SFC (R) Ryan Hendrickson, U.S. Army Retried, was a special forces engineer in the U.S. Army. Ryan transferred over to the Army in 2008 after completing enlistments in both the Navy and the Air Force. After Ryan’s time in service, he wrote his best-selling book, “Tip of the Spear”. To continue his efforts in the military community, Ryan is partnering with Youth with a Mission and Operation Shield Foundation. We have all been watching the war unfold between Russia and Ukraine. While most of us can only pray for things to improve for both countries affected, Ryan decided to go himself and make an impact. He started communicating with Youth with a Mission to get all the details on what was needed and how he could be of the most help once in Ukraine. Operation Shield Foundation jumped in as soon as we found out what Ryan wanted to do. We booked his flight and built an Amazon Wishlist based on the supplies that were most needed. OSF continues to send supplies/food and help fund gas for roundtrip travel to help civilians get to safety.


Ryan’s travels from Florida to Kyiv took him 3 days. While traveling, he was stopped at various safety checkpoints which served to inform him of the warzone ahead. Once in Kyiv, Ryan started picking up families from their homes and driving them across the border to safety. The YWAM team and Ryan have had the opportunity to talk to a few of the local families and they do not understand why their homes and communities were hit. One lady had a shell go completely through her house and it destroyed everything. Food is not easy to get in and out of the country right now, so Ryan and the team have been getting food and supplies to as many families as possible. They are still not allowed to enter all the areas across Ukraine but the further east they go, they are able to get more food and supplies to more people. This war has taken everything away from the civilians that a few months ago were just living their lives. Ryan will be returning to the US in the middle of May, but YWAM will continue its mission there. As OSF, we will still continue sending supplies over as donations come in.