OTTER joined Watsi on August 25th, 2015. Four years ago, OTTER became the 1753rd member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 4,039 more people have become monthly donors! OTTER's most recent donation traveled 6,900 miles to support Win, a mother from Burma, to fund a heart valve replacement.
OTTER has funded healthcare for 59 patients in 12 countries.
Win is a 49-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her husband and four sons. Two of her sons are distant learners at university while her husband and two other sons work as masons. However, her husband had to stop working to look after the housework when she was no longer able to do so. Win was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of her mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. Currently, Win feels tired, has no appetite, cannot sleep well nor walk longer distances. She also has a headache, chest pains, and tingling and numbness in her extremities. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Win. The treatment is scheduled to take place on March 11th and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. Win said, “When I recover from my illness, I will go back to doing the housework so that my husband can also go back to work.’’
Naw Htee is a 30-year-old woman from Thailand. In 2006, Naw Htee and her family fled from Karen State, Burma to Thailand because there were conflicts between the armed groups and the country's military in their village. She now lives in a refugee camp with her family. In 2010, Naw Htee felt a severe toothache while she and her parents were visiting her village in Burma. She went to the nearest local clinic, where she had her molar teeth extracted. After the procedure, Naw Htee was in extreme pain; she could not even open her mouth as she used to. She was told that pain after tooth extraction is normal and that the pain will be diminished if she takes painkillers. Naw Htee tolerated the pain and hoped for the pain to be gone. Since then, Naw Htee could barely open her mouth. Naw Htee was too afraid to tell about her condition to anyone. She carried this burden for almost 9 years, until she decided to seek help. She then visited the clinic in the refugee camp. After trying oral medication and since her condition remained the same, she was referred to Mae Sariang General Hospital (MSGH) in July 2019. There, she received an x-ray, and the doctor diagnosed her with Ankylosis of the Temporamandibular joint [TMJ], stiffness of a joint due to abnormal adhesion and rigidity of the bones of the joint of jaw. She was then referred on to Chiang Mai Hospital (CMH) as MSGH does not have capacity to treat her condition. Once at CMH, the doctor told Naw Htee that she needs to undergo a special x-ray prior to receiving treatment. Doctors want Naw Htee 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 her condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $469 to cover the cost of Naw Htee's CT scan and care, scheduled for February 5th. Naw Htee mentioned, “I wanted to be a healthy, strong and supportive mother, even without the support of their father.”
Chheng is a 50-year-old clothes seller from Cambodia. She enjoys cooking for her family, including one son and one daughter, and likes to watch television in her free time. For the last ten years, Chheng has suffered from swelling and pain in her left knee. She was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in her left knee and cannot stand for a long period of time, and now has difficulty walking comfortably. Fortunately, Chheng learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. At CSC, surgeons can perform a total knee replacement to relieve Chheng of her pain and allow her to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for January 6th, and Chheng needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. I hope that I will no longer be in any pain, and I will be able to walk well again and return to my work," Chheng said.
Brian is 16 years old and the second born in a family of four children in Kenya. His mother used to look after the cerebral palsy children at the cerebral palsy society of Kenya but is currently at home while his father is a hawker in Nairobi. Brian was born without any complications but at the age of one he suffered from malaria and while on treatment the doctors confirmed he had cerebral palsy. He can neither walk nor sit upright. His mother often takes him to a therapy session 3 times a week to avoid stiffness of his hand and leg. “Last week Brian started crying uncontrollably. I noticed a swelling on his hip and we immediately took him to Mama Lucy Kibaki hospitals. An x-ray was taken and showed a fracture on his femur, so we were referred to CURE hospital for specialized care,” Brian’s mother told us. Currently Brian is in pain and discomfort as he cannot stretch his foot further. Fortunately, he is scheduled to undergo hip repair surgery. This treatment will be good as it will stabilize and heal the broken bone as well as re-align the bone. It will enhance his mobility once he heals and reduce his pain. Brian's father shared, “I am kindly requesting for support; my joy would be to see my son without pain and walking like other children. God bless you."
