Chris joined Watsi on April 23rd, 2015. Eight years ago, Chris joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Chris' most recent donation traveled 8,800 miles to support Souhaimy, a 20-year-old hardworking student from Cambodia, to fund ear surgery to relieve him of pain and infections.
Chris has funded healthcare for 102 patients in 15 countries.
Chris has funded healthcare for 102 patients in 15 countries.
Souhaimy is a 20-year-old student from Cambodia. He is from a rural area and has four brothers. His father is a construction worker, and his mom sells fried noodles from a street cart. In his free time, he and his friends play soccer, go on social media, and do homework under a tree near their house. When he was a child, Souhaimy had an ear infection. This infection caused a cholesteatoma, or abnormal skin growth, to develop in the middle ear behind the ear drum. For this reason, Souhaimy experiences hearing loss, tinnitus, and ear discharge. It is difficult for him to hear and he is regularly taking various medications, but to no avail. Souhaimy traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On February 9th, 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 $926 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. He said, "I hope my ear is better after surgery. I am embarrassed about the discharge and I can't remember my ear ever feeling normal."
Bory is a 40-year-old rice farmer from Cambodia. She is married with one son, two daughters, and one grandchild. She lives with her farmer husband and her children. At home, she likes to read the news on her phone and cook for her family. Three months ago, Bory developed a chalazion in both eyes, causing her burning, itchiness,and irritation. A chalazion is an inflamed cyst in a patient's tear gland. She does not see clearly and it is difficult for her to do household tasks. Bory traveled for two and a half hours to seek treatment from our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre. On October 5th, surgeons will remove the cyst through a chalazion excision procedure. After recovery, Bory's symptoms should improve. She needs help raising $210 to fund this procedure. Bory says, "I hope after surgery the cysts from my eye will be gone, and I won't be itchy. I want to go outside again and be able to help my family."
Luz is a sweet baby from Bolivia, where she lives with her parents and two older brothers in a small mountain village. Her parents work as farmers to support their family. Luz, in addition to being diagnosed with Down Syndrome, was born with a ventricular septal defect, a heart condition where a hole exists between the two lower chambers of her heart. As a result, blood leaks through the hole without passing through her lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving her weak and short of breath. Fortunately, our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance who is expanding their work in Bolivia, is helping Luz receive treatment. On January 19th, Luz will undergo surgery where doctors will sew a patch over the hole, allowing for blood to flow completely through her heart and reach her lungs, obtaining oxygen and, ultimately, allowing her to grow as a healthy baby girl. Luz's family needs help raising $1,500 to fund her procedure and care. From Luz's mother: "Our family is all praying that after the surgery our daughter will be stronger and healthier."
Aalyia is an adorable nine-month-old infant who lives with her parents and two brothers in Haiti. Aalyia has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain and increases intracranial pressure. As a result of her condition, the circumference of Aalyia's head has been increasing. Without treatment, she will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, Project Medishare, is requesting $897 to cover the cost of surgery for Aalyia at Hospital Bernard Mevs. This is the only site in the country where this care is currently available, and the procedure is scheduled to take place on September 1st. This critical treatment will drain the excess fluid from Aalyia's brain to reduce intracranial pressure and greatly improve her quality of life. With proper treatment, she will hopefully develop into a strong, healthy young girl. Aalyia's family shares that they hope their child will live a great life.
Hannah is a 70-year-old mother of seven children. She is a widow who lost her husband ten years ago. She is a small-scale tea farmer and relies on her children for upkeep and survival. For eight months, Hannah has been experiencing abnormal bleeding and pelvic pain. She has been diagnosed with endometrial cancer. She needs to undergo a hysterectomy, a procedure in which surgeons will remove her uterus. Although supportive, her children are unable to raise the funds required for her procedure. She had one cow that she sold to pay for a biopsy, treatment and fare to the facility. However, she is requesting financial support for her surgery cost. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is helping raise $1260 to fund Hannah's surgery. On December 16th, she will undergo gynecological surgery at our medical partner's care center. Once recovered, Hannah will be able to resume her daily activities free of pain. Hannah says, "I am old now and fragile. This cancer has depleted my financial resources and affected my health. I need the surgery to avoid the spread of the cancer.”
Chris is an adorable 19-month-old baby from Tanzania. He is the youngest of two children in his family. Chris’s parents are both small-scale farmers of corn, beans, potatoes, and other vegetables, which they use to feed their family. However, they also sell whatever they do not eat in order to earn some income. When Chris was born, his mother immediately noticed that his right foot was twisted out of shape. This is because he has clubfoot of his right foot, which caused this to occur and makes it difficult to walk and wear shoes. When his mother took him to receive a vaccination, she was referred to another hospital for treatment, but she shared that he could not undergo it due to financial constraints. She then sought the help of a local traditional doctor, who tried to heal his condition through massages and herbal medications, but they saw no effective change. Fortunately, Chris's family traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on July 15th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $935 to fund Chris's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk easily. Chris's mother shares, “We couldn’t find the money to take him to the hospital, and that’s why he is still this way. We have no other means.”
Seang Heng is a 63-year-old vegetable farmer who is married and has one son, two daughters, and five grandchildren. Seang Heng's husband also works as a farmer. In her free time, Seang Heng likes to listen to the monks pray on the radio. Three years ago, Seang Heng developed a cataract in her right eye, causing her irritation and blurry vision. As a result, she has difficulty seeing things clearly, including colors and faces, and is worried about falling when walking, so she cannot go places independently. When Seang Heng learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), she traveled for three and a half hours seeking treatment. On June 7th, doctors will perform cataract surgery and an intraocular lens implant in her right eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. CSC is requesting $253 to fund this procedure. Seang Heng shared, "I hope my eye can see well again so I can keep farming."
