Diane joined Watsi on September 12th, 2016. One year ago, Diane joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Diane's most recent donation supported Thein, a father from Burma, to fund treatment for malignant melanoma on his foot.
Diane has funded healthcare for 65 patients in 12 countries.
Diane has funded healthcare for 65 patients in 12 countries.
Thein resides with his wife and children. He had worked at a gardening job in a park in Bangkok but due to his health condition, he is now unemployed. Thein's wife collects bottles and other recyclable items from the trash and sells them to support the family. During his free time, Thein enjoys singing alone. In the middle of 2021, Thein noticed a black spot on the sole of his right foot. He felt no pain at the time, and the size of the spot remained constant. But in 2022, the black spot began to grow and became painful. Unfortunately, Thein was diagnosed with a malignant melanoma on the sole of the right foot. Currently, Thein feels pain throughout his foot, experiences ulcer discharge when walking, and struggles to sleep well due to the pain. An amputation may be necessary. Because of his financial constraints, Thein sought treatment through Burma Children Medical Fund, Watsi's medical partner, for financial aid to access the required surgery. The doctor scheduled a CT scan of Thein's foot and subsequent surgery on 21 August 2023. Thein expressed his gratitude for help, saying: "When I first learned about the diagnosis, my foremost concern was the treatment cost. I am very thankful to all the generous donors for the opportunity to receive treatment."
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.”
Thaw is a 5-year-old boy who lives with a large family in Burma. His whole family works as agricultural day labourers. He has not yet started his schooling because he is young and because of his health condition. Thaw enjoys playing with other children in their neighborhood. He also enjoys practicing writing the Burmese alphabet, which his brother has taught him. Thaw was born with a congenital condition affecting his lower digestive tract. He underwent surgery a few days after he was born and again when he was two years old. Now the doctor wants to perform a reverse colostomy, an operation to improve the function of his lower digestive tract. Our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) is requesting $1,500 to cover the cost of Thaw's surgery scheduled for June 12th. Thaw's father said, "Both us [my wife and I], have to watch him constantly because we are worried that he will get an infection... Currently, half of our income goes towards his medical expenses, which makes it difficult for our family to survive."
Ann is a 45-year-old woman from Kenya and a mother of four children aged between 23-27 years old. Her husband passed away in 1999. Her children have been unable to secure steady jobs, and Ann works as a casual laborer washing clothes to provide a living. However, she shared that her income is inconsistent, as it depends on the availability of work. She lives alone in a single room. Ann does not have medical coverage and is requesting assistance with her treatment costs. In April 2023, Ann slipped and fell on the road causing a fracture in her right wrist. She went to a local pharmacy for first aid and has since been using hot water and salt to treat the fracture due to a lack of medical coverage. However, her hand has continued to swell, and she is in chronic pain, making it challenging to use her right hand. A church member recommended Ann visit Kijabe Mission Hospital for review. Through church members’ contributions, Ann received an X-ray, and the doctor recommended she undergo surgery to treat the fracture. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On May 15th, Ann will undergo a fracture repair procedure called an open reduction and internal fixation. This procedure will heal the broken bones and enable her to use her hand again. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,500 to fund this procedure. Ann says: “I can’t use my hand because it is broken. I am unable to work and sometimes sleep hungry because I depend on my hand to work and earn a living. I need the surgery to earn a livelihood.”
Natasha is a jovial six-year-old only child living in Kenya. She is a grade 2 student and has several hobbies, including singing, praying, and cooking. Natasha was a healthy child at birth. However, when she turned three, her grandmother noticed that she had an unusual gait when she walked. She hoped that the condition would simply correct itself. Unfortunately, Natasha's situation has deteriorated, greatly affecting her mobility. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is seeking $1,224 to fund open reduction femur shortening osteotomy surgery, which is scheduled for April 18th, at AIC Cure International Hospital. This treatment will greatly improve Natasha's mobility and allow her to play with other children and continue with her education. “I will be grateful to see my grandchild walking normally like other children with your support,” Natasha’s grandmother told us.
Negash, who is five years old, is the youngest of the six children in his family. Their family lives in rural Ethiopia, where his parents are farmers who grow wheat and barley. Additionally, they work as daily laborers on government construction projects to earn extra money to support their family. A few years ago, Negash's parents learned that he had been born with hypospadias, a congenital condition that causes urinary dysfunction. The doctors at the hospital in Sekota told the family that Negash would need to return for treatment when he turned four years old. As the hospital in Sekota could not perform the procedure required to address Negash's condition, a social worker accompanied the family to Addis Ababa, helping to cover all of their travel costs. However, the family needs money to pay for the surgery that Negash must have in order to prevent him from higher risk of cancer and infertility, and other worrying symptoms in the future. Fortunately, Negash is now scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on March 30th at BethanyKids Myungsung Christian Medical Centre. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1,293 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Negash's father said: “I want my son to be completely well. I hope he will be well educated and become a president.”
