Cheryl joined Watsi on March 12th, 2013. Six years ago, Cheryl joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Cheryl's most recent donation supported Vichea, a 37-year-old soft drink seller from Cambodia, to fund a mastoidectomy to improve his hearing.
Cheryl has funded healthcare for 79 patients in 14 countries.
Cheryl has funded healthcare for 79 patients in 14 countries.
Vichea is a 37-year-old soft drink seller from Cambodia. He is married and has two daughters and one son. When he is not working, Vichea enjoys playing with his small son and helping his wife at home. When he was six, Vichea had an ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. Because of this, Vichea experiences hearing loss, discharge, and pain. It is difficult for him to communicate with others, and the pain and discharge disrupts his sleep. The medications to alleviate his symptoms are expensive and have not treated the problem. Fortunately, our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is helping Vichea receive treatment. He traveled to CSC's care center where, on November 16th, he will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in his right ear. During the procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Now, he needs help raising $926 to fund his procedure and care. Vichea shared, "I hope my hearing improves and my ear heals."
Beatrice is a student in the fourth grade but has been unable to continue with her studies since she her injury on her right hand. She lives with her parents and four siblings in a one room rental house. Her parents are part-time workers with an inconsistent income and cannot afford her surgery. They are relying on well-wishers to pay her medical bills. Beatrice sustained a burn on her right hand in early June. She accidentally slipped on boiling water as she was getting out of the bed and sustained serious burns on her right arm. She was admitted to Kiambu Level Five Hospital and stayed there for almost three months where a debridement and a skin graft was done but failed. Her mother shares that the wound has been discharging pus. She was reviewed at our medical partner Kijabe Hospital and doctors agreed that she needs several debridement and skin grafting sessions to save the hand from amputation. She is in pain and unable to use her hand and has not been going to school since she had the accident. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is helping Beatrice receive treatment. On October 11th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to aid in the healing of the wound and help her use the hand again. Now, Beatrice needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Beatrice's mother says, “My baby has not been attending school since the accident. Her hand has a foul smell, and it might be cut if not treated.”
Naing is a 27-year-old man who lives with his parents, brother and two sisters in Burma. He enjoys playing cane ball and reading. His parents are retired and grow vegetables in their garden. Naing's brother is a day laborer, but he has been unable to find regular work since the Covid-19 pandemic, so he cannot contribute towards household expenses. One of Naing's sisters works as a government officer, while the other is a shop worker. Naing used to work in his uncle’s shop selling groceries and flowers, but he was forced to stop working when his health began to decline. Naing first developed a cough and a fast heartbeat in November 2021. At a clinic in Dawei, Naing was diagnosed with high blood pressure, provided with medication, and sent home. In December 2021, because of his rapid heartbeat, Naing traveled to the hospital in Dawei, where he underwent a series of tests. Doctors at the hospital told Naing that there were problems with the valves in his heart. Once again, Naing was given medication, and sent home. Last February, Naing vomited, could not sleep, and felt tired when he stood or sat. He went to Dawei General Hospital, and showed the doctor his previous echocardiogram result. The doctor told him to continue taking his medication from Yangon, and gave him some vitamins. A few days later, Naing felt better. Then in March, Naing and his sister went to Yangon General Hospital, where he underwent more testing. This time the doctor told him that he might need to have two of his heart valves surgically replaced. Naing’s sister told the doctor that Naing had been to several hospitals over the past year, and the family had no more money left. Naing's health continues to decline, and he has lost five kilograms; he needs to have surgery. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is here to help Naing access the care that he needs. They are requesting $1,500 to cover the costs of Naing's valve replacement surgery, scheduled to take place on August 9th, at Pun Hlaing Hospital. Naing said: “I am so tired of visiting several hospitals and hoping to receive surgery. My sister has had to take leave [from her work as a government officer] several times, and now she has had to take leave without pay [to accompany me as my caregiver]. I feel embarrassed that my family has used up all their money, sold all their jewelry, and made sacrifices for me. Finally, I have met your organization BCMF, and I will have the chance to receive surgery with the help of donors. I feel less stressed that I will not have to wait so long to receive surgery, and that my sister will be able to go back to work. Thank you so much.”
