UNIVERSAL FUND MEMBERi'm just as lost as you
Jamie joined Watsi on March 12th, 2013. Eight years ago, Jamie joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Jamie's most recent donation traveled 8,600 miles to support Naw Lah, a 35-year-old teacher, mother, and refugee from Thailand, to fund a C-section surgery to deliver her baby safely.
Jamie has funded healthcare for 176 patients in 16 countries.
Jamie has funded healthcare for 176 patients in 16 countries.
Naw Lah is a 35-year-old woman who lives with her husband and her daughter in a refugee camp in Mae Hong Son Province. Naw Lah is a teacher, while her husband is a homemaker caring for their three-year-old daughter. Every month, they receive 864 baht (approx. 28.80 USD) on a cash card from the organization The Border Consortium. This amount combined with the 1,200 baht (approx. 40 USD) from her salary is not enough to cover their family's daily needs. They receive free basic health care in the refugee camp, provided by Malteser International (MI) Thailand but this does note cover surgery, including the c-section that she needs. Naw Lah is currently expecting her second child. Due to complications during her previous delivery, the doctors recommend that she should receive a C-section this time to avoid risk of complications. This way, doctors can ensure the safety of both mother and child. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is helping Naw Lah undergo a C-Section on March 1st. This procedure will cost $1500, and Naw Lah needs your support. “I hope to have a boy because my previous baby is a girl. But I will love my baby regardless if they are a girl or a boy,” she said.
Chamroeun is a 36-year-old father of two, living with his wife and children near the Mekong River, in the Prey Veng province of Cambodia. Chamroeun used to work as a tuk-tuk driver, while his wife is a rainy day rice farmer. They also own several cows, from which they get fresh milk. Chamroeun was hit by a car in September while crossing a road near his home. His right arm and right clavicle were fractured, and he lost his lower left leg, as a result of the accident. Because he had no money, he was transferred from a local private clinic to a government hospital, where he spent several weeks recovering. His arm and clavicle were repaired, but the stump below his knee has still not healed fully. The skin around the stump is open, and Chamroeun is in chronic pain, and is unable to walk. He and his family have also found it difficult emotionally to adjust to Chamroeun losing part of his leg. When Chamroeun learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he sought their help. Now, on October 21st, surgeons at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre will perform a skin graft procedure to help his leg heal, and to facilitate long-term rehabilitation. Chamroeun needs your help to fund this $487 procedure. Chamrouen shared: "After surgery, I hope my left leg and skin will heal soon. After the skin is good, I can get a prosthesis to walk without crutches and return to work to support my family again."
Rin is a 43-year-old mother of one. She is a construction worker and divorced from her husband. She has one son who lives with her. In her free time, she likes to listen to Khmer songs and do things around the house. Earlier this month, she was working on a roof near a high-voltage wire and suffered multiple electrical burns on her hands, feet, and head. She was taken to a referral hospital, but only received minimal dressing for her burns. The tissue damage is extensive, and she is in pain and unable to use her hands. When Rin learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for three and a half hours seeking treatment. On September 15th, surgeons at CSC will perform a skin graft surgery to to help regenerate the damaged skin. Now, she needs help to fund this $805 procedure. Rin is hopeful that after surgery her hands will be better and she will be able to work again.
Sokcheat is a 50-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She is married and has one daughter and two sons. Her sons both work in construction and her daughter works in a clothing store. Sokcheat lives with her husband, who is also a farmer. During her free time, she likes to watch the news and movies on TV. Three years ago, Sokcheat developed a pterygium in her left eye, causing her to experience redness, irritation and tearing in her eye. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. Because of her condition, she now has reduced vision and experiences difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, working, and going anywhere outside. When Sokcheat learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for four and a half hours seeking treatment. Sokcheat needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent recurrence. The total cost of her procedure is $225, which covers supplies, treatment, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for August 11th. Sokcheat says, "I hope after surgery my eye stops burning and I will feel better. I am afraid that if I do nothing, I will not be able to see to plant rice to feed my family."
Itzael lives in the mountains above La Paz, Bolivia with her parents, who are farmers, and her older brother. She was born with Down's syndrome and a cardiac condition called atrioventricular septal defect, in which a large hole exists in the center of the heart, causing blood to leak between all four chambers. This condition leaves her sick, short of breath, and unable to gain weight as her body needs to grow. Fortunately for Itzael, surgeons at our partner hospital will perform heart surgery to fix her condition. During the surgery, doctors will close the hole using a patch so that blood can flow normally through her heart. Her family needs to raise $1,500 for her surgery. Itzael's mother says: "Our family is very happy and thankful to have this chance to help our daughter."
