Ian joined Watsi on March 12th, 2013. Seven years ago, Ian joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Ian's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Nancy, an enthusiastic singer from Kenya, to fund a hysterectomy so she can return to work and her passion.
Ian has funded healthcare for 133 patients in 16 countries.
Ian has funded healthcare for 133 patients in 16 countries.
Nancy is a middle-aged mother from Kawaida village in Kenya. She separated from her husband and has been raising their two children on her own. Her daughter is married and her son lives with Nancy but has not started working yet. Nancy works jobs when she can find them, such as helping in the neighboring tea farms or washing clothes, to support her family. Nancy loves singing at her church, but now her condition forces her to remain indoors and in bed. Five years ago, Nancy began experiencing worrying symptoms. She has been diagnosed with uterine fibroids and needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $755 to fund Nancy's surgery. On July 2nd, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Nancy will be able to resume her daily activities free from pain. Nancy is eager to recover so she can continue her working and pursuing her musical passion: “If this bleeding continues I feel like it will be more challenging for me to continue working for my family. My children look unto me and so I really hope for help so that I can be well again, take care of them and be able to sing as I used to do."
Yin is a 62-year-old woman who lives with her husband, daughter, son in-law, and granddaughter in a refugee camp on the Thai-Burma border. She is a homemaker, and she loves cooking and cleaning around her house. In her free time, Yin loves to play with her granddaughter. Her husband is retried, and her son in-law is unemployed. Yin’s family receives 800 baht (approx. 27 USD) on a cash card every month to purchase rations. This income is just enough for their daily needs, but they cannot afford to pay other costs like healthcare. Currently, Yin has limited vision and can only make out if it is dark or light outside with her right eye. The vision in Yin’s left eye is starting to blur, and she cannot see far with her left eye. She is worried that she will lose vision in both of her eyes. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Yin. On June 8th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Yin's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Yin shared, "Before my vision started to blur, I used to make and sell mohinga [a type of Burmese noodles]. With the money that I earned from selling mohinga, I was able to buy vegetables for my family. However, when the vision in my right eye vision became blurred, I could no longer make mohinga anymore. I hope that my vision will be restored after I complete my treatment.”
Elvin is a one-year-old baby boy and the youngest in a family of two children. His mother shared that he is usually a smiley and happy baby. Elvin's mother sells goods at a shop, while his father is a welder. Elvin has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Elvin has been experiencing pain and is at risk of brain damage. His condition has made him irritable and he experiences regular fevers and vomiting whenever he eats. Without treatment, Elvin will experience physical and developmental delays. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH) can help. AMH is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of surgery to treat Elvin's hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 10th and will drain the excess fluid from Elvin's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Elvin will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Elvin’s mother shared, "my son’s head keeps increasing in size and his health keeps worsening each day, please help."
Naw Mu is a five-year-old girl who lives with her family in a refugee camp in Northern Thailand. Naw Mu, her older brother and older sister are all primary school students. Her mother is a homemaker and her father works as a day laborer outside of the camp when he can. Her parents also look after a small shop in the camp. Her family's combined income is just enough to cover their family expenses and are grateful they can receive basic healthcare and education in the camp. On April 8th, Naw Mu was playing with her friends when she fell to the ground and injured her left arm. Her mother immediately took her to the hospital in the camp, run by Malteser International Thailand. When the medics examined her arm, they suspected that Naw Mu's forearm was fractured and referred her to another hospital to confirm her diagnosis. After Naw Mu received an x-ray, the doctor confirmed that Naw Mu's radius and ulna bones are broken. Currently, Naw Mu is experiencing pain in her left arm and has to take pain medication to have comfort and to sleep. She cannot lift her left hand or move it around. Fortunately, with the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Naw Mu will undergo surgery to reset her fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for April 9th and will cost $1,500. With this treatment, she will no longer be in pain and she will be able to move her hand and arm fully again in the future. Naw Mu's father shared, “my daughter loves to play outsides with her friends and watching cartoon clips on the phone. After she receives surgery, I hope that she is able to play with her friends again.”
Gyi is an agricultural day labourer from Thailand. He lives with his wife, who also works as a day labourer. However, both Gyi and his wife struggle to find work and often have to borrow money to make ends meet. On January 12, 2021, Gyi started to experience difficulty urinating. His abdomen became distended, and he felt uncomfortable as if he had severe gas. For the next two days, Gyi was able to pass urine without difficulty, but he started developing pain on the right side of his abdomen. Four days later, he was unable to pass neither urine nor stool. Gyi and his wife went to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), where a medic assessed him and thought he might be suffering from partial obstruction of his bowel. Doctors want Gyi to undergo a CT scan, a procedure in which x-ray images taken from several angles are combined to produce cross-sectional images of the body. This scan will hopefully help doctors diagnose his condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Gyi's CT scan and care, scheduled for January 20th. In the future, Gyi shared, "I want to continue working in the fields. Also, I would like to move back to Burma one day."
