Alexandra joined Watsi on December 28th, 2015. Five years ago, Alexandra joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Alexandra's most recent donation traveled 8,800 miles to support Oun, a loving grandmother from Cambodia, to fund sight-restoring surgery so she can return to farming.
Alexandra has funded healthcare for 68 patients in 11 countries.
Alexandra has funded healthcare for 68 patients in 11 countries.
Oun is a 67-year-old farmer. She and her husband have six children (one son and five daughters) and many grandchildren. While most of her children have relocated for work, her youngest daughter still lives nearby. Oun is a seasonal farmer, and in her free time, she enjoys caring for her grandchildren, growing vegetables, and listening to the radio. Three years ago, Oun developed a cataract in her right eye, causing her blurry vision, photophobia, and an occasional feeling of pain. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, and going outside. When Oun learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), she traveled for three hours to seek treatment. On August 25th, doctors will perform cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in her right eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. CSC is requesting $229 to fund this procedure. Oun shared, "I hope that my vision can get better so that I can work more during the next season."
Ar is a 28-year-old man who lives with his wife, three sons, and two daughters in a refugee camp. Originally from Burma, his family fled to Thailand 20 years ago due to civil war. His children attend school, except for his youngest daughter, who is not yet old enough. His wife is a homemaker and Ar works as a day laborer when work is available. Ar's family shared that, in addition to his day laborer pay, they receive a monthly cash card from The Border Consortium to purchase food in the refugee camp. Overall, the family's total monthly income is just enough to cover their basic needs. On September 2nd, Ar climbed a tamarind tree to pick tamarinds fruit. When the branch he was standing on suddenly broke, he fell and landed on his right arm and experienced pain in his back. He visited the camp hospital that day, and the medic initially determined that his arm was not broken. Due to recent positive COVID-19 cases in the refugee camp, Ar could not be immediately referred to the local hospital for further testing and was kept for observation at the camp hospital. When the pain in Ar's back and arm did not subside the next day, the medic referred Ar to the local hospital. After receiving a negative COVID-19 test, Ar was finally able to visit the hospital on September 6th, where he received an X-ray for his arm and a blood test for a second COVID-19 test. The X-ray revealed that his upper right arm is broken. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Ar will undergo surgery on September 8th to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure will enable Ar to continue working in the future. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Ar shared, "I am scared to receive surgery. But I was told that I will not be able to work using my right arm if I do not receive surgery, so I gave my consent to the doctor. I hope that I will be able to work again after I receive treatment."
Clementina is a ten-year-old student and the youngest in a family of four children. She is a loving girl who enjoys playing with babies, especially her neighbours'. Her mother says she would wake up in the morning and ask right away for permission to go see her neighbour’s baby. She is also a hard-working girl. She helps her mother clean the house and cleaning dishes. She cleans her own clothes too sometimes. Clementina was born with spina bifida, a type of neural tube defect in which the spine does not properly close around the spinal cord. Without treatment, Clementina is at risk of lower-limb paralysis, infection of the exposed nervous tissue, development of tethered cord syndrome, and possible developmental delays. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMH), is requesting $1,015 to cover the cost of Clementina's spina bifida closure surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on August 9th. This procedure will hopefully spare Clementina from the risks associated with her condition, instead allowing her to grow and develop along a healthy trajectory. Clementina’s mother says, "We never knew the condition needed treatment all these years. But we are thankful that she is able to stand and walk. She has been scheduled for surgery but the cost is too high for us to afford please help."
Omar is a 14-year-old student and the youngest of eight children. He is in grade 5 and likes reading. His father is a farmer and his mother died last year after a long illness. Omar has clubfoot in both feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. Omar and his father traveled over a day to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on June 28th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund Omar's clubfoot repair. He is scheduled to undergo right foot triple arthrodesis surgery to first correct his right foot. After treatment, he will be able to walk and be able to put on shoes. “Any support rendered to make my son walk like other children will be highly appreciated,” Omar’s father told us.
Samuel is a 25-year-old motorbike taxi driver from Kenya. His father is a carpenter and his mother runs a greengrocery in their hometown. On May 8th, Samuel was in a traffic accident that caused a serious fracture to his left ankle. Samuel is unable to walk on his own and is currently using crutches. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), can help. On June 8th, Samuel will undergo a fracture repair procedure called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will help him walk easily again. Now, AMH is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Samuel shared, “I am in pain and cannot walk without the help of the crutches. The doctor said if I don’t get the surgery my leg will not be okay and can't work.”
Elvin is a one-year-old baby boy and the youngest in a family of two children. His mother shared that he is usually a smiley and happy baby. Elvin's mother sells goods at a shop, while his father is a welder. Elvin has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Elvin has been experiencing pain and is at risk of brain damage. His condition has made him irritable and he experiences regular fevers and vomiting whenever he eats. Without treatment, Elvin will experience physical and developmental delays. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH) can help. AMH is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of surgery to treat Elvin's hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on May 10th and will drain the excess fluid from Elvin's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Elvin will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. Elvin’s mother shared, "my son’s head keeps increasing in size and his health keeps worsening each day, please help."
