St. Joseph's Indian School

Rating: 2.55 stars   40 reviews

Address:

1301 N. Main St PO Box 89 Chamberlain SD 57325 USA

Mission:

St. Joseph's Indian School partners with Native American children and families to educate for life - mind, body, heart and spirit.

Target demographics:

Native American children and families

Direct beneficiaries per year:

220 Native American children

Geographic areas served:

South Dakota

Programs:

Residential Care including Food and Clothing, Education, Counseling, Medical Care, College Scholarships

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More Info

1-800-341-2235
http://www.stjo.org

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Reviews for St. Joseph's Indian School

Rating: 1 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

My elderly father sent donations to St Joseph's Indian School for years. His dementia had deteriorated his natural perspicacity, but not, unfortunately, his ability to write checks and sign up for monthly donations. When he died in 2014, I wrote this "charity" requesting they take him off their mailing list. They did, but added mine. almost every month since then, I have received large envelopes full of lots of junk: tablets, note pads, post-it notes, stickers, address labels, dream catchers, greeting cards, postcards, calendars, etc., etc. I have written back twice asking to be removed from their list, to no avail. I do NOT give to charities who waste donations sending unsolicited crap to unlikely donors. I don't know what % of donations actually go to the kids but it must be pretty small.

 
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(Nonprofit Staff) wrote:

We apologize if you do not wish to receive mail from us. If you give us a call at 1-800-341-2235 we can update that for you. Due to the number of mailings we receive, written requests can unfortunately sometimes be missed. $.71 of every dollar goes to the children and our cost to raise a dollar for fiscal year 2015 was approximately $.29.

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I care very much for the Lakota children at St. Joseph's Indian School. Some of them were abandoned children, some had parents who had drug and alcohol issues, some parents had no job, enough food to feed the children. God bless the St. Joseph Indian School for all they do! I help whenever possible through donations from time to time. Children need to know they are not forgotten and are loved!

 
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(Nonprofit Staff) wrote:

Thank you for your comment! Life on the Reservations is difficult and the Lakota children face many difficulties in South Dakota. Children face high suicide rates, drug and alcohol abuse, poverty, and many never make it past the 8th grade. Thank you for your support and helping provide a safe environment for the Lakota Sioux children!

Rating: 5 stars  

I am only a little Native American but my family instilled a great regard for my long ago ancestors. When viewing this video and seeing and hearing the powwow, my heart kept beat and swelled with pride for these children who will carry forth the traditions of the Lakota peoples." Pilamaya" to the supporters, the advisors and the children of St. Joseph's. My limited means of support will continue as often as I can give.
Sincere Blessings,
Donna Yates-Johnson

 
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(Nonprofit Staff) wrote:

Thank you so much for your comment and support! We hold our annual powwow every September. This years video can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BdVKKVDdrTw

Rating: 5 stars  

We orginally started donating to St Joseph's School in the 1970s and have on an off over the years. We have now started monthly donations. They have helped so many children over the years.
There are so many good and honest places to donate to our there, but this is one of the best. Maybe you don't have the money to donate but St Joseph's can use box tops or labels from your cereal boxes or soup cans etc., they can use new clothes or personal supplies for the kids.
Please help.

 
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(Nonprofit Staff) wrote:

Thank you so much for your monthly support! Because of friends like you, we can provide a safe, stable home for the Lakota (Sioux) children in need. We do accept non-monetary donations such as Box Tops and you can find are constant needs list here: http://www.stjo.org/site/PageServer?pagename=help_non_monetary_needs

Rating: 5 stars  

These folks with negative comments should be ashamed. I absolutely adore the gifts I receive, therefore, I donate. I think it is wonderful what they do for the children. Don't forget folks, we took the land from Indians. Yes, some do have casinos and I am proud that they were able to do so. GOD Bless all of you for what you do for the children. Wish I could donate more, however I am on a fixed income. Miriam

 
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(Nonprofit Staff) wrote:

Thank you so much for your comment! We appreciate your support! In terms of casinos, most reservation casinos located in South Dakota are in small isolated locations and are unable to attract large groups of people. There are also state regulations which restrict certain types of gaming. Only a small percentage of federally-recognized Indian nations have high stakes gaming. Because reservations lack basic services and infrastructure, the few dollars generated by the casinos are unable to meet all of the community's needs. Such areas of need are health clinics, schools, water systems, housing, job training, daycare and services for the elderly, all of which are under-funded and lacking on many reservations.

Rating: 3 stars  

29 people found this review helpful

I am a recent donor to St. Joseph's Indian School, and plan to continue. www.stjo.org has the information I need to feel comfortable about financially supporting the charity. If you spend a few minutes on the website, you will find the Annual Report, Strategic Plan, Donor Bill of Rights and Communication Preferences, where you can adjust how often you are contacted. It's always a good idea to research a charity before giving, no matter how heart-tugging the appeal may be. As it stands now, St. Joseph's Indian School meets my qualifications.

 
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(Nonprofit Staff) wrote:

Thank you for your comment and your support. Our website is a wonderful resource. You can also stay in touch on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/saintjosephs If you should ever have any questions, please feel free to contact us at 1-800-341-2235 and we will be happy to help. Thank you again!

