Peggy joined Watsi on March 3rd, 2014. Seven years ago, Peggy joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Peggy's most recent donation traveled 8,600 miles to support Naw Dah, a 40-year-old woman from Thailand, to fund kidney stone surgery.
Peggy has funded healthcare for 95 patients in 13 countries.
Peggy has funded healthcare for 95 patients in 13 countries.
Naw Dah is a 40-year-old woman who lives with her husband, four daughters and three sons in a refugee camp in Northern Thailand. Six of her children attend school in the camp, while Naw Dah looks after her youngest daughter at home. Due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, her husband has had difficulty finding work outside of the camp for the past few months. The family survives on money they receive through a food card each month from an organization called The Border Consortium. Since 2016, Naw Dah has suffered from frequent, painful urinary tract infections. After she received an x-ray at a local hospital in April 2020, she was referred for further treatment and diagnosed with kidney stones. She received treatment in September 2020, but at follow-up appointments, the doctor told her that she still had fragments of the kidney stone, and she returned for multiple x-rays and oral medications. During her most recent follow-up in August 2021, the doctor told her that the stones are now 6mm in size and scheduled her for another ureteroscopy. She is unable to pay for surgery and was referred our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), for assistance accessing treatment. On September 3rd, she will undergo a ureteroscopy and now, she needs help raising $1,500 to fund her procedure and care. Naw Dah shared, "I am a bit scared as I already underwent treatment twice, but I really want to get better. So I put my trust in God and I will go through this pain again so that I will be free from this pain in the future."
Richard is an 11-year-old student and the oldest child in a family of four children. His parents are farmers and when they have a productive harvest, they are able to sell some of their produce. When he was born, Richard was diagnosed with hypospadias, a congenital abnormality that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility. Fortunately, Richard is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on July 29th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $735 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Richard’s father shared, “as a parent, I would really be happy and grateful when Richard is treated.”
Sylvia is a 14-year-old student and her favorite subjects in school are mathematics and chemistry. She shared that she would like to be a doctor in the future. Sylvia is the oldest child in a family of two. Her mother is a single mom and works hard as a laborer whenever she can get work. Sylvia has clubfoot of the left foot, a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes her difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Sylvia to receive treatment. She visited AMH's care center where surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on July 6th. Now, AMH is requesting $1,286 to fund Sylvia's procedure. After treatment, Sylvia will be able to walk with ease and wear shoes. She will continue with her studies and hopefully achieve her dream of becoming a doctor. Sylvia shared, "my desire is to walk well like other girls and continue with school without any interruptions."
Rexa is a 47-year-old mother from Malawi. She has four children, and her sister lives together with their family. Rexa has been selling second-hand clothes called kaunjika locally, but had to pause her business last December due to her health condition. Rexa’s husband is an electrician and is currently unemployed. Two of their children are in college, and they shared that their family is struggling to pay their school fees. Rexa also cares for her mom, who lives in the village. Last December, Rexa started having sharp pains in her abdomen radiating to the back and both legs. Her husband has taken her to many hospitals to figure out the cause of her pain, and it has cost their family a significant amount of money. After being evaluated for peptic ulcers, heart, liver, and kidney problems to no avail, she finally was diagnosed in April with uterine fibroids. Fibroids are abnormal growths that develop in or on a woman's uterus. These growths may become quite large and cause severe abdominal pain and heavy bleeding. If left untreated, fibroids can continue to grow, both in size and number, and could result in increased heavy bleeding or a fatal case of anemia. Rexa was referred to Partners in Hope Medical Center for further review and the gynecologist recommended that she undergo a hysterectomy, which will remove her uterus and cervix and hopefully cure her of this pain. However, she has no insurance and is unable to pay for the cost of her care due to her family's earnings. Rexa will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare. She is scheduled to undergo a hysterectomy on May 28th, and African Mission Healthcare is requesting $1,363 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. After the surgery, Rexa is hopeful that she will stop having abdominal pains and can return to normal life, which can help her resume her business and support her family members again. Rexa's husband shared, “I am excited that finally there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel. When my wife feels pain, I also feel pain and I fail to go and look for work to support the family. I strongly believe that this surgery will bring an end to our misery and sleepless nights. Now we will stop begging relatives for support with even transport money to the hospital, I am very grateful to the donors!”
Jane is a 53-year-old woman who works as a street vendor in Kenya. Her husband was a hotelier, but she shared with us that he has been jobless for over ten years since he suffered a stroke. She shared that he has been in and out of the hospital seeking treatment and the family has been relying on friends and relatives to settle bills and cover medical trips. Jane herself has now been diagnosed with breast cancer. A mastectomy, a surgery to remove breast tissue, has been recommended to rid her body of the cancer and to prevent it from metastasizing. Without treatment, the cancer may spread to other organs. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Jane to receive treatment. On May 3rd, she will undergo a mastectomy at AMH's care center. After treatment, Jane will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Now, AMH is requesting $857 to cover the cost of a mastectomy for Jane. Jane shared that she is feeling, “I have nothing to smile about, the cancer is threatening my health and we have been treating my husband who had a stroke. I hope I will be able to get help.”
Maly is a 40-year-old farmer who is married and has one son and two daughters. Besides farming, she also sells beer. In her spare time, Maly enjoys cooking at home and listening to the radio. Two years ago, Maly developed left thumb pain that made it very difficult for her to hold onto things. She used to take pain killers to help her feel better, but her thumb never improved. In the last six months, the pain has worsened and her range of motion has decreased. Maly has been diagnosed with a a severe case of stenosing tenosynovitis, or trigger finger, which requires surgical treatment. She currently experiences stiffness, swelling, and pain in her finger. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On April 1st, Maly will undergo a tendon release procedure so that she can regain use of her left hand. Once recovered, she will be able to pick up and hold things normally again. Now, our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $541 to fund this procedure. Maly shared, "I look forward to being free of this pain and using my hand again."
