earns 1,100 baht (approx. 37 USD) each month for this. All of his children go to school in the camp while his wife works as a cook at one of the schools. On March 14, 2020, Ree slipped and fell on his right forearm while he was carrying a heavy load. When he got up, he was not able to move his right hand and he thought he had broken his forearm. Ree did not seek help at the camp’s medical centre and instead wrapped traditional herbal medicine onto his right forearm. As time passed, Ree could still not use his right arm and the pain in his arm did not go away. Eventually, on May 10th, he went to the camp’s hospital, run by Malteser International Thailand (MI). At the hospital, he was diagnosed with a fractured right forearm that had not healed properly. He was referred to the local Mae Sariang Hospital and received an x-ray on May 12th. The result indicated that he had fractured one of the two bones in his forearm. The doctor at the hospital then referred Ree to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Chiang Mai Hospital (CMH) for further management and treatment. The following day, MI staff brought Ree to CMH. Once he met with the doctor, the doctor told him that he will need to receive surgery for his arm to heal properly. Currently, Ree is still in pain and his right arm is sore and not in use. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Ree will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for May 21st and will cost $1,500. His arm will no longer be in pain and he hopes he will be able to go back to his old job helping the elderly in the refugee camp. While smiling he said, “I have been struggling to do tasks for the past month without using my right hand which is hard as I am right handed. I cannot wait to use my right arm again!”
Oliva is a baby from Tanzania and is the first born child in her small family. Since Olivia’s mother is a stay-at-home mother and her father is a subsistence farmer, they are not able to afford Oliva’s needed treatment. Oliva has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of her condition, Oliva has been experiencing vomiting and irritability. Without treatment, Oliva will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,238 to cover the cost of surgery for Oliva that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on March 11th and will drain the excess fluid from Oliva's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Oliva will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Oliva’s mother says, “After my daughter had her VPS shunt placed earlier she got better but due to her shunt having failed her head is increasing and she is having fevers and vomiting a lot. Please help my daughter."
Hla is a 41-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her family in a village in Kawkareik Township in Karen State. Hla is a homemaker, raises livestock, and looks after her niece while her sister teaches at a nursery school in the village. Her two younger sons and her brother-in-law are subsistence farmers who grow rice on rented land. Hla’s oldest son is a distance education student in university. One year ago, Hla felt a painless growth when she touched her lower abdomen. That same day, she went to see a traditional birth attendant (TBA) about this. The TBA told her that she had a gastric problem. The next day, Hla went to see a traditional healer receive blessed water in the hopes it would make the growth disappear. Although she drank the blessed water for around two months, the growth remained. As she did not think that the growth would make her seriously ill, she did not go to a clinic. In January 2020, Hla felt like the growth was increasing in size. She decided to visit Kawkareik Private Clinic where the doctor performed an ultrasound. She was told that she had a mass in her uterus. The doctor provided her with painkillers and she was told to only take it when she is in pain. Hla has been experiencing back pain and the mass increases in size day by day. She has been diagnosed with a uterine mass and has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Hla's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Hla is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on March 13th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience back pain and she will be able continue working and helping out at home. Hla said, "I'm very scared when I heard that I need to receive surgery. When I got home, my family and friends encouraged me to not be afraid because there were many other people who had the same condition who recovered and became healthy again."
Keith is a 12-year-old from Kenya. He is the first born child in a family of two, both of whom are students in grade three. They hail from Kaptul village which is known to be a rural area with less access to medical and social services. His parents are peasant farmers and they depend on seasonal farm products like mangoes and cassavas for commercial purpose. The money they get from those farm products is not enough to sustain the family for their daily needs. Therefore they depend on well-wishers for food and clothing when they don’t have farm products to sell. Four days ago, Keith fell from a high height and sustained trauma with injuries on right leg. A right tibia fracture was revealed by x-ray on his arrival to the hospital. Keith was looking after his grandmother’s cattle when he fell into a ditch. He is now in pain and cannot walk. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On February 20th, Keith will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him heal well and be able to walk again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $968 to fund this procedure. Keith’s mother says, “He is hardworking and he is liked by his grandmother for being honest and taking responsibility. He will be missed by his grandmother, who is wishing him quick recovery.”
