For Immediate Release
December 19, 2022
CONTACT: Clem Boyd
NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE – Russian drone strikes have taken out approximately 50 percent of Ukraine’s power-generating ability. It may take months before parts of the country have electricity, heat, and running water.
Imagine what would happen in the United States under a similar nightmare scenario.
Imagine also facing a long, hard Ukrainian winter that includes regular doses of subzero temperatures. How can you survive? Wood-fired stoves.
The answer may be old school, but it’s the key to victory against the demoralization that Russia’s President Vladimir Putin seeks to inflict.
“Nobody thought the war would go on this long,” explained Sergey Rakhuba, president of Nashville-based Mission Eurasia, which has courageously stood in the gap for Ukrainian refugees and those liberated from Russian occupation.
“Everybody thought this would only go on a few days. Then it was a few weeks, a few months, and now 10 months. The war is still raging.”
Mission Eurasia is in the midst of a marathon campaign to raise half a million dollars by January 15 to construct and deliver 2,000 wood-burning stoves to homes, churches, and government facilities in the affected areas.
Along with each stove, valued at $250, Mission Eurasia church partners will deliver enough firewood to last about two weeks. Mission Eurasia partners follow up with families to deliver iCare food packages, containing enough provisions for a family of four or five for a week or more, along with a Bible. Stoves come with a cooktop surface for making meals.
A generous Mission Eurasia supporter has offered a $150,000 matching grant to help reach the $500,000 goal. First-time gifts and gifts from past supporters are key to accessing the grant.
The Ukrainian army has mounted a stiff and successful defense of their homeland, inflicting tremendous casualties on the fleeing Russian army, which has lost as many as 90,000 soldiers. The Ukrainian army has also become quite proficient at shooting down enemy drones, but enough continue to get through to destroy power stations and substations.
“Russia started targeting our infrastructure, leaving Ukraine without sources of heat, water, and electricity,” Rakhuba noted. “We understand they want to demoralize us, so we start appealing to the government to stop the war. But we will fight to the end.”
Even with the valiance displayed by all Ukrainian citizens in the midst of this illegal invasion, Rakhuba knows the situation could become quite desperate.
“I know how hard the winter can be there,” he said. “Blankets will not help if people are without heat for days in subzero weather. Without warmth, the people will really suffer. A wood-burning stove is the most efficient, inexpensive, and very simple way we can help them to survive this winter.”
A wood-burning stove is a very practical way to bring the Gospel to Ukrainians in the midst of suffering. “The Gospel is shared around those stoves,” he said. “People will gather around these stoves to enjoy the warmth, food, and to share Scripture. Our church partners will continue delivering food, building relationships, and connecting people to local churches. These stoves will enable ministry.”
To support Mission Eurasia’s wood-burning stove initiative, visit missioneurasia.org/emergency-proposal-wood-burning-stoves.
To schedule an interview with Sergey Rakhuba, president of Mission Eurasia, or Wayne Shepherd, chairman of the board, please contact Clem Boyd, Director of Public Relations at 724.930.4003.