Brandon joined Watsi on May 29th, 2017. Four years ago, Brandon joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Brandon's most recent donation supported Rickshadez, a 9-year-old student from Kenya, to fund testicular surgery.
Brandon has funded healthcare for 42 patients in 8 countries.
Brandon has funded healthcare for 42 patients in 8 countries.
Rickshadez is a young student and the third of four children. He's a very active and clever boy. His parents sell clothes in Nairobi to earn a living. They live in a small house on the same property where they work. In the middle of last year, Rickshadez began to experience swelling on one side of his lower abdominal area, and his father brought him to the doctor. Rickshadez was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles remains undescended. If left untreated, Rickshadez has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. This condition can be healed through corrective surgery, which will help prevent these potential complications. Rickshadez will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). Fortunately, he is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on March 25th. AMHF is requesting $561 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Rickshadez’s mother says, “We are not blessed enough to raise the required amount for Rickshadez’s surgery.” With some financial help, Rickshadez can undergo this surgery to heal the swelling and protect against future risks.
Baby of Magdalena is a 1-month-old baby girl and the only child to her young parents. Both of her parents are small-scale farmers of maize and vegetables. Her father also seeks casual labour jobs on construction sites to help supplement their family's income. Baby of Magdalena was brought in as an emergency case seeking treatment at ALMC Hospital after being born with spina bifida and congenital malformation of her lower limbs. When she was delivered, the clinic doctors covered the spina bifida area with saline gauze, which led to wound contamination and put her at risk of infection. Once she arrived at ALMC Hospital, Baby of Magdalena was scheduled for spina bifida repair to help save her life and ability to use her lower limbs. Given the urgency of her situation, she was able to get funding to cover this surgery, and it was successful in preventing infection. However, Baby of Magdalena has now developed hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. This could potentially cause brain damage and cause physical and developmental delays. Now, she needs to have ETV surgery, but her parents cannot afford the treatment cost due to financial challenges. They appeal for financial assistance. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of surgery for Baby of Magdalena that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on February 15th and will drain the excess fluid from Baby of Magdalena's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Baby of Magdalena will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Baby of Magdalena's mother shared, "My baby’s head is increasing in size and she needs surgery, but we cannot get that amount of money. Please help us.”
Than is a 42-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband, three daughters, three sons, son-in-law and granddaughter. Than and her family moved from Burma to Thailand ten years ago in search of better job opportunities. Her husband, her oldest daughter, one son, and her son-in-law work as day labourers on their employer’s farm, growing and harvesting tapioca, corn, and cabbage. Her two other sons go to school, while her youngest daughter and her granddaughter are too young to go to school. Than and her second oldest daughter are homemakers. On November 7th, 2020, Than discovered that she had an incisional hernia. Currently, Than experiences abdominal pain throughout the week and has to take pain medication to decrease her pain. She feels uncomfortable when she sits, and when she is in pain, she has to walk or lie down for the pain to ease. Fortunately, on January 28th, she will undergo hernia repair surgery at Mae Sot General Hospital, our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Than's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 28th and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably and go about her daily activities normally. Than shared, “I was so happy when I learned that I was to go to Mae Tao Clinic [and later Mae Sot Hospital] for treatment. My children are also happy that I will receive treatment with help from donors.”
San is a 23-year-old fisherman from Cambodia. San has been married for two years and has a son who is one. His wife is a farmer. In his free time, San enjoys meeting friends, doing house work, taking care of his son, and taking his wife to their local market. San had an accident with a machine on a fishing boat that caused a fracture of his right arm and damaged the nerves. He has been diagnosed with a brachial plexus injury on his right side. The brachial plexus is a nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Injuries to this nerve network can result in loss of function and sensation. He is unable to lift his arm and he cannot work. San traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On December 21st, he will undergo a brachial plexus repair surgery. After recovery, he will be able to use his arm again. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $696 to fund this procedure. San said, "I hope after surgery I get back full arm function and can work again."
