Stefan joined Watsi on December 17th, 2014. Two years ago, Stefan joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Stefan's most recent donation supported Naw Paw, a mother and refugee from Thailand, to fund caesarean section surgery.
Stefan has funded healthcare for 29 patients in 8 countries.
Stefan has funded healthcare for 29 patients in 8 countries.
Naw Paw is a 40 year-old woman who lives with her husband and her three daughters in a refugee camp in Mae Hong Province, Thailand. Naw Paw is originally from across the border in Karen State, Burma. Her family fled to the refugee camp in 2011 due to conflict happening between armed groups in her area. In the camp, Naw Paw’s family receives a cash card from the Border Consortium to purchase food. Naw Paw used to sell Mohhinga (a Burmese noodle) nearby school to cover for their basic needs. However, she stopped selling Mohhinga when she got this pregnant because she couldn’t handle the work well. Naw Paw’s family is struggling to make ends meet and feel lucky they receive free basic healthcare in the camp through Malteser International. Her husband is unemployed. All of her 3 children are students. During her free time, she loves to play with her children and listen to the music in her phone. Sometimes she will read books and help her daughters with their homework. Naw Paw is currently expecting her fourth child. Since Naw Paw got pregnant she is taking antenatal care regularly at the camp hospital. On January 18th, Naw Paw went back for the follow-up in the camp hospital and had an ultrasound which revealed that her baby is in the wrong position laying sideways and her doctors recommended that she deliver via a caesarean section. This way doctors can ensure the safety of both mother and child. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is helping Naw Paw undergo a C-section on January 29th. This procedure will cost $1,500, and Naw Paw's family needs your support. Naw Paw said, “After I deliver my baby and recover from surgical wound, I will sell the Mohhinga (Burmese noodle) again to cover more of the financial needs for our family.”
Lawamutwe is a 7-year-old boy from Tanzania and the youngest of five children. His father works as a cattle breeder, and his mother is a dedicated stay-at-home parent. Unfortunately, due to a prolonged drought in the region, Lawamutwe's family has faced significant challenges in the past year. Their cattle have suffered starvation, resulting in losses and reduced financial stability. Lawamutwe and his father arrived at our medical partner's care center, brought by one of their relatives who live in the city. Due to a language barrier, the team brought in a Maasai translator to facilitate effective communication. Lawamutwe's father shared that he traveled over 400 kilometers to reach the care center to find medical care for his son. After a heartfelt welcome from our team, the staff performed a comprehensive medical assessment. They determined that Lawamutwe's orthopedic condition started at the age of three. He has shown signs of bowed legs, which have progressively worsened with time. As a young Maasai boy, grazing livestock is a fundamental part of Lawamutwe's culture, but his limited ability to walk long distances prevents him from engaging with his peers during these activities. Lawamutwe was diagnosed with a condition in which his left leg is bowed outward, and his right leg is bowed inward. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, which often stems from contaminated drinking water. On June 6th, Lawamutwe will undergo surgery to help restore his mobility, allow him to participate in various activities, and significantly decrease his risk of future complications. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $880 to fund this procedure. Lawamutwe's father said: "I wish for my son to be able to go and be with his fellow boys. I hope his legs won't be a reason he is always alone."
David is the fourth child in a family of five living in Gikindu village in Muranga county, Kenya. David is in grade 6 at Gikindu Primary School, and his mother describes him as a playful boy who is always on the field playing football. He admires Messi, a football player in Europe who always inspires him to play for the national team. His mother is a farmer, and his father is a primary teacher. One sunny afternoon, five years ago, David and his friends gathered at the field to play. During the game, he fell and sustained an elbow injury. He was taken to a nearby hospital where a plaster was applied, then started therapy. Despite these interventions, his injury deteriorated and his elbow began to deform. David and his mother visited Kijabe Hospital, where they were referred to our medical partner's care center AIC Cure International Hospital for an orthopedic review. David is now scheduled to undergo Distal Humerus Osteotomy surgery on November 28th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,224 to cover the costs of the surgery. The treatment will be impactful on him because he will be able to use his arm normally again, lift things, and also help in doing household chores. “I am looking forward to seeing my son using his hand fully like other children,” says David’s mother.
