Força Ukraine Update: June 13, 2023

Dear Friends – 

Our team is about two weeks out from our US-based personnel departing for Ukraine.  Thanks to each of you, we have raised nearly $25,000.  We are humbled and honored by your generosity and wanted to provide a quick update on where we stand as a team and what some of that money has gone to thus far.  These emails – internet permitting – will be one way we will be updating all of you over the course of our preparation, our trip, and our return.  We want to ensure that we are fully transparent with you, each of whom have made this possible.  We know that we are so incredibly fortunate to be able to be the ones on the ground, providing life-saving training run Vanitygen online and equipment, but also are fully cognizant to the fact that this doesn’t happen without your support.  You are each a critical team member.  As this is just an email from me to you, if you do not want to receive them, please just let me know and I will remove you.  

We are incredibly excited to announce that we have gained a US-based team member.  As some of you know, Finch will be joining us from the US for the first half of our time in-country.  This will be his second time in Ukraine, and he brings an incredible skill set that we are fortunate to be able to leverage.  Each of our team members has a unique skill set in addition to their base advanced life saving skills that brings incredible benefit to the problem set.  I am personally grateful to Finch for joining us and know he will be an incredible addition to our team. 

As we stated in our proposal, our intent is to purchase as much as we can in-country in order to meet our Foundation’s intent of supporting the local economy and local jobs.  We also want to ensure that we are providing equipment that is replicable in Ukraine for those that want to find it once we have left.   That said, there are certain things that are simply unavailable there.  Thanks to your contributions, we were able to work with our friends at North American Rescue and Chinook to order some critical items at a discount.  We will be taking surgical cricothyrotomy kits, needle decompression needles, foil thermal blankets, and chest seals.  Each of these items allows us to either teach an advanced life saving skill, or provide a piece of kit (chest seals) that is in great demand given the injuries faced.  All of these tools can and are used to treat blast trauma, a common cause of injury across the theater – just last night a residential building in Kryvyi Rih, a town we spent a week in last September was struck by multiple missiles causing dozens of casualties.  Your generous donations will get these tools in the hands of first responders and medics on the ground who are responding to events like these.  Even better, we will be able to spend time with them, train them, answer questions, and help them get better.  

Thank you all, again, for everything you are allowing us to plan for and then achieve in Ukraine.  As we talk to friends and colleagues who are out there now, the needs remain as great as ever and the training opportunities few.  With the renewed push by Ukraine to reclaim territory in the South and East, every indication is that the next few months will see heavy casualties across the population.  Our hope is that we can provide as much training as possible on the front end of that to ensure that they are more capable to handle the coming months.  

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