Cuong joined Watsi on August 29th, 2016. Seven years ago, Cuong joined our Universal Fund, supporting life-changing treatments for a new Watsi patient every month. Cuong's most recent donation traveled 7,400 miles to support Srey Pov, a 46-year-old garment worker and single mother of two from Cambodia, to fund eye surgery.
Cuong has funded healthcare for 86 patients in 13 countries.
Cuong has funded healthcare for 86 patients in 13 countries.
Srey Pov is a 46-year-old garment worker. She has been divorced for ten years and has one son and one daughter who are both students. She and her children live in Phnom Penh City. When she is free from work, she likes to listen to music on her phone. About ten years ago, Srey Pov developed a pterygium in her right eye, causing her itchiness, tearing, and poor vision. Pterygiums are non-cancerous growths of the conjunctiva, a mucous layer that lubricates the eye. The growths occur when the conjunctiva is exposed to excessive sun damage and the cells grow abnormally over the pupil. She has difficulty seeing things clearly, recognizing faces, working, and going anywhere outside. When Srey Pov learned about our medical partner, Children's Surgical Centre, she traveled for one hour seeking treatment. Srey Pov needs a surgical procedure to remove the abnormal conjunctiva from the cornea surface and replace it with a conjunctival graft to prevent a recurrence. The total cost of her procedure is $225. This covers medications, supplies, and inpatient care for two days. The procedure is scheduled for April 28th. Srey Pov said: "I hope after surgery the irritation and burning in my eye will stop. I want to continue my work, do housework and go outside like before."
Marife is a loving wife and mother from the Philippines. She previously worked as a janitor at Makati Medical Center but had to quit to give more time to her daughter, who has difficulty breathing with asthma. Marife occasionally does freelance work, but their family mostly depends on the income her husband makes as a janitor. Marife and her family reside in a Housing Relocation Site provided by the National Housing Authority. One year ago, Marife began to experience troubling symptoms, including vomiting and extreme abdominal pain. She described it as even worse pain than when she gave birth. For a year, she tried various medications and home remedies to help ease the pain, but to no avail. After seeking treatment through our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP), Marife was diagnosed with cholelithiasis, or gallstones. If left untreated, her symptoms will continue to worsen and put her at risk for further health complications in the future. Marife is scheduled to undergo a cholecystectomy (gallbladder removal) on October 21st. A portion of the cost of the procedure is being supported by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and WSFP is raising the remaining $1,128 to cover the cost of Marife's surgery and care. Marife says, "This surgery will be a great help for me and my family as it will regain my confidence. I have been through depression since I first felt my symptoms. This illness sacrificed my supervision and parenting time with my daughter. I had come to the point of being hopeless but thanks to this hospital and the donors I will fight and continue my life. I hope they can help more people like me who need an operation. Thank you very much."
Titus is a young man from Kenya. He and his sibling live with his grandmother in a semi-arid area and they depend on jobs whenever they can get work to earn a living. Titus shared that he knows nothing about his parents because they left him under his grandmother's care when he was little. He studied up to class 7 in primary school and then dropped out because of the state of his family. Titus recently fell from a mango tree while harvesting mangoes, and he injured his left thigh, leaving him in pain and unable to use or move his leg. Doctors determined that he needs a nail to fix his fracture and enable him to walk again as soon as possible. Fortunately, surgeons at our medical partner African Mission Healthcare (AMH) can help. On September 7th, Titus is scheduled to undergo a fracture repair procedure, called an open reduction and internal fixation. AMH is requesting $1,247 to fund the procedure, which will enable Titus to walk again and return to work. Titus says, “Life has become hard for me and my grandmother at home. I have been the provider through casual jobs, and now I am bedridden. I have nobody to look up to, and I also don’t have any assets that can be sold to help me pay for my surgery. My wages are very low, but I thank you for giving me the strength to work and be able to put food on the table. Please help me fix my broken bone so that I can continue working as I did before.”
Mu Yeh, a 23-year-old woman, resides in a refugee camp in Mae Hong Son Province, Thailand, along with her parents, brother, sister-in-law, and sister. Her parents run a snack-selling business from their home, while her brother and sister-in-law are currently unemployed. Mu Yeh's sister attends school within the camp, and she herself is a homemaker. In her leisure time, Mu Yeh finds joy in weaving traditional Karen ethnic clothes and visiting her relatives in the refugee camp. Each month, they receive 1,303 baht (approximately 43 USD) on a cash card from an organization called The Border Consortium. Additionally, they raise pigs which they sell when in need of extra cash. Despite their modest monthly income, it barely covers their daily expenses. Fortunately, they receive essential healthcare from Malteser International (MI) Thailand, which is provided free of charge in the refugee camp. In October 2022, Mu Yeh noticed a mass in her left breast. Initially, she dismissed it as normal, but by May 2023, the mass had grown and began causing her pain. Currently, Mu Yeh experiences considerable pain and discomfort in her left breast due to the large mass. The pain radiates towards the left side of her torso, making it difficult for her to carry anything heavy with her left hand. Seeking medical attention, she visited the hospital in the refugee camp, where the doctor referred her to Mae Sariang Hospital for further evaluation and treatment. On July 4th, with the assistance of MI staff, Mu Yeh underwent an ultrasound of both breasts. The results revealed cysts in her right breast and confirmed the presence of a mass in her left breast. Subsequently, she underwent a biopsy. During her follow-up appointment on July 18th, the doctor diagnosed her with fibroadenoma in her left breast and fibrocystic changes in her right breast. The doctor recommended removing the benign mass from her left breast under general anesthesia. Her surgery was scheduled for August 2nd. However, unable to afford the procedure, MI staff referred her to our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF) for financial assistance to access treatment. BCMF is now requesting $1500 to help fund the procedure Mu Yeh needs. Mu Yeh said, “In the future, I would like to become a medic. When there is training in the refugee camp, I will register because I would like to study medicine.”