Sopheak is a 38-year-old electronic repairer. He's married and has one daughter and two sons. In his free time, Sopheak enjoys playing football, exercising, reading books, listening to the news, watching boxing on TV, and helping his wife around their house. In April, Sopheak injured his left leg in a traffic accident. This injury caused Sopheak difficulty and pain while walking. After treatment at another hospital, Sopheak's wounds still have not healed so his neighbor encouraged him to seek our out medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC). On May 11th, surgeons at CSC will clean his injury and perform a skin graft procedure to heal his wound. CSC is requesting $487 to fund this procedure so that Sopheak can walk free of pain. Sopheak says, "I hope my leg can heal so I can walk and work again."
Thany is a four-year-old boy with one older sister. Thany's parents are rubber merchants. At home Thany enjoys playing football with his neighbors. In 2019, Thany had an ear infection. This infection caused the tympanic membrane (the ear drum) in his right ear ear to perforate. Due to this, Thany experiences hearing loss, ear discharge and pain. He cannot hear his parents well and has difficulty communication with others. Thany's family traveled to our medical partner's care center to receive treatment. On April 25th, he will undergo a myringoplasty procedure in his right ear. During this procedure, surgeons will close the perforation. Our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, is requesting $487 to fund this procedure. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care. His parents hope that Thany's ear will improve and the pain he has will finally go away.
Shwe is a 24-year-old woman who lives with her family in Burma and enjoys listening to Burmese pop music! Shwe previously worked in a factory, but she had to stop working last December when her health began to deteriorate. Her brother and stepfather both work as agricultural day laborers, and her sister-in-law and mother are both homemakers. The rest of her siblings are all waiting for schools to reopen so they can return to their studies. The schools were closed in February of 2021 following the Mayanmar military coup. About a year and a half ago, Shwe began to experience pain in her chest, as well as fatigue. She initially did not think that her symptoms were serious, but this changed after she fainted at work a few months later. After receiving an echocardiogram, she was diagnosed with mitral valve, aortic valve, and tricuspid valve regurgitation, which are all cardiac conditions that occur when the specified valve does not close properly. As a result, she experiences difficulty breathing, a rapid heartbeat, a lack of appetite, and trouble sleeping. She also feels very tired when walking longer distances. Shwe now needs cardiac surgery to help alleviate her symptoms and allow her to live more comfortably and confidently. However, once the doctor told her and her family the cost of surgery, they left the hospital because they could not pay for Shwe's needed procedure. Fortunately, they happened to meet a taxi driver who kindly told them about our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). BCMF is now helping Shwe undergo cardiac surgery on August 12th at Pun Hlaing Hospital. Shwe and her family need your support to fund this $1,500 procedure. Shwe says, “When I recover fully, I will go back to work and work hard. I will save my money and support my family.”
Joy is a curious, active, and happy six-year-old girl. Joy's father works at a construction site, and her mother is unwell and unable to work. She also has a twin sister, and both girls attend school. The family lives in their ancestral home. Joy has been diagnosed with severe to profound bilateral hearing loss and needs to be fitted for a hearing aid so that she can hear well. She is currently unable to speak and while she is able to attend school, she is unable to sit for exams due to her hearing loss. Fortunately, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is helping Joy to get treatment and fitted for hearing aids. On April 8th, she will undergo the fitting and afterwards, her hearing should improve. Now, she and her family need help raising $1,171 to fund her care. Joy's mother shared, "our baby is so curious and anxious to go to school. Although she is unable to hear, she insists on accompanying her twin to school."
Thidar is a 30-year-old woman who lives with her son, husband, parents in-law, brother-in-law, and sister-in-law in Burma. She, her husband, and her mother-in-law grow rice, beans, and sesame on their farm. During her free time, Thidar enjoys growing flowers and vegetables around her house. Ten years ago, after Thidar gave birth to her son, she began to experience troubling symptoms. These included chest pains and a rapid heartbeat. When visiting a clinic, medics determined that she has a heart condition. To help her condition and alleviate her symptoms, Thidar took medication regularly. However, she ran out of oral medication at the start of this year. This was a problem because medics at her local clinic were protesting against the February 2021 coup, so the clinic was closed. She also could not go to a different clinic because the military had many checkpoints around the nearest town at the time, and she was too scared to pass them. Months later, after experiencing exhaustion, a rapid heartbeat, painful and swollen joints, and a loss in appetite, Thidar was able to seek medical care and receive medication. Following the advice of a medic at the clinic, she eventually visited a hospital. There, she received an X-rays scan and an echocardiogram, which determined that Thidar has a heart disease requiring surgery. Due to financial constraints, she and her husband could not fund the needed procedure and had to return home with Thidar still experiencing the same troubling symptoms as before. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is helping Thidar finally receive treatment. On July 22nd, surgeons will perform double valve replacement cardiac surgery. This procedure will hopefully alleviate her symptoms and allow her to live more comfortably and confidently. Now, Thidar and her family need help funding this $1,500 procedure. Thidar says, “I feel very sad and I want to cry because I have no money to pay for my surgery cost. My mother and husband had to borrow money with interest [to pay for some of my medical fees]. I am also worried that I cannot work and support my son. Now, I am very happy that my surgery cost will be supported. I am thankful to all the donors and the organization.”