Antony is a 36-year-old motorbike taxi operator. He is married and has three children. Antony is the sole breadwinner of the family. In his line of work, his income depends on the availability of customers and is somewhat inconsistent. He lives with his family in a two-roomed rental house. On February 9th, Antony was riding a friend to a funeral on a motorbike, when he got into an accident along the Nairobi-Nakuru highway. His bike lost control when he tried to avoid an oncoming vehicle that was speeding on the wrong side of the road. Antony hit a ditch on the side of the road and sustained multiple injuries. He is in pain and is not able to use his left hand. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On March 5th, Antony will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him heal well and he will be able to use his arm normally again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Anthony shared, “I am the sole breadwinner and my family is looking upon me for survival. I cannot work without the use of my hand, and my hand needs surgery to heal. I am unable to get the money to raise the amount needed for my care."
Jelly is a 50-year-old woman living in Thailand. She lives with her youngest son, cousin, younger brother, sister-in-law as well as her niece and nephew in Mae La Refugee Camp. In the camp, Jelly and her household receive 1,200 baht (approx. 40 USD) every month on a cash card, to purchase rations. Jelly looks after the household chores, while her cousin and her sister-in-law are teachers at a school, each earning 1,000 baht (approx. 34 USD) per month. Her brother is a famous cook in the camp who earns a few hundred baht cooking for public events. Jelly's niece and her son are students, and her other son studies at a migrant school in nearby Mae Sot. She cannot support him financially and he receives a scholarship to study for free. Jelly loves going to church every Sunday with her family, and also loves to play with her niece and nephew. Three months ago, Jelly was brought to Mae Sot Hospital when she developed blurry vision. At the hospital, an ophthalmologist checked both of her eyes. After the examination, the doctor diagnosed her left eye with a cataract, a condition where the lens in the eye gradually becomes clouded. Currently, Jelly can only ascertain if it is dark or bright outside with her left eye. She is unable to see distant things clearly with her right eye. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement eye surgery for Jelly. On February 2nd, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Jelly's natural lens and replace it with an intraocular lens implant. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, Jelly needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Jelly shared, "My blurred vision causes me stress and it is difficult for me to do anything. When I cook, the smoke makes my eyes dry so I cannot see anything and now I am in too much discomfort to cook for my family because of my blurred vision.”
Yar is a 18-year-old girl from Thailand. She lives with her parents, three younger sisters and three younger brothers in a refugee camp on the Thai-Burma border. Yar and her parents are all too ill to work and are homemakers, while her siblings are students. Her family relies on the monthly food allowance they receive from an organization to get by. They also grow vegetables for themselves to supplement this income. Yar completed grade nine, but felt too ill to return to school this year. In her free time, she likes to weave traditional Karen bags for her siblings and help her mother with household chores. One day in early January 2020, Yar started to experience neck pain, fevers, and chills. When she went to the refugee camp’s hospital, run by the International Rescue Committee (IRC), she was diagnosed with tonsillitis and was given oral paink medication and antibiotics. During her follow-up appointment, the medic gave her more of the same medications. After her follow-up appointment, Yar felt a small growth with her tongue inside her bottom left jaw behind her front teeth. She told the medic about this at her next appointment, but it was not checked out and she received more oral medication each week until the beginning of June 2020. During this time, the mass increased in size. In June, she was referred to Umphang Hospital, which then referred her to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for surgery. IRC brought Yar to MSH, where she received a physical examination, a CT-scan, and a biopsy of the mass. The CT result indicated that the mass was benign. In July, when she went back to MSH for her follow-up appointment, the doctor removed the mass in her mouth as well as five of her lower front teeth during surgery. Since the surgery, Yar has experienced swelling where the mass was removed. Daily, she experiences an achy pain in her lower left jaw, her neck and her back. The mass has also returned and is increasing in size. IRC referred Yar to Watsi's Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund for assistance accessing treatment in Chiang Mai Hospital. After reviewing a CT scan to confirm her diagnosis, the doctor in Chiang Mai recommended she move forward with surgery to remove the tumor. Now, she is scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on December 3rd. She is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Yar shared, "I am scared to receive surgery but I believe that I will be recovered after that so I am happy."
Phal is a 56-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She has two sons and three grandchildren. Phal lives with her youngest son since her husband passed away five years ago. In her free time Phal enjoys listening to the monks pray on the radio and visiting the pagoda. One year ago, Phal developed a cataract in her right eye, causing her blurry vision, photophobia, and tearing. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Phal learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three and a half hours with her son seeking treatment. On November 20th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in her right eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $229 procedure. Phal said, "Life as a widow and older woman is very difficult with poor vision, my eyesight is important for me and my business."
Mercy is a 49-year-old single mother of two children from Kenya who makes a living as a street vendor. Mercy has been experiencing heavy bleeding and lower abdominal pains for the past three years. She has been diagnosed with uterine fibroids. She needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $791 to fund Mercy's surgery. On July 3, she will undergo surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Mercy will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain. “I have no one to help me yet this problem is affecting my social life and my ability to work. I am asking for Watsi's help so that I can be well and be able to live a normal life," shared Mercy.
Chanthou is a 34-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. He is married and has one son and one daughter, who are both in primary school. Chanthou's wife is a factory worker. In his free time, Chanthou enjoys looking after his children, watching TV, and listening to the radio. Ten years ago, Chanthou 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, Chanthou experiences hearing loss, tinnitus, ear discharge, and headache. This makes it difficult for him to communicate with others. Chanthou traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On October 14th, 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. Chanthou said, "I hope this surgery makes the ear discharge stop and my hearing will improve."