Pine Ridge Reservation

Pine Ridge Immersions Program Creates Lakota Speakers

Oct 18, 2017
Chynna Lockett

Lakota is an original Native American language that elders on some South Dakota reservations speak today. There are efforts in a number of places around the country to preserve the language.

It’s a vocabulary lesson for a group of young students. 

They’re part of the Lakota Immersion Childcare program on the Pine Ridge Reservation. Here, all the learning is done in Lakota.

Lee Strubinger / SDPB

South Dakota’s US House Representative says an Indian Health Service reform bill is moving quickly through Congress.

Congresswoman Kristi Noem has sponsored similar legislation in the past. The bill increases care standards, gives IHS more recruitment tools and requires more accountability from providers.

Noem gave an update on the bill at a town hall meeting in Rapid City on Wednesday.

The legislation is in response to years of reports about poorly delivered care and mismanagement.

Charles Michael Ray / SDPB

Rural states like South Dakota rely heavily on federal funding.  Tribes also require federal dollars to maintain programs, roads, schools and even small business development.

With so many budgets and businesses hinging on the input of federal dollars.   There’s cautious optimism, and some uncertainty, among tribal and federal officials about the incoming Trump administration…

A group of representatives from the United States Department of Agriculture are touring the Pine Ridge Reservation as part of a Promise Zone initiative granted a few years ago.

One Year Of Pine Ridge Disaster Recovery

Aug 8, 2016
FEMA

The Pine Ridge reservation now has over 200 new or repaired homes following a disaster that struck in the spring of 2015. The Federal Emergency Management Agency and tribal officials are marking one year of recovery following a unique Presidential Disaster Declaration.

President Obama’s Individual Assistance declaration to Pine Ridge was the first ever made directly to a tribal nation. FEMA then initiated the first permanent housing construction program in the continental United States. FEMA also provided additional direct financial aid to the community.

Pine Ridge Police Department

Officials with the US Attorney’s office say three men found dead on Pine Ridge in May were not victims of foul play.   Officials say an extensive investigation showed Juan Lamont, Tevin Tyon  and Tyrell Wilson died from injuries sustained in a car accident.

Officials say rumors on the disappearance and death of three men have circled in the community.

Civil Air Patrol Joins Pine Ridge Search

May 18, 2016
Pine Ridge Police Department

Three men are still missing on the Pine Ridge Reservation. Juan Lamont, Tevin Tyon and Tyrell Wilson are all in their early twenties. They were last seen by family on May 7th.

The Civil Air Patrol is now joining the search. CAP personnel are currently searching Pine Ridge and the surrounding area.

Major Bruce Kipp is the Wing’s Public Information Officer. He says the C-A-P doesn’t get called in for these kinds of situations very often.

Crazy Horse School is receiving a federal grant worth $107,631 to help students cope with suicide on the Pine Ridge Reservation. This is the third grant from the US Department of Education to Pine Ridge schools after tribal leaders declared a state of emergency following a string of suicides.

Project SERV grants target schools where kids experience significant violent or traumatic events. The latest funding adds two counselors at Crazy Horse School in Wanblee to help restore the learning environment.

Secretary John King leads the US Department of Education.

Sanders Makes Three Stops In South Dakota

May 12, 2016
Chynna Lockett

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders is speaking at events across South Dakota ahead of the June 7th primary.

He started with a community discussion in Pine Ridge where he spoke about issues of concern on the reservation and called on audience members to share their experiences.
 
Hundreds gathered in the gym of Pine Ridge School as Sanders took the stage.

Jodi Archambault Gillette, former special assistant to President Barrack Obama for Native American Affairs, will receive an Honorary Doctorate from Black Hills State University on Saturday, May 7 at 10 a.m. during commencement ceremonies.

Gillette will also present a special lecture Friday, May 6 at 1 p.m. at BHSU. She joins Dakota Midday for a conversation about her lifelong advocacy for families and children, how the traditions of her youth continue to impact her work, and the importance of increasing visibility of Native American issues at the highest level of government.

Dakota Digest for April 15, 2016

Apr 15, 2016
SDPB

On this week's episode of Dakota Digest, USD Women's Basketball Coach Amy Williams is the new coach at the University of Nebraska. Also, a Grand Jury has indicted three people related to GEAR UP. All of this and more on this week's Dakota Digest.

Dakota Digest for January 22, 2016

Jan 22, 2016
SDPB

On this week's episode of Dakota Digest, the state legislative session continues with Week 2. SDPB's Kealey Bultena continues to report on the topic of education, and what is being discussed regarding the pay of teachers. Also, SDPB's Jim Kent attends an Eagle Feather Ceremony on the Pine Ridge Reservation.

