Allan joined Watsi on November 7th, 2014. Five years ago, Allan became the 600th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,199 more people have become monthly donors! Allan's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Lazaru, a baby boy from Kenya, to fund anorectal malformation treatment.
Allan has funded healthcare for 64 patients in 12 countries.
Lazaru was diagnosed with an anorectal malformation a day after birth. This is a condition where Lazaru was born without an anal opening. While changing his diapers, his mother noticed that Lazaru had not passed stool since he was born. His abdomen was distended and he was quite irritable. A closer look confirmed that their son lacked an anal opening. This was unheard of and discreetly, his parents rushed him to the nearest hospital. Lazaru was further referred and a colostomy put in place when he was three days old. A second surgery would be needed later on to create an anal opening. The funds they had were exhausted and thus could not afford to pay for the subsequent surgery. A previous Watsi beneficiary from their village advised them to visit BethanyKids Hospital where they could get assistance. With hopes high, they set out. The creation of an anal opening is needed without which, Lazaru risks scarring at the colostomy site due to occasional leakages and infection. Lazaru lives with his parents and elder brother in a one-room traditional house in the Rift Valley region of Kenya. His parents are subsistence farmers and own a few goats. His family was also advised to apply for national health insurance to support future needs, which they did not know was possible. They are appealing for help towards their son’s surgical care. “A friend told us that we would get help from here and we are happy even for the warm reception,” says Lazaru’s mother.
Chit is a 39-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her daughter, mother-in-law, and her sister-in-law’s three children. Her husband has recently left the village to work in Bangkok so he could increase his income, especially since her condition has worsened. Since she became ill, she feels bored because she is unable to work. Around five months ago, Chit started to feel unwell with a stiff neck, headaches, and pain in her right eye. Soon after, she noticed that the black part of her right eye started to move inward toward the middle of her face, becoming crossed eyed. As soon as she noticed a change in her right eye, she went to a hospital to see a doctor about her condition. At the hospital, she underwent a CT scan of her head which showed normal findings. Therefore, the doctor just gave her an injection and oral medications. A week later, she decided to go see a local medic in her village because she felt like the medications were not helping. The medic looked at her medical test results, assessed her and said she might have a neurological condition. The medic gave her oral medication and another injection. She took the medication she received from the medic, and her symptoms subsided gradually. Chit's symptoms disappeared completely about 20 days ago, but this only lasted around 10 days because she noticed that the black part of her right eye had started to become white and the rest of her eye, normally white, started to turn red. She bought eye drops at a local medication stall, but they did not help. A few days later, she learned about Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), a charitable clinic, from one of her nephews. On January 11th, Chit visited MTC regarding her condition, and a medic explained that unfortunately her eye was not functional anymore and that it needed to be removed due to a severe infection. The medic also explained that if her right eye was not removed, the infection could spread to her left eye and cause the same problem. MTC then brought Chit to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) and the doctor there confirmed that her eye needs to be removed as soon as possible. Chit said, "It's upsetting to know that I need to have one of my eyes removed. But then, I feel that since the eye is bad, there is no sense in keeping it. In the future, if possible, I want to get a prosthetic eye."
Habibi is a sweet and very shy girl from Ethiopia. She loves to play with her best friend at home. Habibi has two brothers and five sisters, and she loves to take care of her three younger siblings. Her father is a daily laborer and he maintains his family with the little he earns. Her mom is a house wife. Habibi dropped out of school when she was in grade 1 as a result of her condition. Habibi 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. Habibi is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on January 9th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Habibi's procedure and care. After her recovery, Habibi will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Habibi’s father said, “It is my hope to see Habibi go to school and get educated after she gets treatment. I believe she will serve her community. She always says ‘I want to get treated go to school and be a doctor.’ That’s my prayer and hope for her. ”
Kyu is 38-year-old-woman from Burma. She owns a farm which she is able to rent out for 200,000 kyat (approx. 200 USD) for each season. In her free time, she enjoys doing housework such as cooking and cleaning. Kyu was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of the mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle that controls the flow of blood. Currently, Kyu has difficulty breathing, chest pain as well as pain in her neck. She also cannot walk fast or for long distances because she gets tired easily. Kyu is unable to sleep well for she worries about her condition. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Kyu. Once her treatment is completed, it will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. “If I feel better after surgery, I want to work and save money for my daughter,” said Kyu.
