Austin ShoecraftUNIVERSAL FUND MEMBER
Austin's Story

Austin joined Watsi on June 21st, 2014. Seven years ago, Austin joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Austin's most recent donation supported Elizabeth, a 6-year-old girl from Kenya, to fund surgery to heal her fractured arm.

Impact

Austin has funded healthcare for 93 patients in 12 countries.

Patients funded by Austin

Nay is a 31-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his mother, two sisters, two brothers-in-law, two nephews, and two nieces in a village in Karen State along the Burma border. Nay works in Thailand as a day laborer, spending one week working in Mae Sot and then returning for two days to his village. Nay’s mother is retired and one of his sisters is a homemaker, taking care of her children. The other sister and two brothers-in-law are day laborers on a farm in Karen State. They also grow vegetables for family consumption. His nephews and one niece go to school. Their monthly income is enough for basic needs and they make an effort to pay for basic health care. In his free time, Nay enjoys helping in his community and fixing electronic items. In July 2023, Nay began to experience blurred vision in his right eye. He has intermittent pain and discharge. These symptoms have made it increasingly difficult for him to see clearly. Nay feels uncomfortable seeing only with his left eye and feels sad and depressed about his condition. Nay was diagnosed with retinal detachment, a condition in which the retina pulls away from the supportive tissue in the eye, resulting in vision loss. If left untreated, he could lose vision entirely in the right eye. Nay is scheduled to undergo surgery to reattach his retina on January 18th. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to cover the cost of this procedure and care. After the surgery, Nay's vision will hopefully be restored, and he will resume his daily activities comfortably. Nay said “I was stuck and hopeless while the doctor was telling me that I would need a surgery. I don’t even know how to explain about my health problem to my family. I worry they will feel so sad and worry about me. I am unhappy and feel tired emotionally. After learning that I have donors who will help me paying for my treatment in Chiang Mai, I feel like my hope has returned and I'm wishing my vision would repair and I'll be able to continue my career in the future."

$920raised
$580to go

Gay is a fifteen-year-old resident of Burma, who lives in a village in a conflict area called Karen State with his parents and two older sisters. Gay's parents and one of his sisters work in subsistence farming and his other sister is still in school. Due to financial constraints, Gay tends to the family's cows instead of attending school. During his leisure time, he enjoys fishing and gathering vegetables. On the morning of November 13, Gay was in an accident while riding on his friend's tractor. He was seated next to the driver and fell off when the tractor hit a bump while descending a slope. The trailer being towed behind the tractor ran over his right thigh, resulting in a severe femur fracture. Currently, Gay experiences considerable pain and is unable to move his right leg. He requires assistance from his father for basic activities like using the bathroom. Fortunately, Gay was able to make it to Mae Sot General Hospital, a care center of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). Thanks to the support of BCMF, Gay is slated to undergo surgery on November 14th, to reset his fractured bones, allowing them to properly heal. BCMF is requesting $1500 to help fund this procedure. This surgical intervention holds the promise of enabling Gay to walk again without enduring pain. Expressing his gratitude, Gay's father shared, "When I heard that my son needs an expensive surgery, I felt hopeless. I did not know what to do and I felt so sad to see him in pain. When I learned from the doctor that donors will help pay for my son's treatment, I felt so happy that words cannot express how I felt. Thank you so much with all my heart for helping my son."

$1,500raised
Fully funded

Saw Htoo is an 11-year-old boy from Burma who lives with his parents, 4 brothers and a sister in a refugee camp, in Mae Hong Son Province, Thailand. His parents fled to the camp from Karen State, Burma, due to the civil war in 2010. Saw Htoo is in grade 4 and his favorite subject is English. His father used to work as a day laborer before travel restrictions were imposed on camp residents after the outbreak of covid-19. Since then, both of Saw Htoo’s parents are homemakers. Although they receive a small monthly cash card to purchase food in the camp, as well as free basic health care and education, they struggle to make ends meet. For the past 5 years, Saw Htoo has been brought frequently to the hospital in the camp due to having urine in his blood. He has also experienced pain while going to the bathroom, developed a fever and pain in his bladder area. He received an ultrasound, an x-ray of his kidney, ureter and bladder (KUB) and an intravenous pyelogram (IVP) and was diagnosed with a renal stone in his right renal pelvis. At a follow-up appointment in August 2023, he received another IVP which indicated that the stone was increasing in size and doctors recommended Saw Htoo have surgery to remove the stone. Saw Htoo has been experiencing pain in his back, and he often needs to take leave from school because of the pain. Fortunately, our medical partner Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) can help. Saw Htoo is scheduled for surgery on September 8th, and BCMF is asking for help to raise $1,500 to fund the procedure. Saw Htoo said, “I want to become a football player [in the future] because I love to play football.”

$1,018raised
$482to go

Sai is a 26-year-old veteran from Burma. He lives at a dormitory for people with disabilities in the Internally Displaced Person (IDP) Camp in Shan State, Burma. He has been unemployed since his injury. In his free time, Sai likes to exercise and garden. However, he is currently unable to do these activities because of his health. In 2019, Sai was shot in his right upper thigh. Following the event, he underwent an X-ray examination which confirmed a fractured hip. A doctor immobilized his right thigh and hip by applying a cast. Nevertheless, he has been grappling with persistent discomfort in his right leg and hip. On July 11th, with the assistance of Watsi, he underwent a CT scan of his hip, revealing a malunion of the hip fracture. Sai's right hip and leg continue to be a source of pain for him, despite his regular use of pain-relief medications. Due to the pain, he cannot stand or walk on his right leg without the support of crutches, and his sleep is often disturbed at night as the pain intensifies during colder weather and nighttime hours. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Sai will undergo surgery to reset his fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for August 10th and will cost $1,500. The procedure will help him walk easily again without crutches and resolve pain. Sai said; "I feel very happy to receive treatment in an advanced hospital with your help BCMF, Watsi, and my donors. I cannot wait to walk with my leg and become healthy again. Thank you very much."

$1,500raised
Fully funded

Ma Tin is a 41-year-old mother from Burma. She lives with her husband and three sons in Karen State - an area with conflict and lots of uncertainty and insecurity for the people who live there. Her husband is a day laborer and her three sons are students. Ma Tin is a homemaker but she also sells vegetables sometimes to earn extra money. Her husband's income is usually enough to cover their basic needs, but they sometimes rely on financial support of their adult children. In her free time, she enjoys playing with her children. She is currently expecting a baby and her doctors recommend that she deliver via a caesarean section because she started to leak amniotic fluid at 32 weeks. On April 3rd, she experienced pain and the doctor scheduled her to undergo an emergency c-section to ensure the safety of both mother and child. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is helping Ma Tin undergo a C-Section on April 4th at Taw Win Thu Kha Hospital. This procedure will cost $1328, and Ma Tin needs your support. Ma Tin said, "When I learned that I would need a c-section, I lost hope. I thought about giving birth at home and if I were lucky, I would be able to give birth like before [without complications]. If not, I would die. Now that I was told that there would be donors to help pay for my c-section, I felt so happy. You are a miracle that appeared in my life to help me when I needed it with the cost of my surgery. Thank you so much to all the staff and donors who are willing to help me."

$1,328raised
Fully funded