MICHELLE joined Watsi on January 31st, 2017. Four years ago, MICHELLE joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. MICHELLE's most recent donation supported Naw Lah, a 24-year-old pregnant woman from Thailand, to fund a safe Caesarean section for her new baby.
MICHELLE has funded healthcare for 40 patients in 11 countries.
MICHELLE has funded healthcare for 40 patients in 11 countries.
Naw Lah is a 24-year-old woman who lives in a refugee camp in Northern Thailand. She is 40 weeks pregnant with her first child. She recently went into labor and was brought to our medical partner's care center by Malteser International (MI) Thailand staff. The doctor there initially expected her to deliver the baby vaginally, but when labor stopped progressing, the obstetrician suspected that her baby was in distress. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) is helping Naw Law to deliver her baby safely. On August 25th, she will undergo an emergency C-Section at BCMF's care center. Now, she needs help raising $1,500 to fund her procedure and care.
Sophanha is a six-month-old baby who has an older brother and sister. His father and 20-year-old brother operate a coffee stand outside a factory, and his sister is a 17-year-old high school student. His mother stays home to take care of Sophanha right now. When he was born, Sophanha was diagnosed with Erb's palsy on his left arm and hand. This leads to weakness, loss of function and sensation so that the young boy is unable to lift his arm or use his hand. Sophanha traveled with his family to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On July 29th, he will undergo surgery that will help him be able to use his hand in the future as he grows up. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is requesting $696 to fund this procedure. Sophanha's mother shares, "I am glad my baby can get this surgery, and I hope he can use his arm soon and grow strong."
Mengsim is a 49-year-old tour guide from Cambodia. He is married and lives in the province with his wife and two sons. Mengsim's wife sells soft drinks from their home. In December 2020, Mengsim was in a car accident that caused paralysis of his right hand. This injury, a branchial plexus nerve injury, can cause him to lose feeling and control of his shoulder, arm, and hand. Mengsim is unable to lift his arm and he cannot work. Mengsim traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On June 23rd, he will undergo a brachial plexus repair surgery. After recovery, He will be able to use his arm again. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $696 to fund this procedure. Mengsim shares, "I am thankful that I will be able to return to work when my arm heals so I can support my family."
Veronica is a cheerful, married 29-year-old mother of two children. Veronica shared that she left school in primary school, because her parents could not afford her school fees. Her husband earns a living through helping people lift heavy luggage at a local bus station, and he also does a variety of other jobs when he has the opportunity. Veronica enjoys spending time with her two children, ages two and four; they give her joy and fulfillment as a mother. Her family lives in a one-bedroom rented house. In 2009, Veronica developed a swelling on her neck. She ignored it, thinking it would soon go away, but in 2014, the swelling grew. In 2015, she was diagnosed with a goiter, or enlarged thyroid, and surgery was recommended. As the goiter continues to grow, she has experienced coughing, difficulty breathing and difficulty swallowing. She can no longer sing in church or carry heavy things on her head, and she shared that she can no longer eat hard foods like msima, a Malawian staple. Veronica also told us that the condition has changed her appearance and has impacted her self-esteem. Veronica has visited the government hospital more than 15 times since her diagnosis, but her surgery was always rescheduled. Two weeks ago, she went to a different hospital and was referred to our medical partner's care center, where a surgeon recommended a thyroidectomy. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Veronica receive treatment. On May 25th, Veronica will undergo a thyroidectomy at AMH's care center. Now, AMH is requesting $1,015 to fund her procedure. The surgery is expected to improve her life and heal her symptoms. With a hopeful smile, Veronica shared, “I am overwhelmed with this opportunity to be sponsored for this operation. After the operation, I hope to live normally and care for my children properly. I believe I should be able to eat hard msima [the Malawi staple food] or raw cassava and potatoes which I now miss greatly. I look forward to sleeping without struggles after this surgery, much appreciation!”
Edward is a 10-year-old student and a bright boy who loves to play. He's the third child of four in his family. On April 13th, Edward was out playing with his friends. He climbed a tree and unfortunately, he fell and fractured his right hand. He was brought to a local hospital and the surgeon recommended surgery to make sure he heals. If not treated, Edward may not be able to use his hand. Fortunately, surgeons at African Mission Healthcare (AMH) can help. On April 29th, Edward will undergo a fracture repair procedure called an open reduction and internal fixation. After surgery, Edward will be able to use his hand and resume his normal daily activities. Now, AMH is requesting $1,049 to fund this procedure. Edward's brother shared, “we don’t want our brother to have a deformity of the hand. Unfortunately, we can't afford to pay for his surgery as we do casual jobs for our daily meals. Please help us so that Edward can be well before the schools open.”
