Irina joined Watsi on March 10th, 2015. 17 other people also joined Watsi on that day! Irina's most recent donation traveled 8,300 miles to support Ko Tin, a former driver from Burma, to fund heart surgery.
Irina has funded healthcare for 86 patients in 12 countries.
Irina has funded healthcare for 86 patients in 12 countries.
Ko Tin is a 34-year-old man from Burma. He lives with his parents and his younger brother in a village in Yangon Division, Burma. He used to be a driver before his condition got worse but now he has stopped. Currently, Ko Tin is living with his parents who are farmers and support him. The whole family’s income is just enough for their basic expenses and basic health care. Ko Tin has a wife who went to Thailand for work about four months ago but he has lost contact with her. When he has the energy and free time, Ko Tin likes playing football with friends. Ko Tin was diagnosed with a heart condition that requires replacement of the mitral valve, the valve between the left atrium and left ventricle. This valve controls the flow of blood, but certain conditions may cause blood to flow backward or the valve to narrow. In mid October, Ko Tin experienced fever, cough, body pain, difficult breathing, and severe fatigue when he walks a short distance. After he visited the cardiologist in Yangon Hospital, he was diagnosed with mitral valve regurgitation and doctor recommend that he should receive surgery. Currently, Ko Tin feels tired, coughs often, and is experiencing difficult breathing. Sometimes, he feels pain from his legs and his arms, and he cannot sleep well at night. He will feel extremely fatigued with shortness of breath when he lays down on the floor. He also cannot walk long distances. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund a mitral valve replacement for Ko Tin. The treatment is scheduled to take place at Pun Hlaing Hospital on December 3rd and, once completed, will hopefully allow him to live more comfortably. Ko Tin said, “I would like to recover as soon as possible. My parents are worried about me, and they have difficulty earning enough money to pay for my treatment. I hope my wife to return, and I would like to live as a happy family.”
Su said, "I gave up after I learned the surgery would cost more than we could ever pay. I thought about taking medications to control my symptoms until my time came to go. But now I feel less stressed. Thank you so much for releasing us from our financial problem. I am looking forward to returning to work once I recover." Su lives with her husband, who works as a baker. She stopped working as a factory worker in August due to her deteriorating health and is currently unemployed. Back in 2016, Su began experiencing occasional tiredness, which worsened with physical activity. She also has difficulty sleeping, irregular heartbeat, and loss of appetite. Subsequent investigations, including an ECHO and ECG, revealed she needs a heart surgery called mitral valve replacement. After the surgery, she will no longer experience tiredness, irregular heartbeat, or difficulty sleeping.
Naw Bay is a 36-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband and five children in a refugee camp in Mae Hong Son Province, Thailand. Originally from Karenni State, Burma, she and her family fled to the refugee camp in 2011 due to armed conflict in their area. Naw Bay is a homemaker, while her husband is a laboratory staff at the hospital in the refugee camp. All of her children go to school in the refugee camp. During her free time, Naw Bay enjoys foraging for bamboo shoots near the refugee camp. In 2018, Naw Bay gave birth to twin boys. She gave birth to her first son at the hospital in the refugee camp but had difficulty delivering her second son and had to undergo an emergency C-section at Mae Sariang Hospital. Afterwards, she had postpartum hemorrhage and anemia. In January 2023, Naw Bay became pregnant again and has been receiving regular antenatal care at the hospital in the refugee camp. Doctor told her she would need to have a C-section again so that doctors can ensure the safety of both mother and child. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is helping Naw Bay undergo a C-Section on October 4th. This procedure will cost $1500, and Naw Bay and her family need your support. Naw Bay hopes for a better life for her and her family in the future. She said, “I would love to relocate to another country so that my children can have a better future."
Janet is an 18-year-old student and the second of three children in her family. Her parents do not have regular employment but do work whenever they can get it at a neighboring flower farm. Janet was doing well in her early years, but in 2020, she began falling, and started experiencing headaches, with symptoms similar to epilepsy. Sometimes her eyes were affected, causing blurred vision. She began falling more frequently, and she was admitted to Kenyatta National Hospital, where a brain tumor was diagnosed. Janet had a successful craniotomy (brain surgery). Following the surgery, she developed a limping gait, had difficulty talking, and experienced non-typical body movements. Over time, she seems to have improved as she continues with therapy. Janet started experiencing new symptoms just a few weeks ago. She began crying at night but could not explain her problem. Eventually, it was determined that her left hand was not straightening out and it was suspected that Janet may have fallen and broken her hand without knowing it. An x-ray showed a closed fracture dislocation of the left elbow. Janet's mother was advised to bring her to our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), and their care center. The surgeon has recommended an Open Reduction Internal Fixation (ORIF). This surgery will hopefully mend Janet's elbow. If not treated, Janet will continue to have pain. She may not be able to use her hand, and the fracture may develop malunion, or a permanent deformed healing. Fortunately, surgeons at AMH can help. On September 5th, Janet will undergo surgery. AMH is requesting $1,049 to fund this fracture repair procedure. Unfortunately, the family is not in a position to meet this cost. “My daughter does not even understand what is going on because of her other condition, but I plead for her support so that she can be able to use her hand in the future,” said Janet’s mother.