Rebecca is a young woman from Haiti. She lives with her parents and younger sister in a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince; she graduated from a local college with a business degree but has been unable to work for the past ten years because of her heart condition. She enjoys cooking and listening to Haitian music. Rebecca has a cardiac condition called rheumatic mitral regurgitation. One of the four valves of Rebecca's heart was severely damaged due to an infection she suffered as a teenager; her heart could not adequately pump blood through her body, leaving her weak and short of breath. The surgery that she needs is not available anywhere in Haiti. Rebecca need to fly to the United States to receive treatment. She will undergo cardiac surgery, and doctors will remove Rebecca's damaged valve and implant an artificial replacement. Another organization, Baylor Scott and White Heart Hospital, will contribute $26,000 to pay for surgery. Rebecca's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep and follow-up care. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, checkups, and follow-up appointments. Rebecca shared with us: "Once I am fully healthy, I would like to return to Haiti and adopt a child to start my own family."
Titus is a young man from Kenya. He and his sibling live with his grandmother in a semi-arid area and they depend on jobs whenever they can get work to earn a living. Titus shared that he knows nothing about his parents because they left him under his grandmother's care when he was little. He studied up to class 7 in primary school and then dropped out because of the state of his family. Titus recently fell from a mango tree while harvesting mangoes, and he injured his left thigh, leaving him in pain and unable to use or move his leg. Doctors determined that he needs a nail to fix his fracture and enable him to walk again as soon as possible. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner African Mission Healthcare (AMH) can help. On September 7th, Titus is scheduled to undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. AMH is requesting $1,247 to fund the procedure, which will enable Titus to walk again and return to work. Titus says, “Life has become hard for me and my grandmother at home. I have been the provider through casual jobs, and now I am bedridden. I have nobody to look up to, and I also don’t have any assets that can be sold to help me pay for my surgery. My wages are very low, but I thank you for giving me the strength to work and be able to put food on the table. Please help me fix my broken bone so that I can continue working as I did before.”
Nan is a 41-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her husband and two children. She is a homemaker and her husband is a day laborer. They also have a small garden where they grow betel nut and trees and raise cows, goats and chickens. She loves to take care of her garden during her free time. Nan was referred to BCMF to treat her severe heart condition (ASD) in Chiang Mai Hospital (CMH). After she arrived at our medical partner's Patient House in early March in the evening, she felt weak and tired. She also felt dizzy, had a headache and difficulty breathing. Unfortunately during the night, she suffered a seizure and fell semi-conscious. BCMF staff rushed her to the emergency room at CMH. Doctors want Nan 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 diagnose her condition and formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $693 to cover the cost of Nan's urgent CT scan and care, scheduled for March 3rd. Nan’s husband said, "I am so worried about her but now, I can only wait and see. We have lived through some hard times and now, my wife is admitted in the emergency room.”
Mon is a 40-year-old mother from Thailand. She lives with her husband and son in a small village. She is a seamstress while her husband is unemployed. Her son goes to nursery school. In her free time, she enjoys playing with her son and riding bikes with him. Since 2015, Mon has been experiencing pain in the right side of her abdomen. She has been diagnosed with uterine myoma. She has been advised to undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, the surgical removal of her uterus and cervix. If left untreated, Mon's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, Mon is scheduled to undergo her hysterectomy on July 19th. Our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCM) is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of her procedure and care. Once recovered, she will no longer experience pain. She said, “I was depressed when I learned I have to undergo surgery, but my husband comforted me and encouraged me to continue seeking medical treatment so I will feel better.”
