Ondrej joined Watsi on September 26th, 2017. Seven months ago, Ondrej became the 5480th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 444 more people have become monthly donors! Ondrej's most recent donation traveled 3,900 miles to support Joshua, a newborn baby from Tanzania, to fund hydrocephalus surgery.
Ondrej has funded healthcare for 34 patients in 10 countries.
Joshua is a two-month-old baby and the youngest in a family of three children from Tanzania. His parents are small-scale farmers; his father owns a few cattle and they also have a small farm where they plant food for home consumption. Joshua 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, Joshua has been experiencing challenges since birth. Without treatment, Joshua will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,362 to cover the cost of surgery for Joshua that will treat his hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 20th and will drain the excess fluid from Joshua's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Joshua will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Joshua's father shared, "Please help treat our baby, he needs to undergo a surgery which due to financial challenges, we are not able to afford. Please help us."
Korb is a 34-year-old mother of two from Cambodia. She has one son and one daughter, she enjoys cooking for her family, cleaning the house, and playing with her children. Three years ago, Korb had a serious ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. For this reason, Korb experiences ear discharge, pain, itchiness, and headaches. She cannot hear others clearly and has been unable to find any work. Korb traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 9th, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in her right ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. "I hope that after surgery, the infection will stop and my hearing will improve and my family will not have to worry anymore," she said.
Moe is a 31-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband and four-year-old son in Mae La Refugee Camp (MLRC) in Tha Song Yang District of Tak Province. She has lived there for 20 years after her parents moved from Bilin Township, Bago Division in Burma because of the civil war. Moe is a homemaker who does all the household chores while her husband is a farmer who works on rented land outside of the camp, where he plants corn and beans. To make some extra income, Moe also sells snacks from home. Their combined income is enough to cover basic family expenses. As for healthcare, they receive free basic care in the camp provided by International Rescue Committee (IRC). A few months ago, Moe started to feel a mass in her lower abdomen while she was lying down after eating dinner. She thought it was strange and told her neighbor about it the next day. Her neighbor told her that this was normal for someone gaining weight, which she suggested Moe was. Upon hearing this, she did not seek treatment, agreeing with her neighbor’s conclusion. However, she soon felt that the mass was increasing in size, which did not seem normal. On February 13th, 2020, she decided it was time to go to the clinic in the camp for further investigation. The medic at the camp examined to her and told her that she likely had a cyst in her lower abdomen, but they could not diagnose her further. The medic informed the doctor at the camp and the doctor discussed the situation with IRC staff, who then referred Moe to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. She was referred to MSH on February 17th for an ultrasound. Upon going to MSH, doctors performed an ultrasound and told her that she has a mass in her uterus. Since the mass was already large, however, the ultrasound did not show a clear result whether the mass was outside or inside her uterus. For this reason, the doctor recommended a computed tomography (CT) scan on February 25th. Moe returned home and came back to MSH for the CT scan according to the appointment date. On the day of the scan, she also received a blood test and urine test before being informed that she would have to come back on February 27th to get the results. When she returned, the doctor explained to her that there is a large tumor in her right ovary and that she needs surgery to remove it, followed by a tissue biopsy to confirm whether the growth is cancerous. Currently, Moe has a burning pain in her lower right abdomen. Sometimes the pain gets worse, which makes it difficult for her sleep or eat well. For this reason, she said that she lost her appetite and weight. When she eats, she feels discomfort as her stomach becomes tight and full, even she eats very little. She feels like the mass is gradually getting bigger and she feels more comfortable lying down instead of sitting or walking. Moe sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. She is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on March 24th and is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Moe said, “Both my husband and I became worried when we heard that there was mass in my uterus. We worry that my whole uterus might need to be removed and we will no longer be able to have more children. Now, the doctor told me that only the tumor will be removed and that I most likely will be able to have children in the future. Me and my husband want to have one or two more children, so we were very happy when we heard that my uterus would not to be removed.”
Magdalena is a 4-month-old baby girl from Tanzania. She is the last born child in a family of three children. Her parents are small-scale farmers selling vegetables for a living. Magdalena 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, Magdalena traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on February 21st. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $890 to fund Magdalena's clubfoot repair. After treatment, she will be able to walk easily and wear shoes when she grows up. Michael’s mother says, “We are unable to afford her treatment cost due to financial challenges please help our daughter.”
Mebruka is a cute baby girl from Ethiopia who loves people and to play with others. She loves eating spaghetti. She has one older sister and she loves to play with her. Her mom is a house wife and her dad is a daily laborer. They live in a rented house and the dad’s income is very much limited for the expenses of the family. Mebruka 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. Mebruka is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on November 5th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Mebruka's procedure and care. After her recovery, Mebruka will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Her mother said, “It is my hope that my baby will heal and that makes me happy even now.”
