Alan joined Watsi on January 2nd, 2017. Six years ago, Alan joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Alan's most recent donation traveled 3,300 miles to support Kim Heng, a 67-year-old vegetable seller from Cambodia, to fund life-changing cataract surgery.
Alan has funded healthcare for 61 patients in 9 countries.
Alan has funded healthcare for 61 patients in 9 countries.
Kim Heng is a vegetable seller living with her husband who is a retired army nurse. Together they have three daughters, four sons and 15 grandchildren. She enjoys listening to the radio in her spare time. Three years ago, Kim Heng developed a cataract in her left eye, causing her tearing and blurry vision. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, including colors and faces, and she is uncomfortable going out on her own, as she has concerns about falling. When Kim Heng learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for four and a half hours to seek treatment. On May 16th, doctors at Kien Khleang National Rehabilitation Centre will perform cataract surgery, and implant an intraocular lens in her left eye. They are requesting $253 to cover the cost of Kim Heng's treatment, which will enable her to see clearly again, and to move about independently. Kim Heng says: "I hope I can easily go outside and take care of my family well after surgery."
Sol is a 42-year-old man who works as a blacksmith, while his wife sells groceries from their home. They have three daughters, who are all students in the local public school. When Sol is not working, he likes to listen to the news on the radio or on his phone. Two years ago, Sol developed a pterygium in his left eye, causing him irritation, tearing, and difficulty seeing in low light. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, which is the mucous layer that lubricates the eye. These growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage, and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. As a result of this condition, Sol has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, working, and going outside. When Sol learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre (CSC), he traveled for three and a half hours hoping for treatment. On May 2nd, he will undergo surgery to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent a recurrence. CSC is requesting $225 to fund this procedure, which includes medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. Sol said, "After surgery, I hope my eye can see better. I need good eyesight to work well in my trade."
Henrico is a kind 3-year-old boy, who lives with his parents in a small fishing village in western Haiti. He was born with a cardiac condition called Tetralogy of Fallot, which involves several related defects including a hole between two chambers of the heart and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. As a result of these defects, his heart cannot adequately provide oxygen to his body, leaving him weak and short of breath. As the care he needs is not available in Haiti, Henrico will fly to Italy to receive treatment and, on September 27th, he will be able to undergo the life-saving cardiac surgery he needs. Henrico's family needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep and travel. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports passport obtainment and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany his family overseas. His family hopes he will have a bright future and plans to start him in preschool as soon as he has recovered from his heart surgery. Henrico's mother shared, "Our family is praying for everyone who is making it possible for our son to have this surgery!"
Collins is seventh grade student and is looking forward to finishing his primary school studies. He is the second born in a family of three children. His father is a motorbike taxi driver but was involved in an accident and broke his hand and is now unable to work. Their family now relies on Collins' mother who does laundry work and house chores to earn a living for their family. Collins is a happy and talkative boy. When he was young, his parents noticed his health condition took him to a nearby hospital for treatment. There he was examined but was not able to receive care at that time. His parents were not satisfied and went to another hospital where they recommended surgery. His family has not been able to cover the cost and Collins has not yet been treated. Fortunately, their church pastor heard about Collins’ condition and referred them to our medical partner's care center, BethanyKids Hospital. Collins was diagnosed with cryptorchidism, a condition in which one or both of the testicles remains undescended. If left untreated, Collins has an increased risk of developing hernias, testicular cancer, and fertility problems in the future. Collins will be receiving assistance from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH). Fortunately, he is scheduled to undergo corrective surgery on April 12th. AMH is requesting $646 to cover the total cost of his procedure and care. Collins’ mother says, “I used to feel bad about myself previously as I could not afford to cater for my son’s treatment. Now I’m happy with the progress and what God is doing in Collins’ life. We hope for the best with the surgery.”