Em is a 25-year-old Chinese language teacher with two brothers and four sisters. Em's parents are farmers in the province. One year ago, Em started a job in the city teaching Chinese at a primary school. In his free time, he enjoys watching Youtube, fishing, and visiting his parents to help on the farm. When he was 10, Em 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, Em experiences hearing loss, headache, and discharge. It is difficult for him to hear and communicate with his students. Em traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 15th, he will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in his 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. Em said, "I hope after surgery my ear will be better so I can be free of my headaches and pain."
Evans is a 14-year-old student from Kenya who wants to be a ship captain when he grows up. He says that the idea of sailing through the waters and commanding the vessels excites him. Evans is the youngest in a family of four children born to a single mother who passed away in 2007. He and his siblings rely on relatives for school fees and everyday needs. In 2017, Evans was diagnosed with a condition called pelviureteric junction obstruction which restricts the flow of urine from the renal pelvis to the ureter and causes infections. Evans' pain has fluctuated over time, but has become persistent since the beginning of this year. He visited our medical partner's care center for examination and doctors recommended that he undergo pyeloplasty surgery to get rid of the kidney obstruction. If left untreated, his condition could lead to progressive renal deterioration. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $616 to fund Evans' surgery, scheduled for February 25th. Evans' aunt shared, "This consistent illness is really draining him. At times, the pain is so bad that he is unable to go to school. This surgery will be really helpful."
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.”
Brian is a 12-year-old boy from Kenya and the last born in a family of three children. Eleven months ago, Brian started experiencing some pain in his lower abdominal area. The pain would come and go after a few minutes. After a few weeks of enduring the pain, he opened up to his elder brother about what he was experiencing. Though Brian was hesitant to tell his father, Brian's brother talked to their father so that Brian could seek treatment for his condition. Upon visiting a nearby facility for examination, the doctor diagnosed Brian with a right inguinal hernia. However, the facility could not offer the surgical intervention required, so the physician referred Brian to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center BethanyKids Hospital for treatment. The hernia repair surgery Brian needs will relieve him of the pain and help him return to his normal life activities. This procedure is too costly for Brian and his family. His father is a bodaboda (motorcycle taxi) driver and his mother operates a small grocery shop. The income generated from both businesses is not enough for the family to pay for his surgery, so their family appeals for financial help. Fortunately, on December 31st, Brian will undergo a hernia repair surgery at our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $444 to fund Brian's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Brian’s father shared, "Knowing about Brian’s condition, I am afraid that without the surgical intervention, my son will not be well again. From our side, we are not able to raise any amount of money to cater for his surgery, so we have requested financial support."
Wai is a 33-year-old homemaker from Thailand. She lives with her husband, son, and daughter on the border of Thailand. She is a homemaker, and her husband is a day laborer. Since Wai injured her left eye, her husband had to stop working to look after their children, since her son has a heart condition and her daughter has asthma. Since a young boy accidentally shot her in the left eye with a slingshot, Wai's left eye has been in pain. Her left pupil is covered by a white spot, and she also cannot see clearly. Wai feels stressed and depressed about her eye, and she has lost her appetite. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a lens replacement surgery for Wai. On October 27th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Wai's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Wai shared, “I will try to be a good mother and make sure my children receive an education because I do not want my children to be uneducated like me. If I get better, I will always bring and pick up my children from school. I will look after them full time so that my husband can go back to work and save money.”
Nay Toe is a seven-year-old boy from Burma. He was recently diagnosed with hydrocephalus, which has caused fluid to build up in his brain. Without immediate surgery to alleviate the intracranial pressure that the excess fluid is causing, he is at risk of developing severe, potentially fatal medical complications. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund the insertion of a ventriculoperitoneal shunt for Nay Toe, which will drain the fluid that has accumulated in his brain. The procedure is scheduled to take place on June 21, and, once completed, will greatly improve Nay Toe's quality of life. Nay Toe said, “One day, I will be able to write, and I can become a teacher.”
Andrice is a student from Haiti. He lives with his parents and younger brother in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince; he is in the second grade. Andrice has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation. One of the four valves of his heart is severely damaged due to an infection he suffered earlier in childhood. As a result, his heart cannot properly circulate blood through his body. Andrice will fly to Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On May 27, he will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will attempt to repair his damaged mitral valve; if this is not possible, they will implant an artificial replacement. Another organization, The Mitral Foundation, is contributing $8,500 to pay for surgery. Andrice'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 Andrice's family overseas. His mother says, "Our family is praying for a successful surgery and for our son to become healthy."