34-year-old Beatrice lives with her husband and four children in Malawi. Beatrice uses the income from the saloon that she owns to take care of the needs of her children. Her husband, who is a businessman, uses his income to take care of their home, a three-bedroom house that has neither running water nor electricity. In 2020, some of Beatrice's friends noticed a swelling in her neck. Beatrice- who was pregnant at the time- went to the hospital to be evaluated. She was told that the swelling might be related to her pregnancy and that she should come back after giving birth if the swelling hadn't subsided. The swelling continued to grow; ultimately, Beatrice was diagnosed with a goiter- a swelling of the thyroid gland- and told that she would need to have her thyroid surgically removed. Beatrice's surgery continued to be postponed, but her symptoms of breathlessness and coughing- which often kept her from going to work- continued to worsen. Finally, her sister suggested that she visit Partners in Hope Medical Center, where doctors scheduled her for surgery on January 31st. As Beatrice is unable to cover the costs of her treatment, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is seeking $1,015 to fund Beatrice's thyroidectomy. Beatrice believes the removal of her thyroid will help her to return to her home in Blantyre, and to rejoin her family in good health. She believes her children are the reason why she lives, and she knows that she has to be healthy in order to continue supporting them. Beatrice said: “I am looking forward to getting back to normal.”
Chit Htun is a 21-year-old man from Burma who lives with his mother, two sisters and a brother. His mother is a homemaker, while Chit Htun and his siblings are students. They are supported financially by two aunties and Chit Htun's former teacher. Chit Htun was born with spina bifida as well as hydrocephalus. When Chit Htun was just over a month old, he had a shunt inserted in his brain to control hydrocephalus. In October 202, Chit Htun fell down the stairs in his home and hit his head during the fall. Since that time, he has been experiencing headaches and dizziness with occasional loss of consciousness. Chit Htun's mother brought him to a hospital in Yangon, where he received a CT scans showing that the original shunt was in place. A second shunt was inserted to help with the loss of consciousness, but the headaches and dizziness continued to be a problem. In October 2022, Chit Htun had a seizure, accompanied by nausea and vomiting. Chit Htun's mother brought him to Mae Sot Hospital, where he received a CT scan on November 28th, 2022 with the help of Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). The doctor diagnosed Chit Htun with severe chronic hydrocephalus and suspected shunt malfunction. BCMF is now fundraising $1,500 to help cover the cost of surgery to replace Chit Htun's current shunt. Chit Htun's mother shared, "My son and I have been in Mae Sot for the past two months and we are homesick already. I hope that he will receive surgery soon and recover from his symptoms."
Norelien is a 7 month old baby boy from Haiti who comes from a loving family. Norelien was diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, Norelien has been experiencing headaches, irritability and increasing head circumference. He had a shunt placed in his head to help treat his condition, but he now urgently needs a new one. Without this treatment, Norelien will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, Project Medishare, is requesting $957 to cover the cost of surgery for Norelien at Hospital Bernard Mevs, the only hospital in the country where this care is currently available. The procedure is scheduled to take place on December 29th. This critical treatment will replace the shunt and drain the excess fluid from Norelien's brain to reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve his quality of life. With proper treatment, Norelien will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young boy. The family is hopeful that their child's shunt will work once again and that Norelien's condition will improve.
Swe lives with her parents and her son in a village in northern Burma. Her father is subsistence farmer, her mother owns a small weaving business where traditional Burmese blankets and sarongs are hand woven. Her son goes to school and Swe is a homemaker. In her free time, she enjoys visiting and talking to her friends in their village. In December 2021, Swe began to experience fatigue, sweatiness, vomiting and difficulty breathing. She also had a headache and a stiff neck. At first she could not travel due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, but eventually went to Mandalay in August to seek help. At a hospital, she received an echocardiogram and was diagnosed with mitral valve stenosis and aortic valve regurgitation. She was told she would need surgery costing 15 million kyat (approx. $15,000 USD), but she could not afford to pay for it. She then went to Yangon with her son, in the hopes of finding another hospital that cost operate on her for less money. While in Yangon, her condition deteriorated and her son rushed her to a hospital. The doctor there confirmed her diagnosis and her need for surgery, but told her it would cost 20 million kyat (approx. $20,000 USD). When Swe told the doctor that she could not afford to pay such a large sum, the doctor referred her to an abbot, who in turn referred her to our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for financial assistance accessing treatment. Currently, Swe cannot walk for more than 10 minutes or she feels very tired and short of breathe. She has a rapid heartbeat, dizziness and headache. She said, "I want to say thank you so much to BCMF and all the donors to help me with my treatment cost.”
Isaiah is a young boy from Kenya. He is the eighth born in a family of ten children. Some of his siblings have finished school while others are still studying. Isaiah's father passed on earlier this year and their family relies on his mother and the older siblings to get by. His mother works on people's farms for a living while the older siblings are mostly casual laborers and do not earn much from their jobs. Isaiah was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles remains undescended. If left untreated, Isaiah has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. Their family does not have medical insurance coverage and cannot raise the required amount needed for Isaiah’s surgery. Fortunately, Isaiah will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF). Fortunately, he is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on November 22nd. AMHF is requesting $646 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Isaiah’s mother says, “When I first heard about this condition and what would happen if not treated, I was very worried for my son.”
Chan Se is a 17-year-old 9th grade student. Chan Se has one younger brother, and his parents are farmers. At home, Chan Se enjoys reading and playing football. Five years ago, Chan Se began experiencing difficulty swallowing and breathing. He often experiences a sore throat and difficulty eating and drinking. Chan Se was recently diagnosed with enlarged tonsils and adenoids, which, if not treated, will cause his symptoms to persist and possibly intensify over time. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is fundraising $265 to cover the cost of tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy for Chan Se, which is scheduled to take place on September 5th. Surgeons will remove his tonsils and adenoids, hopefully relieving Chan Se of his symptoms and helping him live much more comfortably. Chan Se shared, "I hope my pain stops and I can breathe easily."