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Temperatures soar well past 100 and no water available at Pine ridge

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I have been thinking about this project for a while. Today, I signed up. I said that I would help with a child or elder, which ever is needed more. I am very excited about this.

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I Have been putting off signing up because I am just a college student - but you know I have a whole box full of gently used clothes - and some sweatshirts I have never even worn - as they are not my thing - I will ask around when I get back to school from winter break and see if we can not get a few boxes sent - postage is always a problem for us - but maybe we can have a bake sale - college kids are always hungry!

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you know what though, you can still go ahead and sign up...and do what you can, when you can do it. We have another 1 or 2 college students in the group as well. :-) What are you majoring in? And I';m sure in the group you may be able to get some help with covering the shipping costs. Clothes are definetly needed. I could just hug ya! lol!

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I sent off a box of scarves today - did not take me very much time and felt so good when I haned it to the post man

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I heard from my elder today and I really had no idea just how bad things are - they live in an old mobile home - they have no electricity or running water, and their only heat is a propane heater - the grandma is in her 70s and she is caring for 9 grandchildren from age of 9 months to 16. They have no beds and some of the windows are missing, but they have boarded them up, big problem is that the trailor has black mold and the children all have allergies and asthma from it. I am disabled so I can not do much, but darn it I can do something. I know Mira has many elders waiting. Even if all you can do is send a scarf one month, or a pot holder another month, a book mark, you may not be able to change the conditions but you can let them know that there is someone out here who cares!

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:cheerI received my elder's name and address today! My dear lady is around 80 and wheelchair bound. That is all I know for now. I will start making her a scarf and mail my first stuff after Christmas. Thank you, Mira, for organizing this for us.!

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Mira do you have a friendship project for children too or just elders - I am home for the holidays and my nieces and nephews were asking if they could write someone and send a gift each month. Maybe they could send things like crayons or colored pencils or things like that - I told them I thought they did not need to know how to crochet they all love drawing, and music and those things are crafts too right? Carol

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We don't right now, but we have tossed the idea around before. So I'm sure in the not so distant future, there may be something along those lines. :D And yes...drawing and music certainly are crafts! Ones I'm not too good at, I might add! lol! How wonderful that they want to get involved as well! And you know, some of the elders are raising grandchildren. How exciting it would be for the grandkids to get things in the mail as well!

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A teenage or child's penpal program sounds terrefic we need to start teaching our children early to reach top gift to others what they have been gifted - Rosa

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Talked with my elder today to wish them Happy Holidays - found out my family is Catholic but belive a combination of native and christian values, and believe in caring for the earth is very important - they so appreciated the afghan I sent and some hats - she said they have only one mattress for all of them and no beds at all Rosa

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I just read a press release today - it announced the 100 poorest counties in the US. When you look at the ten poorest counties you find that 8 of them are Indian reservations in South Dakota and the other two Indian reservations in Arizona - what does that say about how we take care of our own. I wrote something to our local freecycle group - and got a few responses back telling me to tell them to use their casino money - why don't people think about what they are saying all you have to do is look at the map and you see there is a very small population in these areas - and that the reservations are a long ways from a city - you have to have people with money to spend to run a casino and be withint driving distance for people to get there - cheese anyway. Just makes me mad

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I've heard numerous times the casino sentiment. And people wondering why these people aren't getting help like all the other tribes. Here is the cold, hard reality of where all this money is and the amounts.

 

For starters, a good many Lakota people recieve lease royalties from the BIA for land holdings. The normal payout for this averages only $50 a month. That's only $600 a year.

 

The casino does turn a profit. But, it is 100+ miles from Rapid City in the middle of a prairie. Now I don't know about any of you, but I certainly wouldn't travel that far to chance winning money.

 

Many tribes have access to minerals, oil, gas etc to make a profit from. Not so for the Lakota people. There is none of that in the prairie. And no industry on the Reservation.

 

Average income for a typical family that recieves welfare or veteran's benefits is approximately $7200 a year.

 

Why don't they leave? Many do. And then they come back because their entire family is still there. They are of the belief that you care for your loved ones. And so you will find overcrowded homes. Families take in homeless family members. It's not uncommon to have over a dozen people living in a 2 or 3 bedroom trailer.

 

It is a difficult task to set up a business on Pine Ridge. It can take, and often does, 2 years to get approval. Then high expenses to get basic utilities needed. Most communities have little to no infrastructure. On top of that, it is a high risk loan area.

