M

Michael Woerlen

Germany

Michael's Story

Michael joined Watsi on July 29th, 2013. 7 other people also joined Watsi on that day! Michael's most recent donation traveled 5,700 miles to support Thean, a future teacher from Cambodia, to fund ear surgery to restore her hearing.

Impact

Michael has funded healthcare for 20 patients in 10 countries.

All patients funded by Michael

Thean

Thean is a 12-year-old sixth grade student from Cambodia. She is only child in her family and her mom and dad are rice farmers. She enjoys reading books and mathematics, social science, and English are all her favorite subjects in school. When she grows up she wants to be a teacher. She likes to eat sausages and fried fish, and drink kulen juice. Since she was two, Thean has experienced hearing loss making it hard for her to communicate with friends, family, and neighbors. When she was six her family took her to a local health center for treatment but they could not improve her condition. Her family brought her in to see what the problem was and how she could be treated. Thean had an early ear infection and this infection caused the tympanic membrane, or the ear drum, in her right ear to perforate. For this reason, Thean experiences ear discharge, foul smell, and decreased hearing over time. Thean traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On May 20th, she will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in her right ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $464 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Her mother said, "I have been worried about her ear problem for a long time and how it might negatively affect her future. I hope that after surgery her hearing will be improved and change her life. I want her to continue her studies so she may become a teacher in the future."

100% funded

$464raised
Fully funded
Josephine

Josephine shared that she has been struggling with chronic lower back pains for 7 years. She has been under medication and physiotherapy, but without improvement. Doctors recommend a Lumbar Discectomy Surgery to avert the possible advance effects of the condition, which could affect her backbone and the spinal cord. If not treated, Josephine risks having prolonged pains, numbness, and loss of muscle strength that can result in paralysis. Josephine's back problems started in November 2012 while she was doing her laundry. She felt clicking sound on her lower back accompanied by sharp pains. She visited a nearby hospital for treatment. Josephine was put on physiotherapy and pain medication. For the last 7 years, she has been visiting different health facilities but her condition keeps deteriorating. Josephine was referred to Watsi's Medical Partner Care Center Kijabe Hospital by a friend who had received the same treatment in the facility. Josephine doesn’t have a source of income. She is a full time housewife who has dedicated all her time to raising their three children aged between 4-13 years, and taking care of her family. They live in a two-roomed house that costs $30 per month. Her husband is a lorry driver and their family depends on his sole source of income to pay rent, school fees, medical expenses, and for survival. Josephine depends on her husband’s medical cover where she is listed as a beneficiary. Several trips to different hospital has depleted their coverage and family’s little resources. They have been also been relying in the the national health insurance fund which can cover only part of the total cost of the surgery and treatment. She is appealing for financial aid to support the remaining cost of $1,500. Josephine says, “I have lived with this pain for long but it’s now becoming unbearable. I need this surgery and treatment to get my life back to normal again."

100% funded

$1,500raised
Fully funded
Moe

Moe is a 31-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband and four-year-old son in Mae La Refugee Camp (MLRC) in Tha Song Yang District of Tak Province. She has lived there for 20 years after her parents moved from Bilin Township, Bago Division in Burma because of the civil war. Moe is a homemaker who does all the household chores while her husband is a farmer who works on rented land outside of the camp, where he plants corn and beans. To make some extra income, Moe also sells snacks from home. Their combined income is enough to cover basic family expenses. As for healthcare, they receive free basic care in the camp provided by International Rescue Committee (IRC). A few months ago, Moe started to feel a mass in her lower abdomen while she was lying down after eating dinner. She thought it was strange and told her neighbor about it the next day. Her neighbor told her that this was normal for someone gaining weight, which she suggested Moe was. Upon hearing this, she did not seek treatment, agreeing with her neighbor’s conclusion. However, she soon felt that the mass was increasing in size, which did not seem normal. On February 13th, 2020, she decided it was time to go to the clinic in the camp for further investigation. The medic at the camp examined to her and told her that she likely had a cyst in her lower abdomen, but they could not diagnose her further. The medic informed the doctor at the camp and the doctor discussed the situation with IRC staff, who then referred Moe to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. She was referred to MSH on February 17th for an ultrasound. Upon going to MSH, doctors performed an ultrasound and told her that she has a mass in her uterus. Since the mass was already large, however, the ultrasound did not show a clear result whether the mass was outside or inside her uterus. For this reason, the doctor recommended a computed tomography (CT) scan on February 25th. Moe returned home and came back to MSH for the CT scan according to the appointment date. On the day of the scan, she also received a blood test and urine test before being informed that she would have to come back on February 27th to get the results. When she returned, the doctor explained to her that there is a large tumor in her right ovary and that she needs surgery to remove it, followed by a tissue biopsy to confirm whether the growth is cancerous. Currently, Moe has a burning pain in her lower right abdomen. Sometimes the pain gets worse, which makes it difficult for her sleep or eat well. For this reason, she said that she lost her appetite and weight. When she eats, she feels discomfort as her stomach becomes tight and full, even she eats very little. She feels like the mass is gradually getting bigger and she feels more comfortable lying down instead of sitting or walking. Moe sought treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund. She is now scheduled to undergo mass removal surgery on March 24th and is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Moe said, “Both my husband and I became worried when we heard that there was mass in my uterus. We worry that my whole uterus might need to be removed and we will no longer be able to have more children. Now, the doctor told me that only the tumor will be removed and that I most likely will be able to have children in the future. Me and my husband want to have one or two more children, so we were very happy when we heard that my uterus would not to be removed.”

100% funded

$1,500raised
Fully funded
Su

Su is a 43-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her husband and four-year-old son in Shwe Pyi Thar Township in Burma. Her husband works as a day laborer at a construction site while she does all the household chores. Su was diagnosed with a heart condition that involves a malformation of her mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. In 2010, Su started to experience severe coughing so she went to see a doctor at Tun Foundation Clinic in Yangon. The doctor noticed that she has abnormal breathing and told her that she has a heart problem and she would not be able to have baby. The doctor also provided her with three days’ worth of medication and suggested she go to Yangon General Hospital (YGH) to meet with a cardiologist. The next day, she went to YGH and she received an echocardiogram and x-ray. Following this, the doctor told her that she would need surgery right away. She was told that the surgery would cost around five million kyat (approx. 5,000 USD) but she could not afford to pay such a large sum. When she told the doctor this, she received medication to stabilize her heart condition and was provided with a follow-up appointment. In 2015, she started to feel tired whenever she walked for more than 10 minutes or if she used the stairs. She went back to Tun Foundation Clinic where she received medications to stabilize her condition. Currently, she cannot sleep or eat well. She also suffers from fatigue and rapid breathing. 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 27th and, once completed, will hopefully allow her to live more comfortably. Su said, “I worry a lot that I will have a stroke if I do not take my medication daily. But it is had for my husband to come up with money [for my medication]. I want to live long with my family. When I talked to Watsi's partner BCMF, I felt like I had been released from the worry of paying for my surgery. Thank you so much!”

100% funded

$1,500raised
Fully funded