Colin joined Watsi on August 26th, 2014. Six years ago, Colin became the 347th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,690 more people have become monthly donors! Colin's most recent donation traveled 8,800 miles to support Thean, a future teacher from Cambodia, to fund ear surgery to restore her hearing.
Colin has funded healthcare for 74 patients in 10 countries.
Thean is a 12-year-old sixth grade student from Cambodia. She is only child in her family and her mom and dad are rice farmers. She enjoys reading books and mathematics, social science, and English are all her favorite subjects in school. When she grows up she wants to be a teacher. She likes to eat sausages and fried fish, and drink kulen juice. Since she was two, Thean has experienced hearing loss making it hard for her to communicate with friends, family, and neighbors. When she was six her family took her to a local health center for treatment but they could not improve her condition. Her family brought her in to see what the problem was and how she could be treated. Thean had an early ear infection and this infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in her right ear to perforate. For this reason, Thean experiences ear discharge, foul smell, and decreased hearing over time. Thean traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On May 20th, she will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in her right ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $464 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Her mother said, "I have been worried about her ear problem for a long time and how it might negatively affect her future. I hope that after surgery her hearing will be improved and change her life. I want her to continue her studies so she may become a teacher in the future."
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.
Angel is a 6-year-old student from Kenya. Our medical partner shared that they met Angel’s mother in the hospital corridors crying, she looked depressed and they drew in closer to inquire for more information. She showed our team her invoice and explained that she cannot raise the estimated bill. Angel is 6yrs old, the second and last born in her family. She is a nursery school pupil and likes the company of small kids. Their family hails from Gilgil in Nakuru county. Angel's mother is a single parent and she is a waitress at a small hotel. They live in a one-roomed rental house. Angel has clubfoot of both feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Angel traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on June 8th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,347 to fund Angel's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily and hopefully enjoy a full, active life. “Any kind of support to make my daughter walk well is highly appreciated,” Angel’s mother told us.
Belinda is a young lady from Kenya and the last born in a family of five children. She has lost her father and two siblings, leaving her mother with the task of caring for her and her nieces and nephews. Her mother notes that she cares for more than 12 grandchildren in her house, relying on her small piece of land to make ends meet. Belinda was born with spina bifida and received a shunt insertion surgery when she was young. Six years ago, Belinda developed a wound on her gluteal region. However, she did not go to the hospital since the wound was not painful. In late 2019, the wound became septic with pus discharge. Belinda stopped schooling in 2015 due to stigma from other students and she relies on a wheelchair for her movement. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Belinda receive the treatment she needs. On June 12th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to relieve Belinda of the gluteal ulcers she has. Following treatment, Belinda will lead a more comfortable life. Now, we need help to fund this $1,129 procedure. Belinda’s mother says, “My prayer is to have my child treated since the wound looks bad.”
Ali is a 1-month-old infant from Ethiopia and is a beautiful baby boy. He has six siblings. He loves to play with his mom and siblings and is exclusively fed breast milk. His father is a day laborer and earns limited income which is sufficient for their family's daily needs, but not more than that. His mom is a house wife and she raises her children full-time. Ali was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. He needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. Ali is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on April 2nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Ali's procedure and care. After his recovery, Ali will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. His parents shared, “We hope the operation will bring him good health. We were very troubled because of our financial constraint.”
Nay is a 35-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband in Mae Pa Village in Tak Province. One and half year ago, they moved from Shwegyin Township, Bago Division in Burma for a better job opportunities. Nay stopped working as a day laborer because her health deteriorated. Now, her husband is the only earner and he is also a day laborer making limited income. Around eight months ago, Nay had a high fever and stomachache. She was also vomited a few times so her employer took her to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC). When she arrived, she received an IV as well as oral medications. She was admitted for one day and then she felt better and returned home. Two days later after she got home, she felt stomachache again in the right side and also vomited. Again, her employer took her back to MTC and she was admitted again. She received oral medications as well as an ultrasound test. After an ultrasound, the medic informed her that she has a stone in her common bile duct as well as in the intrahepatic duct. She was then referred to Watsi Medical Partner Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. At MSH she received another ultrasound as well as a blood test and an X-ray. She was given oral medications to take home and she was asked to return to the hospital once a month for follow up. She went to MSH several times for follow-up appointments and she kept receiving oral medications for her stomachache problem. On February 11th, she went back to MSH as usual and she received another blood test. After that she was told that she has stone in her common bile duct and she needs to be admitted for surgery to remove the stone. Nay has been advised to undergo a cholecystectomy, the surgical removal of the gallbladder. If left untreated, Nay's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. After seeking treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Nay is scheduled to undergo her cholecystectomy on March 24th. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Nay's procedure and care. Nay said, “I want to work after my surgery so that our family will have enough income and now I am very sad that because of my condition we may have to borrow money from our neighbor.”
