Coach Haywood’s Ukraine Trip
Coach Brad Haywood has been a part of the Foundation Academy team for three years. His heart for students has been obvious through his work as an Elementary PE coach and chapel coordinator on the Plant Street campus, but he recently took his love for people to a global level.
Coach Haywood is a veteran of the 82nd Airborne Division of the United States Army and has been deployed overseas five times. He is accustomed to military and political conflicts. When he first heard about the situation in Ukraine, he knew God was calling him to action. Coach Haywood often tells his students, “We’re called to be involved,” and this was a situation where he knew God was calling him to put those words into action. Through his pastor, he made contact with a church in Palowice, Poland, that was carrying shipments of food and medical supplies across the border into Ukraine. Coach Haywood immediately started making travel plans and began his journey to Europe on May 15.
Once he arrived in Poland, Coach Haywood spent three weeks driving supplies from Poland to L’viv, Ukraine, about 14-16 hours round trip. Supplies would be delivered to his checkpoint via a network of churches and individuals from the surrounding countries. Sometimes, he would deliver the food directly to a Ukrainian church for distribution, but often he was part of a chain of delivery: he would drive the supplies to a certain point where they would then be handed off to another volunteer who would continue the journey. He recounts how amazing it was to see such a global effort to provide resources that the Ukrainian people so desperately need.
1 Corinthians 12:27 says, “Now you are the body of Christ and each of you is a part of it.” Coach Haywood got to experience this first-hand throughout this journey, and he hopes that he can use this experience to relay to his students the importance of obedience to God’s callings. In this instance, God called some people to fund the expenses for the volunteers, others were called to donate food or organize supplies, and others were called to deliver, but it took everyone working together to accomplish the task.
Matthew 20:28 says, “For the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Foundation Academy is thankful that Coach Haywood and our entire staff are committed to educating our students spiritually as well as academically and modeling a servant’s heart to our students and our world.