Jefferson is a three-month-old baby boy from Haiti. He lives with his parents and one older brother. Jefferson has been diagnosed with hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess cerebrospinal fluid accumulates in the brain, increasing intracranial pressure. As a result of his condition, the circumference of Jefferson's head has been increasing in size. Without treatment, Jefferson will experience severe physical and developmental delays. Our medical partner, Project Medishare, is requesting $897 to cover the cost of surgery at Hospital Bernard Mevs, which will treat Jefferson's hydrocephalus. This is the only site in the country where this care is currently available, and the procedure is scheduled to take place on February 14th. During surgery, excess fluid will be drained from Jefferson's brain, reducing the intracranial pressure, and greatly improving his quality of life. With proper treatment, Jefferson should develop into a strong and healthy young boy. The family is looking forward to Jefferson growing up happy and healthy.
Wine is a three-year-old boy who lives with his parents and siblings in Karen State - an area of Burma that is in a state of crisis and conflict. Wine’s father is a construction day laborer and his mother stays at home with Wine and his siblings. Wine's older brother lives in Bangkok and his sister lives in Shan State and is able to send Wine's household money every month. His other four siblings are students. Wine was born in 2019 with a condition called hydrocephalus. Hydrocephalus is caused by a brain malformation or birth defect that causes excessive cerebrospinal fluid to accumulate in brain cavities. Cerebrospinal fluid is a clear, colorless liquid that surrounds the brain and spinal cord, protecting them from injury. It carries nutrients to the brain and spinal cord and takes away waste. In a healthy person, the amount of this fluid produced by the brain is absorbed by the body. In hydrocephalus, the fluid fails to drain and accumulates, leading to pressure on the brain. Wine's symptoms include a lump on the bridge of his nose. His eyes frequently water, and he cries a lot when he is in severe pain. Additionally, his head is gradually increasing in size as the fluid continues to build. The condition is most often treated by inserting a shunt. The shunt diverts excess cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) from the brain to another part of the body where the fluid can be reabsorbed. Wine visited a doctor when he was born to address the issue. While he was in the process of receiving treatment across the border at a hospital in Thailand, the Thai-Burma border shut down due to the outbreak of COVID-19. With the closure of the Thai-Burma border, Wine and his family could not go back to his follow-up care. Fortunately, after the Thai-Burma border reopened, Wine was able to meet with our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF). Wine received a CT scan at Mae Sot General Hospital and the doctor was able to diagnose the issue and scheduled Wine to undergo surgery immediately on June 2nd. BCMF is now requesting $1,500 to help fund this procedure. Wine's mother said, "I want him to be able to walk, sit, and be healthy like other children his age. My husband and two of my children work, so I can take good care of Wine. I cry a lot whenever I see Wine suffering from pain, but now I feel like I no longer have to shed a tear for him because of that. I don’t want to be rich, nor do I want him to be rich. I only want Wine to be healthy and happy."
Miheretu is a sweet nine month old boy, who loves to play with his mother and other children. Miheretu's father works as a day laborer, while his mother stays at home to care for their children. Sadly, the family's income is insufficient to supply adequate food for the children, leaving Miheretu nutritionally deprived. Due to the concerns of his doctors, Miheretu underwent a colostomy for what was determined to be Hirschsprung's Disease. This is a condition that is present at birth, in which the baby's colon is missing necessary nerve cells. Without these cells, the muscles of Miheretu's gut cannot move contents through his colon, which can result in the contents backing up and causing a bowel blockage. After the colostomy, Miheretu's parents brought him back home, as they were unable to pay for the additional medical care that he needs. Thanks to the intervention of a local charitable organization, Miheretu was brought to BethanyKids Myungsung Christian Medical Centre, where on January 5th, doctors from our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare Foundation, will perform a Hirschsprung Pull Through. During this procedure, doctors will remove the damaged section of Miheretu's colon, which will alleviate the bowel obstruction, and allow for normal colon function. Miheretu's parents cannot afford the $1,500 cost of the surgery, and are looking to you for help. Miheretu's mother says: “If my child gets the surgery and recovers, I will give thanks to God in front of all church members and tell my testimony. I will take care of him to the best of my capacity. I want him to get an education and to get married one day.”
