Delores joined Watsi on July 16th, 2019. Two years ago, Delores joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Delores' most recent donation traveled 8,800 miles to support Bunroeun, a farmer from Cambodia, to fund ear surgery that will improve his hearing loss.
Delores has funded healthcare for 25 patients in 8 countries.
Delores has funded healthcare for 25 patients in 8 countries.
Bunroeun is a 38-year-old farmer who works alongside his wife in the fields. Together, they have four children—one son and three daughters. Since he was seven years old, Bunroeun has experienced recurrent ear infections and discharge. Bunroeun's ear infections caused the tympanic membrane to perforate in both of his ears, meaning a hole or tear was created in his eardrums. As a result, he is experiencing discharge, hearing loss, vertigo, and frequent headaches, which leave him feeling unwell and unable to communicate clearly with others. Bunroeun was unable to follow up on his care when his wife recently delivered their youngest child. However, upon learning about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), he traveled to their care center for treatment. On September 8th, Bunroeun will undergo a myringoplasty procedure to close the tear in each eardrum. CSC is requesting $913 to fund this procedure, which includes coverage of all medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Bunroeun hopes that this procedure will help stop the ear infections and finally improve his hearing loss.
Lightness is a hard-working student and the ninth born child in a family of ten children. Lightness loves to help her mother with home chores and looking after her nieces and nephews. Lightness is currently in technical college where she is studying to be an electrician. Lightness's parents are small-scale farmers and livestock keepers, and her mother also sells vegetables and mandazi, a type of fried bread. Three years ago, Lightness was at the fireplace helping her mother cook mandazi when she lost conscious and fell into the pot of hot oil. Her mother rescued her and rushed her to the hospital. The accident has left Lightness with contractures as a result of the burns around her neck. Contractures are a condition in which the muscles are shortened and hardened, and in Lightness's case they limit her neck movement. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMH), is helping Lightness receive treatment. On August 5th, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery to help her move her neck freely. However, Lightness's family needs help to fund this $639 procedure. Lightness says, "I feel bad seeing myself in this condition, I try to cover my neck because I don’t like how people feel sorry for me. I will be happy and grateful if I can have my neck corrected."
Meng Sry is a 53-year-old tailor. He's married and his wife is also a tailor. Together they have two daughters who are both in school. In his free time, Meng Sry enjoys listening to music on his phone and watching the news. Five months ago, Meng Sry developed a chalazion in his left eye, causing him burning, itchiness, irritation. A chalazion is an inflamed cyst in a patient's tear gland. Thus, it is difficult for him to see clearly, making tailor work impossible for him. Meng Sry traveled to seek treatment from our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC). On July 23rd, surgeons will remove the cyst through a chalazion excision procedure. After recovery, Meng Sry's symptoms should improve. Now, CSC is requesting $187 to fund this procedure. Meng Sry shares, "I hope after surgery my eye irritation stops so I can feel comfortable and be able to help my wife with housework and preparing clothes in our tailor shop again."
George is a young boy in grade six who loves playing football. George is the youngest of three children. Both of his parents are farmers. To earn a living, his mother sells their farm's produce, which earns a small amount to support their needs. To supplement their earnings, his father does whatever work he comes across. George was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles remains undescended. If left untreated, George has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. George will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMH). Fortunately, he is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on July 12th. AMHF is requesting $561 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. George’s father says, “It is very difficult for us as a family to raise the required amount for his surgery. Any help offered to us will highly be appreciated.”
Marilyn is a 10-month-old baby girl from a small town in Colombia. She lives with her mother, grandmother, three aunts and one uncle, who is a farmer. Marilyn has clubfoot, a condition in which her foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Marilyn's family traveled to visit our medical partner, Clínica Noel, where surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on July 26th. Now, Clínica Noel is requesting $1,422 to fund Marilyn's life-changing procedure. After treatment, she will be able to start walking and running after her dreams as she grows. Her mother shared, "my biggest dream is for her to get well soon, to see her walking and running as a normal child, with no pain or anything."
Tin is a 56-year-old woman who lives with her husband, daughter, son in-law and granddaughter in Burma. Her husband and son in-law are day laborers, but because of the coup d'état and COVID-19, they are having difficulty finding work. Four years ago, Tin was diagnosed with diabetes and due to financial difficulties, she was not always able to buy medication. In April, Tin noticed that both of her hands were swollen and slightly achy while doing household chores. She applied traditional medicine, but her right hand did not heal. Over time, the pain and swelling increased, her right hand became red, and she developed a high fever. She visited a local clinic where the nurse told her she would need surgery and suggested she seek treatment at a local hospital. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) is helping Tin receive treatment. At our BCMF's care center, the doctor found an ulcer on Tin's right hand and diagnosed her with cellulitis. Surgery was recommended as soon as possible, as this type of ulcer can spread quickly. On May 11th, Tin will undergo a wound debridement procedure at BCMF's care center and now, she needs help to fund this $694 procedure. Tin shared, "during these difficult times, my family does not have enough money and we cannot afford to pay for my treatment. I would like to receive surgery as soon as possible so that I can go back to doing the household chores."