Festo is a 3-year-old boy and the seventh child in his family of eight. His family resides in a remote village called Itenka in the Mpanda district. Both of his parents engage in small-scale farming, earning just enough to cover their daily expenses. However, with the older children attending school, the parents are doing their best to manage both educational expenses and other day-to-day needs. During the initial stages of learning how to walk, Festo's parents noticed that he displayed signs of bowed legs. Initially, they attributed it to his newly acquired walking skills and assumed that his bones were not strong enough. However, at age of two, he was diagnosed with bilateral varus, characterized by bilateral knocking of the knees, which significantly hinders his ability to move around comfortably. Festo quickly becomes fatigued and experiences pain while attempting to walk. Furthermore, his overall health has been unstable, largely due to malnutrition. Fortunately, our medical partner African Mission Healthcare (AMH) can help. Festo is scheduled for corrective surgery on August 1st, and AMH is requesting $880 to fund the procedure. Treatment will hopefully restore Festo's mobility, allow him to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease his risk of future complications. Festo’s mother shared, “I hope my boy to grow older free from any kind of disability. I hope he gets the right treatment that will make it possible to have a good life in the future.”
Wilson is a charming 2-year-old toddler from Kenya. He was born with bilateral clubfoot. Clubfoot is a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. Without treatment, Wilson can experience difficulty walking or wearing shoes. When Wilson was born, the hospital referred Wilson's family to our medical partner's care center. He started casting treatment when he was a month old but did not respond to treatment. On July 10th, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery that will allow Wilson to walk easily as he grows. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare (AMH), is requesting $1,286 to fund this surgery. Wilson's father shared, "Any support to help my son walk with his feet is highly appreciated."
Sayuni, who is 4 years old, lives with her mother and two siblings in Tanzania. Sayuni's mother sells local bites like buns and Vitumbua- coconut rice pancakes- by the roadside to try and make ends meet. Sayuni was diagnosed with bilateral genu varus, which causes her legs to bow outward at the knees. This condition is typically caused by an excessive accumulation of fluoride in the bones, stemming from the consumption of contaminated drinking water. As a result of her condition, Sayuni has a difficult time walking and playing. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $880 to fund corrective surgery for Sayuni. The procedure is scheduled to take place on April 17th, at Arusha Lutheran Medical Centre. Treatment should restore Sayuni's mobility, allow her to participate in a variety of activities, and greatly decrease her risk of future complications. Sayuni’s mother says: “I have hope that my daughter will be able to walk better after the treatment.”
Ruthmeeah is a one-year-old baby girl living with her parents near the northern coast of Haiti. Ruthmeeah was born with a rare, congenital heart condition, known as Tetralogy of Fallot. This condition is characterized by four separate defects of the heart, including a hole between the heart's two lower chambers, and a muscular blockage of one of the valves. Ruthmeeah will fly to the Dominican Republic to receive treatment. On April 25th, she will undergo cardiac surgery at Hospital CEDIMAT, during which surgeons will sew a patch over the hole to prevent blood from leaking through it; they will also remove the blockage from the valve. Our medical partner, Haiti Cardiac Alliance, is contributing $6,000 to pay for Ruthmeeah's surgery. Ruthmeeah's family needs your help to raise an additional $1,500 to cover the costs of her pre-surgical prep, labs, medicines, and follow-up appointments. This money will also be used to pay for passports and for the social workers who will accompany Ruthmeeah and her family to the Dominican Republic. Ruthmeeah's mother said: "Our family has been praying very hard that our daughter would survive long enough to have this surgery, and we are so glad that our prayers are being answered."
