A joined Watsi on October 12th, 2015. Four years ago, A became the 1551st member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 4,405 more people have become monthly donors! A's most recent donation supported Oun, a woman from Cambodia, to fund pterygium eye surgery.
A has funded healthcare for 1233 patients in 13 countries.
Oun is a 65-year-old married woman from Cambodia. She has one daughter, who she is living with, and she is helping her daughter by cooking and doing housework. She likes to watch Khmer movies on TV. Three years ago, Oun developed a pterygium in her right eye, causing her eye irritation, itchiness, tearing, and redness. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, working, and going anywhere outside. When Oun learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for one and a half hours seeking treatment. Oun needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent recurrence. The total cost of her procedure is $216. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for April 8th. "I hope that my mother's eye irritation will stop so she can work and travel by herself. I can go to earn income without any worry about her at home," Oun's daughter said.
Kemirembe is a 63-year-old farmer from Uganda. She is a widow and shared that she lost her husband in 2011 leaving her with four children. All of her children are now married and are farmers. She earns a living from her banana and coffee plantation but at times has some small gardens of food crops like beans, millet, and groundnuts for them to eat at home and sells off the surplus to buy family necessities like soup, salt, and a matchbox. Nearly 20 years ago, Kemirembe began to experience troubling symptoms, including disfigurement sometimes causes her airway obstruction, difficulty in breathing, persistent headaches and consistent heart palpitations. She was diagnosed with a goitre, an abnormal enlargement of the thyroid gland. She needs surgery to prevent her symptoms from getting worse. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Kemirembe receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on June 9th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This procedure will cost $264, and she and her family need help raising money. Kemirembe says: “I think my health will be restored because it has been outstanding over the years in that I had even lost hope but since God does things his way, am now looking forward to being treated with Watsi's support in hope of regaining my health and continuing with cultivation once I have succeeded.”
Bunheng is a 58-year-old vegetable seller from Cambodia. He lives with his wife and four children. He has two daughters and two sons. His wife works with him at the market. He spends time at home playing games with his children, and reading news on his phone. Two years ago, Bunheng developed a cataract in his right eye, causing him blurry vision and tearing. In the last seven months his symptoms have gotten worse. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Bunheng learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for five hours by taxi seeking treatment. On July 6th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in his right eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $229 procedure. Bunheng shared, "Once my vision is more clear, I can drive my bike, continue with my business and earn money to support my family."
Janet is a baby from Tanzania. She is the third born child in a family of three children. She is a cheerful and curious little girl. Janet's parents own a small shop which sells small home stuffs. Janet was diagnosed with genu valgus. Her legs bow inwards so that her knees touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, she can not walk without rubbing her knees together and this is causing her pain and discomfort. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $838 to fund corrective surgery for Janet. The procedure is scheduled to take place on February 28th. Treatment will hopefully restore Janet's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Janet's mother says, "I see that my daughter has a problem with her legs, I do not understand much about her condition but it worries me that she may grow up and become disabled if I do not do anything. Please help my daughter."
Meet Pauline, 12-year-old, calm girl. She is the 4th born in a family of five children. Pauline is a student in class 7 at Kathunguri School. Our medical partner met Pauline at a clinic in Embu and she was accompanied by her mother. Pauline's family hails from Kathunguri village in Embu county. Her mother is a housewife while her father is a farmer. Pauline was born normal and she could walk well like other children however during the month of December 2019, her mother noticed a sudden and unusual walking. She took her to a hospital where she was referred to our mobile clinic in Embu. The condition on her left foot has deteriorated and is suddenly lowering her self-esteem. “Sometimes my classmates imitate and laugh at me when I walk and I feel bad,” Pauline told us. She is scheduled to undergo a surgery which will be of great impact on her life and her growth as she will be able to walk confidently. She will also proceed with her education and her self-esteem will improve. Her family is unable to raise the estimated cost of surgery and thus requested for support from well-wishers. “I request for support for my daughter to undergo surgery. My joy would be to see her walking without any hardship and progressing on well with life.” --Judith, Pauline’s mother noted.
Ainembabazi is just 5 years old and currently in preschool. His father noted that he could not feel his son's right testis and initially, they ignored it because the boy was young but as time went on, Ainembabazi started complaining of pain. In September, Ainembabazi complained of being swollen after coming home from school. His parents thought it would heal on its own however in March, the swelling became prominent and they decided to go to the regional hospital in their area of Uganda. They got several appointments from the doctors but they were constantly postponed over and over again due to the current COVID-19 pandemic. After postponing three times, their family decided to come to Rushoroza Hospital. Doctors there said if he is not treated through a herniorrhaphy, he risks intestinal obstruction, strangulation, and gangrenous. Ainembabazi's mother is a small-scale farmer who grows beans and sorghum for home consumption. She is happily married to his father who is a primary teacher and who does all he can to provide for the family despite his low salary. They own a three-room semi-permanent house on their ancestral land. Ainembabazi is the fourth born in their family of five children. Ainembabazi’s mother says, “My son is active in class despite the prevailing challenges. We have a lot of hope in him. After the surgery, he may be able to comfortably carry on his studies to the highest level we possibly can take him, no doubt about that. May God make everything possible.”
