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Ryan Shea

MONTHLY DONORCo-founder of Blockstack

United States   •   shea.io

Ryan's Story

Ryan joined Watsi on March 12th, 2013. Six years ago, Ryan joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Ryan's most recent donation traveled 8,600 miles to support Say, a four-year-old boy from Thailand, to fund hernia repair surgery.

Impact

Ryan has funded healthcare for 111 patients in 13 countries.

All patients funded by Ryan

Say

Say is a four-year-old boy who lives with his mother, brother, sister, and grandfather in a refugee camp on the border of Thailand. His father returned to Burma to visit his village last year. When Thailand closed its borders because of the COVID-19 outbreak, his father could not come back to the camp. Say's grandfather is an assistant pastor in the camp and he receives his income through donations when he visits his church members for home prayers. Say goes to nursery school while both of his siblings go to primary school. His mother does all the household chores. Every month, their household receives some funding to purchase rations in the camp, which is just enough for their basic needs. They receive free healthcare and education in the camp, but specialized procedures like the care that Say needs are often not possible. In early February 2021, Say developed an inguinal hernia on his right side, which has resulted in swelling and pain. His mother has noticed that since he developed the hernia, his appetite has decreased, as eating more can sometimes cause additional discomfort. Fortunately, on March 25th, 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 Say's hernia repair surgery. The procedure is scheduled to take place on March 25th and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Say's mother said, "When I heard that my son needs surgery, I became so worried because he is the youngest in our family." She is eager for the surgery to be complete and for Say to have healed.

79% funded

79%funded
$1,199raised
$301to go
Rebecca

Rebecca is a 1-year-old girl from Tanzania. She is the last born in a family of two children and has started to grow into a strong and beautiful girl. Both of her parents depend on small scale farming to support their family. Rebecca was initially brought to the hospital by her parents seeking treatment to help correct her spina bifida condition. Spina bifida is a birth defect that occurs when the spine and spinal cord fail to form properly. This puts a child in danger of limb paralyses or death in case of a severe infection. At the time, Rebecca's parents could not afford the proposed surgery. Luckily, one of their friends advised them to seek help at our medical partner's care center, ALMC Plaster House. Through Watsi funding, Rebecca’s life was saved and she has been growing well since then. However, a few weeks ago, Rebecca's mother noticed her daughter's head was increasing in size at a very fast rate and she was complaining of headaches. Her parents had worked hard to save some money and got a health insurance card for their baby, so they decided to take her to the hospital to seek treatment. There, Rebecca was diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. She needs to have an ETV surgery that will help relieve her of the pressure build-up, which would otherwise lead to brain damage. Unfortunately, their insurance has not matured enough to cover this kind of major surgery, so Rebecca's parents are appealing for financial support to help her. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,300 to cover the cost of surgery for Rebecca that will treat her hydrocephalus. The procedure is scheduled to take place on January 25th and will drain the excess fluid from Rebecca's brain. This will reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, Rebecca will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Rebecca’s mother shared, “My daughter’s head is increasing in size and it is making her sick. She needs surgery but the insurance we got for her cannot cover the cost. Please help once more if it is possible because we don’t know where to run to for help besides all of you.”

100% funded

$1,300raised
Fully funded
Kemirembe

Kemirembe is a 49-year-old mother of five and shared that her husband died in 1998. He left her with a grass thatched house, and through hard work, she managed to construct a three-room semi-permanent house to shelter her children. Her house though, was washed away by floods early last month due to constant rains in the country. She is currently struggling in putting up a temporally one because she wasn’t financially prepared for the disaster. Her firstborn is 30 years old and joined a technical institution immediately after completing primary school class seven, the second born is 27 years old and dropped out of school from secondary school class two, her third born is 25 years old and got married after primary school class seven. Her fourth is 23 years old and is in secondary school class four while her last born is 22 years and dropped out of school from primary school class seven. Most of her children are casual laborers and can only offer minimal support to her. At Rushoroza Hospital, she presented with a history of lower abdominal pain plus menorrhagia. If not treated through a total abdominal hysterectomy, she could have chronic pelvic pain that will stop her from doing her daily activities, severe anemia secondary to menorrhagia leading to possible heart failure. Kemirembe is a small-scale farmer who grows a variety of crops for survival. Her husband used to own and raise livestock such as cows and goats. He had many of them, she told us. Kemirembe managed to pay school fees for her children by selling the cows and goats and now is left with no animals. Kemirembe shared, “I had lost hope. May my prayers be answered. I look forward to putting more effort to farming in order to be able to take good care of myself in a few years when I grow older.”