Mindfulness techniques combined with Native traditions are being introduced to students at Pine Ridge School. SDPB's Jim Kent visits Pine Ridge to see how mindfulness is being used to prevent youth suicide. Then Dr. Kathleen Farah, with the Center for Mind-Body Medicine, sits down with Lori Walsh to discuss how ancient techniques can address the effects of ongoing trauma.

Courtesy The Center for Mind-Body Medicine

As parents, teachers, school administrators and tribal officials continue to seek solutions to the youth suicide epidemic that’s plagued the Pine Ridge Reservation for years, health organizations from off the reservation are also offering their help.

SDPB’s Jim Kent visited with representatives of The Center for Mind-Body Medicine and workers at the Pine Ridge Boarding School to discuss how the suicide issue has impacted students and “supervisors” and what’s being done to address the problem.

Dakota Midday: SD Video Wins Award

Nov 19, 2015

The Chamber Music Festival of the Black Hills recently recorded over 200 boys and girls from the Pine Ridge Reservation and the Black Hills.  They're featured in a "virtual choir" video that earned a second place honor at one of the largest Native American film festivals in Europe.  Guest host Jackelyn Severin was joined by Michael Hill, Executive Director of the Chamber Music Festival of the Black Hills.

Photo by Victoria Wicks

The documentary Rising Voices features workers and volunteers with the Lakota Language Consortium. One of them is Albino "Junior" Garcia, who lives at Rockyford, on the Pine Ridge Reservation. Garcia travels to schools where Lakota is taught and lends his support and energy to the effort. On Sunday, Nov. 14, before the documentary was screened at the Journey Museum in Rapid City, SDPB's Victoria Wicks sat in on Garcia's language class, when he gave a Black Hills group a taste of his teaching skills.

Unemployment Aid To Tribal Members

Aug 18, 2015

The South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation is offering assistance to tribal members. The funds are being distributed to members who are now unemployed due to the severe weather damage in May.

Disaster Unemployment Assistance or DUA is now available for the Oglala Sioux Tribe in Pine Ridge. Funds are for anyone who can no longer work or their workplace was severely damaged due to the May storms. Pauline Heier is the South Dakota Director of Unemployment Insurance.

The Oglala Lakota College is receiving a grant of $25,000 from a tribe in Minnesota. The grant money will fund the Lakota immersion school for kindergarten through fifth grade students on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Leaders want to prevent the loss of the Lakota language.

The Shakopee Native American tribe in Minnesota is helping fund the Lakota language program. The grant will allow around 30 children to learn their native language at the childcare facility.

Dakota Midday: BEAR Project Founder 'Tiny' DeCory

May 26, 2015
Chynna Lockett SDPB

The Pine Ridge Reservation is struggling with a rash of youth suicides. There have been at least 10 since December. And according to the federal Indian Health Service, there have been 103 attempts by people ages 12 to 24 this past December through March. In February, Oglala Sioux Tribe president John Yellow Bird Steele declared an emergency on the reservation in response to the suicides.

Dakota Midday: Tim Giago's Boarding School Memories

Apr 29, 2015
Tim Giago

Beginning in the late nineteenth century, many American Indian children were sent away from their homes and families to attend government or church-operated boarding schools. Students were forced to cut their hair, give up traditional clothing and forbidden to speak their own language. The idea was to assimilate them completely into American culture. As the founder of the Carlisle Indian Industrial School Richard Henry Pratt said in 1892, “… all the Indian there is in the race should be dead. Kill the Indian in him, and save the man."

Twila True

Twila True is co-founder, president and CEO of True Investments, a real estate private equity business. She’s also a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe. Over the past couple years, she’s traveled between her home in Irvine, California and the Pine Ridge Reservation to identify the needs of the Oglala Sioux people and to figure out what she could do to help. She founded the True Sioux Hope Foundation to create new opportunities for the people of Pine Ridge. She joined Dakota Midday and discussed the foundation and its goals.

Along with statewide races yesterday, Oglala Sioux Tribal members elected a new president. John Yellow Bird Steele defeated incumbent Bryan Brewer. And Shannon County residents voted to change the name of the southwest South Dakota county to Oglala Lakota County. The name change now must be approved by the state legislature. Rapid City attorney Charlie Abourezk, who helped organize the get out the vote effort in tribal communities, and SDPB's Charles Michael Ray joined Dakota Midday election results on the Pine Ridge Reservation yesterday.