Phearum is a three-year-old boy from Cambodia. He has two older brothers, and enjoys playing with his toy cars and watching cartoons. Two years ago, Phearum suffered from burn injuries to his right hand after accidentally coming into contact with an open flame. His wounds have healed but his skin has tightened and he is unable to fully flex for bend his finger. When Phearum learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for two hours seeking treatment. On September 9th, surgeons at CSC will perform a burn contracture release surgery to help him move and flex his fingers without difficulty. Now, he needs help to fund this $448 procedure. "I hope that my son will be able to move his fingers and write when he is older, and I won't have to worry about his condition. - Phearum's Mother
Susan is a housewife from Kenya. She is a mother of six children who are grown up with their own families. But since she could not give them a good education they are also struggling to sustain their families. Susan does not work she is a house wife and the husband is a small scale farmer. Susan has been alright until 26th July 2019 when she slipped and fell. She was taken to hospital and an x-ray done showed she had closed fracture right radius/ulna bones. It is difficult for her to use her hand and she is in chronic pain Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On October 03, Susan will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help her work again Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $998 to fund this procedure. “I love my wife and she has been very helpful to me and the family. I hate to see how she is suffering and kindly ask for help” said Susan’s husband.
Kry is a 58-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She has six children, eight grandchildren, and enjoys listening to the monks pray on the radio in her free time. Four years ago, Kry developed a cataract in her left eye, causing her blurry and cloudy vision. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going anywhere outside. When Kry learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three hours seeking treatment. On July 3, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in her left eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $211 procedure. She says, "I hope that after my surgery I will be able to plant crops near my home and will be able to go anywhere I want to independently."
Farkia is a baby from Tanzania. Farkia is a second born child in a family of two children, her mother says she is a happy and very active baby. Farkia’s father works as a casual labor looking for day jobs and her mother is a stay home mother. Farkia has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of her condition, Farkia has been experiencing an increasing head circumference. Without treatment, Farkia will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,238 to cover the cost of surgery for Farkia that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on September 2nd and will drain the excess fluid from Farkia's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Farkia will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Farkia’s mother says, “I got so worried once I heard that I could not deliver normal, I knew then that something is wrong. I know that my child needs this surgery but I cannot afford to give her that, please help me be able to save my daughter’s life."
Nasomi is a child from Tanzania. For two years, Nasomi has been experiencing difficulty breathing. Nasomi was recently diagnosed with enlarged tonsils, which, if not treated, will cause his symptoms to persist and possibly intensify over time. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $633 to fund a tonsillectomy for Nasomi, which is scheduled to take place on July 19. Surgeons will remove his tonsils, hopefully relieving Nasomi of his symptoms and helping him live more comfortably. Nasomi’s uncle says, “My nephew has been struggling to breathe for years please help him we can’t afford his treatment cost.”
Ngwe is a 72-year-old retired widow from Burma. She lives with her daughter, her son-in-law, and her two grandsons. Ngwe has an abdominal mass that causes her discomfort. Ngwe sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. She is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on July 5. She is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care.
Vorn is a woman from Cambodia. In November 2018, Vorn suffered injuries to her elbow when she fell trying to lift her father from his bed. She went to Ror Meas Hek Health Center for treatment, but she still experiences difficulty flexing her elbow. Surgery will allow her bones to heal in alignment and mobilize movement in her elbow. A reduction procedure is scheduled for April 30 and will cost $390. She says, "I hope that after my surgery, I will be able to bend my elbow without pain or difficulty and go back to work."
Elizabeth is a housewife from Kenya. In February 2019, Elizabeth fell and sustained a fracture in her right leg. It is difficult for her to walk and she is in chronic pain Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On May 13, Elizabeth will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him walk easily again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $998 to fund this procedure. “I plead for help so that I can continue with my life and support my family,” says Elizabeth.