“I am very sad that this has happened to my daughter,” says the mother of Thi, a nine-year-old girl who lives with her mother, sister, and grandmother in Burma.
Thi and her mother came to our medical partner, Burma Border Projects (BBP), in search of help for Thi, who was healthy and active until she started experiencing dizziness and vomiting during the spring. “Over the course of several months,” says BBP, “Thi has lost the ability to walk unassisted and to write. Her speech is slow, and she talks with great difficulty. The left side of her face has also been paralyzed.”
An MRI confirmed that Thi has a brain tumor, causing swelling in her head and making it difficult for her to control the muscles that move her body. BBP explains, “Thi no longer experiences regular vomiting or dizziness, but her symptoms are quite visible. She is very slow to respond to questions, and her speech is sluggish.” Thi is no longer able to attend school because of her condition.
Thi’s mother buys and sells goods to support the family, but her daily earnings are only enough to cover a day’s expenses. In the past, she has had to borrow money from neighbors to pay healthcare costs. Given the family’s financial situation, money to pay for treatment for Thi is unavailable.
With $1,485 in finding, Thi can undergo surgery to place a shunt that will relieve the swelling and pressure in her head. BBP shares, “It is hoped that Thi’s current symptoms will be alleviated, and that she will be able to return to school following treatment.”
Thi’s mother shares that sentiment. “I want her to go back to school and eventually become a preacher,” she says.