Leang is a seven-year-old 2nd grade student. She has one 12-year-old brother. Leang's father is a truck driver and her mother sells soft drinks by their home. At school Leang is good at math and wants to be a math teacher in the future. Four years ago, Leang was in a traffic accident and injured her left hand. She received a month of treatment including skin grafts and wound dressings after the accident at a local hospital. The skin has healed but a contracture formed causing a tightening around her left hand and between fingers. Now it is difficult for her to grasp objects and carry anything with her left hand. When Leang's family learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), she traveled for two and a half hours seeking treatment. On April 7th, surgeons at CSC will perform a burn contracture release surgery to to use her hand again. Now, she needs help to fund this $477 procedure. Leang's mother says, "I hope her hand heals and she can recover well."
Mi is a 58-year-old mother from Thailand. She lives with her husband and her three daughters. She supports her family by working as a homemaker. Her husband does not work because he is ill. Her eldest daughter is an accountant, her second eldest daughter is a homemaker, and her youngest daughter does not work because she is attending school. Some of Mi's favorite activities include cleaning her house and growing vegetables in her garden. In February, Mi started experiencing pain in her left breast. After examining the area, she noticed a small mass. Over time, the mass increased in size and the pain worsened. She currently still experiences pain in her left breast. Although she takes medication, it only alleviates her pain temporarily. Because of this, she cannot cook or clean, and her daughter has had to take over the household chores. Fortunately, Mi sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. She is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on July 12th. She is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Mi shares, “I want to get better soon. Then my second eldest daughter can find work so that we can pay back our debt. I want to live happily with my family for the rest of my life.”
Keziah is a lovely, 36 year old mother of three, who lives with her husband and children on the outskirts of Nairobi. Before her current illness, Keziah would hawk food, while her husband works as a laborer to support their family. After giving birth to her last child in 2016, Keziah began to experience pain around her umbilicus, and then her abdomen began to swell. Despite numerous trips to the hospital, Keziah was always sent home without a solution. Fortunately, Keziah was referred to Nazareth Hospital, where the doctor who first met with her thought that she was pregnant, because of the size of her belly, and because she was wearing maternity clothes. A CT scan revealed an unusual and benign cyst on Keziah's ovary, that had grown to a very large size. If Keziah does not have the cyst removed soon, she risks having the cyst rupture, which might lead to blood poisoning from the bacteria in the cyst. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is seeking $788 to fund the surgery to excise Keziah's cyst, which is scheduled to take place on June 10th at Nazareth Hospital. “I am worried and exhausted. I pray that I get help so that this problem can be treated so that I can resume my normal life, and also be able to restart my small business to support our family,” said Keziah.
Randy is a 49-year-old from the Philippines. He has developed a large mass on his left shoulder. Because of this mass, Randy has been unable to secure full time employment. In order to support the needs of his family, Randy works part time in the neighborhood where he lives. Because of his inability to afford and access care, Randy had to delay treatment for a couple of years, and the mass increased in size. Fortunately, Randy found his way to our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, and he is now scheduled for surgery on May 3rd at Our Lady of Peace Hospital. World Surgical Foundation Philippines is requesting $1,196 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care, which will remove the mass and enable Randy to return to full time employment. “Randy is so eager to be treated so he can work and provide for his family,” his sister said. “We are very grateful to World Surgical Foundation Philippines and Watsi for helping people like us. Thank you for your generous hearts," she added.