Zaw, who is 29 years old, lives with his wife and extended family members in Karen State, Burma. He and his wife are currently unemployed, although Zaw hopes to work as a second-hand motorbike seller. Zaw has had an irregular heartbeat since he was 10 years old. Although he visited a local clinic as a child, he was never provided a definitive diagnosis. By January 2022, he began to experience fatigue. His back and neck were stiff, and he lost his appetite. He also had difficulty sleeping, experienced a persistent cough and body aches, and his lips turned blue. After multiple hospital visits, Zaw was told he had a heart condition that required surgery. Unable to afford surgery in Burma, Zaw sought affordable care at Mae Tao Clinic (MTC) in Thailand. With the help of our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, he received a free echocardiogram, which revealed he had mitral valve regurgitation, atrial valve regurgitation, pulmonary valve regurgitation, and patent ductus arteriosus. He is now scheduled for a procedure at Kasemrad Prachachuen Hospital in Bangkok on April 18th to repair or replace three of his valves and address any other issues with his heart. Currently, Zaw continues to experience fatigue, thus he is unable to work. He experiences shortness of breath and a racing heartbeat, for which he requires oxygen therapy three times a day. He needs your help to raise the $1,500 to fund his life-changing surgery. Zaw said: “I want to be free from this disease as soon as possible. Thank you all for helping with my treatment cost.”
Alex is an 11-year-old pupil from Kenya who is the elder of two siblings. His mother is a housewife while his father works as a casual laborer at construction sites. Due to his clubfoot, which causes his left foot to be twisted out of shape, Alex tiptoes when he walks, cannot walk for long distances, and currently stays home with his mother. He has difficulty walking and wearing shoes. Fortunately, Alex and his family traveled to visit our medical partner, African Mission Healthcare, where surgeons will perform clubfoot repair surgery on March 14th. African Mission Healthcare Foundation is requesting $1,286 to help support Alex's clubfoot repair. After treatment, he will be able to walk comfortably and return to school. “I am appealing for support from well-wishers to help my son undergo surgery and I will appreciate it,” Alex's mother said.
Jocelyn is a loving mother of four from Philippines. She works as a bookkeeper, and her husband works as a part-time sidecar driver while also looking after their children. Despite their hard work, their combined income is just enough for the family's daily needs. Three years ago, Jocelyn began to experience troubling symptoms, including episodes of epigastric pain. Worried about their finances, she chose to defer her checkup. Unfortunately, the symptoms worsened as she began to experience difficulty of breathing, and persistent vomiting. She was brought to the nearest hospital to be given emergency care. The doctor told her to have an abdominal ultrasound. The test showed that she was suffering from gallstones, which can no longer be treated with medicines. Jocelyn has been advised to undergo a cholecystectomy, the surgical removal of the gallbladder. If left untreated, her symptoms will continue to worsen and put him at risk for further health complications in the future. After seeking treatment through our medical partner, World Surgical Foundation Philippines (WSFP), Jocelyn is scheduled to undergo a cholecystectomy on February 17th. A portion of the cost of the procedure is being supported by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and WSFP is raising the remaining $1,128 to cover the cost of Jocelyn's surgery and care. Jocelyn shared, "I'd like to thank WATSI and World Surgical Foundation Philippines for sponsoring my surgery. May you continue helping people who are financially incapable of paying for their surgeries. You are an answered prayer!"
Hla is a 43-year-old woman, living with her husband, son and daughter in a village in Thailand. Seven months ago, Hla and her family were forced to flee Karen State, Burma, because of the fighting that was taking place there. Both Hla and her husband worked as agricultural day laborers, but due to Hla's health, only her husband is working now. Two years ago, Hla felt a small mass in her left breast. The mass wasn't painful, so she decided not to seek treatment. A few months ago, the mass started to increase in size, and it became painful. In addition, puss has developed at the site of the mass. Doctors want Hla to undergo a CT scan, a procedure in which x-ray images taken from several angles, are combined to produce cross-sectional images of the body. It is hoped that this scan will help doctors diagnose her condition, and enable them to formulate an appropriate treatment plan. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $414 to cover the cost of Hla's CT scan and care, scheduled for September 5th, at Mae Sot General Hospital. Hla said: "I feel so sad that I cannot work since my condition worsened. I have to depend on my husband's income, which is hardly enough for this month. Thank you to all the donors who are willing to help pay for my expensive scan."
Paw is 52-year-old woman from Thailand. She lives with her husband, two daughters and son-in-law in a refugee camp. She and her husband are homemakers, while her eldest daughter and son-in-law are teachers. Her youngest daughter is a student. She has cataracts and she has blurred vision in both of her eyes. Because of her poor vision, she has difficulty walking around the refugee camp and she has had to stop weaving and selling traditional Karen clothes from her home-region of Burma. Our medical partner, Burma Children Medical Fund, is requesting $1,500 to fund lens replacement surgery for Paw. On December 29th, doctors will perform a lens replacement, during which they will remove Paw's natural lenses and replace them with an intraocular lens implant in each eye. After recovery, she will be able to see clearly. Now, she needs help to fund this $1,500 procedure. "I hope that my treatment will be successful. I want to be able to see well. I want to continue weaving clothes in the future, and I want to live with my family for the rest of my life,” she said.