Laura joined Watsi on November 24th, 2015. 16 other people also joined Watsi on that day! Laura's most recent donation supported Amos, a baby from Kenya, to fund spina bifida closure.
Laura has funded healthcare for 21 patients in 10 countries.
Laura has funded healthcare for 21 patients in 10 countries.
Amos is a one-month-old infant and an only child. His mother is a single parent and unemployed. She works to support both her son and her brothers, who are still in school. Shortly after he was born, Amos was diagnosed with myelomeningiocele, which is a birth defect where his backbone did not fuse and membranes surrounding his spinal cord did not properly form. This is the most severe form of spina bifida. Amos was admitted to a different hospital but could not be treated due to lack of funds. He was then referred to a Watsi care center in hopes of receiving treatment there. His mother was able to borrow $10 to cover the transportation costs for this visit. He will need $1,097 to fund a spina bifida closure procedure. This surgery will close his backbone and prevent him from getting further infections. Surgery is scheduled for September 6. Amos's mother hopes he will one day be able to live a normal life free of pain and illness.
Dibora is a 14-year-old girl from Ethiopa. She is one of 10 children, and her parents work as farmers to support their large family. Dibora was born with anorectal malformation, a birth defect in which the anus and the rectum do not develop properly. As a result, Dibora cannot make stool and urine in a normal way. Furthermore, Dibora has had to drop out of school several times and is now many grade levels behind her peers. She has faced discrimination from other students and community members because of her medical condition, which has been very psychologically taxing. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to fund corrective surgery for Dibora. The procedure is scheduled to take place on July 11 and, once completed, will hopefully allow Dibora to live more comfortably and confidently. Dibora's father says “I lost all hope and the money I had after we returned home for the third time without a treatment. All these years, Dibora has been without treatment, facing so many social and psychological problems. I couldn’t bear to see her situation and I tried to find someone who can help us in my hometown and in other towns. I found this organization who told me about the service you are providing and they brought me here.”
Mika is a five-year-old boy from Tanzania who lives with his parents and sisters in a rural farming community. Mika was born a healthy baby, but when he was two years old his legs started to bend in different directions. His parents noticed this change, but could not afford to take him to the hospital. As Mika grew, his legs continued to bend, making it painful and difficult to walk. "I could not afford my son’s treatment," Mika's mother said. "But I knew I would not stop until he was well again." Mika and his family sought treatment at our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre, where doctors diagnosed him with windswept legs, a condition in which his right leg is bent outwards and his left leg is bent inwards. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $838 to cover the cost of corrective knee surgery. Mika is scheduled for his operation on June 16. After treatment, he will be able to walk and play without pain. "Thank you so much for this," Mika's mother says.
Thwa is a 14-year-old boy from Thailand, diagnosed with spastic quadriplegia and cerebral palsy. He lives at home with parents and siblings. To move around, Thwa mainly crawls or is carried by his family members. As Thwa grows, it is becoming increasingly difficult for his family members to carry him. To help with his mobility, Thwa was referred to our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), through Stepping Stones, a physiotherapy support service. He needs Achilles tendon lengthening surgery. This procedure will help to alleviate the tightening in his calves and give him more independent movement. On May 4, Thwa will undergo surgery at Mawlamyine Christian Leprosy Hospital, BCMF's care center. BCMF is asking for $1,500 to cover the cost of his surgery. After treatment, Thwa will be able to move around more easily!
Ramon has worked as a farmer for most of his life, but due to his age and deteriorating eyesight, he is finding it very hard to continue working. Ramon has been diagnosed with complicated cataracts. The clouding of the lenses in his eyes makes it difficult for Ramon to see clearly. Without surgical intervention, Ramon is at risk of going completely blind. Ramon has been scheduled for surgery on March 4. The total costs of the surgery will come to $1,500. This will also cover specialized medical evaluation by an ophthalmologist (eye specialist), travel to and from the hospital, and pre- and post-operative care. Ramon cannot pay for the surgery alone, so our medical partner, Wuqu’ Kawoq (WK), is asking for donations. Ramon's surgery will give him back his independence and freedom so he can continue to work and take care of himself. Ramon shares with WK, "With all of my heart I thank you for your help. May God bless you and your families, always!"
Meet Samen, a married father of three sons. He enjoys chatting with his friends and neighbors and listening to the news on the radio. One year ago, Samen developed cataracts in both eyes, causing blurred vision. Samen has difficulty seeing things clearly, working, and going anywhere by himself. He is worried about going blind. After hearing about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), from his neighbor, Samen traveled with his wife for four hours to reach CSC. Surgeons at CSC will perform a small incision cataract surgery and intraocular lens implantation in each eye on February 13. CSC is asking for $292 to help Samen see clearly again.
