Ravi joined Watsi on July 27th, 2015. Six years ago, Ravi joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Ravi's most recent donation traveled 8,700 miles to support Clementina, ten-year-old from Tanzania, to treat her spina bifida.
Ravi has funded healthcare for 91 patients in 13 countries.
Ravi has funded healthcare for 91 patients in 13 countries.
Clementina is a ten-year-old student and the youngest in a family of four children. She is a loving girl who enjoys playing with babies, especially her neighbours'. Her mother says she would wake up in the morning and ask right away for permission to go see her neighbour’s baby. She is also a hard-working girl. She helps her mother clean the house and cleaning dishes. She cleans her own clothes too sometimes. Clementina was born with spina bifida, a type of neural tube defect in which the spine does not properly close around the spinal cord. Without treatment, Clementina is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMH), is requesting $1,015 to cover the cost of Clementina's spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on August 9th. This procedure will hopefully spare Clementina from the risks associated with her condition, instead allowing her to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Clementina’s mother says, "We never knew the condition needed treatment all these years. But we are thankful that she is able to stand and walk. She has been scheduled for surgery but the cost is too high for us to afford please help."
Gift is curious, charming, and social two-year-old boy. He's the second born child in a family of three children. Both of his parents are small scale farmers who grow maize, beans, and vegetables for their food. They also go out to seek other work, such as helping on other farms, to earn an income. Gift has clubfoot of his right foot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Gift receive treatment. On July 13th, surgeons at AMH's care center will perform clubfoot repair surgery. Now, AMH is requesting $935 to fund Gift's procedure. After treatment, Gift will be able to walk and wear shoes. Gift’s mother shared, "I know my son will be very happy to be able to wear shoes and walk in a normal way. Please help him have this treatment."
Robson is a friendly and calm baby. He is the youngest sibling of the family, and they all live in an urban settlement in Nairobi, the capital city of Kenya. Robson's mother takes care of their family and home while his father used to be a cook, but was laid off due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While his mother was outside washing clothes, Robson was in his grandmother’s grass-thatched house in their village. Suddenly, a mattress caught fire, causing burns on Robson's face and fingers. The burns led to contractures on the fingers, so that Robson is unable to hold things and use his fingers well. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMH), is helping Robson receive treatment. On July 17th, surgeons from the care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery. Now, AMH is requesting $840 to help fund this procedure. “I hope and pray that with the assistance accorded to my son, he will be able to hold things and start crawling with support as he learns to walk,” Robson’s mother told us.
Htoo is a 29-year-old woman from Burma, and the headmistress for a middle school. She lives with her seven friends in a dormitory, and they are all teachers at the same middle school in the village. She raises chickens and also grows vegetables in a small garden beside the dormitory. She and her friends often go to the forest on weekends. Due to impacts of COVID-19 on her school, her income has been irregular since June 2020, but she and her friends share meals to make sure they have enough. In late March 2021, after a friend had mentioned how to do a self-exam for breast cancer, Htoo found a mass in her right breast later that night. Currently, Htoo does not experience any pain but she is very worried that the mass will turn cancerous. Htoo felt very scared to undergo surgery, as she feels stressed about her condition and she also thinks about the work she has to do at school which stresses her out even more. However, the doctors have recommended surgery to remove the tumor before it causes more risk or has a chance to spread. Htoo is seeking treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. She is now scheduled to undergo tumor removal surgery on May 25th and is requesting $1,500 to cover the cost of her procedure and care. Htoo said, “When I think about my condition and my work, I become so stressed, and I cannot sleep well at night. I cry very often when I think about my condition. I feel like the stress has made me lose my appetite.”
So is a nine-year-old boy who lives with his parents, sister and brother in a village in Tak Province. Since schools closed due to Covid-19, So and his siblings have had to stop studying. So now helps out around the house, watering their garden and helping his mother with preparing meals. His sister works as a dishwasher at a Thai noodle soup shop. His father works at a construction site, and his mother is a homemaker. Their monthly household income is just enough to cover their basic expenses. When So was born, the medic noticed that So had a mass on the right side of his neck. Upon pressing the mass with his finger, So did not react, so the medic assumed the mass was not painful. The medic told So’s parents that the mass was fatty tissue and that they had nothing to worry about for now, but he would need to receive surgery to remove it when he was older. As So grew, the mass also slowly increased in size and became heavier. Currently, the muscles in his neck are stiff and the mass is painful when it is touched. Frequently, he will wake up in the middle of the night in pain after he turns in his sleep, putting pressure on the mass. So underwent a CT scan at the hospital, which indicated that the mass is a lymphangioma, or a noncancerous fluid-filled cyst. The doctor recommended that So undergo a cyst excision procedure to remove the cyst. So told us he's extremely excited to receive surgery and is not afraid to undergo the procedure because he wants to look (even more) handsome afterwards :). However, he and his family need financial support to afford the cost of his care. So will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. Fortunately, he is scheduled to undergo a cyst excision procedure on April 23rd. Our partner is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Once recovered, he will be free of pain and will feel more comfortable and confident in his daily life activities and when spending time with his friends. So shared, “I cannot wait to receive surgery and I really want this mass to go away. I am so embarrassed of this mass but once it is gone, I will go back to school and my friends will no longer tease me.”
