UNIVERSAL FUND MEMBERDonating to Watsi is one of my greatest pleasures.
United States • engineersf.com • Born on October 6th
Kumar joined Watsi on May 21st, 2014. Nine years ago, Kumar joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Kumar's most recent donation traveled 8,300 miles to support Htee, a one-year-old boy from Burma, to fund surgery to heal his severe liver condition.
Kumar has funded healthcare for 93 patients in 13 countries.
Kumar has funded healthcare for 93 patients in 13 countries.
Htee is a one-year-old toddler who lives with his parents and his grandfather in Burma. His mother is a homemaker and his father and grandfather grow betel nuts, bananas, durian, chili and sesame on their own land. The income they earn from selling their crops is not enough to cover their daily expenses and pay for basic health care. Earlier this year, Htee had a fever and runny nose. He received treatment at a local clinic but his fever did not subside. A few days later, his skin and eyes turned yellow and he developed blue spots all over his body. He was brought to a hospital in Burma, where the doctor told Htee's parents that he has a problem with his liver and would need surgery at another treatment center. Unable to pay for travel and treatment, his parents brought him home. One day, a neighbor's referral led them to our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. BCMF is now seeking $1,500 to help fund a hepatoportoenterostomy, which will allow for bile drainage and relieve Htee's worrying symptoms. “I am happy to hear the organization (BCMF) will help support my son’s treatment. Thank you to the donors," said Htee's father.
Souhaimy is a 20-year-old student from Cambodia. He is from a rural area and has four brothers. His father is a construction worker, and his mom sells fried noodles from a street cart. In his free time, he and his friends play soccer, go on social media, and do homework under a tree near their house. When he was a child, Souhaimy had an ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. For this reason, Souhaimy experiences hearing loss, tinnitus, and ear discharge. It is difficult for him to hear and he is regularly taking various medications, but to no avail. Souhaimy traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On February 9th, he will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in his left ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $926 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. He said, "I hope my ear is better after surgery. I am embarrassed about the discharge and I can't remember my ear ever feeling normal."
Kimberly is a 5-month-old baby girl. She lives in a small city in central Bolivia with her parents, who work in the mining industry, and three siblings. Kimberly was born with several defects in her heart, including a hole between the two upper chambers as well as a second hole between the two lower chambers. As a result of these conditions, her heart struggles to pump blood through her body. During surgery, doctors will be able to sew these holes shut so that her heart functions well and is stronger. Her surgery is scheduled for January 19th. Fortunately, the organization, Gift of Life International, is subsidizing part of Kimberly's medical care, but her family still needs help to fund the remaining $1,500. Kimberly's mother says, "Our family is very hopeful that this surgery will be a success!"
Saw Kyaw is a 25-year-old man living in Thailand. He currently lives with his older sister, younger sister, mother and her niece. He moved from Burma to Thailand for job opportunities three years ago. He was working in a shop and was able to support two younger siblings who are studying in Karen State in Burma. Around the end of July, he was playing football with friends when he slipped trying to kick the ball. His lower right leg was very painful, but he was still able to bear weight lightly on that leg. At the time, Saw Kyaw didn’t have health insurance, so he went to a clinic instead of the hospital. There they examined his leg, gave him some medication for the pain and advised him to go to the hospital for an X-ray if the pain persisted. Saw Kyaw rested for two days and then went back to work. That day at work, Saw Kyaw was carrying a heavy load when he slipped again. This time, the pain was severe, and he was unable to stand on his right leg. He went to a hospital in Bangkok where they X-rayed his lower right leg and told him that the tibia was fractured. The doctor recommended surgery where they would use a metal rod to connect the bones and set them in the correct position to heal. Saw Kyaw was told that the surgery would cost between 40,000 to 50,000 baht (approx. 1,330- 1,660 USD). He told them that he did not have insurance and was unable to afford the surgery, so they gave him pain medication and bandaged up his leg. He returned to the hospital three times and each time the doctor recommended surgery, but Kyaw was unable to figure out how he could get that kind of money. His employer was not helpful and refused to assist with the cost of the surgery. Since Saw Kyaw didn’t have the money, he decided to just rest and see whether the bones would heal on their own. Saw Kyaw recalled that he had fractured his femur when he was young, and he had used a traditional medicated oil to help heal the injury. He hoped that he could use this on his new fracture. But now he cannot walk properly and cannot work since his accident. He is stressed about his condition and his future. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Saw Kyaw will finally undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for December 7th and will cost $1,500. He will able to go back to work after surgery Saw Kyaw said, “I would like to go back to Bangkok and find work again so I can go back to helping my family; my siblings who are studying in Burma, and also my mother who is getting older. I also want to save some money for my future. I will not work at the same place though as they have not been kind or caring since I had the accident.”
