Harini joined Watsi on July 17th, 2015. Five years ago, Harini became the 1358th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,135 more people have become monthly donors! Harini's most recent donation supported Naw Dah, a refugee from Thailand, to fund kidney stone treatment.
Harini has funded healthcare for 62 patients in 11 countries.
Naw Dah lives with her four daughters and three sons in a refugee camp in northern Thailand. Five of her children attend school in the camp while Naw Dah looks after her two youngest children at home. Her husband, who lives most of the year at his worksite, is a gardener and farmer in a nearby Thai village. He earns 1,000 baht (approx. $33.50 USD) in a month. Every month, Naw Dah’s family receives 1,538 baht (approx. $51.30 USD) as part of their camp food support from an organisation called The Border Consortium. Despite receiving basic health care services and not having to pay for her children’s education, Naw Dah is struggling to make ends meet to feed her large family. In 2016, Naw Dah started experiencing pain and difficulty passing urine. She frequently sought treatment at the camp’s hospital, run by Malteser International Thailand (MI). From time to time, Naw Dah would be admitted to receive treatment for a reoccurring urinary tract infection (UTI). On March 27th, 2020, Naw Dah gave birth to her youngest daughter. While still admitted, on April 1st, she came down with another UTI. She was in extreme pain and had a high fever. That same day, the camp doctor referred her to Mae Sariang Hospital for additional review and treatment. Naw Dah arrived at that hospital later that day and received x-rays and an ultrasound of her abdomen. When her results came in, they indicated that she has an oval shaped opaque stone in the area where her right ureter connects to her urinary bladder. The doctor then referred her to the bigger local hospital for further treatment. Knowing she could not afford to pay for treatment, she was referred to Watsi's Medical Partner BCMF for financial assistance accessing treatment. After she was seen by the doctor at Chiang Mai Hospital, she was given antibiotics to treat her infection. On August 8th, 2020, she was admitted at CMH. Two days later she underwent a procedure called percutaneous nephrostomy to drain the urine in her kidney through the insertion of a catheter into her right kidney. Before she was discharged on August 11th, 2020, she received another appointment to be readmitted on September 14th, 2020. During that admission, the doctor scheduled her to undergo a surgical procedure to remove the stone from her ureter and she needs support raising funds for this critical treatment. In the future, Naw Dah would like to go back to work. “I want to work in the [camp’s] hospital because I used to be a nurse there in the past,” said Naw Dah.
Zin Oo is a 36-year-old man who lives with his mother, younger sister, and his seven-year-old son in Mawlamyine, Burma. He is an assistant truck driver and he earns 4,000 kyat (approx. 4 USD) per day. Since the outbreak of CVOID-19, there is less work and he is only able to earn 64,000 kyat (approx. 64 USD) in a month. Zin Oo's son goes to primary school and his wife passed away last year. His mother goes house to house to see if anyone would hire her to wash their clothes. His younger sister lost her job at the factory after the outbreak of COVID-19 in Yangon. Since April, she looks after the household chores and she also works as a day laborer when she can find work. Zin Oo’s combined household income of 124,000 kyat (approx. 150 USD) in a month is just enough for their daily expenses and they cannot afford to pay the costs of basic healthcare. On August 3rd, Zin Oo was cutting firewood with an axe. While cutting the logs, his aim was off and he hit his fingers on his right hand against the log. His fingers became swollen and red after the accident, especially his small and index fingers. Without enough money to go to the hospital, Zin Oo bought traditional medicine and applied it to his fingers. He felt like his middle and ring fingers healed but his small and index fingers became more swollen and painful. Eventually when he noticed pus on his fingers, he told his friend about his problem and his friend suggested he go to Mawlamyine Christian Leprosy Hospital (MCLH), where treatment often cost less than other hospitals. At MLCH, the doctor completed a detailed assessment of his right hand and diagnosed him with cellulitis, a serious bacterial skin infection. The doctor told him that because of poor blood supply, he would need to amputate his small finger and probably his index finger as well. When Zin Oo told the doctor that he does not have any money to pay for the surgery, the doctor referred him to Watsi's Medical Partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for assistance accessing treatment. Currently, the fingers on Zin Oo’s right hand are red, swollen, and warm to the touch. His fingers hurt a lot, especially his small and index finger. He cannot sleep at night without taking pain medication. He is not able to eat food with his right hand and he feels uncomfortable eating with his left hand since he is right-handed. Aside from this, Zin Oo feels stressed about his condition. He cannot work and his mother has to help look after him since he was admitted at the hospital. His mother then has no income while he receives treatment. They are worried that they will not have enough money for food and for Zin Oo’s treatment. In the future, Zin Oo wants to work as a truck driver to earn money for his family. Once he has fully recovered, he will accept any work he can find as he looks for a job as a truck driver. Zin Oo’s younger sister shared with us, “Now, I have to take care of my nephew while my mother accompanies my brother [Zin Oo] at the hospital. I cannot work and our family is worried about money. We owe our neighbor 50,000 kyat [approx. 50 USD] and we have to pay it back with 20% interest.”