Hai is a 64-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. Hai has two sons, two daughters, and five grandchildren. He shared proudly that he has been married to his wife, who is also farmer, for 36 years. Currently, Hai lives with his eldest son. He enjoys spending his free time exercising, listening to the news on the radio, and teaching his grandchildren. Fifteen years ago, Hai was in a motor vehicle accident when a car hit him while he was driving his motorbike. He fell and injured both of his hips. At first, he had mild pain on his right hip that he managed with pain medication. Over time the pain worsened and now he needs crutches to walk. His condition makes him unable to work. He has been diagnosed with avascular necrosis of the right hip, which means his bone tissue is dead. Fortunately, Hai learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. At CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Hai of his pain and allow him to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for November 23rd, and Hai needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. Hai said, "I hope after surgery my hip will be free of pain so I can walk and work again."
Myint is a 52-year-old father from Burma. He lives with his wife, two sons and daughter. Myint used to work as a construction manager, and his wife is a homemaker. In his free time, Myint likes to search for building design ideas on Facebook and likes to read books. He also enjoys helping a charity group that drives patients to hospitals in an ambulance. Myint was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of the mitral valve, which is the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle that controls the flow of blood. Malformations of this sort may cause blood to flow backward, or cause the valve to narrow. Currently, Myint has difficulty breathing and chest pains. He cannot sleep well at night and has to take medication to help him fall asleep. He also feels tired when he talks for a long time. Myint needs a mitral valve replacement surgery to improve his quality of life. Since April 2020, he has been unable to work due to his poor health. When his eldest son's university classes did not resume this year, his son found work as a truck driver to make additional money. However, due to government imposed COVID-19 restrictions, his work ceased around August. Myint's family now lives off of their savings and borrow money when needed. They are appealing for financial help for Myint's health. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Myint. The treatment is scheduled to take place on October 25th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Myint shared, “After I have recovered fully, I will go back to work. But if I cannot do that same job anymore, I will look for something else that I can do. I will save money for my family’s future. I want my daughter and my sons to successfully complete their studies.”
Bon is a fifth-grade student from Cambodia. He is ten years old and he has three sisters and five brothers. He loves to play soccer and watch funny videos, and his favorite foods are chicken soup and coconut water. He hopes to become a doctor when he gets older. Eight months ago, Bon 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, Bon experiences ear discharge, itchiness, tinnitus, headache, and hearing loss. He cannot hear others clearly and is frequently distracted at school because of his hearing. Bon traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 10th, 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 $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. "I hope that my son's surgery goes well and he will recover without anymore discharge or headaches." -Bon's Mother
Aung is a 15-year-old novice monk from Hpa-An. He lives with other monks in the monastery. His parents own a piece of land where his father and oldest brother grow vegetables and fruits for sale. The family also grows vegetables for their own consumption. He was born with encephalocele and it was the size of a fingerprint. It grew bigger over the years and was the same size for the last three years before receiving surgery in 2015. He also suffers from hydrocephalus and he received ventriculoperitoneal shunt (VP) in 2016. Two months ago, Aung developed headaches and his head has grown bigger on the right side. At that time, his father bought medicine from the pharmacy to reduce his headaches. He took it for two days, but he did not feel better. Later on, his father took him to Hpa-An hospital where he received a blood test and x-ray. The doctor suggested his father to take him to Yangon but his father returned to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) in Mae Sot instead of going to Yangon. On February 25th, he arrived at MTC and he was referred to Watsi Medical Partner's Care Center Mae Sot Hospital to be seen the next day. At MSH, the doctor recommended a CT scan, which Watsi donors have also generously supported, and with these results Aung's father was told that doctors need to replace Aung's VP shunt as the previous shunt from 2016 is blocked. Aung’s father said, “I am very worried for him as he is my son and I hope that he will be healthy as soon as possible. In the future, I want him to be a monk for the rest of his life. Because I know my other older sons will not take good care of him as he is not a healthy boy. If he stays at the temple, he can be able to sleep and eat regularly."
