Fidel joined Watsi on April 7th, 2014. Eight years ago, Fidel joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Fidel's most recent donation traveled 8,800 miles to support Srey Nath, a bright student and future teacher from Cambodia, to fund life-changing spinal surgery.
Fidel has funded healthcare for 86 patients in 11 countries.
Fidel has funded healthcare for 86 patients in 11 countries.
Srey Nath is a bright young student who loves to read books and wants to be a teacher when she grows up. She has two older brothers and lives with her parents who are rainy day rice farmers. They also grow vegetables and keep cows and chickens to feed their family and make extra money at the local market. Over the past several years, Srey Nath's back has curved which limits her movement and lung expansion. She has trouble standing up straight or walking, and is easily winded when she is active due to difficulty expanding her lungs. She shared that she feels embarrassed with her friends and very shy about how her back looks. She loves school but doesn't want to attend now because of the abnormal curvature of her spine, and the chronic pain it causes. Srey Nath's neighbors told her family to visit our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre for a diagnosis and treatment. Surgeons have diagnosed her with scoliosis of the thoracic spine. She needs expanding rods in her back to straighten her spine as she grows to avoid any further medical problems. Srey Nath and her parents traveled two and a half hours to seek treatment and need help raising $1,500 for this specialty surgery. Srey Nath's mother said: "My daughter needs this surgery to grow normally and become a teacher. I hope we can raise the money so she can fulfill her dream someday."
Sambath is a 42-year-old soldier who now lives in a rural province of Cambodia with his mother. In his free time Sambath enjoys reading books, watching TV, listening to music, and meeting with friends. One year ago Sambath began experiencing pain in both hips. Now he has difficulty walking. Sambath was evaluated by doctors and due to the osteonecrosis in his hips, where his bones break down due to lack of blood flow, a total hip replacement surgery is recommended to restore his mobility. Fortunately, Sambath learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. At CSC, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Sambath of his pain and allow him to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for November 23rd, and Sambath needs help raising $1,087 to pay for this procedure. Sambath says, "I really hope that the pain will go away and I can walk easily again."
Phally is a 41-year-old vegetable farmer. She is the oldest in a family of five children, including two sisters and two brothers. Phally lives with one of her sisters. When she is at home, she likes to watch movies on TV. Over ten years ago, Phally had an ear infection that caused a cholesteatoma, or an abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. For this reason, Phally experiences hearing loss, tinnitus, and ear discharge. Fortunately, our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), is helping Phally receive treatment. On October 28th, she will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure at CSC's care center. During this procedure, ENT surgeons will remove the cholesteatoma. Now, CSC is requesting $925 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Phally shared, "I hope my ear infections and pain will stop. I want to return to the rice field to earn money and be able to hear people well."
Hashim is a seven-year-old student and the third-born child in his family of three children. Hashim started his primary school education early this year and he is currently in grade one. His mother is concerned he may have learning challenges as he has delayed talking in comparison to his younger sibling. Hashim’s mother is a single mom who works hard selling vegetables for a living. Hashim has been diagnosed with bilateral genu varus, where his legs bow outward so that his knees do not touch. 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 gets tied after a short walk and experiences pain. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Hashim. The procedure is scheduled to take place on October 7th. Treatment will hopefully restore Hashim's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Hashim’s mother says “It is through people’s kindness, help, and support for us to make it here to Plaster house. Please help my son.”