Ohmar is a 36-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband and two children in a town along the Thai-Burma border. On July 4th, Ohmar was trying to cross the highway to go to a grocery store. She was on her bike on the side of the road when a car sped past, causing her to fall off her bike and land on top of her right arm. A man who saw her fall put turmeric powder on her injured arm and wrapped it in a cloth. But Ohmar did not go to Mae Tao Clinic right away because she did not have enough money. She was only able to seek treatment two days after the accident. Now, Ohnmar's she is in pain, her right arm cannot be extended and her fingers are also swollen. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Ohmar will undergo surgery to reset her fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for July 16th and will cost $1,500. This procedure will help make Ohnmar's right arm become functional again and she will no longer be in pain. "I am happy that I can have surgery with the support of the Burma Children Medical Fund and Watsi donors. I have to look after my two children so I need to be strong for them," shared Ohmar.
Blessed is a 7-year-old boy from Kenya. Blessed’s parents are both casual laborers and his mother stopped working so that she could take care of Blessed. His father is not able to raise enough as his work is not reliable. Blessed underwent an earlier colostomy procedure, in which the end of the colon is brought through an opening in the abdominal wall. This surgery is often performed to bypass bowel malformations, but colostomies are usually temporary and may need closure. In Blessed's case, his colostomy requires closure in order to restore bowel function and prevent future complications. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $681 to cover the cost of a colostomy closure for Blessed. The surgery is scheduled to take place on June 12th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably and confidently. Blessed’s mother says, “I just can’t wait to see Blessed treated and playing like other kids.”
Elliud is a 12-year-old student from Kenya and the second born child in a family of three. They live in a small village called Koisungur where most of the inhabitants work in farms or other small not very stable jobs. His parents are farmers in the village, they plant maize and beans in their small farm. Like many in this region, money has always been an obstacle for families like Elliud’s to seek proper medical care. Saturday evening, on May 9th, Elliud was playing with friends in their homestead when he experienced a very painful accident on his right leg. He is now in pain and he cannot walk on his own. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On May 13th, Elliud 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 $1,065 to fund this procedure. Elliud’s father says, “We wanted to return home because of lack of means but he was crying in pain. We were assisted by a well-wisher to the hospital. My hope is to see him walk again and not to be in pain.”
Len is a nine-year-old boy from Kenya, who is the 2nd born of three children. He lives with his parents and sibling in a one room house outside of Nairobi. Len’s mother is employed as a hair stylist, while his father takes up any construction work to supplement the family’s income. Since one year ago, Len has had an inguinal hernia. This hernia causes causes him pain and if not treated it may result into intestinal tissue damage or even death. Fortunately, on February 25th, he will undergo repair surgery at our medical partner's care center. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $423 to fund Len's surgery. Once completed, this procedure will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. “I would like to be an engineer in the future and help people,” says Len.