Bright is a three month old baby who lives with a single mother, who works in small scale, subsistence farming. Bright was born with with bilateral clubfoot, which will make it difficult to wear shoes or to walk. Because of limited income - and because she is young and this is her first child - Bright's mother has been struggling to find the right care for Bright since he was born. Fortunately, Bright and his mother were connected with our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation. With their assistance, Bright has been scheduled for clubfoot repair surgery on November 4th, at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. Bright's mother needs your help to fund this procedure, which will cost $935. Bright’s mother says: “After seeing the work that you do here, I have hope that my baby will grow up to have a normal life.”
Brenda is a student from Tanzania who has had epileptic seizures since childhood. This has continued until now, though she is taking medication that is helping her manage the condition. She shared that she is not close to her parents as they are verbally abusive. She tries to keep her distance, but with her condition, it has been hard to depend on herself. After hearing about our health center and the work we do, she was hopeful that she is could get help. She had to take more than three buses to get to our center. “I am lucky. I did not have any seizure episodes during my journey," she says. She is at our center ready to receive treatment, but she cannot afford it. Earlier this year, Brenda had a seizure and fell on a hot stove. Her face was badly burned. Brenda received treatment, but after healing her face was left impacted. She has been living this way for four months now, hiding her face whenever she goes out. Her neighbor saw her one day and noticed that she was hiding her face. Thankfully, he told her about our health center and informed her that she could get help. It is hard for her to open her eyes fully, and due to the disfiguration, her self-esteem is affected. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Brenda receive treatment. On October 13th, surgeons there will perform a burn contracture release surgery, which will allow her to open her eyes fully, and will hopefully help improve her self-esteem. Now, she needs help to fund this $874 procedure. Brenda says, “I am a spiritual person. I know it was God’s will for me to get here and get help. Thank you.”
Yves is a young man from Haiti. He lives with his parents and sister in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince; they have been caring for him since he fell ill about five years ago. Prior to his illness, he worked as a clerk for a local business. Yves has a cardiac condition called severe rheumatic mitral insufficiency. One of the four valves of his heart was severely damaged by a rheumatic fever that he suffered a number of years ago, and cannot adequately pump blood through his heart and body. The care Yves is not available anywhere in Haiti, so Yves will fly to Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On September 12th, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will remove his damaged valve and implant an artificial replacement. Haiti Cardiac Alliance is contributing $9000 to pay for surgery. Yves's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep and travel. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It will also pay for the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Yves's family overseas, and the cost of obtaining Yves' passport. Says Yves: "I am hopeful that I can get back to a healthy and independent life once my heart problem is fixed!"
Alex is a student and is a very ambitious and active teenager from Kiambu, Kenya. He is the only child of a single mother, who is a hawker of different items. He is in high school and his mother shared that he has a passion for football and running. After schools were closed in March, Alex decided to go and visit his aunt who lives near Nazareth Hospital. Being playful as he is, he took a bicycle from his aunts’ house and decided to have a ride on last Saturday. Unfortunately, while riding, he tried to avoid a collision and he fell. He sustained an injury to his left hand. Now Alex is in pain, unable to use his hand. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On April 12th, Alex will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. Alex's fracture will heal, he will be able to use his hand and also resume school. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. “I am feeling for my son, and hope he could receive the sponsorship so that he can be well before the school opens,” said Alex’s mother.
