BY MAIRE O’NEILL
As the community looks in shock at the events in Ukraine over the last several days, two brave Los Alamos men are heading this week with the Humanitarian Aid & Rescue Project (HARP).
Tylerr Jones, a registered nutse, City of Santa Fe Fire Inspector and EMT, and Chris Hammond, an emergency room physician at Los Alamos Medical Center, have previously traveled together to Mosul, Iraq and Jones has worked in Bangladesh and responded to Hurricane Harvey in Houstin and Hurricane Irma in Florida.
While those around Jones and Hammond are most worried about their safety on this mission, they two men are more anxious abouit getting people to contribute to HARP to fund the supplies needed for their operations in Ukraine.
“The people we are going to help have no water, no food, no medical supplies. Many of them are women and children. They are trapped and have nothing. They are badly injured and we will be providing frontline medical attention and trying to get them out of there as soon as possible. The money people in the community here donate to HARP is a life line for those people,” Jones told the Los Alamos Reporter Tuesday evening.
He encouraged anyone who can to donate immediately at https://www.harprescue.org. His wife, Becca said HARP runs on a shoestring budget and that all funds collected go to provide aid directly to the people they are serving. Jones and Hammond are leaing on Thursday and are expected to be gone until mid-April.
“We all hope for peace but in the meantime, people need help, so Tylerr’s gotta do what Tylerr does best – help people,” Becca Jones said.
The HARP project has been named Operation Winter Shadow and available details of the operation are limited at this time due to conditions in war-torn Ukraine. Jones admitted that he is scared and nervous about the mission before him.
“As Nelson Mandela said, ‘Courage is not the absence of fear but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who doe not feel afraid but he who conquers that fear’. Right now I’m focusing on raising the funds we need to do our work,” he said.
“I’m always so proud of his decision to go into these very, very scary places, but all the good juju you can muster on this one will be appreciated,” Becca Jones said.
HARP’s goal is to provide immediate support to those most vulnerable in high-impact areas experiencing disaster, war, and conflict both foreign and domestic. Their website states, “Saving lives is our business and we’re extremely good at it”.
To donate, go to http://www.harprescue.org. Remember that an immediate response has been requested as the need is so urgent.