Wel is a five-year-old boy who lives with his parents and an older sister and brother. His parents are subsistence farmers while he and his siblings are students. His mother forages for food and fishes to supplement their meals, while his father also works as a day laborer. The income he receives is just enough to cover their daily expanses but is not enough to pay for basic healthcare. On the 26th of December 2019, Wel was playing with pebbles at school with his friends. When he came back home that afternoon, he was crying but no one was home; his mother was away fishing. When she came back home and saw him still crying, she asked him what was wrong. Wel told her that while he was playing with his friends at school, one of his friends threw a pebble that hit him in his left eye. Since then, his left eye hurt a lot. His mother checked his eye, but she did not see any redness, and thought that the pain would go away after a while. Five days later, Wel complained that his left eye hurt more than before. His mother then took him to Hpa-An General Hospital, where his eye was checked. The doctor saw pus in his left eye and told his mother to take him to a hospital in Yangon as they cannot do anything for him there. The doctor provided him with eye drops and they returned home. Wel's mother did not have enough money to go to Yangon. His mother administered the eye drops for him, but his eye did not get better. His mother started to worry more about him and tried to look for a way to take him to another hospital. One of their neighbors suggested that she bring him to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) in Mae Sot, Thailand, as she has been to the clinic before. On the 5th of January 2020, Wel's mother borrowed 100,000 kyat (approx. 100 USD) from a neighbor and took him to MTC. There, his eye was checked but the medic referred him to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH), as they could not treat Wel at the clinic. When Wel arrived at MSH, the doctor examined his eye and told Wel’s mother that he has an ulcer in the cornea of his left eye. His left eye had turned white and he also had pus due to the infection in his eye. The doctor told them that unfortunately the only option left was to remove his left eye so that his right eye would not become infected as well. Wel cried when he learned that his left eye had to be removed. Wel's mother however agreed to the procedure and he was scheduled to receive surgery on the 20th of January. Unable to pay for the surgery, the medic at MTC referred Wel to Watsi medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund for assistance in accessing treatment. Currently, Wel's left eye is itchy and has discharge coming from it. He cannot look at sunlight, as if he does his eye hurts. Before he stated taking the painkillers provided by MSH, his eye was very painful. He can no longer see anything with his left eye. "I want him to continue his studies after he receives treatment and I would like him to become either a teacher or a nurse in the future," said Wel's mother. "I don’t want him to work on the farm like us because he will have only one eye, so I want him to get a good job.”
Sarah is a calm teenager and in class six from Kenya. She is an aspiring lawyer and firstborn of two children. She lives with her mother and younger sister in a two-room house in the Rift valley region of Kenya. Her father left them years back due to the increasing family demands. Sarah was diagnosed with spina bifida at birth and was treated. The site is however prone to infection and if not treated, result in severe pain. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Sarah receive treatment. On October 30th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to this will eliminate the risk of infection. Now, Sarah needs help to fund this $1,129 procedure. “I would like to be a lawyer when I grow up,” says Sarah.
Meet Paul, a 17 year old young man. He is social and polite and likes doing charity work. He visits the aged, sick and the orphans in his village together with his friends. He hails from Cheese village, Karangatha town Kinangop, in Nyandarua County. The village ‘Cheese’ was named after a white man who settled there for a long time. Paul finished his O-level last year and scored a grade which will enable him to enroll into a college. He is currently helping his parents at home as he plans to go for surgery before joining school. Paul’s father is a carpenter while the mother is a farmer. Everything seemed normal until about 2 years ago Paul noticed an unusual carving on his back. His friends also would tell him that he has changed rapidly. Due to so many observations and comments from friends, he was taken to a hospital nearby and later advised to seek further consultation with a spine surgeon. Paul came to CURE hospital early July and on seeing Dr. Theuri a spine specialist, he was scheduled to undergo post Instrumented spine fusion surgery. Paul and his family went home to look for ways in which they can raise the estimated bill but up to date, they have never raised. They depended on (NHIF) but the insurance rejected the request. Paul is complaining of severe pains in his back, muscle fatigue and stiffness in the back. His self-esteem has also slowed since the condition developed when he is mature. He is desiring to undergo surgery to correct the deformity so that he can continue with his normal life and studies. “My prayer is that I can go for surgery so that I can live a normal life like my friends and continue with my studies. Any kind of support will be appreciated," Paul expressed himself.
Gracious is a baby boy from Tanzania. Gracious is a calm baby boy and the only child to his young parents. He has bilateral clubfoot which if not treated will result in permanent disability. After he was born, his parents were advised to take him to the hospital at three months of age. Upon review, surgeons advised for manipulation and casting surgery to correct the condition. Gracious's parents are casual labourers. His mother sells fruits and vegetables in the neighbourhood while his father is a casual construction site labourer. Their income is only sufficient to meet their daily needs. Gracious's relative referred them to our facility where the child was reviewed. His parents were asked for the hospital fee but are not able to raise it. If treated, Gracious will be able to walk upright and with ease. The family appeals for help. Fortunately, Gracious traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on October 15th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $890 to fund Gracious's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily. Gracious’s mother says, “The cost of the treatment is high for us to afford, kindly help our son if it’s possible.”
Esther is an elderly lady from Kenya. Esther is a mother of 2 children whom she has struggled to raise for the past 23 years. She lost her husband in 1996 and since then has been struggling with poverty. She had to sell a small piece of land to educate her children. Esther does not have any income and relies mainly on friends and relatives. Two years ago, Esther has been experiencing persistent bleeding. She has been diagnosed with a large ovarian tumor that is suspected to be malignant. She needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $756 to fund Esther's surgery. On September 13th, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Esther will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain. Esther says, “I am appealing for your kind support to help me access medical care. I hope that soon Il be free from the complications."
Brighton is a young boy from Kenya. For five years, Brighton has had an inguinal hernia. If not treated, the hernia may result in intestinal tissue damage. Fortunately, on August 2, he will undergo repair surgery at our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $423 to fund Brighton's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. “I want to be a driver when I grow up,” says Brighton.
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.