Myint is a nursery school teacher from Burma. She lives with her husband, son, and daughter in Burma. Her husband is a homemaker while her children go to school. Myint also cooks Burmese Moh Hin Kar, a type of fish soup, during the weekend, to earn extra money. Since June 2018, Myint has been experiencing abnormal bleeding on a weekly basis and she can feel a mass in her lower abdomen. She used to experience very bad cramps, but since she received oral medication from Mae Sot Hospital she no longer has cramps. She has been diagnosed with a uterine mass. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Myint's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Myint is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on January 31st. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience abnormal bleeding and discomfort. "Once I recover fully, I would like to continue to work as a nursery school teacher and earn money from making and selling Moh Hin Kar," said Myint.
Colette is a young mother from Haiti. She lives with her husband and baby son in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince. Colette has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation. One of the four valves of her heart was severely damaged due to a rheumatic fever she suffered a number of years ago, and it cannot adequately pump blood through her body. Colette will fly to the United States to receive treatment. On December 11th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will remove her damaged valve and implant an artificial replacement. Another organization, Baylor Scott and White Heart Hospital, is contributing funds to pay for surgery. Colette's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Colette's family overseas. "I am very relieved I can have this surgery so that I know I will be alive to take care of my son," Colette shared.
Sharon is a 22 year old from Singore Village in Kenya. She is social, friendly and loves music. Sharon is the 2nd born together with her twin sister in a family of 5 children. She is currently enrolled at Eldoret Technical Training Institute pursuing a medical record course with her sister. Sharon's mother is a farmer and her father a carpenter. Sharon had a normal birth but at a young age she couldn’t walk and her knee was stiff. She previously underwent surgery 16 years ago, but she has never improved and is still walking with a lot of difficulties. Sharon currently limps as she walks and feels pain as she strains to move. Her self esteem has also been affected and sometimes while in college she gets imitated by her colleagues in school. Sharon is scheduled to undergo surgery on her right knee. This treatment will be of great help to her as she will be able to walk without any difficulty. Her self esteem will improve and she will continue with her dream career of becoming a record officer in a hospital. Sharon and her family are not able to raise the estimated bill and thus requested for support saying, "my desire is to walk well like my sister without straining. Any kind of support purposed to make/ improve my walking is highly appreciated.”
Sammy struggles with a congenital hearing problem. He has been to several ENT facilities where he had tests run on him and hearing loss diagnosed. However, he has not received any treatment due to financial struggles. He was brought to Kijabe and after hearing tests were done, he had hearing aids recommended. Sammy continues to face struggles socializing with other children. With the hearing aids, his social interactions will improve tremendously. Sammy is the only child in his family. His mother is a gas station attendant making about $120 per month. This is the money she splits to meet all her bills including rent and daily upkeep. She will need several months of saving to consolidate the amount required for her son’s treatment. She appeals for help.
Mary walks into my office with the top of her cardigan covering her chin. She sits on the chair opposite me with one hand clasping the top of her black cardigan to veil the swell running from her jawline to her neck. The lower lip protrudes with a peeping swelling attached in so that her upper lip cannot touch the lower one. This has been Mary’s life for over 6 months. Late last year, Mary developed a small swelling on her jaw. It was not painful and therefore she did not think of it as serious. As time passed, the swell grew in size. Mary who could eat just about anything now has restrictions on what she can eat. There is pain when she bends and this has also obstructed her working. Mary is married with two children. She was a subsistence farmer before the condition restricted her activities. Mary and her husband depend on one of their daughter who sells second-hand clothes. Besides helping her parents, she has four children under her care. Mary says, “Please help me because I can barely eat."
Sue is a 10-month-old boy from Burma. He lives with his mother, his great-uncle, his grate-aunt and his uncle in Hlaingbwe Township, Karen State. father works at an ice factory in Bangkok, while his mother looks after him in their village. Sue has cataract in both of his eyes. He cannot see clearly with both of his eyes. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Sue. On August 28, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Sue's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Sue’s mother said, “I feel very stressed and upset that I don’t have money to treat my son. I also feel bad that my husband doesn’t care about us, even though I told him that my son has to receive surgery. He still doesn’t believe me and doesn’t provide us with any money since we found out his diagnosis.”