Sopheak is a 43-year-old housewife from Cambodia. She has three children and enjoys cooking and taking care of her kids in her free time. When she was three years old, Sopheak had an ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in her right ear to perforate. For this reason, Sopheak experiences discharge, smelliness, itchiness, hearing loss, and headaches. She suffers from hearing loss and worries about her condition every day. Sopheak traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On September 6th, she will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in her right ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $423 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. "I hope that after my operation, the infection will go away and my hearing will improve."
Eh is a 22-year-old woman from Thailand. She was born and lives her parents and younger brother in Mae La Refugee Camp. Her younger brother studies at the bible school at the camp. Eh used to attend the same school as a third-year student, but she had to stop studying when her health deteriorated. Eh's father is a homemaker, and her mother works for the department of health at the camp. In 2017, Eh started to become more tired and began to have difficulty breathing. Her mother took her to the clinic in the camp and the doctor listened to her heart, did an electrocardiogram (ECG) and told Eh’s mother that Eh has a heart disease. She was then referred to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. Eh was not told anything about her condition, and the doctor only informed her parents without telling her. Eh had an echocardiogram (echo) at MSH in December 2018. After the echo, she travelled back and forward several times from Mae La refugee camp to MSH for medical follow-up visits. Finally, the doctor at MSH informed her that she needs surgery. Currently, Eh has dizziness, headaches, tiredness and sometimes experiences difficulty breathing. She sleeps well but has lost her appetite and she sometimes suffers from chest pain. She loves reading and playing football and volleyball in her free time. Eh was born with ventricular septal defect, a cardiac condition in which a hole exists between the two lower chambers of the heart. Blood leaks through this hole without first passing through his lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving him sick and short of breath. Eh is scheduled to undergo heart surgery on October 5th to correct her condition and improve her quality of life. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Eh's procedure and care. Eh said, “All my classmate graduated, and I want to as well, but I am tired of studying and when I think about this, I cry”.
Simon is a child from Tanzania. He is the second born child to a family of four children. Simon’s parents depend on small scale farming of maize, beans and cassavas for their living. Simon 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, Simon has been experiencing an increasing head circumference and inter-cranial pressure. Without treatment, Simon will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $728 to cover the cost of surgery for Simon that will treat his hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on September 2nd and will drain the excess fluid from Simon's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Simon will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Simon’s mother says, “My son was doing so well after the surgery but now he is going through a lot of pain, he can’t eat well please help my son.”
Chang is a 41-year-old market seller from Cambodia. She has one son, one daughter, and enjoys cooking for her children and doing the housework in her spare time. Four years ago, Chang had an 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, Chang experiences hearing loss, infection, discharge, and headaches. She is not able to hear properly and experiences daily discomfort. Chang traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On August 5, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in her left ear. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $842 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. She says, "I hope that my surgery is successful and that my ear will heal and my hearing will improve."
Sue is a 48-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her mother, husband and son in Hlaingbwe Township, Karen State. Sue and her husband are farmers. Sue has a kidney stone. She has been advised to undergo a cholecystectomy, the surgical removal of the gallbladder. If left untreated, Sue's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. After seeking treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Sue is scheduled to undergo her cholecystectomy on July 3. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Sue's procedure and care. Sue said, “I would like to become healthy again, so that I can be able to work and support my family.”
Choy is a 20-year-old football player from Cambodia. He has three brothers and one sister, and takes care of his mother during the daytime. When he was nine, Choy had an ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in his right ear to perforate. For this reason, Choy experiences fever, discharge, itchiness, headache. He cannot hear clearly, and this affects his ability communicate well with others. Choy traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On June 06, he will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in his right ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $423 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. He says, "I hope that surgery will help to improve my hearing and stop the ear discharge."
Alfred is a casual laborer from Kenya. He is the father of a young baby. About two weeks ago, Alfred was in grisly road accident that left him with injuries. He is not able to walk on his own and he is in a lot of pain. He is not able to work and provide for his family. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On May 3, Alfred will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. He will be able to go back to work and care for his family. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,451 to fund this procedure. Alfred says, “I am in much pain and appeal for financial assistance. Once healed I will get a job to provide for my family."
Letiya is a child from Tanzania. He is five years old and the youngest in his family. Letiya was diagnosed with windswept deformity, which means his legs are bowed at the knees. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. As a result, he experiences pain and difficulty walking. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $940 to fund corrective surgery for Letiya. The procedure is scheduled to take place on April 4. Treatment will hopefully restore Letiya's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Letia’s mother says, “I really wanted to treat my son but the cost turned out to be very high for us to afford please help us.”