About six months ago, Thidar started to feel very tired and could not sleep well due to difficulty breathing. After multiple tests and blood tranfusions, Thidar was diagnosed with mitral valve stenosis, mitral valve regurgitation, aortic valve stenosis, and aortic valve regurgitation. Seeing that both of her heart valves need to be replaced surgically, the doctor told her, “You have a heart problem and you must undergo surgery as soon as possible.” When Thidar told him that she cannot afford to pay for surgery, the doctor told her about a monk who lives just outside of Yangon and who might be able to help her. She was given his phone number and when she called the monk, he referred her to Watsi partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for assistance in accessing the treatment she needs. Currently, Thidar feels very tired and has no energy to walk long distances. She cannot sleep well, and she has no appetite. She said, “In the future, I will stay in my village and look out for my family. I would like to send my children to school until they graduate.”
Nan Lay is a 22-year-old woman from Burma. She works as a medic at a clinic near her village. In her free time, she enjoys reading health-related books to gain more knowledge on the work she does. In 2014, while she was attending the medic training at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), she had a fever which was followed by pain in her back and her right abdomen. Although she had ultrasound done at the clinic, the result showed normal. She was just treated for urinary tract infection, and she felt better after five days. In 2016, she again experienced pain in her abdomen but this time was on the left side. She went to a clinic in Taunggyi, Burma, where she again had an ultrasound imaging test. The result this time revealed a stone in her left ureter. The doctor told her to undergo surgery to remove the stone but because she could not afford the surgical cost 800,000 kyat (approx. 800 USD), she just asked for medication. Since then she had a few episode of severe abdominal pain, and she went to different hospitals in Burma to seek treatment but the doctors kept telling her that she needed surgery. One day in 2019, Nan Lay ran into a friend who also had the same kind of health condition as hers. Her friend told her about the assistance she received at Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) and advised her to ask for help there. Nan Lay then went to MTC, a partner organisation of BCMF. After confirming her diagnosis, MTC referred her to BCMF. Nan Lay still is experiencing back pain at the moment. She worries that her pain will increase when she has to travel. She has pain at her back and at suprapubic area, especially when she sits for a longer period of time and/or when she drinks insufficiently. Although she wants to continue learning and attending more training on medical and health, her health problem has limited her ability to finish her trainings. Nan Lay said, “After I recover from this condition, I will save money so that I can open a small shop, for my parents, to sell dry foods."
Ashraf is a baby from Tanzania. Ashraf’s mother only had a chance to study up to class seven. She successfully completed her primary education but she couldn’t continue with her studies due to financial challenges. Her father passed away the year she was still waiting for her results so that she can join secondary. She would have loved to be a nurse if she had the chance to continue with her studies. Ashraf’s grandmother having been left with six children to look after by herself, she decided to start small business of a hair salon and selling second hand clothes. She also did small scale farming of maize and vegetables with the help of all of her children. Through this she has been able to provide for them. Ashraf’s mother has been working on their farm with her siblings ever since. Ashraf’s mother had been in a relationship with Ashraf’s father for two months when she got pregnant, she informed Ashraf’s father but he denied that the pregnancy was not his and he stopped any kind of communication with Ashraf’s mother. Through the help of his grandmother, Ashraf’s mother was able to deliver safely Ashraf has clubfoot of both his feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Ashraf traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on October 08. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $890 to fund Ashraf's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily and wear shoes when he gets older. Ashraf’s mother says, “My family and I are unable to afford any of the surgeries my son needs please help support us to cover the treatment cost.”
Tina is a 59-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her family in a village in Myawaddy Township, Karen State. She stopped working five months ago because of her poor health and now, she looks after the household chores and takes care of her grandchildren. Both of her grandchildren go to school while her daughter works as a health worker in their village. Both Tina’s son and her son-in-law work as agricultural day labourers on different farms. In January 2019, Tina began to experience that her right eye started to hurt. These symptoms have made it increasingly difficult for she to see clearly. Tina was diagnosed with retinal detachment, a condition in which the retina pulls away from the supportive tissue in the eye, resulting in vision loss. If left untreated, she could lose vision completely. Tina is scheduled to undergo surgery to reattach her retina on September 20. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. After his surgery, Tina's vision will hopefully be restored, and she will resume her daily activities comfortably. She is not able to sleep well because she worries about her condition. “When I have free time, I weave bags for my grandchildren,” said Tina. “I hope that I will feel better soon so that I can go back to work and pay back my debt.”
Muntha is an 80-year-old mother of four from Cambodia. She has fifteen grandchildren, and enjoys listening to the radio, watching Khmer movies on television, and looking after her grandchildren. One year ago, Muntha developed a cataract in each eye, causing her blurry vision, tearing, and photophobia. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Muntha learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for half an hour seeking treatment. On August 7, doctors will perform a small incision cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $398 procedure. She says, "I hope that my surgery will allow me to see again and be able to take care of my grandchildren."
Wycliff is a student from Kenya. He 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, Wycliff traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on June 28. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,224 to fund Wycliff's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily.
Begaelle is a baby from Haiti. Begaelle lives in Port-au-Prince with her parents and grandparents; she is her parents' first child. She was born with two holes in her heart: a ventricular septal defect, between the two lower chambers, and an atrial septal defect, between the two upper chambers. As a result, blood cannot circulate properly through her body, leaving her sick and short of breath. Begaelle will fly to India to receive treatment. On August 22, she will undergo cardiac surgery. Another organization, Rotary International, is contributing $8,000 to pay for surgery. Begaelle'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 Begaelle's family overseas.