Irine is a hardworking 76-year-old grandmother and widow from Kenya. She lives in a semi-permanent house and works as a small-scale farmer, growing food to feed herself. She receives other basic necessities from her children. Irine's home is located in an area with many hills, which become very slippery when it rains. One rainy day, Irine was doing her daily duties when she unfortunately slipped and fell. As she fell on the side of her hip, the load she was carrying also fell on top of her. She could not get up or move due to her right lower limb being in pain. Since she was home alone, she had to shout for help, and a neighbor eventually came to her rescue. A family member later took her to a hospital, where she was diagnosed with a fracture of her right femur. Irene currently experiences pain and is unable to use her leg. Although she was previously among the beneficiaries who received health insurance paid for by the government, the government eventually stopped providing payment. This meant Irine had to pay for her own monthly bill, a cost she could not provide. Due to financial constraints and not having insurance, Irine cannot fund her needed treatment. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On August 2nd, Irine will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. After the surgery, she will hopefully be able to walk and care for herself again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,247 to fund this procedure. Irine says, "I know how my children struggle to earn a living. Kindly help me so that I may not be a burden to them.”
Nedjee is a 17-month-old baby girl from Haiti. She lives with her parents, grandparents, and three siblings in a neighborhood outside of the capital city, Port-au-Prince. Nedjee has a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect, which means a hole exists between the two lower chambers of her heart. As a result, blood leaks through this hole without passing through her lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving her weak and short of breath. The surgery that Nedjee needs for her birth condition is not available within her country. Fortunately, Nedjee will be able to fly to the Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On July 25th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will sew a patch over the hole so that blood can no longer leak through it. Nedjee's family is requesting assistance to cover the costs of Nedjee's surgery prep, as our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance (HCA), is contributing the funds needed to cover the cost of surgery. HCA is requesting $1,500 to cover the surgery prep, which includes all labs, medication, check-up and follow-up appointments, and the passports needed for HCA's social workers to accompany Nedjee and her family overseas. Nedjee's mother shared, "Our family is all praying that this surgery will go well and that our daughter's heart will be stronger afterward."
Christmaelle is a beautiful toddler from Haiti. She lives with her parents, grandparents, and three older siblings in a small fishing village in southwest Haiti. The adults in her family all fish and raise livestock for a living. Christmaelle has a cardiac condition called ventricular septal defect. A hole exists between the two lower chambers of her heart; blood leaks through this hole without first passing through her lungs to obtain oxygen, leaving her weak and short of breath. The surgery Christmaelle needs is not available in Haiti, so she will fly to Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On June 28th, she will undergo cardiac surgery, during which surgeons will close the hole in her heart with a patch so that blood can no longer leak through it. Haiti Cardiac Alliance is contributing $7,000 to pay for her surgery. Christmaelle's family also needs help to fund the costs of surgery prep and followup. The $1,500 bill covers labs, medicines, and checkup and followup appointments. It also supports the cost of getting passports and the social workers from our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, who will accompany Christmaelle's family overseas. Christmaelle's mother said: "Our family is praying for everyone who is helping our daughter to become healthy again!"
Dismas is a boda boda taxi driver from Kenya. He is a bright and hardworking young man from a highland region in Elgeyo Marakwet County. Dismas is the third born in a family of four. He studied up to the 7th grade in primary school, but then had to stop attending due to the school fees. Now he lives in a rental house with his wife and their son. His parents live in a place far from him in a semi-arid area, and he moved to look for work and to earn a living. Before his recent accident, Dismas was employed as a motorcycle driver and his limited wages enabled him to sustain his family and give his parents a little support. After a severe road traffic accident about three weeks ago, Dismas was taken to the hospital on a stretcher and is still unable to walk. The bill for his care has been accumulating and he had no funds to pay due to his current state and inability to work. Well-wishers helped him pay the bill and he was discharged home with his fracture stabilized on a splint. One of his brothers reached out to a friend who knew of our medical partner's care center, Kapsowar Hospital, and he was brought in to see if they could help him. An x-ray found that he sustained fractures of the distal tibia and fibula. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner can help. On April 26th, Dismas will undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. After he heals from this surgery, he will be able to walk easily again. Now, our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, is requesting $1145 to fund this procedure. Dismas says, "It really hurts when I see my family suffering. I am worried about their future if my condition doesn’t change. Kindly help me get well so that they may not be impacted even more.”