Festus is a lively 6-year-old boy from Kenya. He is the third born in a family of five children. His parents own a small corn farm, which they use to earn a living by selling produce. Festus was born with hypospadias, a congenital abnormality that causes urinary dysfunction. Without treatment, he will continue to experience discomfort and will be at risk for infertility. Fortunately, Festus’ father was introduced to a social worker who brought the family to the care center, BethanyKids Kijabe Hospital (BKKH). BKKH is run by our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH). As a result, on February 16th, surgeons at AMH will perform the corrective surgery. AMH is requesting $847 to fund the total cost of his procedure and care. Festus’ father says, “I want Festus to be treated and grow up like other children.”
Leonardo is a 9-month-old boy who lives with his parents and older brother in a neighborhood of La Paz, Bolivia. His father is a maintenance worker and his mother is a homemaker. Leonardo was born with a heart condition called total anomalous pulmonary vein return. This means that the blood vessels between his lungs and heart connect to the heart at anatomically incorrect locations. As a result, his body cannot obtain enough oxygen, and he has required an external oxygen tank since he was born. Our medical partner Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA) will perform a surgery to detach the blood vessels and reconnect them in their correct locations. HCA is requesting $1,500 to cover the cost of Leonardo's surgery scheduled for June 21st. Leonardo's mother shared, "We are all praying that after this surgery our son will be able to breathe normally."
Linn is a 29-year-old day laborer from Thailand. He works at a construction site and during his free time, he enjoys playing volleyball with his friends. Two months ago, Linn accidentally poked his left eye with a needle while he was sewing a bag. Since the accident, the vision in his left eye has been blurry. He visited our medical partner's care center where he was diagnosed with a cataract in his left eye. Eyedrops and medications have not improved his vision. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), is helping Linn receive treatment. On May 18th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Linn's natural lenses and replace them with intraocular lens implants in each eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help raising $1,500 to fund his procedure and care. Linn shared, "I was worried about my vision becoming blurrier. I want to thank you [BCMF and donors]. After I get treated, I will work hard and try to donate some money back to BCMF."
Khu is a 65-year-old woman from Burma. She lives with her nephew in a village in Karen State. Khu is a missionary while her nephew raises pigs and chickens for their own consumption. In her free time, she likes to read the Bible and pray. She also enjoys talking about her religious beliefs with her community. Khu has gallstones. She feels bloated and she cannot eat a lot of food. If she tries to eat more, she vomits. She experiences a burning sensation and pain in her abdomen and on the right side of her back. Her back pain intensifies when she sits for long periods of time and walks long distances. Khu has been advised to undergo a cholecystectomy, the surgical removal of the gallbladder. If left untreated, Khu's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. After seeking treatment through our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), Khu is scheduled to undergo her cholecystectomy on April 19th. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Khu's procedure and care. "Thank you so much BCMF organization for supporting my treatment’s cost. I want to recover and become more active in my missionary work,” said Khu.
Seint, who is 34 years old, lives with her parents and her aunt in Ayeyarwaddy Division in Burma. Her parents and her aunt make and sell mats from their home. When Seint was 13-years old, she noticed she started to easily tire, experienced heart palpitations, and had barely enough energy to play with her friends. Her mother took her to a nearby clinic, where the doctor examined her and told them that she had congenital heart disease. The doctor gave Seint medication, which she used together with traditional medicine. Both helped her to feel better. In November 2022, Seint felt extremely tired and experienced heart palpitations while she was completing physical exercises with her students. She also had difficulty breathing, and her vision became blurred. Her mother took her to a clinic, where she received medications which helped her to feel better. A few days later, however, she started to experience pain in her back whenever she felt tired. She also started to have difficulty breathing again, and had heart palpitations. Her mother brought her to a hospital in Yangon, where she received an echocardiogram that allowed the doctor to diagnose her with atrial septal defect. After additional testing, the doctor scheduled her to undergo urgent heart surgery at Pun Hlaing Hospital. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is seeking $1,500 to fund Seint's surgery, which will allow her to regain her health, and to live symptom free. Seint said: "I would like to recover as soon as possible. In the future, I will continue to work as a teacher. I love teaching students and wearing our school uniform proudly."