Cuong joined Watsi on August 29th, 2016. Seven years ago, Cuong joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Cuong's most recent donation traveled 7,200 miles to support Mu Yeh, is a 23 year old refugee from Thailand, to fund a procedure needed to remove a mass in her breast.
Cuong has funded healthcare for 83 patients in 13 countries.
Cuong has funded healthcare for 83 patients in 13 countries.
Mu Yeh, a 23-year-old woman, resides in a refugee camp in Mae Hong Son Province, Thailand, along with her parents, brother, sister-in-law, and sister. Her parents run a snack-selling business from their home, while her brother and sister-in-law are currently unemployed. Mu Yeh's sister attends school within the camp, and she herself is a homemaker. In her leisure time, Mu Yeh finds joy in weaving traditional Karen ethnic clothes and visiting her relatives in the refugee camp. Each month, they receive 1,303 baht (approximately 43 USD) on a cash card from an organization called The Border Consortium. Additionally, they raise pigs which they sell when in need of extra cash. Despite their modest monthly income, it barely covers their daily expenses. Fortunately, they receive essential healthcare from Malteser International (MI) Thailand, which is provided free of charge in the refugee camp. In October 2022, Mu Yeh noticed a mass in her left breast. Initially, she dismissed it as normal, but by May 2023, the mass had grown and began causing her pain. Currently, Mu Yeh experiences considerable pain and discomfort in her left breast due to the large mass. The pain radiates towards the left side of her torso, making it difficult for her to carry anything heavy with her left hand. Seeking medical attention, she visited the hospital in the refugee camp, where the doctor referred her to Mae Sariang Hospital for further evaluation and treatment. On July 4th, with the assistance of MI staff, Mu Yeh underwent an ultrasound of both breasts. The results revealed cysts in her right breast and confirmed the presence of a mass in her left breast. Subsequently, she underwent a biopsy. During her follow-up appointment on July 18th, the doctor diagnosed her with fibroadenoma in her left breast and fibrocystic changes in her right breast. The doctor recommended removing the benign mass from her left breast under general anesthesia. Her surgery was scheduled for August 2nd. However, unable to afford the procedure, MI staff referred her to our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for financial assistance to access treatment. BCMF is now requesting $1500 to help fund the procedure Mu Yeh needs. Mu Yeh said, “In the future, I would like to become a medic. When there is training in the refugee camp, I will register because I would like to study medicine.”
Jefferson is a three-month-old baby boy from Haiti. He lives with his parents and one older brother. Jefferson has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain, increasing intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, the circumference of Jefferson's head has been increasing in size. Without treatment, Jefferson will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, Project Medishare, is requesting $897 to cover the cost of surgery at Hospital Bernard Mevs, which will treat Jefferson's hydrocephalus. This is the only site in the country where this care is currently available, and the procedure is scheduled to take place on February 14th. During surgery, excess fluid will be drained from Jefferson's brain, reducing the intracranial pressure, and greatly improving his quality of life. With proper treatment, Jefferson should develop into a strong and healthy young boy. The family is looking forward to Jefferson growing up happy and healthy.
Wine is a three-year-old boy who lives with his parents and siblings in Karen State - an area of Burma that is in a state of crisis and conflict. Wine’s father is a construction day laborer and his mother stays at home with Wine and his siblings. Wine's older brother lives in Bangkok and his sister lives in Shan State and is able to send Wine's household money every month. His other four siblings are students. Wine was born in 2019 with a condition called hydrocephalus. Hydrocephalus is caused by a brain malformation or birth defect that causes excessive cerebrospinal fluid to accumulate in brain cavities. Cerebrospinal fluid is a clear, colorless liquid that surrounds the brain and spinal cord, protecting them from injury. It carries nutrients to the brain and spinal cord and takes away waste. In a healthy person, the amount of this fluid produced by the brain is absorbed by the body. In hydrocephalus, the fluid fails to drain and accumulates, leading to pressure on the brain. Wine's symptoms include a lump on the bridge of his nose. His eyes frequently water, and he cries a lot when he is in severe pain. Additionally, his head is gradually increasing in size as the fluid continues to build. The condition is most often treated by inserting a shunt. The shunt diverts excess cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) from the brain to another part of the body where the fluid can be reabsorbed. Wine visited a doctor when he was born to address the issue. While he was in the process of receiving treatment across the border at a hospital in Thailand, the Thai-Burma border shut down due to the outbreak of COVID-19. With the closure of the Thai-Burma border, Wine and his family could not go back to his follow-up care. Fortunately, after the Thai-Burma border reopened, Wine was able to meet with our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). Wine received a CT scan at Mae Sot General Hospital and the doctor was able to diagnose the issue and scheduled Wine to undergo surgery immediately on June 2nd. BCMF is now requesting $1,500 to help fund this procedure. Wine's mother said, "I want him to be able to walk, sit, and be healthy like other children his age. My husband and two of my children work, so I can take good care of Wine. I cry a lot whenever I see Wine suffering from pain, but now I feel like I no longer have to shed a tear for him because of that. I don’t want to be rich, nor do I want him to be rich. I only want Wine to be healthy and happy."