Misgune is a 3-month-old baby boy from Ethiopia with one older brother. He loves to play and laugh with his mom. He's exclusively fed by breast milk. Misgune’s mom is a house wife; she dropped out of school at grade 9 when she got pregnant. She used to do a bit of small business before she gave birth to him. Misgune's dad is a daily laborer. They live in a rented house and their family's income is unpredictable and limited for the expenses of the basic needs of the family. Misgune was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. He needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. Misgune is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on March 10th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Misgune's procedure and care. After his recovery, Misgune will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Misgune's mom said, “It is my hope that my baby will get healthy and as normal as other boys. I hope I will raise him well and educate him. I hope I will start working again and support my children. ”
Aung is a 34-year-old man from Burma who lives with his wife, son, and daughter. Both he and his wife work as government officers. In his free time he likes to read books. Aung 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, Aung feels tired, has chest pains, and has difficulty breathing. However, he can eat and sleep well. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Aung. The treatment is scheduled to take place on January 27th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. “I want to go back to work [as a] healthy [person] and support my family,” said Aung.
Roth has a two-year-old son, and enjoys reading books and taking care of his family and household in his free time. Since Roth was born, he had a curvature in his spine, making it difficult for him to walk and sleep comfortably. He was diagnosed with scoliosis and the curvature of his spine is nearly 80 degrees. Roth will undergo spinal surgery, where implants will be inserted along his spine to help correct the deformity and prevent the curve from developing in the future. He shared, "I hope that I will be able to recover from my surgery and ... I will be able to walk again without any difficulty."
Ma Ni is a 30-year-old woman from Burma. In her free time, she likes to pray to Buddha. She and her husband work as government officers. Together they earn 414,000 kyat (approx. $414 USD) per month, which is not enough for any safety net after they pay their bills for utilities and other household expenses. One day in July 2019, Ma Ni stood up from her desk at work and had pain in her hip joints. She had to push her hand against her hips to help her walk. She did not think there was anything seriously wrong so she did not seek medical attention. However, two weeks after this incident, when she was going to work, she slipped and fell in front of her house. Right away her hips started to hurt and two weeks later, the pain gradually became severe. Her condition worsened day by day, although she visited several hospitals and had taken medications. Currently, Ma Ni has a lot of pain in her hips. She cannot walk for more than two minutes or the pain becomes unbearable. She does not feel comfortable when she lays down and has problems sleeping from the pain. She also needs help going to the bathroom and taking a shower. Fortunately, Ma Ni learned about Watsi's medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). At BCMF's care center, surgeons can perform a total hip replacement to relieve Ma Ni of her pain and allow her to walk easily. Treatment is scheduled for December 17th, and Ma Ni needs help raising $1,500 to pay for this procedure. Ma Ni said, "I had to send my son to my mother’s place in Mawlamyine and my husband also had to ask for leave. [When fully recovered] I want to take back my son from my mother and send him to school. I will support him in whatever he wants to become when he grows up.”
Dennis is a very shy and quiet boy from Kenya. Dennis was born with anal rectal malformation, where he lacked an anal opening. This caused trouble to his parents as he could not pass stool for an entire week when he was born. He had a colostomy created and was required to proceed with subsequent surgeries of the anal opening and colostomy closure. However, for the last 17 years, he has survived with the colostomy. His parents were not able to raise the funds needed for his surgeries. His area chief recently forced Dennis's parents to bring him to Bethany Kids Kijabe after much suffering. At Bethany Kids Kijabe, he was diagnosed and surgery recommended. He needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. However, the family is still struggling financially. Dennis is the firstborn child in his family. Due to his condition, he has never been to school, being passed by all his 6 siblings who are schooling. Dennis is quite shy and prefers to be alone due to his condition. Successful surgery will allow Dennis to resume a relatively normal life like any other child and perhaps start schooling. His father is a security guard while his mother sells vegetables in their village.The family appeals for help. Dennis is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on October 22nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,327 to cover the total cost of Dennis's procedure and care. “If only I knew, I would have come here early. I feel like I have wasted his life,” says Dennis's father with regret.
Da is a mother of four from Thailand. She is a homemaker, looking after household chores and her two children who are still in school. During her free time, she likes to spend time with her children and reads religious texts to them. Da 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. Da currently suffers from chest pain, pain in the middle of her back and extreme tiredness. When the doctor diagnosed her, she became upset and is worried as her children are still very young. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Da. The treatment is scheduled to take place on October 13 and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. Da said, “Although I tried to forget about my condition, it's always on my mind and I feel very irritated. I want to be healthy again and help my husband with his work. I also want to see my children grow up and send them all to a Thai school.”