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Success! Rich from Cambodia raised $292 for vision-restoring cataract surgery.

  • $292 raised, $0 to go
to go
Fully funded
Rich's treatment was fully funded on October 26, 2016.

Photo of Rich post-operation

October 31, 2016

Rich successfully received vision-restoring cataract surgery.

Rich’s eye cataract was successfully removed from her left eye and clear vision has been restored. Following the operation, she was given eye drops to reduce inflammation and fight infection. Rich went home after the first surgery and has yet to return to have the same operation completed in the other eye. Because returning to the clinic requires taking a day off from work and usually a family escort, she may have had trouble finding a day to come back. Also, because she left with clear vision in one eye, her problems with blurred vision are less of a burden making the second surgery a less immediate priority than the first. The second surgery will be free whenever Rich returns.

“I feel very happy that I can see everything clearly again,” she says. “Now I can work in my rice fields and go anywhere on my own.”

Rich's eye cataract was successfully removed from her left eye and clear vision has been restored. Following the operation, she was given ey...

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August 12, 2016

Rich is a 61-year-old woman from Cambodia with seven brothers and two sisters. Rich works as a rice farmer, and she enjoys visiting the pagoda to listen to the monks pray. Rich traveled three hours with her brother to reach Watsi’s medical partner, Children’s Surgical Centre (CSC), for treatment.

Rich developed a cataract in each eye. This clouding and deteriorating of the eye lens causes blurred vision and makes it hard for her to do her work.

With $292, Rich can receive a phacoemulsifaction procedure, in which an ultrasonic device is used to break up and then remove the cloudy lens. Followed by an intraocular lens implant in each eye, Rich will be able to see clearly again.

Let’s help Rich get back to her daily life as usual.

Rich is a 61-year-old woman from Cambodia with seven brothers and two sisters. Rich works as a rice farmer, and she enjoys visiting the pago...

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Rich's Timeline

  • August 12, 2016

    Rich was submitted by Hannah Callas, Stakeholder Relations Officer at Children's Surgical Centre.

  • August 12, 2016

    Rich received treatment at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre in Cambodia. Medical partners often provide care to patients accepted by Watsi before those patients are fully funded, operating under the guarantee that the cost of care will be paid for by donors.

  • September 20, 2016

    Rich's profile was published to start raising funds.

  • October 26, 2016

    Rich's treatment was fully funded.

  • October 31, 2016

    Rich's treatment was successful. Read the update.

Funded by 6 donors

Funded by 6 donors

Cataract - Two Eyes
  • Cost Breakdown
  • Diagnosis
  • Procedure
On average, it costs $292 for Rich's treatment
Hospital Fees
Medical Staff
  • Symptoms
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Cultural or regional significance

​What kinds of symptoms do patients experience before receiving treatment?

Patients with cataracts experience decreased vision, discomfort, and irritation. Cataracts occur when the lens inside the eye becomes cloudy, causing functional blindness. These changes in the lens commonly occur with increasing age and therefore affect elderly people. Cataracts can also be congenital or traumatic.

​What is the impact on patients’ lives of living with these conditions?

The decreased vision from cataracts can cause functional blindness. This makes it difficult for the patient to conduct daily activities. Patients often need a family member to help guide and care for them. If the patient is elderly, this often affects a young child in the family. When a grandmother needs help getting around, a young child is often assigned to help with her daily tasks. That child cannot go to school.

What cultural or regional factors affect the treatment of these conditions?

In many countries in the developing world, surgical services are inadequate. Cataracts remain the leading cause of blindness globally. Even where surgical services are available, barriers to surgery remain, including cost, shortage of human resources, poor infrastructure, and limited awareness about access to available services.

  • Process
  • Impact on patient's life
  • Risks and side-effects
  • Accessibility
  • Alternatives

What does the treatment process look like?

Cataract surgery is the most common surgery performed worldwide. Surgeons remove the cloudy lens and place a clear lens implant in its place.

What is the impact of this treatment on the patient’s life?

A patient's vision can improve to 20/20 within one day after the surgery.

What potential side effects or risks come with this treatment?

Cataract surgery is highly effective and carries a low risk.

How accessible is treatment in the area? What is the typical journey like for a patient to receive care?

Cataract surgery is available in most areas of Cambodia. However, free surgery is not as widely available.

What are the alternatives to this treatment?

Some debilitating effects of cataracts can be improved with glasses. When the cataract becomes mature, however, the only definitive treatment is surgical.

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.


Pai is a 63-year-old woman who lives alone in a refugee camp in the border region of Thailand and Burma. She receives 350 baht (approx. $12 USD) each month on a cash card from The Border Consortium, to purchase food in the refugee camp. This support is just enough to cover her daily needs, since she sometimes shares meals with her sister. In June 2019, Pai first notice that the vision in both of her eyes was blurry. By late 2021, she could no longer see with her left eye. She then went to the hospital in the refugee camp, run by the International Rescue Committee (IRC). A medic checked her eyes, gave her some eyedrops, and told her that they would refer her to Mae Sot Hospital (MSH) for further follow up. IRC staff brought Pai to the hospital in January where the doctor completed a vision test and also checked her eyes with specialized equipment. The doctor diagnosed her with cataracts and shared that she would need surgery to be able to see clearly again. Currently, Pai can only see objects near to her with her right eye and even then, she cannot see objects clearly. She can only perceive light with her left eye. When she walks, she has to do so slowly to avoid stubbing her toes on stones and other objects. At night, she now needs someone to assist her to get around at all. She also has difficulty cleaning her house and doing other household chores like washing her clothes or cooking. She shared that when she tries to cook on her own, she will sometimes mixed up the ingredients now. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Pai. On February 22nd, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Pai's natural lens and replace this with an intraocular lens implant. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. Pai said, “I do not want to depend on my sister as she has to look after her family too. However, now I have to depend on her for many things and I feel sad about this.” Pai is thankful to the donors who can help pay for her treatment cost. She is very happy that there will be a donor for her. She said, “I hope that I can see again, and I really want to see the donors and everyone at BCMF’s organisation who was willing to help me. Thank you so much for your kind support.”

79% funded

$313to go

Meet another patient you can support

100% of your donation funds life-changing surgery.