Dieunese is a mother of two from Haiti. She lives in the outskirts of Port-au-Prince where she cares for her two young children along with her husband who is a taxi driver. Dieunese has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral stenosis which makes it extremely difficult for her heart to pump blood through her body, leaving her weak and short of breath. Dieunese requires surgery, but it is not available in her country. To access care, she will fly to the United States to receive treatment. On November 17th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will attempt to repair her heart valve; if they are unable to, they will remove it and implant an artificial replacement. Another organization, the Baylor Scott & White Heart Hospital, is contributing $20,000 to pay for this surgery. Dieunese's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep and travel. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and check-up and followup appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social worker from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Dieunese overseas. Dieunese says, "I am hopeful that having this surgery will allow me to be alive and healthy for my children!"
Meet Lydia, a 25-year-old mother of three, living with her husband and children in rural Kenya. Lydia and her husband both work as farmers, and live with her husband's parents. Lydia, who has epilepsy, fainted while she was preparing food for her children. She sustained severe burns on her left hand, extending to the left forearm. Lydia was admitted to the hospital, where she was treated, but her wounds became infected, and she lost her fingers. After three weeks of medication and surgeries, Lydia’s medical costs rose to a level that her family could not sustain, so the decision was made to discharge her from the hospital, even though her condition had not improved. Lydia is worried about being able to care for her children now that she can no longer work as a farmer. Her mother-in-law is also concerned about her future, and the difficulties she may face: will she be able to do laundry and cook, will she face social problems or financial challenges? Lydia requires skin grafting to heal her burn wounds and treat her infection. Her family, who sold everything at home to raise funds for Lydia's initial treatment, cannot afford the cost of her procedure. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,089 to fund her surgery, which is scheduled to take place on May 25th, at AIC Kapsowar Hospital. Lydia shared: “It is difficult to look at my hand; I want to get better than this. Please help me improve the quality of my life.”
Neat is a 41-year old-construction worker, who is married and has a nine-year-old daughter who is in 1st grade. Neat's wife is also a construction worker, and when Neat has free time, he repairs motorcycles to earn more money. In 2021, Neat developed an ear infection, which caused the ear drum in his right ear to perforate. As a result, Neat now experiences ear pain, hearing loss, tinnitus, discharge, and headaches, and he cannot hear clearly when he is at work. Neat traveled to Children's Surgical Centre hoping to receive treatment. On May 5th, he will undergo a procedure on his right ear, during which surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $487 to fund this procedure. This will cover medications, supplies, and inpatient care. Neat says: "I hope my ear heals so the infection stops and I can hear well again."
Porla is a 57-year-old farmer who is married and has two sons and two daughters. Porla's children are now married and he has several grandchildren. Porla enjoys playing with his grandchildren, drinking tea with his friends, and listening to the radio. Porla's right foot is has become severely infected from an insect bite. His foot is swollen and red making it difficult for him to walk without pain. When Porla learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), he traveled there hoping for treatment. On April 20th, surgeons will perform a skin graft procedure to help him walk easily again. CSC is helping Porla raise $487 to fund this procedure. Porla says, "I hope after surgery I heal quickly and am able to return to work and be free of pain."
Allan is an adorable two-year-old boy from the Philippines. Allan loves to sing nursery rhymes and listen to music. Allan's father works as a welder in Saudi Arabia, while his mother stays at home to look after their children. Allan’s father's income is only enough to support their basic needs, the family works hard to shoulder Allan’s medical treatment. Allan was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. Allan needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. Allan is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct his condition on April 4th. Our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines, is helping Allan's family raise $1,279 to cover the total cost of Allan's procedure and care. After his recovery, Allan will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Allan's mother shared, “This surgery is important for us. Through this, Allan will have a chance to grow as a normal kid - no more discomforts and pain. This will also ease our financial burden to buy his colostomy supplies. WSFP and WATSI will be of really great help to us, and so we’re grateful to them!”
Naw Eh is a 32-year-old woman who lives with her parents, her husband, and her children in a refugee camp. She supports her family by caring for her children and managing their home. Her husband is currently unemployed. Three of her children are enrolled in primary school, but her fourth child is too young to attend. During her free time, Naw Eh enjoys sewing clothes. Naw Eh is currently expecting a new baby and her doctors recommend that she undergoes a caesarean section to deliver her child because she is already 40 weeks pregnant and her baby is still in the wrong position, laying horizontally instead of vertically. With a C-section, doctors will be able to ensure the safety of both Naw Eh and her baby during the delivery. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is helping Naw Eh undergo a C-Section on July 7th. This procedure will cost $1,500, and Naw Eh's family needs your support to help fund her care. Naw Eh shares, “In the future, I will search for a job in the refugee camp, and I will also take good care of my children.”
Rachhan is a 12-year-old student with five siblings. His parents are construction workers in their province. Rachhan enjoys playing football and riding bikes with his friends. Six years ago, Rachhan 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, Rachhan experiences ear fullness, headaches, hearing loss, and ear discharge. He shared that he does not want to go to school because he is ridiculed by his friends when the teacher scolds him for not listening. As a result he has poor grades and it is difficult for him to communicate with other people. His parents are worried, but cannot afford expensive treatment for him. Rachhan traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 10th, he will undergo a mastoidectomy procedure in his right 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. Rachhan was excited that he will start to feel better soon. He told us, "I hope that I can hear well and go back to school."