Horn is a 55-year-old father of four. He has been married for 33 years and together they have one son, three daughters, and seven grandchildren. Horn's wife is also a farmer. In his free time Horn enjoys doing exercises, taking care of his grandchildren, and doing house work. When he was young Horn fell off a truck and never saw a doctor after the accident. Over time, his right hip pain worsened and Khmer traditional medicine treatments did not improve his condition. When Horn arrived at our medical partner Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), doctors noted his leg lengths are unequal and his right leg has limited range of motion. He cannot walk and is in pain. Fortunately, at CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Horn of his pain and allow him to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for December 24th, and Horn needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. Horn said, "I hope I can finally walk again after surgery so I can work without pain and support my family."
Phorn is a 40-year-old construction worker with three children: two sons and one daughter. They all are now in school. Phorn is not working now but his wife is a factory worker. His parents live with his family and he supports them. For over two years, he has had pain in both hips. He feels his left side is much worse than the right. He describes his current health as generally very poor because he is in such pain. When he has pain, he has traditionally been able to buy pain medication from the pharmacy, but it has lately become unbearable. Doctors diagnosed his condition as avascular necrosis (death of bone tissue due to lack of blood circulation) of both hips. Fortunately, Phorn learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. At CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Phorn of his pain and allow him to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for February 9th, and Phorn needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. He hopes after surgery, his left hip will not have pain, he can walk without help, and go back to work as before.
SaMat is an 84-year-old man from Cambodia. SaMat used to work at a tobacco factory but is now retired. He lives with his sister and enjoys listening to the monks pray. Five years ago, SaMat developed a cataract in his right eye, causing him blurred vision, tearing, and photophobia. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When SaMat learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled by tuk tuk with his sister seeking treatment. On October 12th, doctors will perform small incision cataract surgery (SICS) 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. SaMat said, "I am hopeful that my vision will improve after this surgery so I can help my sister do some work at home and take care of myself."
Sitha is a 60-year-old cleaner from Cambodia. She has three siblings. She is currently living with her niece who also works with her. They enjoy tending a vegetable garden at their home together. Five years ago, Sitha developed a cataract in her right eye, causing her blurry vision, photophobia, and headaches. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Sitha learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for one-and-a-half hours by taxi seeking treatment. On July 13th, 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. Sitha shared, "I hope I can recognize my friends' faces and see well enough to help with the housework. My niece has taken good care of me but I don't want her to worry anymore."
Bunthoeun is a 36-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. He has one son and he farms rice with his wife. After work, he usually helps his wife with cooking and watching their son. In November 2019 Bunthoeun was in a motorbike accident that caused a fracture in his left leg. It is still difficult for him to walk, and he is in chronic pain. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On April 27th, Bunthoeun will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. This procedure will help him walk easily again and move in any direction. "I hope that I will be able to walk well, so I can go back to return to the rice field," Bunthoeun said.
Roth has a two-year-old son, and enjoys reading books and taking care of his family and household in his free time. Since Roth was born, he had a curvature in his spine, making it difficult for him to walk and sleep comfortably. He was diagnosed with scoliosis and the curvature of his spine is nearly 80 degrees. Roth will undergo spinal surgery, where implants will be inserted along his spine to help correct the deformity and prevent the curve from developing in the future. He shared, "I hope that I will be able to recover from my surgery and ... I will be able to walk again without any difficulty."
Mo is a 22-year-old student from Thailand. He lives along with his father in a refugee camp on the Thai-Burma border. While living in the camp, Mo finished high school and is now completing post-high school education. Their household receives 480 baht (approx. $16 USD) each month as part of their food support from an organization called The Border Consortium. However, this amount is not enough to cover their daily needs. Therefore, Mo's father works as a seasonal agricultural day laborer in a nearby village. He is able to earn an extra 350 baht (approx. $12 USD) in a month but this amount is still not enough and they shared that they struggle to make ends meet despite having free basic health care and education in the camp. In early September, Mo started to feel dizzy frequently, especially whenever he stood up. At first, he thought he would feel better after he rested and slept. However, he was unable to sleep well for about a week and was suffering from insomnia. After a medic examined him he was referred to the local hospital for treatment. The doctor at the local hospital referred him to Chiang Mai Hospital (CMH) to see a neurologist. After he returned to the camp, Mo rapidly started to lose his vision in both of his eyes. An NGO called Malteser International Thailand (MI) was able to arrange Moses’ travel documents, he was brought to CMH on October 5th, 2020. The next day, he received a CT scan which showed that he has a mass in his brain and a build-up of cerebrospinal fluid in his brain due to the mass. Because of the severity of his condition, the doctor scheduled him to receive surgery right away on October 9th. The mass will be removed and sent for biopsy. He will also undergo a procedure to receive a ventriculoperitoneal (VP) shunt to drain the excess fluid from his brain. Currently, Mo has a headache, and he is not able to move his eyes from side to side. He needs his father to accompany him wherever he goes because he can no longer see far. He spends most of his time lying down in bed and needs to be pushed in a wheelchair to get around due to his new vision problems. Mo sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. He is now scheduled to undergo a brain mass removal surgery on October 9th. He is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. “Life suddenly become darker without me knowing why," said Mo. "It is extremely difficult for me to even go to the toilet [by myself]. I cry while I lay in bed for many hours. I really miss seeing colors."