Wonderful messages from Eila and Veli this morning..  the power of Rotarians giving to Rotary Foundation has allowed this miraculous project to be fulfilled.  What courage!
Your support of Rotary Foundation is hugely appreciated.  Let’s show our support by becoming a district Centurion club in our 30th year.
Warm good wishes

Begin forwarded message:
From: Eila Parviainen <rotary.eila@gmail.com>
Subject: Ukraine Field Ambulances DR824
Date: 26 January 2023 at 1:29:13 AM NZDT
To: Marilyn Stevens <marilyn.rotary9940@gmail.com>, Judy Bain <judy.bain@me.com>, Martin Garcia <garcia.family@xtra.co.nz>
Cc: Veli Heinijoki <veli.heinijoki@flywell.fi>
Dear Marilyn, Judy and Martin,
I'm happy to announce that our mission is completed!
The six field ambulances with their load are now in Ukraine and the Kharkiv area.
We spent Monday at customs at the border of Poland and Ukraine. But finally we passed it. It was already dark in the evening when we were free to go. We had to drive apr. 90 km by our own from the border to Lviv where we met Ukrainian Rotarians. On the road we saw soldiers, roadblocks/checkpoints, bumpy roads, newly opened graveyards etc.  For me it was a once-in-a-lifetime -experience. Mostly because of the feeling that here we are driving in a war zone in darkness trying to find our way to the destination.
Anyway, we had no problems on the Ukrainian side.
We met Rotarians from Kharkiv and had a warm dinner together. The handover of the vehicles was memorable. It was such a touching moment when we changed the flags. And the message: Rotarians are working together across the continents to help Ukraine. They were amazed that Rotarians from Finland and New Zealand are working together to help Ukraine. They send big hugs and warm thoughts to all of you ❤
RC Kharkiv New Level Rotarians had almost 1000 km to drive across the country from Lviv to Kharkiv and they did it. The field ambulances are now in the Kharkiv area.
We got remarkable help from Polish Rotarians, especially DG Piotr Jankowsky (D2231 Poland) was a priceless helping hand for us.
First time we had seven drivers from Finland (one backup) and this time we had four drivers from Finland and two from Poland. Veli was one of our drivers this time.
Both teams did a remarkable job, not least because the days were very long and conditions were sometimes difficult. I'm proud of all our drivers! They are such a good people ❤
Enclosed The Ukrainian Flag. More photos will come later.
I will also make you a presentation to showcase this project. The photos of our professional photographer will be in use next week.
Now we have a positive problem.
We bought the vans so cheap and got so many supplies as a donation that we still have some money left. So we ordered "Walking Blood Banks" (you can transfer blood from one person to another outside the hospital when needed) for 24.000 euros.
It's more than we have money left in DR824 but because we have got so many extra donations during this project we have the possibility to do this.
The order is in, we got the invoice and now we  pay it. When supplies arrive we send them as cargo to Kharkiv, Ukraine. RC Kharkiv New Level Rotarians will forward them to hospitals.
I'm going to report these Walking Blood Banks as a part of this project because Field Ambulance really needs those and also because this is one big invoice and easy to explain to TRF. At the same time we can use our districts' other (Ukraine dedicated) funds for other minor expenses caused by this project. It will be clear and transparent this way. I hope this is ok for you. The final report will not be delayed because of this arrangement.
Awesome. I'm so happy that I have had the opportunity to be a part of this project. This is one of those memories I will never forget.
Let's keep going on Rotary's work!
Eila Parviainen
DG 2021–2022 - coordinating D1390 aid for Ukraine
D1390 Finland
+358 (0)40 536 5166
AND from Veli:
Dear Friends,
We drivers enjoyed Eila's great leadership in practise, when she guided our convoy trough the darkness of Ukraine. Determined voice in the radio informed - Next to the right after two kilometers -, and the message spread trough the convoy in Finnish, Swedish, Polish and English. I felt all the way safe and in the end very emotional. It was a life time experience.
Cheers to Eila and Thanks to you Kiwis for the co-operation.
Best Regards,
Veli Heinijoki
Lorry Driver