Michael joined Watsi on April 19th, 2013. Five years ago, Michael became the 617th member to automatically support a new Watsi patient every month. Since then, 5,383 more people have become monthly donors! Michael's most recent donation traveled 8,500 miles to support Susan, a small-scale farmer from Kenya, to fund mobility-restoring ankle surgery to repair a fracture.
Michael has funded healthcare for 70 patients in 12 countries.
Susan is married and blessed with five children, they all live together on their small-scale farm. She is entirely reliant on her farm produce for income. In her previous hospital admission, the family exhausted all of their savings and had to hold a funding drive to help pay for the bill. Early in June, as Suzan was walking down a staircase she fell and injured her right ankle. She was rushed to a dispensary where first aid was administered and she was referred to their district hospital where an x-ray was done and a cast was placed. She was admitted for two weeks without any review by the doctor. So, she requested a discharge and came to our facility because she is not able to walk and is still in pain. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On July 3rd, Susan will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. This is procedure will help her walk easily again and no longer be in pain. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. "I will be happy to be able to help my husband with farm work," Susan shared.
Pheaktra is a 21-year-old farmer from Cambodia. He is the oldest child in a family of five. His mother is a teacher. After finishing high school studies, Pheaktra joined his father in working on their family farm. He enjoys listening to music while he works. A year ago, Pheaktra was in a motor accident and suffered trauma to his right shoulder. He has been diagnosed with a brachial plexus injury on his right side. The brachial plexus is a nerve network that transmits signals from the spine to the shoulder, arm, and hand. Injuries to this nerve network can result in loss of function and sensation. Pheaktra cannot move his right arm or hand, and he cannot pick up or hold anything. Pheaktra traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On June 2nd, he will undergo a brachial plexus repair surgery. After recovery, he will regain function in his shoulder and arm, and will be able to return to all the daily activities he could do before the accident. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $696 to fund this procedure. Pheaktra said, "My family was so worried for me because I cannot recover, so I want to get better in order to make them feel better too."
Minea is 12-year-old 4th grade student. Her favorite subject in school is Khmer literature, and she hopes to be a teacher when she grows up. In her free time she enjoys exercising for good health, reading books, and watching cartoons on TV. She has one older sister; together they like to cook fried rice with chicken. Five years ago, Minea's spine curvature became noticeably worse at around 20 degrees. For a time she was using a back brace but it did not improve her condition in the long term. In recent months her scoliosis has advanced to a 45 degree angle. Her family is concerned that her condition will prohibit her from attending school and make her self conscious about her appearance. She has difficulty in sleeping, sitting, standing, or walking, and she feels uncomfortable with her appearance. Minea's mother said "I hope that the doctors will help my daughter improve her quality of life, and that she will be able to be happy and confident."
Bon is a fifth-grade student from Cambodia. He is ten years old and he has three sisters and five brothers. He loves to play soccer and watch funny videos, and his favorite foods are chicken soup and coconut water. He hopes to become a doctor when he gets older. Eight months ago, Bon 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, Bon experiences ear discharge, itchiness, tinnitus, headache, and hearing loss. He cannot hear others clearly and is frequently distracted at school because of his hearing. Bon traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On March 10th, 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. "I hope that my son's surgery goes well and he will recover without anymore discharge or headaches." -Bon's Mother
Nay is an eight-year-old boy from Thailand. He lives with his parents and two older sister in in a village in Tak Province. Nay’s mother and his eldest sister work at a sock factory. They receive food and accommodation in addition to a combined monthly income of around 7,000 baht (approx. $234 USD) per month. Nay and his other older sister are students at one of the migrant learning centers in their area, while his father is homemaker. This morning at around 11:00 am, Nay had finished writing his exam at school and was ready to go home. When he saw the school car that had come to bring the students back to their homes, he and some of the other students became excited about going back home. They rushed into the car before the car had come to a full stop. In the chaos, Nay fell out of the car and cried out that his leg is hurt. His teacher ran to help him up, but Nay told the teacher that he could not stand up and that his right leg was in pain. His teacher then arranged for a car to take him to Mae Tao Clinic (MTC), where upon arrival the medic examined his leg and informed his teacher that Nay had broken his right femur. The medic also told the teacher that he would need to receive surgery at Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) to help his leg heal properly. Currently, Nay is in pain and he cannot move or lift his right leg. He can only lay down and complains that his leg is in pain. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Nay will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for March 3rd and will cost $1,500. He will be able to move his leg and walk again after surgery. He will also no longer be in pain.
Myint is a nursery school teacher from Burma. She lives with her husband, son, and daughter in Burma. Her husband is a homemaker while her children go to school. Myint also cooks Burmese Moh Hin Kar, a type of fish soup, during the weekend, to earn extra money. Since June 2018, Myint has been experiencing abnormal bleeding on a weekly basis and she can feel a mass in her lower abdomen. She used to experience very bad cramps, but since she received oral medication from Mae Sot Hospital she no longer has cramps. She has been diagnosed with a uterine mass. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Myint's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Myint is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on January 31st. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience abnormal bleeding and discomfort. "Once I recover fully, I would like to continue to work as a nursery school teacher and earn money from making and selling Moh Hin Kar," said Myint.