Josephine is a widow and mother who has three children, now grown up themselves and who work as casual laborers. Recently, Josephine's daughter brought her to our medical partner and explained that her mother has difficulties in communicating and hearing. She could not explain how she slipped or fell, but has severe leg pain, including feeling like it has detached, and she had not been able to walk for over a week. An X-ray showed she has a closed fracture of the left femur. Additionally, on checking her blood level, she had hemoglobin (Hb) of 7mg/dl, which is a sign of anemia. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. The surgeon first advised admission for treatment to correct the anemia. Next, on April 15th, an open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) procedure has been scheduled to repair her fracture. This procedure will help Josephine be able to walk again and resume her normal activities. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. If not treated, Josephine will not be able to use her left leg and the fracture may have malunion or heal with permanent deformity. Josephine was mostly quiet as her daughter shared her story, but she added, “Please help me and God will bless you.”
Fidelica is a third grade student from Haiti. She is an only child and enjoys learning to play piano and guitar. Fidelica has a cardiac condition called atrial septal defect, which means a large hole exists between the two upper chambers of her heart. This condition may have serious risk factors for heart failure or stroke. In order to receive treatment, Fidelica must fly from Haiti to the Dominican Republic. On March 15th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, as surgeons will use a patch to close the hole in her heart. Another organization, Gift of Life International, is contributing $5,000 to pay for her surgery. However, Fidelica's family needs help raising an additional $1,500 to fund related costs such as labs, medicines, and follow-up appointments. This funding will also help the family cover travel costs for the procedure, such as obtaining a passport and having social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, accompany Fidelica's family overseas. Fidelica's mother says, "I am excited for this surgery so that I can let my daughter run and play with other children!"
Naw Kwee Moo is a 54-year-old woman from the Karen region in Burma, who lives with her husband and their family in a refugee camp. Of her children, three daughters and three sons still live in the refugee camp along with them near the Thai-Burma border. Naw Kwee is a homemaker and her husband is currently too ill to work. Five of their children go to school in the camp, four other children have moved away, and her second oldest son graduated from a post-secondary program in May 2020. He worked as an agricultural day laborer at a nearby Thai village until mid-December 2020. Due to Covid-19 travel restrictions, he was no longer allowed to leave the camp. Naw Kwe’s household receives a monthly cash card to purchase basic rations. Although they receive free education and basic health care in the camp, they shared how hard it is to make ends meet. Starting four years ago, Naw Kwee often went to the camp’s hospital run by Malteser International (MI) Thailand to receive treatment for urinary tract infections (UTI). Most of the time, she would feel better after taking medication, but she was no longer able to work as an agricultural day laborer because of her pain. Over the next few years, she was diagnosed with chronic UTI. “I think my condition was caused from consuming dirty water,” she said. “When I worked as a day laborer, we had no access to clean water.” Naw Kwee received antibiotics through an intravenous (IV) line at the camp’s hospital. When her condition did not improve, a doctor at the camp’s hospital referred her again to Mae Sariang Hospital in March 2020. There she received a urine test and an x-ray of her kidneys, ureters and bladder. She was finally diagnosed with a right kidney stone. After multiple visits, the doctor at Mae Sariang Hospital referred her to Chiang Mai Hospital (CMH) for further treatment. However, Naw Kwee could not travel to CMH for a while due to travel restrictions after the outbreak of Covid-19. Finally, last June medical staff from her camp were able to bring Naw Kwee to Chiang Mai. During her appointment, the doctor scheduled her to undergo an intravenous pyelogram on July 16th, 2020. After she received a diagnostic test, she returned to CMH for her follow-up appointment on November 19th, 2020. During her appointment, she received more tests and it was at her next appointment Naw Kwee was told she needed to undergo multiple rounds of laser treatment to break up the stone in her kidney. She received her first round of laser treatment on February 11th, 2021. Two days later, she developed a fever and could only pass a bit of urine. She also started to experience severe back pain and other troubling symptoms. MI staff took her back to the hospital where she received an ultrasound. The nurse shared with her that after her laser treatment, the stones had broken up and many of them where now stuck in her ureter, creating a blockage. She now needs emergency surgery to remove the stones. Our Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund is seeking $1,500 to support her surgery and finally relieve her of her painful condition.
