Alexandra joined Watsi on December 28th, 2015. Three years ago, Alexandra became the 2132nd member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 3,675 more people have become monthly donors! Alexandra's most recent donation traveled 8,300 miles to support Poe, a five-year-old from Burma, to fund his spleen removal for thalassemia.
Alexandra has funded healthcare for 49 patients in 11 countries.
Poe is a five-year old boy who lives with his family in Shwe Koke Ko village of Karen State in Burma. In his free time, Poe likes to play with his friends and toys. He also likes to eat sweets. Poe does not go to school because of his condition. Poe's mother and father are divorced, and both are remarried. His father lives and works in Bangkok, Thailand and he contributes to Poe’s financial wellbeing by giving the household 5000 baht (approx. $167 USD) per month. His mother does not provide the family with any extra income. Poe stays with his grandmother and great grandmother from his father's side. His grandmother works as a cleaner. The rest of the family does not currently have work. When Poe was eight months old, he got a severe fever and his family took him to the Wang Pha clinic near Mae Sot, Thailand, which is the same place where he was born. He was admitted at the clinic for three days, but his condition did not improve. Doctors at the clinic told his family to take him to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. The family immediately took him to MSH and he was admitted for one week. At MSH, he received a blood test and was diagnosed with Thalassemia, a blood disorder. He received a blood transfusion and after the transfusion, Poe felt better, but only temporarily. His family went back for three follow-up appointments to MSH, where he had blood transfusions each time. When he was one year and five months old, the family could not afford going to MSH any longer, so they took Poe to Myawaddy Hospital. He received another blood transfusion and an IV line. He was admitted for three days at the hospital. Although he felt better after getting discharged in Myawaddy, since his condition is chronic, he needs regular blood transfusions to stay healthy. It became increasingly difficult for the family to pay for Poe’s care, however, they decided to come to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) for further help in 2016. Since then, he has received many blood transfusions at MTC, sometimes monthly and sometimes bi-monthly. With these treatments, he is able to survive. However, his condition also affects his spleen, the organ that filters blood. To prevent further problems, medics at MTC told his family that doctors need to remove Poe's spleen. Since it cannot be done at MTC, he needs to go back to MSH to undergo the operation. Currently, Poe has frequent bloody noses, coughs up blood, and has blood in his stool. He feels better after having a transfusion, but it wears off in the weeks following the procedure. When its nearing time for another transfusion, he feels weak and tired. When asked what he wants to do when he grows up, Poe was adamant that he wanted to be a medic. “I want to help people,” he said. “When he sees people that are sick, he always tells me he feels sorry for them,” added his great grandmother.
Zeth is 3 year old boy who likes playing games like kick the can with his friends. Wednesday, the 22nd of Jan, in the evening Zeth was playing with his friends when he was knocked down by one of his friends injuring his hand. Zeth was brought to our hospital crying and on his arrival, he was injected pain meds before he was sent for an x-ray which confirmed that Zeth had fractured his left elbow. Zeth was unable to lift or fold his left hand, all he could do is cry for help. He was then admitted for surgery to fix his fractured elbow. Zeth is the firstborn child in a family of two and he has just joined kindergarten. His father is a student in a teachers’ college and his mother is a housewife. They are a young family raised from a humble background. Currently, Zeth's mother has a nursing child so she can’t work. On the other hand, his father is in school continuing with his studies with the hope of improving his employment prospects. The young family mostly depends on Zeth's grandparents for basic and other family needs. They also still stay with them because they can’t afford to buy a land or build a home of their own. The family has nothing to pay for his surgery. They are requesting anyone to support them so that Zeth can receive treatment. Sharon, Zeth’s aunt says, “He has so much pain, I hope he gets treated and feels relieved.”
Victor is a child from Kenya. Victor is the second born in a family of two. His mother is a stay-at-home mom while his father is a motorbike taxi rider. Victor was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles remains undescended. If left untreated, Victor has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. Victor will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). Fortunately, he is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on November 28. AMHF is requesting $542 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care.
Jane, a self-employed woman, was unfortunate to fall in a latrine in July 2018, severely breaking her leg. Upon the accident, she was rushed to Nakuru Hospital, where she was admitted and had surgery in which a metal plate was inserted. She went for clinics in the same hospital after being discharged, but the leg was not improving at all. Her uncle came to her rescue in June 2019 and brought her to Kijabe Hospital. Jane was admitted, had the metals on her leg replaced with lighter ones, and was discharged. She has been coming for clinics to monitor her leg. An x-ray was done and it was decided that another surgery was needed. Due to lack of funds, Jane went home helpless. Being a divorced woman and self-employed (selling second-hand clothes), Jane is the breadwinner of her family of five children. With her mobility being hindered by her broken leg, she cannot do as much as she would have if she’d be on both feet. This surgery will definitely improve Jane’s and her children’s quality of life.