La is a 36-year-old mother of three children. She is married and her husband works as a construction worker. To help support her family, she sells soft drinks and coffee from her home. The couple has one son and two daughters, who are all in public school. In her free time, La enjoys walking her children to and from school, cooking, and, after a long day, watching television. Five years ago, La injured her left knee and she has experienced intermittent pain since the injury. Unfortunately, in December 2021, she was involved in a motorbike accident where she re-injured the same knee. After an x-ray, she was diagnosed with an aneurysmal bone cyst, or a benign, blood-filled lesion in the bone that often expands or grows. She experiences severe pain and now has difficulty walking. To treat her condition, surgeons plan to remove the cyst from her left knee and heal her joint. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is helping La receive treatment. On April 9th, surgeons will perform procedure to relieve La of her pain and allow her to walk easily. Now, she needs help raising $600 to fund her procedure and care. La shared, "I am thankful that I will be able to return to work and care for my children after this surgery."
Lionel is a charming five-month-old baby from Colombia. He was born near the northern coast and his parents are from Venezuela. After he was born, they moved to Medellin due to his father's job. Lionel was born with clubfoot of his right foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and wearing shoes as he grows older. Fortunately, Lionel's family traveled to visit our Medical Partner Clínica Noel where they can offer life-changing treatment. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on March 22nd. Our medical partner is requesting $1,422 to fund Lionel's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to learn how to walk and live a fully active life ahead. His father said: "I hope my little champion can get his surgery, I pray for his wellbeing. I just want his feet to be normal and hope to see him walking like any other child."
Paw is a 24-year-old woman from Thailand. Originally from Burma, Paw, her husband, their three daughters and her parents fled in March 2021 after the Burmese military shot rockets into their village. In Thailand, as refugees, they cannot work, and have temporarily moved in with Paw's brother and his family. They receive rice from her brother's neighbors, while her brother's family provides them with vegetables and curries. In July 2021, Paw's parents and her two older daughters went back to their village when they felt it was safe to do so. Meanwhile, her husband and her three-month-old baby have stayed with her while she receives treatment in Chiang Mai. Two years ago, Paw noticed a mass on the right side of her neck. Her neighbor suggested she apply a natural remedy, but unfortunately, the mass remained and grew over time. In September 2019, she visited a local hospital in Thailand with her husband, but the surgery recommended was too expensive. She experiences pain near the site of the mass, and the mass is still growing. Paw sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). She is scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on August 16th, and now she needs to raise $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Paw shared, “I felt embarrassed and very upset when I first noticed that I had this problem. I will feel a lot better after my surgery because I have needed to receive it since I first went to see the doctor in 2019. In the future I want to look after my children and send them to school.”
Brian was born one month ago at our medical partner's care center, Kijabe Hospital. He is the first baby for his young family. Brian's father works in a newly opened bakery while his mother makes and sells pots to earn a living. His father lives in Kariobangi and mother stays with her mother in-law in an area called Bomet. Immediately after his birth, Brian was examined by the doctor and found that he was not able to pass stool. The doctor consulted with the pediatric surgery team and diagnosed him with anorectal malformations. Brian was referred to our medical partner's care center, BethanyKids, immediately and was admitted in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit for close monitoring. Later, Brian had a colostomy to enable him pass stool with funding from the Watsi community. He has healed well and is now scheduled for his next treatment, a PSARP surgery, to allow for stool passage. Brian’s father shares his appreciation for Watsi's support during his son's first surgery, and says: “We are thankful to God for he answered our prayers through the Watsi program. We are still requesting for more financial help for the second surgery.”
Caren is a 17-year-old student and the oldest in a family of four children. She is a social girl who enjoys singing and reading books. In school, her best subjects are biology, chemistry and physics, and she hopes to be a doctor one day. Caren's father used to own a fish shop, but unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, his business closed. Caren was diagnosed with genu valgus, which means that her legs bow inwards and her knees touch. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones which often comes from contaminated drinking water. As a result of this condition, she has difficulty walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Caren. The procedure is scheduled to take place on June 8th and treatment will hopefully restore Caren's mobility, allowing her to participate in a variety of activities and greatly decreasing her risk of future complications. Caren shared, "my legs hurt when I walk and the pain is usually too much during the evening and the morning hours. Each day they keep bending please help correct my legs."