100% funded

$239raised
Fully funded
Aung

Aung is a 15-year-old novice monk from Burma. He stays in the monastery in his village of Hpa-An. His parents own a piece of land where his father and oldest brother grow vegetables and fruits to sell. His family also grows vegetables for their own consumption. Two months ago, Aung developed headaches, and his head increased in size, especially the right side of his head. At that time, his father bought medication from the pharmacy to reduce his headaches. He took it for two days but did not feel better. Later on, his father took him to Hpa-An Hospital where he received a blood test and an x-ray. The doctor told his father to take him to Yangon but his father instead brought him to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) in Mae Sot, Thailand. On February 25th, Aung arrived at MTC and he was referred to Watsi Medical Partner's Mae Sot Hospital the next day. At MSH, the doctor has recommended a CT scan and also told Aung's father that Aung needs to replace the shunt he received in his head in 2016 that has helped treat his hydrocephalus condition; unfortunately, the shunt is now blocked. The family is hopeful that Watsi supporters may be able to support a shunt procedure as well. Currently, Aung suffers from headaches and the area where he had the shunt inserted into his head is slowly increasing in size. The area of his head that has increased in size is sensitive and he is not able to sleep on his right side. Doctors want Aung to undergo a CT scan, a procedure in which x-ray images taken from several angles are combined to produce cross-sectional images of the body. This scan will hopefully help doctors further diagnose his condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Aung's CT scan and care, scheduled for February 27th. Aung said, "When I lie down and sleep, I can sleep only on one side because the growth hurts if I lay on it." He is hoping to feel better with treatment.

100% funded

$414raised
Fully funded
Rosaline

Rosaline is a 23-year-old manual laborer from Kenya. When she was only 15 years old, young Rosaline was married and conceived her 1st born. A year later, she left her matrimonial home following constant quarrels and domestic violence from her then-husband. She went back to her ancestral home to live with her elderly mother. She currently has three children ages: 7, 4, and 2 years old. She was not able to complete a formal education. Rosaline lives in a one-room traditional house with her children. She depends on a small income she gets from fetching water for people in her village. On a good day, she makes $2, which she uses to feed her kids and take care of her basic needs. On days when there are no jobs, she relies on her siblings for food. Rosaline is the last born in a family of five. Her siblings do fishing in the nearby lake Baringo and don’t have a stable source of income either. In April 2020, Rosaline's traditional lessos and dress caught fire while cooking in her small makeshift kitchen. She shared that the space around the cooking area is small and can barely accommodate 2 people. As she was turning to pick up salt, her loose lessos and dress caught fire causing severe burns on more than 20% of her body. She now has difficulty sitting and is in pain. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Rosaline receive treatment. On September 22nd, surgeons will perform a debridement and skin graft procedure to this treatment will help her heal properly and she will no longer be in pain. Now, Rosaline needs help to fund this $1,185 procedure. Rosaline shared with us, “I have gone through a lot. Early marriage and break up, teen pregnancy, and now this accident. I have 3 children to feed and raise. I even had to discontinue my little baby from breastfeeding after I sustained the burns. I am in constant pain and at risk of getting infections. I am hopeful I will get to undergo this surgery so that I can take care of my young family.”

100% funded

$1,185raised
Fully funded