Tag: Pine Ridge Reservation

Pine Ridge

“It is hard being poor” said Will Peters, a Lakota high school teacher born and raised on the reservation. “But I’m not leaving. I have two degrees, my wife has three. We could go anywhere. My home is here, our home is here. My ancestors are buried on this land. We are needed and no amount of hardship will make us cut and run. So we stay to ease the burden of poverty and oppression endured by so many. It is who we are.” A common question asked by those who visit Pine Ridge is, “Why don’t they just leave?” It’s simple. The Lakota are family born of a common history, a common spirit, a common pride. One does not leave this family, no matter the circumstance. There are NO orphans. This culture of poverty creates many obstacles to a life fulfilled, and many do not find it. But many…

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This year the Solutions men traveled to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation to work with the service organization Re-Member.  In the past few years Jaywalker has been honored to work with Re-Member.  Accompanying Solutions, for this trip, was Dan Reed Solutions Program Director and Bobby Ferguson Jaywalker Founder.  They got a chance to do an interview with Re-Member and impart some of the wisdom and benefits of trips like this. Solutions will again be traveling to Pine Ridge early this September. For a link to the Re-member blog please click here. Cary Pew Program Coordinator Jaywalker Solutions

My Life has been Blessed

I have been anticipating the Solution’s trip to Pine Ridge since the first time I heard about it.  I knew that going into a new environment could potentially be out of my comfort zone but could be a whole new experience for me. In the past, I had gone to the Cherokee reservation in North Carolina with my church so I thought the experience would be similar. However, when I arrived at Pine Ridge I was overcome by the amount of poverty and division amongst the tribe; what I had read about could not describe what I saw.  I found myself feeling a mix of emotions for the reservation and the Lakota people. There was anger towards the history of the broken treaty and massacres, confusion as to how the People stood united, compassion towards the significant social issues (suicide, alcoholism, health issues, poverty) that they faced, and frustration as…

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Pine Ridge Service Trip

Jaywalker has been going on service trips to the Pine Ridge reservation in South Dakota for 4 years.  We work with a group called Re-Member, a non-profit volunteer organization.  Many told me it would be an intense experience.  Dan said to the guys “this is usually one of our most impactful trips”.  There were no play days planned, no trips to the hot springs.  It was going to be a total immersion into the culture of the Oglala Lakota Sioux, a people who have been incredibly wronged by our government.  The Massacre of Wounded Knee, the stealing of their ancestral homeland, to just name a few.  We have wronged them and they respond with integrity and pride. Pine Ridge is considered to have some of the worst poverty in the country.  The poverty, suicide rates (especially among teens), and alcoholism are all very bad.  Alcoholism rates are supposedly as high…

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