Bonnie Sachatello-Sawyer is a caring and bright leader of Hopa, and, their outreach programs, to community programs help so many address issues in their tribal environments. Hopa is alway there to consult and work with you. I do suicide prevention among Native American youth, and we all hurt, sometime, and we're all in this together.
Great non profit that helps teen learn leadership skills through nature! They are committed to the communities they serve and help those community members obtain their ultimate successes.
HOPA helps so many. They put books in the hands of those who would not have them; they put high school scholars on the path to college admission; they help make GREAT leaders out of already good ones; and they provide leadership skills to the youth of Bozeman and surrounding areas. My husband and I help support HOPA because we know they are making a difference....that what they are doing works not only for now, but for generations to come.
Hopa Mountain and its premier program, Indigenous Scholars of Promise, for the past two years has supported and helped several Native American high-achieving high school students search for and connect with top colleges and universities! As a mentor organization, Hopa Mountain and ISP are making a huge difference in the lives of these mostly-rural youth who don't usually have an opportunity to know about college opportunities! Our twin daughters were two of the first four graduates through ISP and benefited immensely from the support and encouragement! And I know that Hopa Mountain is involved in many other community endeavors that are making a huge impact in rural Montana communities!
Hopa Mountain has been a transformational influence through its constant support for the conception and continuance of a program begun in October, 2011, Indigenous Scholars of Promise. Indigenous Scholars of Promise is a real and concrete support for the very highest-achieving Crow and Northern Cheyenne high school juniors and seniors who live on these reservations in Southeastern Montana, in a very remote part of the state. Many have traveled thousands of miles over long distances just to receive their educations and have already persevered through many obstacles and difficult situations in order to earn the distinction of top students, However, these students still are in need of support in terms of awareness of higher education opportunities, college application requirements and deadlines, and a general overview of the entire process of the college quest. Coming from rural areas with high poverty rates, these students have gained immeasurable benefits from the care and support of Hopa Mountain and Indigenous Scholars of Promise. Our twin daughters were two of the first four graduating senior ISPs and have gone on to study at a highly-regarded liberal arts college. ISP continues to support them and they will in turn stay involved in the program in order to support the other students who are coming up. The program continues to evolve and improve, gaining more depth and breadth. In June, 2012, the upcoming seniors were able to take a life-changing trip to visit several Ivy League colleges on the East Coast! Hopa Mountain and Indigenous Scholars of Promise is impacting the futures of these young scholars, their families, their tribes and their communities! Hopa Mountain is impacting eternity!
I have worked for non-profits and served on non-profit boards for almost forty years. Without hesitation I can tell you that I have never experienced a nonprofit with a compassionate heart and soul such as Hopa Mountain. This is a tough time to work in the nonprofit world, in this country, when many fingers - some very few rightfully so - point to the waste or enabling some nonprofits are responsible for. This is not the case with Hopa Mountain. Hopa Mountain gives 100% to give nonprofits in service to the neediest populations the tools and resources they need to help their people. The compassion they have for their communities and their clients is palpable, and their services are delivered with respect and humility. This nonprofit is human-scale, human-based and makes a difference - a REAL difference - at the grass roots. Hopa clients become like a family, and we are all encouraged to succeed and help others succeed. It is an incredible organization, and I am so glad they exist - they make the world a better place.
Hopa Mountain is totally community oriented organization offering a wide array of services. I particularly appreciate the work being done to strengthen Native non-profit organizations, the one entity we need more of Indian Country. Hopa Mountain makes free training available to anyone who would like to participate via a number of webinars. Hopa has developed a great social media outreach campaign to keep the Native community up to date on Hopa activities. In addition, Hopa Mountain has several strong programs geared towards developing indigenous scientists. For example, Hopa is bringing a well known professor of environmental and forest biology, Dr. Robin Kimmerer, to the University of Montana in late February 2012. Kimmerer, director of the Center for Native Peoples and the Environment, will present to a UM campus-wide audience. She will also work with Native students and discuss indigenous models in science application. What I write represents just a sliver of the great work being done at Hopa. When asked to join the Hopa Mountain board of directors in 2012-- I said, yes. I knew I would be working with a great team.
Last year, Hopa Mountain helped Chief Joseph Middle School celebrate Human Rights Day. Bonnie Sachatello-Sawyer, talked about "Building Bridges Across Cultures." Through her experience, she showed the children that commitment to hope, community, and social responsibility can be interesting as well as fun.
Hopa Mountain has played a large role in my life. I became involved with the organization right out of college and was quickly captivated by Bonnie (the organization's founder) and the entire Hopa team. Hopa is one of the most genuine and self-reflective organizations that I have had the pleasure to be a part of. The staff and amazing group of partners are committed to their work in a deep and meaningful way. I have spent time with many different non-profits and have found few with such conviction and contagious energy. I look forward to seeing how this organization continues to grow and impact the lives of those it touches.
I joined Hopa Mountain for a year as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer, and it was an absolutely transformative experience. The positive energy that this organization brings to their work, their willingness to listen, and the respect they have for the communities they work with sets them apart. I really believe that Hopa Mountain has found a uniquely beautiful yet effective approach to creating positive change from the community level up. As a VISTA volunteer, I grew tremendously both personally and professionally from my time with them. I am grateful for what they did for me, and what they work tirelessly to do for folks living in the Northern Rockies.
I've been following the growth and development of Hopa Mountain for the past six years, and have been a donor on several occasions. Bonnie Sachatello-Sawyer and her staff are an inspiration to many as they work with students and communities in the tribal and rural areas of the northern plains on the educational and environmental challenges that go with the territory. An added bonus is the teaching of best practices for non-profit management that Hopa Mountain offers to community organizations - something that is building stronger organizations in a region that sorely needs them. My family and I will definitely support Hopa Mountain in the future, because they truly epitomize the spirit that will save and revitalize communities and individuals in MT, ND, SD, and WY!