Mary joined Watsi on March 12th, 2013. Seven years ago, Mary joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Mary's most recent donation supported Tay, a 6-year-old girl from Burma, to fund atrial septal defect closure.
Mary has funded healthcare for 90 patients in 12 countries.
Mary has funded healthcare for 90 patients in 12 countries.
Six-year-old Tay lives with her mother, sister, and brother in a village in Shan State in Burma. Tay's mother is a teacher. When Tay was three years old, she was frequently ill with a rapid heartbeat and fingertips that would turn blue. Her mother brought her to a nearby hospital, where the doctor told them that Tay had congenital heart disease and would need to be treated in Yangon. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Tay's mother did not feel it was safe to take Tay to Yangon. When she turned five, Tay's symptoms worsened, and her mother brought her to a hospital in Yangon in August 2022. At the hospital, Tay was diagnosed with an atrial septal defect, and her mother was told that Tay would require surgery- which the family could not afford to pay for. Fortunately, Tay's aunt referred her to our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, for help. Now Tay is scheduled to undergo atrial septal defect closure at Pun Hlaing Hospital on May 13th. As Tay is becoming progressively more ill- with episodes of rapid breathing and weight loss due to a lack of appetite- this procedure is critical for her health and well-being. Burma Children Medical Fund is seeking $1,500 to cover the cost of Tay's care. “When I learned that my daughter [Tay] needs surgery, I felt very sad and I cried because I cannot afford to pay for her surgery. But when I learned that the organization [BCMF] will support the cost of my daughter’s surgery, I felt very happy and thankful to all the donors and that organization. I want to see her healthy,” said Tay's mother.
Zoe, who is six months old, lives with her parents and two older sisters in La Paz, Bolivia. Her father is a dentist, while her mother stays home to take care of the children. When Zoe was born, she was diagnosed with Down syndrome and patent ductus arteriosus, a condition where there is a hole between two major blood vessels near the heart. As a result of this condition, blood leaks through the hole, leaving her weak and unable to gain weight, as her blood isn't properly oxygenated. Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is requesting $1,500 to fund surgery to correct Zoe's condition. The operation is scheduled for April 19th at Hospital del Niño Dr. Ovidio Aliaga Uría, where doctors will sew the hole shut, allowing for her blood to flow completely through her heart. Zoe should grow stronger after she has recovered from surgery. Zoe's mother said: "Our family is very hopeful that Zoe will gain an appetite and become stronger after her surgery!"
Austin is seven years old and a pupil in pre-primary two in Kenya. His father sells household items in Mwiki, while his mother is a homemaker. Austin also has one sibling. Austin has suffered from developmental delays in his growth and ability to speak. He also suffers from a heart condition, for which he is receiving treatment. Additionally, Austin has been diagnosed with significant hearing loss in both of his ears. As a result, his father reports that Austin performs poorly in school and has difficulty pronouncing words. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, wants to help Austin procure hearing aids. After being evaluated, Austin will receive his hearing aids- which will cost $1,171- on March 21st, at AIC Kijabe Hospital. Austin and his family need your help to raise the necessary funds. Austin's father says: “Austin is struggling to study in school. He is unable to pronounce words and do sums in class.”
Ju is a 27-year-old woman from Thailand where she lives with her friend. She used to work as an assistant cook with her friend until her accident. In her free time, she enjoys exercising and watching movies. On January 2nd, her friend was driving Ju home from work on her motorcycle when they were in an accident. When Ju regained consciousness three days later, she found herself in a hospital and learned that she had fractured her left pelvis. She cannot walk, and cannot sit up due to the pain. She has to stay in a reclining position. She experiences pain in her left pelvis, especially at night when it is cooler. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Ju will undergo surgery to reset her fractured bones and ensure proper healing. The procedure is scheduled for February 18th and will cost $1,500. This procedure will help her walk again and regain her independence. She will no longer be in pain and she will be able to work again. "I planned to earn money, but instead I brought a problem home. Now my mom has had to come here to help look after me. I feel stressed because now I am in debt. I will need to go back to work to earn money and pay back my debt", Ju said.
