Allan joined Watsi on December 24th, 2014. 76 other people also joined Watsi on that day! Allan's most recent donation traveled 1,500 miles to support Cristel, a toddler from Guatemala, for heart surgery.
Allan has funded healthcare for 4 patients in 3 countries.
Cristel is an only child from Guatemala, and a joy to her parents. Cristel loves to eat beans, which are her favorite food, color and paint, and play with her dolls. Her father works in a clothing factory in Guatemala, and her mother takes care of Cristel, cooks, and cleans. Cristel lives with her mother and extended family in one-room house in a Maya Quiche village in the mountains. The family loves to spend their free time going to church, where Cristel has joined the choir. Cristel was born with several heart defects. One of them is a hole in her heart, which makes her heart work twice as hard to pump oxygenated blood into her body. She also has a defect in the veins that take blood from the lungs to the heart, which connect to the heart in the wrong place, meaning that oxygenated blood enters and leaves from the wrong part of the heart, depriving her body of oxygenated blood. If she does not receive immediate treatment, she could go into heart failure, have high blood pressure in the lungs (which is damaging), dangerous irregular heart rhythms, or a stroke. Although Cristel's father works hard, he makes only a couple dollars per day, making this life-saving surgery a luxury they cannot afford for their daughter. This surgical intervention will repair the defects in Cristel's heart and veins. $1,169 in funds will allow Watsi's medical partner, Wuqu' Kawoq, to provide surgeons and necessary medication for Cristel's condition. Once her heart can function properly, she will be able to run and play like a normal child, and her mother will be able to send her to school without worry. She will be able to run and play for long periods of time, and be more independent, allowing her to attend school. This treatment will greatly improve her quality of life now, and prevent her from facing the life-threatening consequences of her defects later on. Her mother shares: "I hope this surgery helps Cristel to go to school, so she can study and one day be a secretary."
Meet Yoeun, a 60-year-old woman from Cambodia. “In her free time, she likes to watch the news and Thai soap operas,” shares our medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre (CSC). Yoeun has a pterygium in each of her eyes. A ptergyium is a fleshy growth that appears on the conjunctiva—the mucous membrane that covers the cornea. This damage to the eye is often caused by prolonged exposure to the sun. “They cause burning sensations and she itches her eyes a lot, making her face puffy and red,” CSC tells us. Yoeun’s eye symptoms make it hard for her to work. $150 will fund the treatment Yoeun needs: surgical removal of the pterygiums, along with the necessary medication and post-operative care. This surgical procedure involves removing the affected conjunctiva and replacing it with a conjunctival graft to cover the defect and prevent recurrence. Without this surgical intervention, Yoeun will continue to experience irritation, light sensitivity and decreased vision. After Yoeun’s recovery CSC reports that she will no longer have pain in her eye. CSC adds, “She looks forward to going back to the farm to make money and no longer having pain in her eyes.”
Meet Khin Chit, a 27-year-old woman from Burma. Khin Chit and her parents earn modest wages as subsistence farmers. Khin Chit was only able to attend school until fourth grade because she had to help her parents on their farm. Khin Chit has a congenital heart disease called an atrial septal defect (ASD), which causes a hole between the two upper chambers of the heart. Blood flows through this hole without first passing through the lungs for oxygen, leaving Khin Chit constantly short of breath. Our medical partner, Burma Border Projects, reports, “Khin Chit is not able to walk very far without experiencing fatigue and her condition puts considerable strain on her mental well being.” Khin Chit's mother says, “I was so anxious when I discovered that my daughter had a cardiac condition. I feel so helpless because I cannot help her - we cannot afford the high cost of surgical treatment. We are so thankful that we have found this program - all I want is for my daughter to become healthy again.” After receiving surgery that will close the hole in her heart, “Khin Chit believes that, with her new found energy, she will be able to be a market vendor in Naypidaw and sell vegetables grown on her parents farm.”
“All I want in my future is to be healthy and happy,” says Eh Kawt, a 40-year-old mother from Burma. About one month ago, Eh Kawt began to experience severe abdominal pain, body aches and soreness in her legs. She was subsequently diagnosed with a cervical poly and ovarian cysts. Eh Kawt works with her husband as a bean farmer, and makes about 10,000 Kyat, or $10 US dollars each month. This is not enough to cover the cost of surgery, on top of other family expenses. Our medical partner in Burma, Burma Border Projects (BBP), can perform a total hysterectomy to remove the poly and cysts. The cost of the surgery is $865. After surgery, Eh Kawt will be relieved of her pain and able to walk comfortably again. She will also be able to return to work and fully care for her son. “When she is healthy again her dignity will be restored,” says BBP. “She will be able to work and live as she did before.” Let’s help give Eh Kawt a pain-free, healthy future!