Sai Laung, who is 18 years old, lives with her parents and her younger sister in Shan State in Burma. Sai Laung used to be an agriculture day laborer, but she stopped working in July 2022 due to her illness. In her free time, Sai Laung likes to read Buddhist books and study English online. During the first week of July 2022, Sai Laung began to feel very tired and she developed a fever. At first, she thought it was because she was working a lot, but when she had difficulty breathing a few days later, her mother brought her to the hospital. She was told she might have a congenital heart condition, and the doctor recommended that she have an echocardiogram to confirm the diagnosis. Sai Laung had an echocardiogram at another hospital, confirming that she has a ventricular septal defect, or a hole in her heart. The doctor advised her to go to the Pun Hlaing Hospital in Yangon to see a cardiologist, which Sai Laung did towards the end of November 2022. During that visit, the doctor also diagnosed her with aortic valve regurgitation, and told her that she needs surgery. Currently, Sai Laung has difficulty breathing and is only able to walk short distances before experiencing fatigue. Performing ordinary household chores like cooking or cleaning is exhausting for her. Her lips turn blue, and she has sharp chest pain, fever, and difficulty sleeping. Fortunately, our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, has stepped in to assist Sai Laung access the care that she needs. On March 7th, she will undergo surgery to repair her heart at Pun Hlaing Hospital. Now Sai Laung and her family need your help to raise the $1,500 to fund this life-saving procedure. “I have felt so sad since I was diagnosed with this [heart disease]. I need surgery and we have no money. I look at my parents and I pity them because they work so hard to help me get treatment. I want to recover quickly and go back to work so I can help my parents with the extra income. When I learned that there are donors who will help pay for my treatment cost, I felt so happy," said Sai Luang.
Naw Lah is a 35-year-old woman who lives with her husband and her daughter in a refugee camp in Mae Hong Son Province. Naw Lah is a teacher, while her husband is a homemaker caring for their three-year-old daughter. Every month, they receive 864 baht (approx. 28.80 USD) on a cash card from the organization The Border Consortium. This amount combined with the 1,200 baht (approx. 40 USD) from her salary is not enough to cover their family's daily needs. They receive free basic health care in the refugee camp, provided by Malteser International (MI) Thailand but this does note cover surgery, including the c-section that she needs. Naw Lah is currently expecting her second child. Due to complications during her previous delivery, the doctors recommend that she should receive a C-section this time to avoid risk of complications. This way, doctors can ensure the safety of both mother and child. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is helping Naw Lah undergo a C-Section on March 1st. This procedure will cost $1500, and Naw Lah needs your support. “I hope to have a boy because my previous baby is a girl. But I will love my baby regardless if they are a girl or a boy,” she said.
Nine-year-old Thiri is a first-grader, living with her mother and two brothers in Burma. Her mother sells vegetables in a local shop, while Thiri and her brothers attend school. While playing with her friends in front of her house in early January 2023, Thiri tripped, and fell into a pile of rice sacks, injuring her left eye in the process. Immediately, she realized that she could not see out of her left eye. Over time, her eye injury became more painful, red, and sensitive to light. Eventually, when her eye did not heal, her mother brought her to Mae Sot Hospital, where she was diagnosed with traumatic glaucoma. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Thiri. On February 1st, doctors at Mae Sot General Hospital will remove the natural lenses from both of her eyes, and replace them with intraocular lens implants. Once she has recovered. Thiri will regain her ability to see clearly. Now she needs your help to fund this critical procedure. Thiri's mother said: "I want her to receive surgery and recover soon so that she [Thiri] can go back to school and I can go back to work. I want her to be rich in the future, not like me, and own her own shop, because she likes to cook."
Esther is a young girl from Kenya. She likes reading books and enjoys going to school. Her family lives in a rural village, and she is the youngest in her family. Esther's mother is a business woman, while her father is a laborer on construction sites. Esther's right foot is affected by clubfoot, a condition in which the foot is twisted out of shape. This causes difficulty walking and even wearing shoes. She was born with hemiplegic CP, which means the right side of her body is weakened. Her condition has greatly impacted Esther and has made it difficult for her to engage with her peers at school. Earlier Esther was taken to a hospital, where she was given an orthosis to help correct her condition without surgery, however, she hasn't received treatment since then. Fortunately, Esther now traveled to visit our medical partner's care center, AIC Cure International Hospital. There, surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on January 16th. Our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, is requesting $1,286 to fund Esther's surgery. After treatment, she will be able to walk more easily and proceed with her studies uninterrupted. Esther’s mother says, “I am appealing for your financial help so that my daughter can walk well like other girls.”