FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) – U.S. Air Force Veteran and unpaid humanitarian volunteer, Mark J. Lindquist plans to sleep outside during December weather to help raise awareness of opportunities to help Ukrainians this winter. Mark has been coordinating non-lethal humanitarian aid missions as close as 1-mile away from the Russian frontlines since March of 2022
Mark J. Lindquist, United States Air Force veteran, most well-known for his performances on Monday and Thursday Night Football for the NFL has returned to America after his 9-month humanitarian mission to eastern Ukraine to rally support for Ukrainians in need this winter. He is announcing “Operation: Sleep Out” which is his 17-day challenge to camp out in Fargo, North Dakota in his tent and sleeping bag to bring maximum awareness of the many ways Americans can help Ukrainians this winter.
The launch of the mission will occur at Broadway Square Plaza in downtown Fargo at Noon on Friday, December 16th and has been approved and contracted by the Broadway Square Management as a public awareness campaign. “My friends in a trench in the Donbas can’t escape the cold – and the Donbas is the same latitude as International Falls, MN,” said Lindquist.
Following the two-day launch in Broadway Square, the first phase of Mark’s mission is to issue a challenge to the community and surrounding areas to identify backyards, parking lots, football fields, or rooftops that Mark can safely camp for a night or multiple nights from Sunday, December 18th to New Year’s Day 2023 as he has obtained permission to camp at the Square the nights of December 16 & 17th.
Lindquist said, “This is something the community of Fargo, North Dakota is doing for Ukrainians and I can’t wait to see the response from the caring community we live in. This is our chance to duplicate the greatness our grandparents demonstrated 80 years ago when similar events occurred on the European continent. Even a small donation of $11 gets me a locally sourced tourniquet in Ukraine or $15 gets us a good pair of winter socks for a guy sleeping in a trench for the next 6 months.”
Lindquist has been networking across the war zone of Ukraine for the past 9 months and has formed partnerships with hundreds of western volunteers and hundreds of local Ukrainians to identify immediate needs and hand-deliver humanitarian aid as close as 1-mile away from the Russian frontlines. “We work diligently to ensure that the deliveries are made directly to those in need and nothing gets resold or lost along the way. Our nonprofit team has set up a social media channel so donors can see photo evidence of our volunteers delivering the aid packages,” said Lindquist.
“We aim to send a pallet of humanitarian aid from Fargo every week and our team will get it out to the frontlines, usually within about 6-10 days. I think many Americans have been looking for a way to help and this is a way to partner with a local veteran with trusted western and Ukrainian contacts. Just imagine if the good people of Fargo could spark a nation to volunteer at a higher level and we can lead the way because we know what living in the cold is really like. This is how our community is leading on the issue of Ukraine… I ask other communities around the region and country: What little project might you embark on this Christmas to help a citizen of the world in their fight for the very same freedom we enjoy every day? I am using the freedom available to me as a citizen of the United States to act on behalf of other human beings who deserve these freedoms just as much as I do,” said Lindquist on why he is embarking on such a project this winter in Fargo.
You can visit //MarkJLindquist.com/Ukraine or follow the hashtag #UkraineChallenge and @MarkJLindquist on social media to learn how to partner with Mark’s team of volunteers to help Ukrainians this winter.