Miheretu is a sweet nine month old boy, who loves to play with his mother and other children. Miheretu's father works as a day laborer, while his mother stays at home to care for their children. Sadly, the family's income is insufficient to supply adequate food for the children, leaving Miheretu nutritionally deprived. Due to the concerns of his doctors, Miheretu underwent a colostomy for what was determined to be Hirschsprung's Disease. This is a condition that is present at birth, in which the baby's colon is missing necessary nerve cells. Without these cells, the muscles of Miheretu's gut cannot move contents through his colon, which can result in the contents backing up and causing a bowel blockage. After the colostomy, Miheretu's parents brought him back home, as they were unable to pay for the additional medical care that he needs. Thanks to the intervention of a local charitable organization, Miheretu was brought to BethanyKids Myungsung Christian Medical Centre, where on January 5th, doctors from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, will perform a Hirschsprung Pull Through. During this procedure, doctors will remove the damaged section of Miheretu's colon, which will alleviate the bowel obstruction, and allow for normal colon function. Miheretu's parents cannot afford the $1,500 cost of the surgery, and are looking to you for help. Miheretu's mother says: “If my child gets the surgery and recovers, I will give thanks to God in front of all church members and tell my testimony. I will take care of him to the best of my capacity. I want him to get an education and to get married one day.”
Zaw, who is 29 years old, lives with his wife and extended family members in Karen State, Burma. He and his wife are currently unemployed, although Zaw hopes to work as a second-hand motorbike seller. Zaw has had an irregular heartbeat since he was 10 years old. Although he visited a local clinic as a child, he was never provided a definitive diagnosis. By January 2022, he began to experience fatigue. His back and neck were stiff, and he lost his appetite. He also had difficulty sleeping, experienced a persistent cough and body aches, and his lips turned blue. After multiple hospital visits, Zaw was told he had a heart condition that required surgery. Unable to afford surgery in Burma, Zaw sought affordable care at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) in Thailand. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, he received a free echocardiogram, which revealed he had mitral valve regurgitation, atrial valve regurgitation, pulmonary valve regurgitation, and patent ductus arteriosus. He is now scheduled for a procedure at Kasemrad Prachachuen Hospital in Bangkok on April 18th to repair or replace three of his valves and address any other issues with his heart. Currently, Zaw continues to experience fatigue, thus he is unable to work. He experiences shortness of breath and a racing heartbeat, for which he requires oxygen therapy three times a day. He needs your help to raise the $1,500 to fund his life-changing surgery. Zaw said: “I want to be free from this disease as soon as possible. Thank you all for helping with my treatment cost.”
Alex is an 11-year-old pupil from Kenya who is the elder of two siblings. His mother is a housewife while his father works as a casual laborer at construction sites. Due to his clubfoot, which causes his left foot to be twisted out of shape, Alex tiptoes when he walks, cannot walk for long distances, and currently stays home with his mother. He has difficulty walking and wearing shoes. Fortunately, Alex and his family traveled to visit our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, where surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on March 14th. African Mission Healthcare Foundation is requesting $1,286 to help support Alex's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk comfortably and return to school. “I am appealing for support from well-wishers to help my son undergo surgery and I will appreciate it,” Alex's mother said.
Jocelyn is a loving mother of four from Philippines. She works as a bookkeeper, and her husband works as a part-time sidecar driver while also looking after their children. Despite their hard work, their combined income is just enough for the family's daily needs. Three years ago, Jocelyn began to experience troubling symptoms, including episodes of epigastric pain. Worried about their finances, she chose to defer her checkup. Unfortunately, the symptoms worsened as she began to experience difficulty of breathing, and persistent vomiting. She was brought to the nearest hospital to be given emergency care. The doctor told her to have an abdominal ultrasound. The test showed that she was suffering from gallstones, which can no longer be treated with medicines. Jocelyn has been advised to undergo a cholecystectomy, the surgical removal of the gallbladder. If left untreated, her symptoms will continue to worsen and put him at risk for further health complications in the future. After seeking treatment through our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP), Jocelyn is scheduled to undergo a cholecystectomy on February 17th. A portion of the cost of the procedure is being supported by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and WSFP is raising the remaining $1,128 to cover the cost of Jocelyn's surgery and care. Jocelyn shared, "I'd like to thank WATSI and World Surgical Foundation Philippines for sponsoring my surgery. May you continue helping people who are financially incapable of paying for their surgeries. You are an answered prayer!"