Kidus is a cute baby boy who loves to walk. His dad enjoys walking with him and holding his hand, and Kidus loves it when his mom carries him on her back. He also loves to watch cartoons. Kidus's dad and mom love each other so much and have a happy life together. Kidus's father is a tailor. His income is very limited and barely enough to sustain the family through the month, but love fills their home, and their lives, with happiness. When Kidus was born his parents learned that he had bladder exstrophy, a rare condition where children are born with an open bladder. His parents faced a challenge that they did not expect in their life, but they are facing it with courage. Kidus needs surgery to perform a procedure to divert his urination to the anal opening & make a pouch bladder from the bowel. He will undergo this surgery on September 28th with our medical partner African Mission Healthcare (AMH) and his family needs $1,500 for the procedure. Kidus's dad said, “For thirteen days after his birth we worked hard to get him treatment but no one in the health centres could help us. Some health workers gave us hope and some health workers did not give us any hope." He is hopeful for after surgery, “After he gets his surgery and recovers I want to tell him the truth about his condition and what we went through as a result of it when he grows up. Also, I want to tell him how he got the treatment, about the people who helped him, how God helped him and gave him this healthy life. I will tell him this so he grows up grateful and he lives to support and help others. I want him to be good and caring and God-fearing. I want him to be there for others. I believe kindness is contagious.”
Chhanny is a 31-year-old car mechanic from Cambodia. He has been married for five years but does not have any children yet. He likes to play volleyball and football, and listen to romantic music. In April of 2018, Chhanny was in a motor vehicle accident that caused a fracture. He went across the border to Vietnam for treatment, then returned to Cambodia. Chhanny visited a clinic where doctors inserted hardware to heal his fracture. Now, the bone has healed and Chhanny needs to have the hardware removed. His neighbors shared with him that he should come to our medical partner's care center for the treatment he needed. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, can help. On August 3rd, Chhanny will undergo a hardware removal procedure, which will cost $230. This procedure will help him walk easily again. CSC is requesting $230 to fund this surgery. Chhanny hopes that the hardware will be removed and his wound will heal quickly.
Naing is a 46-year-old-man who lives with his mother, wife, sister, son and two daughters in Karen State in the border area of Burma. Naing used to work in a teashop as a baker but stopped four years ago when his health deteriorated. His son is also unemployed, unable to find work ever since the COVID-19 pandemic broke out in Burma more than a year ago. They all rely on Naing’s wife, who works as a vendor in the market, to get by. She earns about 150,000 kyat (approx. 150 USD) a month, which they shared is not enough to cover their household expenses. In 2014, Naing received surgery for a right inguinal hernia with the help of his employer. Then, four years ago in 2017, he noticed that he had a small lump on his left side. Over time, the small lump increased in size and shifted downwards, causing pain and discomfort that made it impossible for Naing to continue working at the teashop. Although Naing knew that he most likely is having another hernia, since he was experiencing the same symptoms as before, he did not have enough money to pay for surgery. Therefore, he tried to cope with the pain and discomfort without treatment. In June, Naing’s friend advised for him to go to Ananda Myitta Clinic, a charity clinic in his city to ask for help accessing treatment. Naing and his friend went to the clinic, where they talked to the founder. The founder then referred Naing to another organization called Health for All who help put him in touch with our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), for assistance accessing surgery for his hernia. Naing said, “I would like to receive treatment for my hernia. If I’m cured, I can work again as a baker and our [household] income will increase. Now, only my wife works and we all depend on her.”
Shupe is a 39-year-old mother of two girls, ages 16 and 17. She is very proud of her children who have both been successful in school. She separated from her husband four years ago and has a small business selling tomatoes and vegetables house-to-house. Last year, Shupe began experiencing pain in her abdomen. She shared that she has been unable to work due to the pain and had difficulty paying her rent. Now, she is staying with her sister while both of her daughters stay at a friend’s house to attend their secondary schools until they pass their exams. Shupe recently visited a surgeon who confirmed that she has an inguinal hernia and requires hernia repair surgery. If not treated, the hernia will continue to cause her pain, and in rare cases, it could lead to strangulation, cutting off the blood flow to part of her intestines. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Shupe to receive treatment. On June 3rd, she will undergo hernia repair surgery at AMH's care center. Now, AMH is requesting $575 to cover the cost of Shupe's procedure. Shupe shared, “I need to be alive to see my children go to college. This hernia and the pain are shattering my hopes, but with this surgery, I can see freedom coming. Much appreciation to Watsi for the support and funding."