Chit is a 39-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her daughter, mother-in-law, and her sister-in-law’s three children. Her husband has recently left the village to work in Bangkok so he could increase his income, especially since her condition has worsened. Since she became ill, she feels bored because she is unable to work. Around five months ago, Chit started to feel unwell with a stiff neck, headaches, and pain in her right eye. Soon after, she noticed that the black part of her right eye started to move inward toward the middle of her face, becoming crossed eyed. As soon as she noticed a change in her right eye, she went to a hospital to see a doctor about her condition. At the hospital, she underwent a CT scan of her head which showed normal findings. Therefore, the doctor just gave her an injection and oral medications. A week later, she decided to go see a local medic in her village because she felt like the medications were not helping. The medic looked at her medical test results, assessed her and said she might have a neurological condition. The medic gave her oral medication and another injection. She took the medication she received from the medic, and her symptoms subsided gradually. Chit's symptoms disappeared completely about 20 days ago, but this only lasted around 10 days because she noticed that the black part of her right eye had started to become white and the rest of her eye, normally white, started to turn red. She bought eye drops at a local medication stall, but they did not help. A few days later, she learned about Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), a charitable clinic, from one of her nephews. On January 11th, Chit visited MTC regarding her condition, and a medic explained that unfortunately her eye was not functional anymore and that it needed to be removed due to a severe infection. The medic also explained that if her right eye was not removed, the infection could spread to her left eye and cause the same problem. MTC then brought Chit to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) and the doctor there confirmed that her eye needs to be removed as soon as possible. Chit said, "It's upsetting to know that I need to have one of my eyes removed. But then, I feel that since the eye is bad, there is no sense in keeping it. In the future, if possible, I want to get a prosthetic eye."
Jane is a farmer from Kenya. She lost her husband twelve years ago who was working as a driver in a faith-based organization. Jane is a farmer, she plants sorghum in her small farm left by her dear husband. Since she lost her husband, Jane has been the sole breadwinner of the family. She has done all sorts of work to meet daily needs of her children. Jane was well until Friday evening when she fell and sustained a fracture on her right knee. She was brought to hospital by relatives around 9pm in the night. A X-ray was done on arrival which confirmed the fracture of the right patella. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On November 12th, Jane will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help Jane heal well and walk again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $771 to fund this procedure. Jane says, “Help me raise funds to make it possible and a success. I want to get back on my feet again.”
U Chit is a 55-year-old man from Myawaddy Township, Karen State, Burma. He divorced his wife seven years ago and has two daughters and three sons. His youngest daughter lives with his ex-wife in Yangon and their other children live in Myawaddy Township. In March 2019, he entered into monkhood. Now, he receives alms from laypeople and from his children. In February 2019, U Chit began to experience back pain and a burning sensation when urinating. To treat his symptoms, he bought medication from a nearby pharmacy. However, after taking the medicine, he did not feel any better. He later went to a local clinic where he received more medication for his symptoms. They suggested that he go to Myawadday Hospital to receive an ultrasound scan. However, he did not go to the hospital because he did not think he would be able to pay for the cost of the scan. Instead, he continued taking the medicine that the doctor had prescribed. Unfortunately, his pain when urinating did not get better. Finally, U Chit decided to visit Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), where he got his hernia treated four years ago, to seek treatment. U Chit arrived at MTC on April 24th, 2019, where an ultrasound scan revealed that he had a bladder stone. The next day, he was sent to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) where he received an injection and oral medication. On May 16th, 2019, he received an Intravenous Pyelogram (IVP) test for further investigation. After the IVP test, the doctor told him that he requires surgery and is scheduled for 20th November 2019. Currently, U Chit experiences back pain and he continues to feel a burning sensation when urinating. Aside from his concerns about his condition, he is worried about financial problems because he is a monk and does not have a regular income. U Chit likes reading Buddhist texts and newspapers in his free time. He said, “I want to cure my condition as soon as possible and I would like to focus on religious activities. After I am cured, I also would like to help find treatment for my daughter who has suffered from a stroke.”
Kaung is a three-year-old boy from Thailand. He lives with his parents and grandmother. His mother works in a sewing factory and his father as a day labourer while his grandmother taking care of him at home. On October 16th, around 10 in the morning, Kaung was playing with a stick after breakfast. While his grandmother went to wash the dishes, after feeding him, Kaung tried to climb up onto the fence but fell off onto the ground and broke his right humerus bone. Currently, Kaung is in pain and he cannot lift up his right hand. He cries a lot and his grandmother has to carry him around in her arms. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Kaung will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for October 16th and will cost $1,500. This surgery will help Kaung to be able to use his hand again without pain. His grandmother said, "I am very worried for my grandson when I see that his hand is broken. I don't know what to do to help him. I just know that I am worried as we do not have money to seek treatment for him."