Marline is a 7-year-old boy from Kenya. He is a cheerful boy and a Grade 2 student at Jayden Academy. Marline wants to be an engineer when he grows up. Marline's mother says that he loves to dismantle and assemble electronics in the house, and is well on his way to his career dreams. Additionally, Marline has a condition called spina bifida. Earlier in April 2020, Marline was playing with his friends when his mother noticed a small pimple-like wound on his right foot. It was small at first, but slowly started to grow bigger in size. His mother rushed him to a nearby health centre in their hometown, where he has been undergoing dressing in the facility but they have not seen much improvement. Since Marline has been coming to Kijabe Hospital for his spina bifida clinic, he opted to seek review in the hospital and get this wound checked. He was reviewed a week ago by the plastic and pediatric surgical teams, who recommended that he undergoes debridement, excision of calcaneal ulcer, and flap cover surgery to clean and heal his infected wound. Currently, Marline is in pain and at risk for further infection. If left unattended, the wound may result in severe infection and possible amputation. Unfortunately, these procedures are costly for Marline's family. His mother is a single mother raising two kids on her own. Their family lives in a bedsitter house in Ruai, at the outskirts of Nairobi. Marline's father left the family and his responsibility. Marline's mother is the sole breadwinner of the family and she has a small grocery kiosk. The total profit from the venture is very small, and her close relatives are not able to assist with financial support. Their family appeals for help. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Marline receive treatment. On January 6th, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to help heal the wound and prevent possible complications. Now, Marline's family needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Marline's mother says, “This wound is worsening by the day. If left unattended, doctors say that he might lose his leg. This would be hurting all of us. Kindly help us as we really don’t have a way out."
Sherline is a 7-year-old playful girl from Kenya. Last Friday, Shirlene arrived at the hospital with pain in her right leg and head after being hit by a tree branch. Sherline had gone to fetch firewood with her friends when the accident happened. She was rushed to the hospital by samaritans and on arrival, an x-ray was done which confirmed a right femur fracture. Because she was unable to use her leg and was in pain, Sherline was put on traction to reduce pain, avoid irritation, and help put tension on the displaced bone. Sherline was born and raised in a village in Elgeyo Marakwet County. She was the firstborn child of a single mother. In 2015, during the Marakwet and Pokot clashes in their region, her mother was eloped and taken away to an unknown location. Since then Sherline has not seen her mum and, currently, she stays with her elderly grandmother. Shirlene's grandmother is a farmer of millet for their family's consumption. They live in a two-roomed grass-thatched house. Sherline is going through a tough experience with intense pain, trauma, and discomfort. She needs urgent help to fix her condition. Their family is facing financial hardship and is asking anyone reading Sherline's story to help her raise the fee for her surgery. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On December 16th, Sherline will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. The surgery will reduce the pain, initiate her healing, and help her to walk easily again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,016 to fund this procedure. Shirleen's guardian shared, "It's paining me to see her cry in pain, I want her to receive treatment and be able to walk again."
Zin Oo is a 36-year-old man who lives with his mother, younger sister, and his seven-year-old son in Mawlamyine, Burma. He is an assistant truck driver and he earns 4,000 kyat (approx. 4 USD) per day. Since the outbreak of CVOID-19, there is less work and he is only able to earn 64,000 kyat (approx. 64 USD) in a month. Zin Oo's son goes to primary school and his wife passed away last year. His mother goes house to house to see if anyone would hire her to wash their clothes. His younger sister lost her job at the factory after the outbreak of COVID-19 in Yangon. Since April, she looks after the household chores and she also works as a day laborer when she can find work. Zin Oo’s combined household income of 124,000 kyat (approx. 150 USD) in a month is just enough for their daily expenses and they cannot afford to pay the costs of basic healthcare. On August 3rd, Zin Oo was cutting firewood with an axe. While cutting the logs, his aim was off and he hit his fingers on his right hand against the log. His fingers became swollen and red after the accident, especially his small and index fingers. Without enough money to go to the hospital, Zin Oo bought traditional medicine and applied it to his fingers. He felt like his middle and ring fingers healed but his small and index fingers became more swollen and painful. Eventually when he noticed pus on his fingers, he told his friend about his problem and his friend suggested he go to Mawlamyine Christian Leprosy Hospital (MCLH), where treatment often cost less than other hospitals. At MLCH, the doctor completed a detailed assessment of his right hand and diagnosed him with cellulitis, a serious bacterial skin infection. The doctor told him that because of poor blood supply, he would need to amputate his small finger and probably his index finger as well. When Zin Oo told the doctor that he does not have any money to pay for the surgery, the doctor referred him to Watsi's Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for assistance accessing treatment. Currently, the fingers on Zin Oo’s right hand are red, swollen, and warm to the touch. His fingers hurt a lot, especially his small and index finger. He cannot sleep at night without taking pain medication. He is not able to eat food with his right hand and he feels uncomfortable eating with his left hand since he is right-handed. Aside from this, Zin Oo feels stressed about his condition. He cannot work and his mother has to help look after him since he was admitted at the hospital. His mother then has no income while he receives treatment. They are worried that they will not have enough money for food and for Zin Oo’s treatment. In the future, Zin Oo wants to work as a truck driver to earn money for his family. Once he has fully recovered, he will accept any work he can find as he looks for a job as a truck driver. Zin Oo’s younger sister shared with us, “Now, I have to take care of my nephew while my mother accompanies my brother [Zin Oo] at the hospital. I cannot work and our family is worried about money. We owe our neighbor 50,000 kyat [approx. 50 USD] and we have to pay it back with 20% interest.”