Kong is a 60-year-old corn farmer. He is a loving grandfather and lives with his wife who manages the farm with him. Together, they have two sons, two daughters, and two grandchildren. At home, he likes to listen to the news on TV. Two years ago, Kong developed a cataract in his right eye, causing him photophobia and blurry vision. It is difficult for him to spend time outside with his crops and he feels like there is a film covering his eye. He has difficulty seeing things clearly, including colors and faces, and is worried about falling when walking, so is not able to go places on his own. When Kong learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, he traveled for three and a half hours seeking treatment. On October 6th, doctors will perform a phacoemulsification cataract surgery and place an intraocular lens implant in his right eye. After recovery, he will be able to see clearly. Now, he needs help to fund this $253 procedure. Kong said, "I hope after surgery I can see better to plant corn and vegetables. I want to be able to still work outside to support my family."
Lwin is a 37-year-old wife and mother who lives with her husband and son on the Thai-Burma border. Lwin and her husband work as day labourers in a temple as a cook and gardener. In her free time, Lwin likes to garden and enjoys growing vegetables to eat and to donate to the temple. Lwin also likes to watch Thai movies. One night in March 2021, Lwin had a rapid heartbeat and felt dizzy. Lwin could not sleep that night so her husband brought her to a clinic the next day. The doctor referred her to Mae Sot Hospital in an ambulance, where she underwent diagnostic tests, but never received a diagnosis. Lwin was given medication to stabilize her condition. During her follow-up appointment in June 2022, Lwin received an echocardiogram and was diagnosed with mitral valve stenosis. The doctor then referred her to Chiang Mai Hospital for further treatment. Currently, Lwin suffers from shortness of breath and heart palpitations. Lwin reports her arms and legs feeling heavy and trouble sleeping. Lwin has little appetite and she has to sleep propped up on pillows. On January 13th, Lwin with receive surgery to improve her condition. Our medical partners, Burma Children Medical Fund, are helping Lwin raise $1,500 to cover the cost of this life altering surgery. Lwin shared, "I will never forget the donors who will help pay for my treatment cost. When I recover fully, I want to learn how to sew so that I can open a shop from my home and work as a seamstress."
Meet Kyar, a 4-year-old boy who lives with his parents, two brothers, and one sister in Tak Province. Kyar and his siblings are students at a Thai school, while their parents raise pigs and ducks and grow some vegetables for their own consumption. Kyar's mother is a homemaker, and his father makes charcoal to earn a living. He will also work as a day laborer to supplement his income, and goes fishing to put additional food on the table. The family income is just enough for their basic needs. In early December 2022, Kyar was playing with rubber bands with his friends, when one accidentally hit his left eye, which turned red and became painful. Kyar’s mother brought him to a nearby hospital, where he was admitted right away. After two days, Kyar's mother was told that he needed to be transferred to another hospital, but after eight days there, Kyar was referred to a hospital in Chiang Mai, because of the nature of the injury. Currently, Kyar experiences severe pain, swelling, and tearing from irritation in his left eye. He cannot open his eye because it is too painful. With the assistance of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, Kyar is now scheduled to undergo a surgical procedure on December 20th at Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital, that will resolve his injury, enabling him to see clearly again. Kyar and his family need your help to fund the $1,500 needed for the surgery. "I honestly feel sad to see my son's condition and also worried about financial difficulty, but after learning this organization BCMF and donors will support my son's treatment, I am relieved and happy," said Kyar's mother.