Daw Aye is a 49-year-old woman who lives with her three sons, daughter-in-law, and a grandson in Burma. Two of her sons works as carpenters, while one works in a factory. Her daughter-in-law is a homemaker and her grandson is too young to go to school. Daw Aye was working as a vegetable seller, but recently stopped due to her injury. In February, Daw Aye and her grandson walked to her sister’s village for a visit. When her grandson tripped along the way, Daw Aye tried to catch him and fell herself. She injured her right knee, right elbow, hit her head and lost consciousness. Her elbow remained swollen and painful, and she sought treatment from a traditional healer. The healer suggested stretching exercises, but unfortunately, her condition did not improve. She visited a hospital where an x-ray and physical exam indicated a closed fracture of her elbow. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), is helping Daw Aye access the treatment she needs to heal. On March 26th, she will undergo internal fixation surgery at BCMF's care center. Hopefully, the procedure will help her regain use of her right arm and alleviate her pain. Now, she needs help raising $885 to fund her procedure and care. Daw Aye shared, "when the doctor told me about the cost of the surgery, I started to cry because I do not want to burden my children. My children are very kind to me and they are all good. When they heard that the surgery will be expensive, they told me that my only option was to pawn the house to come up with money to pay for the surgery. When the monk told me not to worry about the cost and that donors may be able to help pay for it, my children told me they would kneel down in front of the donors [in respect] if they ever had the chance to meet them in person."
Nan Hla is a 65-year-old nun. She lives alone, as she is the only nun in her monastery of monks in Karen State in Burma. Nan Hla shared that she meditates daily, and the community supports her with meals. Her son, who also lives in Burma, can sometimes provide Nan Hla with extra money to buy additional snacks. On February 20th, Nan Hla began to experience severe stomach pains. She visited a local hospital the next day, where she received an ultrasound and x-ray, but her test results were not clear. As a result, she was referred to another hospital for a CT scan a few days later. The CT scan indicated she has common bile duct stones. Currently, Nan Hla is experiencing heartburn, jaundice, and a poor appetite, as she feels nauseous after she eats any solid food. Doctors have advised her to undergo a cholecystectomy, which is the surgical removal of the gallbladder. If left untreated, Nan Hla's symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF), can help Nan Hla receive treatment. On March 1st, she will undergo a cholecystectomy. BCMF is requesting $1,500 to cover the total cost of Nan Hla's procedure and care. Nan Hla shared, "I have never experienced these kinds of symptoms before. This is a very bad experience to go through. I pray that all the donors will be healthy. May all your work be successful."
Marimar is from Samar, an island approximately 530 km away from the capital city of Manila. She's been diagnosed with cholelithiasis, also known as gallstone disease. She saw several doctors in her province after experiencing shooting pains in her stomach whenever she walked. Eventually, her condition has gotten severe to the point that she had to stop working due to her worsening symptoms. Due to the lack of equipment and specialists in their province, she has needed to travel to Manila to get the surgery she needs to heal. If left untreated, her condition may lead to tissue damage, tears in the gallbladder, and infection that can spread to other parts of her body. Luckily, her brother who works in construction in Manila is able to host her to stay with him until she undergoes surgery and afterward as she heals. Her surgery is scheduled for February 1st and our medical partner World Surgical Foundation Philippines is raising $1,253 to fund her procedure and care. After recovering, Marimar will be able to work again to support her family in Samar. Looking forward to a better future, Marimar shared, "after the surgery, I hope to be able to live and work again without the excruciating pain."
On Monday night this week, Christine started experiencing pain in her abdominal area which she thought would disappear but it did not. The pain began when she was in school and her roommate heard her cry at night and went to her help. Upon learning about Christine’s pain, she immediately requested a taxi and rushed her to a nearby hospital. She was examined in the emergency department where first aid and a diagnostic scan was done. Her scan did not reveal anything unusual and she was referred to another facility where she could have a CT scan. Based on her results from the CT scan she was immediately referred to Kenyatta National Hospital. She was taken there in an ambulance, but on arrival they were asked for money which her father did not have. Their family made a decision to bring her to Kijabe Hospital for treatment with hopes that she could get the care she needed there. Christine’s family is having a difficult time right now and is requesting help to support her treatment. They need help raising $1,074 to fund the emergency laparotomy that will heal her pain.