Ryan and Liz have collectively been in ministry for over 15 years. They met in 2016 while both were serving in Thailand with YWAM. Liz was serving with an Anti-Trafficking ministry as a Trauma Sensitive Yoga Instructor as well as the English Coordinator at a drop-in center for at-risk youth while Ryan was serving as a part of the Leadership Team in YWAM Ubon helping to lead the base as well as doing village and homeless ministry. They were married in 2018 and welcomed their first son, Zion Rivers, in 2019.
After the birth of their son and through some incredibly miraculous encounters, they felt led to Northern Thailand to serve with The RICD Wheelchair project. The RICD Wheelchair Project strives to provide mobility aid and additional medical equipment to the people of Thailand, raise awareness regarding the needs of those affected by disabilities, and empower and encourage the disadvantaged to become fully integrated into their communities.
The team has distributed more than 10,000 wheelchairs, and each year surpasses the last. The Project runs in a unique model as it has the patronage of the Thai royal family, and the ability to import dozens of containers of equipment each year, free of taxes or import fees. A multitude of international donors ship used and refurbished equipment which is given new life and in turn, gives new life. At each distribution, the local Thai church is invited to come and share the gospel. This model of Thai to Thai evangelism has had an incredible impact. The Wheelchair Project provides Bibles and other materials, and then the local church does follow up with each patient. The Wheelchair Project is expanding at an incredible rate and distributions have now been held in Malaysia, Myanmar and Laos. The goal is to equip even more nationals in wheelchair mechanics and fitting and we are developing training materials to this end. People with disabilities are incredibly marginalized, and access to a wheelchair is nearly impossible without the Wheelchair Project. With newfound mobility our patients can finally attend school, find employment, and be part of their community.
Ryan serves the ministry using his talent as a digital storyteller documenting and sharing the incredible stories of hope and empowerment through Media Production. Liz is using her passion for Member Care to assist in the running of the Family Retreats. These retreats invite entire families affected by disabilities to experience rest and renewal, both for local Thai families as well as missionary families. She is also serving as part of a Member Care team supporting missionaries and running a yearly Member Care training.
Ryan and Liz have one son, Zion Rivers, as well as a dog, a cat and too many plants to count.