Shoh is a 47-year-old man who lives with his wife, two sons, daughter-in-law and two daughters in Nu Poe Refugee Camp in Thailand. In the camp, Shoh and his oldest son are teachers who teach about the Quran for other refugees. They each earn 1,200 baht (approx. 40 USD) per month. His wife is often sick, and his eldest daughter has to look after her at home. His daughter-in-law is a homemaker while his youngest daughter and son are students. Shoh’s household receives 1,110 baht (approx. 37 USD) every month on a cash card to purchase rations in the camp. Their monthly household income is just enough to cover their daily expenses as they also receive free basic health care and education in the camp. Since February 2020, Shoh has had umbilical hearnia. Currently, Shoh’s abdomen pain is not severe but his hernia is still increasing in size. He feels uncomfortable when he walks because of his swollen abdomen. He cannot sleep well and is increasingly worried about his diagnosis. The pain in his abdomen increases when he feels cold, especially at night. Fortunately, on March 9th, he 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 Shoh's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on March 9th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Shoh said, “I do not want to stop being a teacher. I love teaching the Quran to young children. Also, if I do not teach, I do not earn an income and my family does not have enough income to cover our household expenses.”
Charity is a 28-year-old woman from Kenya. She is the eldest in her family and is now married and has a newborn baby who is two months old. Her husband works as a clerk at a local dairy factory, where he earns enough to feed their family. Charity was working at the same factory, but was laid off from her job due to the COVID-19 pandemic. She is not currently working and spends her time at home taking care of her child. Since August 2020, when Charity was pregnant, she started experiencing pain in her upper abdomen that radiated to the back. Charity had visited several different health centers but showed no improvement, and later decided to come to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Nazareth Hospital. She underwent a scan, which showed that she has a large gallstone. The doctor recommended that she undergo a cholecystectomy. Without treatment, Charity's condition may become more complicated and cause her gall bladder inflammation, or a blocked bile duct or pancreatic duct. However, Charity is unable to meet the cost of her care and appeals for financial support. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare. is helping Charity receive treatment. She is scheduled to undergo a cholecystectomy on March 9th at our medical partner's care center. Surgeons will remove the gallbladder due to the gallstone causing pain and possibly infection. This procedure will cost $788, and she and her family need help raising money. Charity shared, "The pain is too much at times and I feel some relief when I vomit. I am hoping to get support so that I can be well and be at peace to nurse my baby."
Su is a 16-year-old girl from Burma. She has three siblings. Su’s mother is a home maker, and her older brother works as a day labourer. Su and her youngest sister are students and this year Su is in grade seven. Her family's combined monthly income is around 200,000 kyat (approx. 200 USD) per month, which is just enough for their daily expenses, but not enough to pay for basic healthcare. When she has free time, Su loves to play football with her friends at school and she likes to be the goalkeeper. She also loves to read books and watch movies. Su plans to continue her studies as soon as she finishes her treatment. Su was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of the mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. Currently, Su still feels tired, but not as much as before she started taking her medication. When she feels more tired, her breath quickens. Su has stopped attending school since she got sick. Although she wants to go back to school, her mother worries for her as her school is a little far and she normally walks there. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Su. The treatment is scheduled to take place on February 12nd and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. Su's mother shared, “Su really wants to go to school but I worry that the long walking distance from our house to her school will make her tired and worsen her condition. So, I asked her to stay home for a while until she can get treated.”
Hamisi is a four-month-old baby from Tanzania. He is the last born child in a family of four children. Hamisi’s parents are subsistence farmers who depend entirely on what they harvest for their food and living. Their income is very limited, since they have to sell some of their harvests in order to be able to buy other basic commodities and support their family. Hamisi was born with clubfoot of both of his feet. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty with walking, playing, and even wearing shoes. Fortunately, Hamisi traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on January 5th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Hamisi's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily, wear shoes, and go about normal life when he grows up. Hamisi’s mother shared, “Living with a disability comes with a lot of hardship, which is not something I would like my son to go through. Please help correct his feet.”
Jane is a 65-year-old farmer from Kenya. She lives in a 3 room house that is built on their ancestral home in South Kinangop. Her husband passed on in 2004. Together, they had 4 children, all of whom are now adults. Jane does small scale farming mainly for home use, and does not have a source of income. Currently, none of her children have stable employment, and are unable to financially support Jane for the care that she needs. Jane has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Without treatment, the cancer may spread to other organs. A mastectomy, a surgery to remove breast tissue, has been suggested to rid her body of breast cancer and to prevent the cancer from metastasizing. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $857 to cover the cost of a mastectomy for Jane. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 9th. After treatment, Jane will hopefully return to a cancer-free life. Jane shared, "I thought the itching on my breast was just normal but I was wrong. It has turned out to be cancer which I know can cause death if not controlled. Doctors say I need this surgery to help stop its spread, but I know I cannot afford it."
Chanthou is a 34-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. He is married and has one son and one daughter, who are both in primary school. Chanthou's wife is a factory worker. In his free time, Chanthou enjoys looking after his children, watching TV, and listening to the radio. Ten years ago, Chanthou 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, Chanthou experiences hearing loss, tinnitus, ear discharge, and headache. This makes it difficult for him to communicate with others. Chanthou traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On October 14th, he will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in his left 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. Chanthou said, "I hope this surgery makes the ear discharge stop and my hearing will improve."