Tuesday was the 50th anniversary of what is considered one of the greatest upsets in Olympic history when the virtually unknown Billy Mills won the 10,000 meter run in the 1964 Tokyo Games. In the final lap, the 26-year-old Marine from the Pine Ridge Reservation passed 10K world record holder Ron Clarke of Australia and Mohammed Gammoudi of Tunisia with a sudden burst of speed as NBC analyst Dick Banks screamed "Look at Mills! Look at Mills!"

Sharing Lakota Heritage and History

Oct 2, 2014
SDPB Television

In a broadcast from Oglala Lakota College on the Pine Ridge Reservation, Wilmer Mesteth and Mike Her Many Horses joined Dakota Midday and discussed stories, songs and legendary leaders from Lakota history. Mike Her Many Horses is a tribal historian who is also executive director of the Oglala Sioux Tribe and a member of the Lakota Fund board of directors. Wilmer Mesteth is a spiritual leader, musician and instructor of Lakota Studies at OLC. He is a direct descendent of Chief Red Shirt, who fought in the Battle of the Little Bighorn.

University of South Dakota

Oglala Lakota College is one of the first tribally-controlled colleges in the country. It was first chartered in 1971 as the Lakota Higher Education Center. In 1983 the college was accredited as a four-year degree granting institution. The Pine Ridge Reservation institution is dedicated to rebuilding the Lakota Nation through education by teaching Lakota culture and language and preparing students to live and work in a multi-cultural world.

Bush Fellow Preserves Lakota Peacemaking Traditions

Aug 20, 2014
Bush Foundation

If you’ve spent much time listening to the news lately, you’ve heard plenty of stories about conflict. That includes the unrest in the Middle East, Africa, and not to mention Ferguson, Missouri. Richard Iron Cloud is a peacemaker who has spent years working on the Pine Ridge Reservation to improve the tribal justice system and keep alive traditional Lakota ways of resolving conflict. He's a 2014 Bush Fellowship winner. The 100-thousand dollar grant is awarded to community leaders.

A Conversation With Mark Tilsen

May 22, 2014
www.tankabar.com

Mark Tilsen is co-founder of Native American Natural Foods, that company that makes the Tanka Bar.  The company is headquartered in Kyle on the Pine Ridge Reservation.  The company's vision includes staying on Pine Ridge to help create jobs and improve economic development.  This spring, Tilsen was invited to speak before a Congressional committee in Washington, D.C.  He discussed the challenges of creating business in Indian Country.  SDPB news producer Charles Michael Ray visited with Tilsen after he returned from the nation's capital.

Istinma / To Rest

May 1, 2014

Scott Means plays the role of the son in "istinma/to rest," a short film about a Lakota man who finds forgiveness for his father and reconciles with him while breaking the cycle of trauma in the family.  It's the first of a three-part trilogy set on the Pine Ridge Reservation.  Jesse Short Bull co-wrote and co-produced "istinma/to rest."  He's from Interior and a member of the Native Youth Leadership Alliance.  He discovered his passion to make films about the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota people while attending Oglala Lakota College.  Means and Short Bull discussed "istinma/to rest" which show

Lakota Federal Credit Union Grand Opening

May 3, 2013
Courtesy Lakota Federal Credit Union

The Lakota Federal Credit Union has its “official” opening today in the Pine Ridge Reservation village of Kyle. But the reservation’s first savings institution is already having a profound impact on the Lakota people.

Since opening its doors for business last Fall, 608 people have set-up accounts at the Lakota Federal Credit Union.

Spokesperson Tawney Brunsch says although it may be perceived as a contradiction in locations, a Credit Union is just what’s needed in a poor area like the Pine Ridge Reservation.

Trail Of Hope For Indian Housing

Apr 17, 2013
Photo by Jim Kent

Representatives of the Oglala Sioux tribe are in Washington, D.C. today on The Trail of Hope for Indian Housing. The 1500 mile journey saw a group of Lakota people haul portions of a dilapidated reservation home to the nation’s capital. Their goal is to bring attention to housing needs on the Pine Ridge Reservation and in other Native American communities across the state.Today we visit the village of Kyle to take a closer look at the realities of housing on the rez.

Activist Instruction Conference On Pine Ridge

Mar 7, 2013
Photos courtesy Deb White Plume

The Pine Ridge Reservation is the place to be this weekend for those wanting to learn how to be a frontline activist. An activist training conference is being held near the village of Manderson where participants will learn how to take direct action on environmental issues.

The three day conference is to teach people how to protest projects like the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline. Lakota activist Deb White Plume calls it “Moccasins on the Ground.”

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