Habibi is a sweet and very shy girl from Ethiopia. She loves to play with her best friend at home. Habibi has two brothers and five sisters, and she loves to take care of her three younger siblings. Her father is a daily laborer and he maintains his family with the little he earns. Her mom is a house wife. Habibi dropped out of school when she was in grade 1 as a result of her condition. Habibi was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. She needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. Habibi is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on January 9th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Habibi's procedure and care. After her recovery, Habibi will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Habibi’s father said, “It is my hope to see Habibi go to school and get educated after she gets treatment. I believe she will serve her community. She always says ‘I want to get treated go to school and be a doctor.’ That’s my prayer and hope for her. ”
Ester is a seven-year-old girl from Tanzania and last born of six children in her family. She walks with difficulties due to genu varus, a condition where the legs curve outwards by the knees. She complains of pain and exhaustion after long walks, especially to school. Her parents noted the curving two years ago which has gradually increased. One of her teachers advised Ester's family to visit our hospital. Upon review, Ester was diagnosed with the condition and requires surgery. With successful surgery, she will be able to walk with ease, less pain and exhaustion. Ester's parents are peasants, relying on casual labour in other people's farms to make a living. Providing for their six children is hard for them. They are not able to afford the cost of surgery for their child and appeal for help. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $838 to fund corrective surgery for Ester. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 5th. Treatment will hopefully restore Ester's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Ester’s mother says, “Our daughter has been suffering due to her leg’s condition but due to financial challenges we haven’t been able to treat her please help our daughter.”
Aung is a 30-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his wife, daughter and sister in an internally displaced persons (IDP) camp which is close to the Chinese-Burma border town of Lweje in Momauk Township, Kachin State. Today, his wife works as a mathematics teacher at a middle school in the IDP camp. His sister is a student in the IDP camp while his daughter is still too young to go to school. He used to work as a English teacher. Later on, he stopped working in June 2019 due to his poor health. feels exhausted and he is not able to walk for longer than 30 minutes, or he feels tired. His heartbeat is rapid, he has blue lips and sometimes he feels like he is not able to get enough oxygen. He has no appetite and he is not able to sleep well, worrying over his health condition, the cost of his surgery and his inability to access it. Aung was born with ventricular septal defect, a cardiac condition in which a hole exists between the two lower chambers of the heart. Blood leaks through this hole without first passing through his lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving his sick and short of breath. Aung is scheduled to undergo heart surgery on September 15th to correct his condition and improve his quality of life. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Aung's procedure and care. Aung said, "Even if I could go someplace else, I wouldn’t be able to do any hard labour due to my condition. And I can’t go to China because I can only speak a little bit of Chinese.”
Eh is a 22-year-old woman from Thailand. She was born and lives her parents and younger brother in Mae La Refugee Camp. Her younger brother studies at the bible school at the camp. Eh used to attend the same school as a third-year student, but she had to stop studying when her health deteriorated. Eh's father is a homemaker, and her mother works for the department of health at the camp. In 2017, Eh started to become more tired and began to have difficulty breathing. Her mother took her to the clinic in the camp and the doctor listened to her heart, did an electrocardiogram (ECG) and told Eh’s mother that Eh has a heart disease. She was then referred to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further investigation. Eh was not told anything about her condition, and the doctor only informed her parents without telling her. Eh had an echocardiogram (echo) at MSH in December 2018. After the echo, she travelled back and forward several times from Mae La refugee camp to MSH for medical follow-up visits. Finally, the doctor at MSH informed her that she needs surgery. Currently, Eh has dizziness, headaches, tiredness and sometimes experiences difficulty breathing. She sleeps well but has lost her appetite and she sometimes suffers from chest pain. She loves reading and playing football and volleyball in her free time. Eh was born with ventricular septal defect, a cardiac condition in which a hole exists between the two lower chambers of the heart. Blood leaks through this hole without first passing through his lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving him sick and short of breath. Eh is scheduled to undergo heart surgery on October 5th to correct her condition and improve her quality of life. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Eh's procedure and care. Eh said, “All my classmate graduated, and I want to as well, but I am tired of studying and when I think about this, I cry”.
Sue is a 10-month-old boy from Burma. He lives with his mother, his great-uncle, his grate-aunt and his uncle in Hlaingbwe Township, Karen State. father works at an ice factory in Bangkok, while his mother looks after him in their village. Sue has cataract in both of his eyes. He cannot see clearly with both of his eyes. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Sue. On August 28, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Sue's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Sue’s mother said, “I feel very stressed and upset that I don’t have money to treat my son. I also feel bad that my husband doesn’t care about us, even though I told him that my son has to receive surgery. He still doesn’t believe me and doesn’t provide us with any money since we found out his diagnosis.”
Obed is a child from Kenya. Two years ago, Obed accidentally dipped his hand into hot water while crawling. Obed cannot hold anything with his right hand because his fingers are folded. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping Obed receive treatment. On August 5, surgeons at their care center will perform a burn contracture release surgery. Now, he needs help to fund this $1,006 procedure. His grandmother says, “Obed is joining school next year. He will need his right fingers so that he can be able to hold a pen. I wish that he can be treated this year so that he can join kindergarten with his age mates."