Erick is a first grade student from Tanzania who dreams of becoming a truck driver like his father. He lives with his mother, who works in a coal mine, and his siblings. His father works in a different city, but he still helps support their family. Erick enjoys playing soccer with his friends at school and helping with house chores once he is home. Erick has clubfoot of his left foot, a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. In Erick's case, his left foot is twisted both downwards and inwards. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. His parents share that they are determined to see their child receive his needed treatment and get better. Fortunately, Erick and his family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on August 12th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Erick's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to run, walk for long distances, and carry things with ease. He will also be able to play soccer and help with house chores without difficulty. Erick's mother says, "My son has been through a lot. We are happy that he is going to get better after the surgery."
Jean Pierre is a 45-year-old father from Haiti who lives with his wife and daughter. To help support his family, he works at the local city hall. His daughter was a previous Watsi patient and received life-changing surgery with the help of amazing donors. When bringing his daughter in a few months ago for a post-op checkup, he mentioned that he has been experiencing the same symptoms as his daughter for many years. After further examination, doctors found that Jean Pierre has the same life-threatening condition as his daughter and has somehow survived to his age! He was born with a cardiac condition called patent ductus arteriosus, a condition in which blood leaks through a hole between two large blood vessels near the heart. After years of feeling weak and experiencing poor health, Jean Pierre's heart condition will finally be treated. On July 14th, doctors will use a catheter to insert a device into the hole so that blood can no longer leak through it. Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is raising $1,500 to pay for Jean Pierre's life-saving procedure. Jean Pierre shares, "My family and I are very grateful that so many people are making it possible for me to have this surgery!"
Phyo Ko is a 33-year-old man, living in Thailand with his wife and two young children. Originally from Burma, Phyo Ko and his family moved to Thailand in 2009, in search of better job opportunities. Phy Ko's wife stays home with the children, who are too young to go to school, while Phyo Ko works as a construction day laborer, earning under $12 a day. In early 2021, Phyo Ko and his friend were at work at a construction site, when scaffolding fell onto Phyo Ko's left hand and thigh. Initially, he used oil made from traditional medicine to ease the pain. However, a month after the accident, Phyo Ko noticed that there was a mass on his left leg, so he sought medical attention. The first doctor he visited could find nothing wrong, and sent Phyo Ko back home. His mass continued to grow in size, and the pain increased, making it impossible for Phyo Ko to continue working, so once again, he went to the hospital. This time, there were no doctors available to see him because of the pandemic. Finally, in April, Phyo Ko was able to receive a CT scan, thanks to our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund and the Watis community. The CT scan revealed a hematoma, which requires surgical intervention. On June 16th, Phyo Ko will undergo surgery at Mae Sot General Hospital, to have the mass removed from his thigh. After the procedure, Phyo Ko should be able to walk, stand and work without pain, something he is unable to do now. Burma Children Medical Fund is seeking $1,500 to cover the costs of Phyo Ko's surgery. Phyo Ko said: "I would like to receive surgery soon so that the pain will go away. Before I received the CT scan, I was told that my leg could be be amputated because the mass on my leg is very big. However, after the CT scan, the doctor told me that they could remove the mass without amputation. I was so happy to hear this. I want to work and earn an income for my family after surgery."
Horn is a 72-year-old man with one son, seven daughters, and many grandchildren. Horn shared that his favorite activities include playing with his grandchildren, exercising, going to the pagoda, and meeting friends to drink tea. Horn has a squamous cell carcinoma, which is a type of skin cancer, on his left heel. The wound on his heel has become infected and he is worried about it worsening and spreading. When Horn learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), he traveled for two hours seeking treatment. On April 21st, surgeons at CSC will perform an excision and reverse sural flap procedure to heal his wound. Now, Horn needs help to fund this $673 procedure. Horn says, "After surgery, I hope my infection and pain are gone and I can return home soon."