Titus is the eldest son in a family of four. He shared his life's story with us: sometime back, his father was involved in a fatal argument with a neighbor, and went to prison. Titus' family became homeless as a result of this incident, and Titus could not stay in school after 8th grade due to financial difficulties. Recently, he has been working getting jobs near his home and sometimes he works at construction sites in order to earn a living. His jobs enable him to get his daily basic needs and be able to pay for his rent. Generally, Titus’ life is hard, and it is difficult for him to makes ends meet. Titus had a burn accident and his relatives rushed him to the hospital for treatment of severe burns on his hand and superficial burns on his chest and face. He has been on a daily dressing regime to lower the risk of infection and his doctor has determined that he needs a skin graft surgery in order to replace the lost skin and restore function of his right upper limb and forearm. Titus is requesting to be discharged home from the hospital without further treatment because he does not want the bill to accumulate as it will be hard to pay. However, it is critical for him to have the surgery, so that he can have the full use of his right arm. He needs $1,089 to pay for the surgery. Titus says, "Life has really been hard for me: when a problem ends, another one begins. I am so desperate, but I will not lose hope because someday things will be well. I kindly ask for your help to get well so that I may be able to continue working in order to change my current state.”
Teresiah is a quiet but social mother of three children, who lives with her family in Kenya. She is a small-scale farmer while her husband works as a casual laborer. Teresiah's children are all in school and she has big hopes for their future. Teresiah started experiencing severe epigastric pains intermittently. She has visited many hospitals without much success. Finally, at Nazareth Hospital, an ultrasound scan examination was done, and it showed that Teresiah has Cholelithiasis - gall stones. In addition to the severe pain she is experiencing, Teresiah might also develop complications like inflammation of the pancreas, gall bladder, or gall bladder obstruction. The surgeons advised that she needs to undergo surgery to treat her condition. Teresiah is not in a position to fund her treatment and she therefore requests for help. She needs $788 to fund her surgery. Teresiah says, "Having kids in school and not being able to take care of them is very difficult. I humbly ask for assistance and medical attention. I want to take care of my family and return to my regular life."
Naima is a smiley and playful baby girl from Ethiopia. She loves to breastfeed and play with her seven older siblings and her mother. Her dad is a retired driver and the community elder, and her mother stays home to care for the children. Because Naima's father has no source of income, their older children support them financially. Naima was born with an anorectal malformation, a congenital abnormality that leads to a complete or partial intestinal blockage. She needs to undergo a series of procedures to eliminate bowel dysfunction. Naima developed bowel obstruction because of her condition and an emergency colostomy was done. She has had multiple issues with her colostomy care and associated complications. As a result, she cannot make stool in a typical way. Her parents have been very troubled because of her condition and are asking for support. Naima is scheduled to undergo surgery to correct her condition on September 22nd. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Naima's procedure and care. After her recovery, Naima will no longer experience bowel dysfunction or be at risk of developing health complications in the future. Naima's father says, “I hope my child will get the treatment and heal. Once she finishes her treatment, I hope she will be relieved from her pain and suffering and lead a healthy life.”
Josephine is a 70-year-old mother of eight children who lives with her husband in Kenya. Although she and her husband both do some small-scale farming in her community, they depend on their children to support them. However, Josephine has recently been unable farm due to her current medical condition. Since January, Josephine has been experiencing troubling symptoms, including uncontrolled bleeding. She visited a nearby health facility in her hometown to be evaluated and was referred to a hospital for additional tests. There, she received a CT scan and a biopsy, which revealed that she has uterine cancer. Her doctor recommends that she undergo a total abdominal hysterectomy, a surgical procedure to remove the uterus, to help remove the cancer from her body and hopefully stop its spread. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF), is requesting $1,260 to fund Josephine's surgery. Josephine has gathered funds to help with a copay, but the full cost of the specialist procedure is out of reach. On August 25th, she will undergo gynecological surgery at AMHF's care center, AIC Kijabe Hospital. After this procedure, she should be able to resume her life free from discomfort and bleeding. Josephine says, “Struggling with cancer at my age is scary. I can’t believe it! I hope the surgery will help to get rid of the disease.”
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.”