Three weeks ago, Ko was foraging for bamboo roots in the jungle when a bamboo twig sprang back and hit him in his left eye. His left eye started to hurt right away, and he stopped foraging. When he went back home, he did not apply any medication because he thought his eye would get better on its own. The next day however, he could not open his left eye and had a sharp pain in his injured eye as well as a headache. When he asked his wife to check his eye, she told him that it was red and that he had a white dot on his pupil. He then went to Chaung Son Clinic, a free clinic. he health worker at the clinic gave him an antibacterial ointment to apply inside his eye every day and seek further treatment at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) in Mae Sot, Thailand right away. The next day, Ko went to MTC. At the clinic, he received an eye examination, one weeks’ worth of ointment and a bottle of eye drops to apply twice a day. He was asked to come back a week later. When he went back on the 14th of October. After he received another eye examination, the doctor told him that he wanted to admit him at the hospital right away. His left eye was infected, and he needed antibiotics. If the treatment would not work, the doctor told him that they would probably have to remove his eyeball. Unable to pay for his own admission, MTC referred him to Burma Children Medical Fund for assistance in accessing further treatment. Currently, Ko's left eye is teary, he has a severe headache and sharp pain in his left eye. Because the antibiotics did not work, he now has to remove his left eye. His injury has also impacted his family, as he is currently unable to work. Unable to leave his children with any money for food while he receives treatment, his children now have to work on a farm as daily labourers for 2,400 kyat (approx. 2 USD) each per day, to pay for their own meals. Luckily, they have not missed any school, as schools are closed until November for the holidays. "I worry about my eye and I worry for my children too. We left [our children] with our neighbor and they told us not to worry about my children getting food because they will look after them [when they go back to school]. I feel really grateful for my neighbors, BCMF and [BCMF’s] donors for supporting my treatment and everything they have done for me," said Ko.
Daniel is car wash attendant from Kenya. Daniel’s wife left with their two children in 2002 when he developed the leg ulcer and could barely provide for the family. He now stays alone in a one-room rental house in Central Kenya. In 2017, Daniel was diagnosed with venous leg ulcer at Kijabe hospital after struggling for over 15 years to find the cause for the leg swelling. Daniel walks with a limp and is in pain and discomfort. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Daniel receive treatment. On October 08, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to help him walk easily again. Now, Daniel needs help to fund this $1,129 procedure. “I at times wonder whether God forgot about me. Please help me get an admission,” says Daniel.
John is a student from Kenya. He is a form two student, aged 16 years from Zambezi in Kiambu County. He is a cheerful young man and the second last born in a family of six. John seems to be of a playful and easy going nature. John’s parents are both small scale farmers He fell from a tree and sustained a closed fracture of the left humerus on 20th August. He visited our facility and was reviewed by the surgeon who recommended ORIF. He is not able to use his left arm and is in chronic pain Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On September 05, John will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him walk easily again Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $998 to fund this procedure. “I am looking forward to the day when I will be able to use my left hand like I was used to.” said John with a glimmer of hope in his eyes.
Vakhim is a tenth grade student from Cambodia. He has two older sisters, and enjoys playing soccer and watching television in his free time. His favorite subjects in school are math and biology, and he hopes to become a teacher when he gets older. When he was eight months old, Vakhim had an ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in his left ear to perforate. For this reason, Vakhim experiences discharge, itchiness, fever, tinnitus, and hearing loss. He has a difficult time focusing in school and cannot communicate well with others. Vakhim traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On August 7, he will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in his left 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 after my operation, I will be able to hear more clearly than before and the infection will go away."
Samuel is a man from Kenya. He makes a living working on construction sites. In early July, he fell from a two-story building. X-ray imaging showed a femur fracture thatt requires an implant. It is difficult for him to walk and he is in chronic pain Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On July 10, Samuel will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him walk easily again and go back to work once he has fully recovered. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,451 to fund this procedure. Samuel says, “I hope that soon I will be able to walk with ease again."
Gudise is a baby from Ethiopia. She loves to crawl and play with other babies. Gudise 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. Gudise is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on June 11. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Gudise's procedure and care. After her recovery, Gudise will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future.
Nyo is a 44-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her husband, daughter and son in Myawdddy Town, Karen State. Two years ago, Nyo experienced a sense of tightness in her back that would come and go. One night in the beginning of March 2019, she started to experience severe pain in her upper abdomen. The doctor diagnosed her with a bile duct stone after a CT scan. Nyo has been advised to undergo a cholecystectomy, the surgical removal of the gallbladder. If left untreated, Nyo'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), Nyo is scheduled to undergo her cholecystectomy on May 2. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Nyo's procedure and care. Nyo says, "I cannot wait to have surgery and get well. After that I can spend time with my children happily."
Joshua is a student from Tanzania. He loves going to school to make new friends and learn. Joshua was born with hypospadias, a congenital abnormality that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience uncomfortable symptoms and will be at risk of infertility. Fortunately, Joshua is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on April 9. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $986 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Joshua’s mother says, “I was scared that it is too late for my son to get any treatment since I could not afford to pay for his treatment sooner. Please help my son get the help that he needs so that he can be well.”