Strategy update from leadership team

scene of bridge over a river

Dear Friends,

Since Russia invaded Ukraine, we’ve faced an immense humanitarian crisis with many unknown days ahead. Our response is adapting to meet our people’s most pressing needs: safety, emergency care, and emotional and spiritual guidance. Our community is now spread across Eastern Europe, and we’re bracing for the long-haul of rebuilding lives devastated by war.  

As we’ve kept you updated on our frontline stories, we’ve been grateful that you care so deeply about the people of Ukraine. You have responded with an astounding amount of kindness, desperate prayer, and financial support. Your compassion inspires us and reminds us of God’s kindness amid the darkness so many of our Ukrainian friends are facing. For a moment, we want to step away from the front lines of the war and share the big picture – our strategy for this moment in time. 

Here’s an overview of how our Last Bell team will prioritize our work in the days ahead – our Strategic Objectives:

  1. Secure the safety of our people still in Zhytomyr (including 11 of our staff members) by identifying alternative supply routes from the west, so our people’s basic needs can be met even if supply lines are cut off.  
  2. Evacuate any of our youth, families, volunteers, or staff who want to leave Zhytomyr using our staff drivers, vans, and partner resources.
  3. Continue to secure housing and supply connections for our people entering border countries, especially housing options that will last six months to a year. 
  4. Identify continued risk from Russian military movements.
  5. With help from friends in the U.S., gather financial resources to quickly fund war relief needs on the ground in Ukraine and western Europe.
  6. Care for our staff through encouragement, prayer time, connections to virtual trauma counseling, and overall emotional and spiritual support in this time of deep grief.

The immediate and long-term needs for our Last Bell community are substantial. As a reminder, you can give to our relief fund by clicking on the Donate button at the top of this page.

All of our operational costs are covered, so please know that 100% of the funds you give now will go directly to the crisis relief needs of our youth, staff, and volunteers. 

On behalf of the leadership team and those we love and serve in Ukraine,

Megan Hershey
Executive Director

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