Dear Friends –
Exciting news to share – our US-based personnel arrived in Poland today where we will reset prior to traveling across the border in the next day or so. There have been some changes since the last time we were here in terms of permissions and potential delays at the border, so we built some front-end time into our itinerary for that reason and just in case any of our bags did not make it all the way through.
Speaking of bags, we worked with two local (to us) organizations – Sunflower Seeds for Ukraine and Ukrainians of Colorado – and they were able to help us get all of our bags (9 bags!) checked all the way out to Poland for free. In exchange, we were able to bring an additional 9 bags out of gear that they had collected that will be delivered inside Ukraine through their network. So a total of 18 bags of humanitarian aid were carried out by our team thanks to their help and the wonderful airline, Lufthansa. We are incredibly grateful for their assistance and generosity, allowing us to save several hundred dollars that can now be directed against more training equipment. Some of that training equipment – as promised – is coming from the local vendor Steepen (https://www.steepen.ua/shop/). You can see some of their products on the website, but thanks to your generous donations, we were able to acquire several vital training models. We will be receiving from them cricothyrotomy trainers, wound packing trainers, and nasal adjunct trainers (NPA trainers).
Our team is exhausted from the long travel day, but we cannot tell you how excited we are to be back in Poland and on the cusp of starting this vital humanitarian mission. I will be spending the available time while we are here refining our schedule and doing the final security assessments. We continue to monitor the dynamic situation across the country very closely.
On behalf of the Forca Foundation, our UAMSI partners, our Ukraine team, and me personally, thank you so very much for helping us get to this point. You are a member of this team, and we value and appreciate you for your trust in us.