Anton joined Watsi on April 8th, 2014. Nine years ago, Anton joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Anton's most recent donation traveled 8,800 miles to support Sophea, a father from Cambodia, to fund surgery to help restore his hearing.
Anton has funded healthcare for 105 patients in 12 countries.
Anton has funded healthcare for 105 patients in 12 countries.
Sophea is a 27-year-old father of two from Cambodia. He lives in a small village with his wife and two sons. Sophea and his wife plant and harvest vegetables to sell from their street cart and provide food for their family's consumption. Twelve years ago, Sophea developed an ear infection that caused a cholesteatoma, or abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind his ear drum. As a result, Sophea experiences hearing loss, tinnitus, and ear discharge. It is difficult for him to hear at home and with his customers. Sophea traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 6th, he will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in his left ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is requesting $926 to fund this procedure, which covers all medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Sophea also contributed $100 towards his care. Sophea shared that he hopes this surgery will relieve him of symptoms and allow him to finally be able to hear again.
Htwe is a 12-year-old student who lives with his uncle's family in Thailand. His parents are day laborers in Bangkok, who send his uncle money every month to support him. In his free time, Htwe enjoys playing football with his friends. Two years ago, Htwe's right eyelid became swollen and red. By July 2021, the swelling had worsened and he felt a small mass in his right eyelid. He also developed double vision. He visited several clinics and was given oral medications and eye drops, but he never felt better. Currently, Htwe has redness and swelling in his right eyelid, and sometimes his eye will water. He also has blurry vision and feels uncomfortable with the mass pressing on his eyelid. Due to his blurry vision, he finds it hard to study and do his homework. Eventually, his aunt took Htwe to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH), where he was diagnosed with a cyst in his right eyelid. The doctor told him that he will need to have surgery to remove the cyst. Thanks to our partner's care center, Mae Sot General Hospital, Htwe will have the cyst surgically removed on February 2nd. Now he needs your help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Htwe said, “I want to be a football player when I grow up.”
Malaika lives on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince in Haiti with her parents and four siblings; she is in the third grade and likes her science and reading classes. She was both with a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect, in which a hole exists between the two lower chambers of her heart. Blood leaks through this hole without passing through her lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving her weak and short of breath. The surgery she needs is not available in Haiti, but fortunately for Malaika, doctors at the Clinica Corominas in the Dominican Republic will be able to perform an interventional heart catherization procedure to fix her condition. During the procedure, doctors will insert a catheter into her heart to plug the hole with a device. Now, her family needs $1,500 to help pay the costs of the procedure and travel. Another organization Gift of Life International is also contributing to her life-saving care. Malaika's mother says: "Our family is very hopeful that our daughter will be healthier and happier after her heart is fixed."
Rechael is a 38-year-old widow and mother of three children, who works in a small grocery store. Her husband died in a traffic accident in 2018, and her life changed dramatically as a result. Her husband's family sent her away with the children, and since her mother had also died earlier, she shared with us that she had nowhere to go. Her aunt agreed to have Rachael and her children come live with her. Rechael was accompanied by her aunt and uncle when she came to Nazareth Hospital this week. She was very anxious, and when she started narrating her story she began to cry. She had become depressed, had experienced periodic upper abdominal pains, and occasional vomiting. She has been admitted at hospitals three times, and a scan showed that she had gallstones. Doctors advised that she have surgery to heal her condition. Unfortunately, she is unable to pay the $788 needed for this surgery. If not treated, Rechael will continue to experience these symptoms, and could develop complications such as pancreatitis, or obstruction of the gallbladder among others. “I am desperate and don’t know what to do. I can only depend on my family, and they are not in a position to help. I pray for help so that at least my life can be normal again for the sake of my children,” said Rechael.
Meet Katweensly, a 16 year old student, living with her mother and siblings in a small town in Haiti, near the border with the Dominican Republic. Katweensly, who is a junior in high school, particularly enjoys her math and science classes. As a young child, Katweensly suffered a bout of rheumatic fever, which damaged one of the four valves in her heart. As a result, her heart cannot pump blood efficiently through her body, leaving her feeling weak and short of breath. Thanks to the help of our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, Katweensly is scheduled to travel to the Dominican Republic for surgery, which is scheduled for November 10th, at Hospital CEDIMAT. There, doctors will first try to repair the damaged valve. If they are unable to do this, they will implant an artificial valve. Another organization, Mitral Foundation, is helping supporting the cost of the surgery, but Katweensly's family needs an additional $1,500 to pay for lab tests, medicines, and follow up appointments that are a part of her overall treatment. In addition, support will help cover the travel costs and ensure a social worker from Haiti Cardiac Alliance can support the family during treatment in the Dominican Republic. Katweensly said: "I am feeling very happy to finally have the chance to have my heart repaired after waiting for so long."
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.”
