WATERFORD, Calif. — The former athletic director of Waterford High School resigned to help volunteer in Ukraine. The country has been engaged in a war with Russia for weeks.
Seeing the devastation in Ukraine, he said that he felt compelled to help with the knowledge he has as a combat veteran who served in the U.S. Army. The former athletic director also said he couldn't devote enough time to his students, noting that he was working part-time in what often feels like a full-time job.
"Absent athletic director wasn't a thing," Whitfield said. "I sat down. I had conversations with my family and school administration and I said I have to give this up to do the Ukraine thing," Whitfield said.
Whitfield has been to Ukraine twice but has plans to go back and forth to relieve the other team that's on the ground. The other volunteers are also veterans, each one familiar with the other.
"Having seen war, we know unfortunately what these people unfortunately were going to be in for and we felt an obligation to help out," Whitfield said.
They are bringing supplies like feminine hygiene products, diapers, baby wipes, medicine and other essentials that people can't get access to during this time in Ukraine.
"The basic idea is to bring help where it's needed the most and maybe bring these supplies in where NGOs (non-governmental organization) don't feel comfortable going and that's our mission to just lend a hand wherever we can," Whitfield said.