Hla is a 43-year-old woman, living with her husband, son and daughter in a village in Thailand. Seven months ago, Hla and her family were forced to flee Karen State, Burma, because of the fighting that was taking place there. Both Hla and her husband worked as agricultural day laborers, but due to Hla's health, only her husband is working now. Two years ago, Hla felt a small mass in her left breast. The mass wasn't painful, so she decided not to seek treatment. A few months ago, the mass started to increase in size, and it became painful. In addition, puss has developed at the site of the mass. Doctors want Hla 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. It is hoped that this scan will help doctors diagnose her condition, and enable them to formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Hla's CT scan and care, scheduled for September 5th, at Mae Sot General Hospital. Hla said: "I feel so sad that I cannot work since my condition worsened. I have to depend on my husband's income, which is hardly enough for this month. Thank you to all the donors who are willing to help pay for my expensive scan."
Paw is 52-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband, two daughters and son-in-law in a refugee camp. She and her husband are homemakers, while her eldest daughter and son-in-law are teachers. Her youngest daughter is a student. She has cataracts and she has blurred vision in both of her eyes. Because of her poor vision, she has difficulty walking around the refugee camp and she has had to stop weaving and selling traditional Karen clothes from her home-region of Burma. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Paw. On December 29th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Paw's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. "I hope that my treatment will be successful. I want to be able to see well. I want to continue weaving clothes in the future, and I want to live with my family for the rest of my life,” she said.
Na is a 54-year-old homemaker from Thailand. She lives with her husband and her niece in a refugee camp. Her husband is a mechanic and her niece helps her with household chores since her vision worsened. In her free time, she likes to pray and listen to the news. She also enjoys helping her husband repair bicycles and motorcycles. Na has cataracts. The vision in her right eye is very blurry and she can only perceive light with her left eye. Her niece now has to do most of the household chores since her vision is so poor. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund eye surgery for Na. On November 27, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Na'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. "I have no children to take care of me and my husband," Na said. "Because of this, I want to receive surgery as soon as possible so that I can recover."
Shem is a 14-year-old student from Kenya who is studying in class seven. He is the youngest in his family of eleven. Shem's parents practice small-scale farming of maize, and his older siblings work labor jobs to help provide for the family. A few weeks ago, Shem was injured playing football and fractured his lower tibia and fibula. He is experiencing pain and cannot use his leg, which is preventing him from being able to go to school, play with friends, and help his family at home. Shem needs to undergo surgery to heal, and his family requests assistance with the surgery costs. Happily, Shem was able to visit our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), for assistance. On November 1st, he will undergo a fracture repair procedure called an open reduction and internal fixation. Upon recovery, Shem will be able to use his leg again, allowing him to attend school and participate in activities with friends and at home. AMH is requesting $1,145 to help fund this procedure. Shem shared, "It has been hard to carry out my normal duties, especially going to school. I really look forward to getting well so that I can fully depend on myself as before."
Titus is a hardworking 24-year-old from Kenya. He is the only child to his single mother, who sells tea and porridge at the market. Due to their financial situation, Titus was compelled to drop out of high school and do casual labor jobs to support his mother. Together with his mother, they live in his uncles’ home who is a small-scale farmer. Titus also helps his uncle with farm work. A month ago, Titus fell at work and his hand was cut by a sharp object. Titus went to a nearby facility where his wound was sutured because the fracture was open, and a splint was applied in order to stabilize the fracture. Now he cannot work using his hand and therefore he depends entirely on his mother. When he realized that there was no improvement of his injury, Titus visited a nearby facility where he was referred to our medical partner's care center Kapsowar Hospital. On physical examination, the surgeon told him that he required an urgent surgery in order to repair his tendon and fix his fracture which had taken time to heal. Titus has no medical insurance and is worried about how he can pay for the care he needs. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On September 27th, Titus will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. Titus will be able to go back to his work and continue to earn a living. He will be able to assist his mother. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $941 to fund this procedure. Titus says, “I get my income through working with my hands. Now that I cannot use them, I feel so bad. I don’t want to burden my mother who is also struggling. Kindly help me.”