Jovin is a beautiful one-month-old baby boy from Tanzania and the first child born to his young parents. Jovin's parents are small scale farmers of maize and vegetables for their family's food and for their living. Since birth, Jovin has had a right inguinal hernia. If not treated, the hernia could result in intestinal tissue death or damage. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Jovin to receive treatment. On May 5th, he will undergo hernia repair surgery at AMH's care center. Once complete, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Now, AMH is requesting $566 to fund Jovin's surgery. Jovin’s father shared, "the cost of treating our son’s condition is too high for us to afford and he is suffering. Please help if possible."
Samuel is a 53-year-old fisherman. He is a father of two children aged 18 and 16 years old. He separated from his wife 5 years ago, and has been taking care of the children since the separation. In December 2020, Samuel was pricked by a poisonous thorn on his foot, which left a wound running from his foot to ankle that has become severely infected. He is in pain and unable to walk comfortably. The wound threatens his mobility and could result in amputation if not urgently attended to. Initially, Samuel tried treating the wound with herbs, but there was no improvement. He visited a nearby mission facility for a checkup and dressing, where doctors treated and washed the wound, but it continued to worsen. On April 1st, Samuel was driven by a well-wisher to our medical partner's care center Kijabe Hospital and upon review, doctors recommended an urgent debridement and skin grafting surgery. However, the cost of care is difficult for Samuel to afford. He had been depending on support from the local missionaries to pay for his previous medical bills and medication. Samuel appeals for financial support. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Samuel receive treatment. On April 2nd, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to clean off the wound and prevent further infection. Now, Samuel needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Samuel shared, “This wound is worsening by the day. I currently limp but I might lose the leg if I don’t get some surgical intervention. My fishing venture cannot even pay for the surgery.”
Ra Sa is a 67-year-old woman who lives with her nephew in Mae La Refugee Camp in Thailand. Ra Sa is a homemaker and her nephew is a student. Ra Sa’s daughter, who also lives in the camp with her husband, supports Ra Sa with food and visits several times a week. Ra Sa’s daughter works as a domestic worker in the camp, and her son-in-law works as a porter unloading supplies from delivery trucks, but the support they are able to provide for Ra Sa does not always cover her expenses. In her free time, Ra Sa likes to teach children at the local mosque. However, since a hernia appeared last year, she has not been able to teach in the same way. Once she has recovered, she wants to live happily with her nephew and to continue teaching. Since the 7th of March 2020, Ra Sa has had an umbilical hernia. She experiences a lot of pain in her lower abdomen and has three lumps that are increasing in size every day. She can no longer sit for more than 10 minutes before she is in pain, feeling more comfortable when she lies down. Sometimes she cannot breathe well and is having other troubling symptoms. Fortunately, on March 5th, she will undergo hernia repair surgery at Mae Sot General Hospital, our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund Ra Sa's hernia repair surgery, which will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably again. Ra Sa said, “I prayed every day that I would get a donor to cover the cost of my surgery and I feel like my prayers have been answered. I am so happy! I would like to say thank you so much to all of the donors. I will never forget what you have done for me and I hope that you will continue to help more patients in the future.”
Plork is an 18-year-old ice driver from Cambodia. He has 7 siblings - 3 brothers and 4 sisters. Plork is the youngest in the family. He lives with his parents who are farmers. In December 2020, Plork was electrocuted in an electrical accident, which burned his hand. Electrical burns occur most commonly on the hands and feet. His family took him to a provincial hospital for wound care, and he spent 3 days in the hospital. When Plork returned home, his right hand got infected and did not heal. He went and had a surgical debridement of the dead skin, which healed well. Now, however, Plork cannot use this hand and is constantly in pain. He is feeling very unwell and describes his health as poor. When Plork learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), he traveled for six hours seeking treatment. On February 5th, surgeons at CSC will perform a skin graft to help his hand to heal properly so that he can use his hand again. Now, he needs help to fund this $787 procedure. Plork shared, "After surgery, I hope my right hand will be get better and have no more pain and wound infection. I hope I can return to work soon and support my family again."