Dibora is a smiley and playful 13-month-old baby girl from Ethiopia. Her father is a farmer and her mother is a housewife. She has three older siblings and loves to eat and to play with her family. Dibora was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. Due to her condition, she developed a bowel obstruction and an emergency colostomy procedure was performed. She has had a number of complications due to this procedure, and requires an additional procedure to correct her condition. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Dibora receive treatment. On September 8th, she will undergo corrective surgery at AMH's care center. After her recovery, Dibora will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Now, she and her family need help raising $1,500 to fund her procedure and care. Dibora's mother shared, "Once Dibora has recovered and is healed of this condition, I want to take care of her and her siblings well."
Alice is a cheerful and talkative 63-year-old farmer from Kenya. She has seven children, with her youngest being 14 and her oldest being 40. Although she is married, Alice works to support her children alone. She and her family live on a small piece of land, half of which is reserved for a tea plantation. She grows and sells this tea in order to pay her children's school fees and provide them with their day-to-day needs. 15 years ago, Alice began experiencing troubling symptoms, including neck swelling, joint weakness, and constant fatigue. After attempting to alleviate her symptoms using herbal medication with no success, she decided to seek medical attention at a health center. The medics referred her to our medical partner's care center, AIC Kapsowar Hospital, for diagnosis and treatment. Fortunately, a friend provided her with money to pay for her transportation to the hospital. Once there, she was diagnosed with bilateral non-toxic multinodular goiter, meaning she has multiple lumps located within her thyroid glands. In order to stop her symptoms and prevent them from worsening, she must undergo surgery. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), is helping Alice receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a thyroidectomy on August 15th at AMHF's care center. During this procedure, surgeons will remove all or part of her thyroid gland. This surgery will cost $936, and Alice and her family need help raising money. Alice says, “I would like to see my children achieve their dreams. I look forward to getting well to continue providing for and supporting them. Kindly help me.”
Chrismarlie is a 13-year-old student from Haiti. She lives with her parents and three siblings in a city on the northern coast of Haiti. Her father is a school administrator, and her mother is a homemaker. Chrismarlie shared that she enjoys going to school and listening to music with her friends. Chrismarlie has a cardiac condition called pulmonic stenosis, which means one of her heart valves is too tight, making it difficult for blood to pass through and leading to heart failure. The surgery that she needs is not available in Haiti, but fortunately, Chrismarlie will be able to fly to the Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On July 29th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which the surgeons will widen the heart valve so that blood can flow through it more easily. Chrismarlie's family is raising funds to cover the costs of her surgery prep, as our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA), is contributing funds to help cover the cost of surgery. The $1,500 will support her surgery prep, which includes all labs, medication, check-ups and follow-up appointments, and the passports needed for HCA's social workers to accompany Chrismarlie and her family overseas. Chrismarlie said, "I would like to say thank you to everyone who is helping to fix my heart problem!"
Elinipa is a beautiful two-year-old girl. She is an incredibly friendly child who loves to play with her five older siblings. At birth, she was a healthy child. It wasn't until she was learning to walk however, that her mother noticed that her legs were slightly curved, yet even so they did not seek treatment assuming it was a minor problem that she would outgrow. Elinipa has now been diagnosed with bilateral valgus, which is a condition caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result of her condition, Elinipa's legs bow inward to the point that her knees touch. This makes walking persistently more difficult as she continues to grow. Through our medical partner's outreach program her parents learned that their daughter needs surgery to correct her legs. Elinipa's parents are small scale famers who depend entirely on what they harvest to make a living. As a result, their income is not enough to afford to take Elinipa to the hospital to treat her condition. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Elinipa. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 13th at our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. With this treatment Elinipa's mobility will hopefully be restored, thus allowing her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decreasing her risk of future complications. Elinipa’s father says, “I am worried with how her legs continue to bend inward. Please help us.”
Said is a talkative, friendly and playful 4-year-old boy who loves to play football and to watch movies. Said's family consists of three other siblings, his mother, who is a housewife, and his father, who is a day laborer getting work whenever he can. Because of a medical condition, Said's legs bow outward and his knees don't touch, which caused difficulty walking. Our medical partner African Mission Healthcare is requesting $880 to fund a procedure that will take place on April 22nd to restore Said's mobility. This treatment will enable him to participate in a variety of activities as he grows and also decrease his risk for future complications. Said’s mother says, “The economy is not good and finding work is getting hard. The little money I get goes to food. If you can help my son have this treatment, I would be very grateful.”
Cali is a two-year-old girl from the Philippines. She loves to watch TV, and play with her siblings and cousins. Her mother takes care of her and her siblings while her father is a tricycle driver. The family’s income provides for their basic necessities but is not enough to cover Cali's medical treatment. Cali was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. She needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction and is scheduled to undergo surgery on March 23rd. Our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, is requesting $1,279 to cover the total cost of Cali's procedure and care. After her recovery, Cali will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. “Nowadays, you'll find bullies everywhere, and we have been worried that growing up, her condition might affect her ability to interact with others. So thank you, WSFP and Watsi, for helping us. We are hopeful that if the [colostomy] closure is done, she’ll be able to live a normal life, without worrying about her appearance and what others might say about her, ” Cali's mother shared.