 

So as you can see, where other tribes can help themselves, it has become a harder task for the Oglala and Lakota people.

 

Another note on the casinos. All profit has to be split between all tribal members! In 1998, there were 40,000+ living on Pine Ridge. Imagine winning the lottery and having to split it with over 40,000 other winners. And a small jackpot at that. Gives one a little better insight to the casino junk.

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I sponsor a family on Pine Ridge and was appauled at the conditions there. The family I talk to lives in a home with basic ammenities and feels incredibly greatful for that.

I sponsor two girls and the first time I spoke to their grandmother to get an idea of what the girls needed, I was expecting detailed answers of frivilous things the girls wanted, but she said they really needed basic food, warm clothing, underwear, etc. Neither of them had a warm coat. The grandmother explained that there are very few jobs on the reservation and the nearest town with available jobs is over an hour away, as well as any place to buy basic goods.

I have really enjoyed getting to know the family I work with there and would highly recommend this experience to anyone. I sponsor with Spirit Rising, which is currently undergoing some changes, but I am only asked to send 5 items per year.

Just wanted to share my experience.

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I live in Toronto, and even I cannot imagine how cold it must be at Pine Ridge. I just made a hat/scarf combo for the elder I am partnered with. I am working on mittens today. It makes me so sad to think of the old and the young and those in between in such dire straights.

 

 

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/CraftingForACause/

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Indianz.Com. In Print.

URL: http://www.indianz.com/News/2005/011633.asp

 

 

 

 

Tough winter for Pine Ridge Reservation residents

Thursday, December 8, 2005

 

Residents of the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota are worried they might not be able to heat their homes this winter.

 

 

 

Below-zero temperatures, storms and high energy prices have hurt the reservation, the Associated Press reports. Celeste Pretends Eagle, a 25-year-old single mother of four, ran out of propane and had to use a space heater to keep her family warm. A businessman has since offered to help the family pay for propane, The Rapid City Journal reports.

 

 

 

The Oglala Sioux Tribe runs an energy assistance program but it has run out of money for the past two winters. The state has already received more applications than usual for its assistance program.

 

 

 

Sen. Tim Johnson (D-South Dakota) and Sen. John Thune (R-South Dakota) are seeking more federal funds to help low-income families.

 

 

 

Get the Story:

Low income residents struggling with cold, high energy costs (AP 12/8)

Warm heart heats home (The Rapid City Journal 12/8)

 

 

 

Related Stories:

Major storm strikes South Dakota reservations (12/1)

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I cannot commit to joining this group at this time, but I do have a scarf and hat that I made recently that need a neck and head. I was thinking that I could send them to one of you who is a member, and you could just send it on with your next contribution. Would that work?

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Rosa-

Thanks for bringing this to everyone's attention. My dad is Oglala, and was lucky enough to have had parents who "escaped" the reservation, so he was raised in sunny California. I've been out to the badlands to see where my grandparents grew up. Even in June, there's still snow in the black hills.

 

Did you know that the life expectancy of a plains indian is less than the average life expectancy in Bangladesh? Between diabetes and brutal temperatures, the old people don't have a chance.

 

And so, I will continue to support my fellow indians living in such horrible conditions, knowing that there but by the grace of God go I.

 

Pilamaya ye!

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I am shocked at the conditions I have read about Pine Ridge on crochetville.

I can not believe this goes on in America!:angry I thought that poverty was bad in Appalachia, but this tops it all. I say crocheters to the rescue!

sue

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I talked with Vina at Pine Ridge this morning and she asked me to tell all of you thank you so much many of the children and adults who have received your crafting gifts did not even have a coat for winter let alone hats scarfs and mittens - when there is no hear but a kerosense heater an afhgan is a luxury - thank you for everyone at Pine Ridge

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Is anyone interested in my offer?

 

 

 

I cannot commit to joining this group at this time, but I do have a scarf and hat that I made recently that need a neck and head. I was thinking that I could send them to one of you who is a member, and you could just send it on with your next contribution. Would that work?

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I am almost positive I joined this group already, but I rejoined today; am just waiting for 'approval'. :)

 

It's so sad what these people are going through, it seems like someone would do something to help them. (Besides us, that is.) :angry Ugh!!... don't get me started. Well I am glad I can do my little part. Besides crocheting/crafting, I have some gently used boys' clothes I can donate.

 

Tina

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