Ken is a 59-year-old grandfather from Cambodia. He has two sons, one daughter, and three grandchildren. He likes to watch boxing on TV and listen to the news on the radio. About three years ago, Ken developed a cataract in each eye, causing him blurred vision, pain, and burning. He finds it difficult to see clearly, and he is worried about his eyesight. Ken learned about our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre (CSC), from his neighbor. He traveled for six hours with his niece to reach CSC for treatment. On February 1, Ken will undergo cataract surgery, which will allow him to see clearly. CSC is requesting $292 to fund the surgery. Ken says, "I hope to be able to see more clearly so that I can work around my home easily."
Ma Nyein is a 42-year-old woman who has lived in a village in Burma her whole life. She lives with her parents, her 18-year-old son, and her seven-year-old nephew. Her daughter moved to Bangkok seven years ago to work in a food shop. Eight months ago, Ma Nyein stepped on a loose plank in the floor. The piece of wood swung up and hit the left side of her head. Soon, her left eye grew swollen and bruised. She began to experience numbness and pain in her head. She visited several healthcare centers, but all she received were painkillers. Ma Nyein's son, an eighth grader, left school to take care of her. Her condition also forced to her stop her sewing business. Finally, Ma Nyein came to our medical partner's care center, Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), in October of 2016. She was seen by an eye surgeon and underwent a CT scan on October 19. The results should give her medical team a clearer picture of her condition. Now, Ma Nyein needs $414 to fund this scan. "I would like to get well soon. I wish to open a shop at home to sell dried food and the clothes I made," shares Ma Nyein.
Naw Blu is a one-month-old baby girl who lives in a refugee camp in Thailand. Her parents moved to the camp from Burma to escape civil war and raise a family. In addition to her parents, Naw Blu also has three older sisters. One week after Naw Blu was born, her mother noticed that her left leg wasn't moving. X-ray results did not show any bone abnormalities. On December 16, Naw Blu will undergo a CT scan, which will help her doctors diagnose the problem. Our medical partner, Burma Border Projects, is requesting $414 to fund the scan. Over the past year, life in the refugee camp has grown more difficult, due to reduced food rations and fewer community workers. Jobs within the camp have become scarce. Despite these challenges, Naw Blu's mother is optimistic about the future. She will do whatever it takes to ensure the wellbeing of her children. She says, “I want my daughter to finish school, and after that she can do whatever she wants.”
Srey Neang is 15 years old and in the tenth grade. She has two brothers and six sisters. She likes to read books and watch TV. When she was 11 years old, Srey Neang had an ear infection in her left ear. The infection caused her left tympanic membrane to perforate. Since then, she has experienced ear discharge, hearing loss, and pain. Despite receiving treatment from an NGO in Phnom Penh, her symptoms did not improve. Srey Neang's family was very worried about her hearing loss. When Srey Neang learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), she traveled for two hours to seek treatment. On December 8, ENT surgeons at CSC performed a mastoidectomy surgery on her left ear to repair the perforated tympanic membrane and treat the infection. After recovery, Srey Neang's discharge and pain will cease, and her hearing will improve. CSC is requesting $423 to pay for this procedure. "I hope that after I heal, I can go back to study and be able to easily listen," she says. "I want to work at the bank one day."
Zuleina is an 11-month-old girl from Guatemala. She loves to eat papaya and scrambled eggs. She has been diagnosed with acute malnutrition. This means she has little energy to grow, and her immune system is weak and vulnerable to illness. She is also at risk of chronic disease and delayed development. Fortunately, Zuleina began malnutrition treatment on October 27, 2016. Zuleina lives with her family in a cinderblock house with a tin roof. Her father works as a bricklayer, and her mother weaves traditional Mayan textiles. While Zuleina's parents want the best for their daughter, their resources are already stretched thin. They cannot afford to pay for Zuleina's $512 treatment. While malnutrition can have devastating effects, it is also very treatable. Growth monitoring, micronutrients, and food supplementation will help Zuleina recover. She will gain weight and grow taller to catch up with other children her age, and her immune system will grow stronger. Community health workers will teach her mother about creating a nutrient-rich diet from limited resources. Treatment will give Zuleina a chance to grow healthy and strong. "I am hoping for my daughter's development to improve," says her mother. "I want to see her in the future as a healthy student." She also hopes that Zuleina graduates "so she can have better opportunities than we had."
Beng is a 57-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She is married with four sons, two daughters, and has seven grandchildren. Beng likes to go to the pagoda to listen to the monks pray. She heard about CSC from a person in her village who had surgery here in the past. Beng traveled for five hours with her daughter to reach CSC for treatment. Beng developed a pterygium in each eye about five years ago. This causes her blurred vision, burning, and tearing. It is difficult for her to see things clearly, do any work, and go places on her own. It also makes her feel uncomfortable. For $148, eye surgeons at CSC will remove the pterygium in each eye to relieve her of her symptoms. "I hope I can feel comfortable and be able to do work easily and go outside. I want to be able to plant rice better than now," shares Beng. Beng's daughter says, "I hope that my mother can feel comfortable and make me not worry about her eye problems anymore."