Tin is a 38-year-old woman from Northern Thailand. She and her husband are agricultural day laborers, and they live in a hut on their employer’s land. They shared that, unfortunately, their earnings are not enough to cover their expenses or to pay for basic healthcare. Since early 2019, Tin has been experiencing dizziness, fatigue, insomnia and pain in her lower abdomen. She was diagnosed with a myoma and has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Tin's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications. Since September 2020, Tin has been unable to work due to her illness. Fortunately, Tin is scheduled to undergo a hysterectomy on March 23rd. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, Tin will no longer experience lower abdominal pain, dizziness or fatigue. She will be able to work again as a day laborer after her treatment. Tin shared, “I am not afraid to undergo surgery because I believe that I will receive successful treatment. I used to pray every day that a donor would help me. Once I have recovered from surgery, I will go back to work so that we can repay our debts. In the future, I would like to stay healthy so that I can work, eat good food, wear beautiful clothes, and earn an income.”
Orn is a 72-year-old rice farmer with three daughters, five sons, and many grandchildren. At this age he no longer goes to the rice field anymore; he stays at home to look after his grandchildren. He lives with his oldest daughter who is also a farmer. His wife passed away five years ago due to hypertension. He enjoys listening to the monks preaching on the radio. One year ago, Orn developed a cataract in his left eye, causing him itchiness, tearing, and blurry vision. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Orn learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for three and half hours with his daughter seeking treatment. On January 12th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in his left eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $229 procedure. "I hope after surgery I can see better so I can see my family better, go outside, and mostly help my daughter to take care of her children. I'd really like to plant vegetables around the house and go outside by myself."
Leng is a 42-year-old father of three from Cambodia. He is a construction worker with one son and two daughters who are all in school. In his free time, Leng likes listening to news on the radio. Five years ago, Leng developed a pterygium in left, causing him blurry vision, tearing, redness, and discomfort with his appearance. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, working, and going anywhere outside. When Leng learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for eight hours with his father seeking treatment. Leng needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent recurrence. The total cost of his procedure is $216. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for December 7th. Leng said, "I want my eye to get well soon so I can go to work to earn money to support my children in their schooling."
Rebecca is a 1-year-old girl from Tanzania. She is the last born in a family of two children and has started to grow into a strong and beautiful girl. Both of her parents depend on small scale farming to support their family. Rebecca was initially brought to the hospital by her parents seeking treatment to help correct her spina bifida condition. Spina bifida is a birth defect that occurs when the spine and spinal cord fail to form properly. This puts a child in danger of limb paralyses or death in case of a severe infection. At the time, Rebecca's parents could not afford the proposed surgery. Luckily, one of their friends advised them to seek help at our medical partner's care center, ALMC Plaster House. Through Watsi funding, Rebecca’s life was saved and she has been growing well since then. However, a few weeks ago, Rebecca's mother noticed her daughter's head was increasing in size at a very fast rate and she was complaining of headaches. Her parents had worked hard to save some money and got a health insurance card for their baby, so they decided to take her to the hospital to seek treatment. There, Rebecca was diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. She needs to have an ETV surgery that will help relieve her of the pressure build-up, which would otherwise lead to brain damage. Unfortunately, their insurance has not matured enough to cover this kind of major surgery, so Rebecca's parents are appealing for financial support to help her. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of surgery for Rebecca that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 25th and will drain the excess fluid from Rebecca's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Rebecca will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Rebecca’s mother shared, “My daughter’s head is increasing in size and it is making her sick. She needs surgery but the insurance we got for her cannot cover the cost. Please help once more if it is possible because we don’t know where to run to for help besides all of you.”
Tibanyenda is a farmer from Uganda. Tibanyenda is a widow who lost her husband in 2013. She is a mother to nine children with three sons and six daughters, all are married and are small scale farmers. She never went to school at all because when she was younger education wasn’t valued. She earns a living from her banana and coffee plantation. For some time now, Tibanyenda has been experiencing lower abdominal pain. She has been diagnosed with a pre-malignant cervical lesion. She needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $219 to fund Tibanyenda's surgery. On August 18, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Tibanyenda will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain. Tibanyenda says, “I hope to get much better after I have undergone surgery, I will resume with farming.”
Rin is a 49-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. He and his wife have been married for 20 years, and have two children together. His wife works in a factory, and his children are all in school. He works long hours, and raises chickens for additional income. He enjoys cooking for his family in his free time. Rin had a work accident and has an open fracture on left forearm. He went to a local hospital for an open reduction internal fixation and skin graft, but the surgery did not help him feel better. He has now come to Watsi's Medical Partner CSC because the fracture is still impacting him in a challenging way. He cannot use his fingers and has pain when he tries to work with this hand. One year ago, he was dragged under a vehicle and fractured his left forearm. He went to a local hospital and was operated on, but the fracture did not heal properly. He still experiences chronic pain from his injury, and he cannot move his hand. His family has lost their primary source of income since he cannot work, and he is worried about being able to support them. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On June 3rd, Rin will undergo a fracture repair procedure, which will cost $465. After the surgery, he will be able move his wrist and hand, and return to work. Rin said, "I am proud of my work and I want to work so I can support my family. My hand is in pain all the time, but I really hope that this surgery is enough for me to keep working."
Win is a 46-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his wife and two sons in a village in Kyain Seikyi Township in Karen State. His elder daughter is a health worker where she works at a clinic in another village in Burma. His two youngest sons are students. Both he and his wife are a subsistence farmers. In his free time, he sometimes helps his communities with building a bridge or road as much as he can. In January 2020, he developed a painful urination, itchiness, and also difficulty urinating. He feels like something is blocking his urinary and also feels stomach pain in his right side. Doctors want Win 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 Win's CT scan and care, scheduled for February 28. Win said, “I keep myself strong and I hope if I receive proper treatment I will be better.”