Rating: 1 stars  

31 people found this review helpful

I visited the reservation's list of schools and couldn't find St. Joseph's Indian school. I also noticed that like the reservation in Fort Hall, Idaho, the Indians on the reservation have built a $20 million dollar casino recently. Because of the casino at Fort Hall, the Indians here have raised themselves out of poverty.
They also have raised their self images and can't begin to say how much difference that has made in their self esteem. They have also been able to build a great infrastructure on the reservation including new good schools. More and more of the same Indians are now persuing college degrees and some have become lawyers. The lawyers are now able to help the Indians at the reservation.
They no longer need to send their children off the reservation to schools. Therefore, I don't think we need to donate any money to St. Joseph's Indian School. Also, not being able to find out exactly what St. Joseph's is doing with the money sends up a HUGE reda flag.

 
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(Nonprofit Staff) wrote:

St. Joseph's Indian School is located in Chamberlain, South Dakota. Our community is just south of both the Crow Creek and Lower Brule Reservations, but not within the borders of either reservation. All our students are Native American. You can review our financial information at www.stjo.org/report.

Rating: 5 stars  

12 people found this review helpful

I donate to this organization because these people so often get overlooked and they deserve every opportunity to succeed in life.

 
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(Nonprofit Staff) wrote:

Thank you for your comment. Life on the reservations in South Dakota is difficult. Yet, many never consider leaving as it is the only life they know. Suicide is an epidemic for Native American youth. In fact, Native Americans are committing suicide at a rate three times the national average for their age group. Native American children's exposure to drug and alcohol abuse and gang activity is increasing. These and other problems are permeating the reservation, destroying homes and draining funds for needed programs. Graduating from eighth grade is a milestone for many Lakota (Sioux) youth in South Dakota. The dropout rates on South Dakota’s reservations is around 50%. In comparison, St. Joseph’s student’s graduating from High School is around 82.5%. The overall percentage of our students graduating from High School or obtaining a GED is 95.5%. These numbers have been tracked since 1996 and are the overall averages for St. Joseph's Indian School.

Rating: 1 stars  

71 people found this review helpful

I was giving to this charity for several years then looked up it's financials.. I was giving so they could heat the school of 200 kids in the cold winter.. Then I looked at the financial statement.. They raise $67M a year and have $145M in the bank for 200 kids.. And they have Catholic priests run the place. God save them. THe foodbank that feeds everyone in my state doesn't have as much money. They are shameful.

http://www.stjo.org/site/DocServer/Annual_Report.pdf?docID=1761

Jon

 
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(Nonprofit Staff) wrote:

Thank you for your comment regarding the strength of St. Joseph’s net assets and the nature of our direct mail appeals. I appreciate the fact that you took the time to review our annual report and write to us sharing your concerns, which we take seriously. St. Joseph’s Indian School is indeed blessed to have had net assets of $153 million as of June 30, 2015. Property, plant, and equipment make up $28 million of that figure and our Annuity Reserve Fund (which is restricted for payments to our charitable gift annuitants) makes up $60 million. Our current assets and investments (less liabilities) are $45 million which will be used to fund future programs at St. Joseph’s, but would also allow us to keep St. Joseph’s operational for two years without our fund raising program. While the argument could be made that $45 million is more than enough for future programs, there’s no guarantee that donors will continue to give to our children and school at the level they have in the past. As a direct mail fund raising program, we know that the number of checks being written is decreasing rapidly, and the U.S. Postal Service is showing signs of insolvency – both very ominous signs for future direct mail efforts. We do our best to keep fund raising costs as low as we can while attracting new donors through all channels (direct mail, on-line, phone, and personal visits) to ensure a solid future for our school. Though St. Joseph’s Indian School is affiliated with the Catholic Church through the Priests of the Sacred Heart, we welcome children of all faiths, recognizing the dignity of each human person created in God’s image. Students are not required to be Catholic, and we respect each child’s individual family beliefs. Families record their wishes in their consent packet each year, and the Director of Pastoral Care follows up to confirm those wishes and provide further information when sacramental preparation is requested.

Rating: 1 stars  

54 people found this review helpful

this place is a huge scam. they do not care one bit about the money you send. my mother in law used to send these people money until we got ahold of her finances. i told them to stop sending me their ridculous info after seeing the expose about their kickbacks from the company that makes the crap they send. they told me they will keep me in their system for 3 months, even though i will not send them a dime. they know this and will not even try to stop this stuff from coming to me. if they do, they do not get their kickback
a complete joke of a charity
now they sold my info to another scam of a charity and they are sending me stuff!!! like i said, they care nothing about the school or kids, only the kickbacks for the crap they send.

 
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(Nonprofit Staff) wrote:

Thank you for your comment. We have tried direct mail with and without gifts and have found that when gifts are not included, donations plummet. Our mission is not to send mail – our mission is to provide for the children entrusted to our care. Anyone may contact us about their mailing preferences and we will honor their wishes. If someone does not wish to receive gifts and they let us know, we can certainly update that for them. We strive to respect our donors wishes. Our mailings are prescheduled months in advance and that is why you were advised of the 90 day time period. We apologize if this bothered you. St. Joseph’s, from time to time, does exchange its list with other charities in an effort to find new supporters. Anyone may contact us and ask for their information to not be shared. When this request is made, it is specifically followed. We will never sell or exchange your name with any other organization.