Turinawe is a 49-year-old mother of four who are all still in school. Two are at the university, and the rest are in secondary levels of education. She and her husband are primary school teachers at a private school. They also enjoy growing crops to eat at home. Turinawe has been experiencing epigastric pain and feels as if her abdomen is always full. This has negatively impacted her quality of life. She has lost weight because she does not have an appetite. If not treated, her symptoms will persist, worsen, and she may even develop life-threatening complications such as stomach cancer. She traveled to our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, where she was diagnosed with cholecystitis, an inflammation of the gallbladder. Now, she needs $253 to fund the cost of the curative laparotomy treatment which will relieve her of this condition. Turinawe shared, “I think my health will be restored because I have faith in God and I am looking forward to being able to continue teaching after the COVID-19 lockdown, thanks to Watsi.”
Ratha is a six year old boy with one younger brother. Their parents are farmers. He is in the first grade and loves reading books about animals. Everyday when he finishes his homework, he takes his brother outside to play. They also like to watch cartoons together. Since he was born, Ratha has had contracted muscles in the left side of his neck, which has made it difficult for him to move or rotate his head. In addition, his head is tilted to the left side, and he cannot keep it straight. Ratha has often experienced social ostracization due to this condition, and he has difficulty participating in athletics with other students. Doctors at Watsi's Medical Partner CSC now plan to perform a tenotomy in order to release the tension in his neck and allow him to gain a greater range of motion. After this procedure he will be able to rotate and tilt his head normally. Ratha's father said, "My son enjoys playing soccer near the house, but I want him to be able to play with all the children and make a lot of friends. This surgery will really make his life better."
Kyosimire is a 40-year-old small-scale farmer who stays at her parents’ home despite being married. She completed sixth grade in primary school and receives limited support from her husband and father who have other families. Kyosimire got married in 2017. She shared that she delayed getting married because she needed to take good care of her mother. After her mother’s death, that’s when she decided to get married. She married a man who has another family with 6 children; she could therefore not get the care and support she hoped from her husband. She has had abdominal pains for the past five years and she thinks her problem of not conceiving could be connected to her abdominal pains. She feels severe pain along with bleeding and sometimes develops swollen legs plus a high heartbeat. She has only used pain medicine from clinics to relieve her pain but has never visited any hospital for medical attention. She has now come to Rushoroza Hospital to seek medical advice. At Rushoroza doctors have recommended she have a total abdominal hysterectomy. The surgery is expected to remove a leiomyoma; hence relieving her pain, the menorrhagia, bleeding, and averting additional complications. She is on her own and cannot afford the surgery charges despite being in severe pain. She shared that she experiences sleepless nights due to the pain and she seeks financial support for the surgery. She said, “I had lost hope. Given the opportunity with the surgery, I believe I can be able to work harder through farming to be able to sustain myself and my entire family.”
Sarorn is a 60-year-old mother of five from Cambodia. She has three sons and two daughters, and likes to make desserts and look after her family when she is not working. Three year ago, Sarorn 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, Sarorn experiences headaches, dizziness, ear discharge, infection, and hearing loss. She is not able to hear others clearly, and this makes her husband and children worry about her alot. Sarorn traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 10th, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in her right 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 once my surgery is over, the ear infection will stop and I will be able to hear again," Sarorn shared.
Loeum is a 44-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She has four sons, and her favorite activities include growing vegetables, feeding the farm animals, and taking care of her family. In January 2020, Loeum was in a motorcycle accident and fractured her left knee. She is unable to walk without support, and cannot stand for long periods of time without pain. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On February 26th, Loeum will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. This operation will help Loeum's knee injury to heal and allow her to walk independently again. "I hope that after my surgery, I will feel much better and I will be able to walk and stand like before without any pain and can return to work," she shared.
Yarm is a 74-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She has five daughters, one son, and twelve grandchildren. She enjoys listening to the monks pray on the radio in her spare time. Two years ago, Yarm developed a cataract in each eye, causing her photophobia, blurry and cloudy vision. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Yarm learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three and a half hours seeking treatment. On January 6th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $425 procedure. "I hope that I will be able to go outside on my own again and return to visiting the pagoda," Yarm shared.