Every time a write a simple check I feel I am donating to a very good and proper non profit organization . It all lies in the values they teach and uphold, specifically with their student s and the school itself. I never ask for anything in return but its a good feeling when I receive pictures, stories and thank you notes form the students/children that truly come from the heart with sincerity. In addition I love the picture of the blanket many receive as a thank you for their continued support . I AM LOOKING FORWARD TO RECEIVING MINE! KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK ALL !
This organization does amazing things for the Indian children. The staff are pleasant and truly love their work. These children deserve a bright future and the staff really works hard to make that a reality.
My dual position allows me to work closely with the students and staff of St. Labre Indian School on a daily basis as well as assisting in the Donor Relations department. Every day I see smiles on everyone's faces. No matter the challenges of day-to-day life on a rural reservation, we always find love wins by the end of each day.
St. Labre attracts the very best paid staff and non-compensated volunteers from all over the country as well as locally. We all share a common goal: To be a part of the miracle that has been sustained in this community for over 137 years of providing a first class education in a rural reservation community. It doesn't take more than a few minutes for these children to root themselves in your heart. Some of our staff and volunteers come for just a year and move on; many others stay for several years. We have some staff who have traveled from other countries to be part of the miracle here.
As well as serving students and staff I also work in our Donor Relations department where I meet with donors every day. I listen to how the children's lives affect them on a daily basis, even thousands of miles away. Many of them post photos of the kids on their fridges, right next to the grandchildren. Some of them claim that our blankets that we give away as courtesy gifts for donations carry the blessing of the children and help them to feel calm and peaceful.
Our children here symbolize hope, faith, and love. When our donors give to St. Labre they are investing in these values as well as providing these children a school they can be proud of, nutritious food to eat, affordable clothing and housing supplies, and much more.
One day we all hope to see these kids thrive in such a way that the whole reservation is lifted into a first world experience.
Our staff and volunteers live inside of this modest rural life experience, also. Donors need not worry about their precious resources being drained by staff and administrative costs. The school provides public audited financial reports so that every dollar is accounted for.
While not perfect and not everyone will agree, St. Labre is truly making these students happy. I get to witness this, myself, every day.
I, like most of the staff I know, am here at St. Labre because our Creator inspired me to come here. It's a beautiful place to be!
I taught at this school in the 1980's and have seen its continued progress in combining an excellent education with cultural sensitivity for the Northern Cheyenne and Crow students. These schools are located in remote, rural areas of Montana and provide a free education to nearly 100% Native children. Unlike groups that have wealthy large donors, this charity relies on many ordinary people giving smaller sums of money. This means they spend more in mailings than some groups in order to make their budgets. No institution is perfect, but St. Labre is doing a great job serving often forgotten people. I am proud to serve as a volunteer board member.
I am honored to serve St. Labre as a board member. Throughout the years of volunteering for the school system, I have learned three critical components of education excellence. They are:
1) If we want to break the cycle of poverty, provide the best education possible.
2) The best education relies on loving parents working with dedicated teachers
3) The best education must include an awareness of the local cultural and a commitment to preserve it.
St. Labre lives these 3 values. The good people working here are life-long educators dedicated to providing the best education possible for the parents and children who choose to attend. It is a pleasure to work with and among women and men who live a mission-driven life to provide a better future for the next generation.
love how the ppl. at the reservation care for & help all the children there i send what i can when i can to help. hope other ppl help when ever they can
We have been a giver to the beautiful children of St. Labre Indian School for about three years, but only one to three times per year. This year God has put upon our hearts to make a monthly contribution to the school to help these great children on going in their dreams of a great education. We send our love to each and everyone of you and keep you all in our prayers.
Peace and God's blessings,
Harold & Sharon Knolls
I have been involved with St. Labre for over 20 years, working in the development department, as a substitute teacher, and as a parent whose child graduated from St. Labre.
St. Labre goes above and beyond for all the children. Especially the graduates. They provided a scholarship that helped my daughter attend college.
I believe St. Labre has a caring impact on the students, staff, community, and surrounding areas. I am glad to be a part of the St. Labre team.
I have been involved with St. Labre for at least 27 years. From kindergarten to high school to becoming an employee for 6 years. St. Labre has impacted so many students' lives, whether it be nutritional meals, a great education, scholarships, community outreach, a food pantry, a group home for children with no homes, and many more.
St. Labre provides an exceptional education at no cost to the Northern Cheyenne and Crow children. They also provide some scholarship opportunities for the children to further their education at the college of their choice.
As a former student, now employee of 10 years, I was able to utilize my educational opportunities that were provided by St. Labre to get my Bachelor's degree and come back to help provide that same service to our future St. Labre alumni.
St. Labre also offers healthy, nurishing meals to the students at no cost throughout the week as well as providing food packets on the weekends for the children who suffer from food insecurity. As a former Food Service Director for St. Labre, I was able to help provide these meals and see the positive impact that it has on our students.
St. Labre also provides services such as food pantry, utility assistance, medical assistance, and funeral assistance for the surrounding community members as well. They also host community events such as Easter egg hunts, Christmas stockings for the children, bike rodeo to promote bike safety, a 5K run/walk to promote health and wellness, and providing school supplies at the beginning of the year. St. Labre also has a group home for a small number of Indian children that do not have parents or a home where they can thrive and become successful adults. There is also a daycare for employees children and some community members where services are provided at a low cost. St. Labre also has a thrift store where students or community members who need clothing or small household items can get them either free or at a very low cost.
The ability to help the Crow and Northern Cheyenne children is a blessing. My own heritage is Irish Scots and Mohawk.
Along with an education, living and food arrangements on site, the children are given HOPE along with pride in their heritage, which is so important their deep being.
Please know I keep you all in my thoughts and prayers.
St. Labre Indian School 04/09/2021
Thank you for your kind words and the continued support, love, and gifts you provide for the children of St. Labre. We will keep you and your loved ones in our daily prayers. Blessings & Peace
I am very disappointed at this organization!! They have stolen LOTS of money from my 87 year old father. They say “Send me a $100 to help me graduate!” There are many other stories buy like” buy me a stove for $500” “buy me a meals” etc it never stops!! Cheap blankets made in China, cheap pens, paper, and of course cheap dream catchers made in China!! We are part Cherokee and Choctaw this is an insult to our indian heritage and you are ver deceptive stealing from the elderly!! You need to stop!! My Father will no longer be sending you any more money!!
St. Labre Indian School 04/09/2021
We are sorry to hear that you are disappointed in St. Labre and our fundraising efforts. To provide an exceptional private education to the nearly 700 Native American children attending our schools, our fundraising efforts are robust. The St. Labre gifts we send out cost us a couple of dollars each. And our contributors are very generous in return. We can then use these funds to support our students. We use American-made products whenever possible; however, the cost would be considerably more. This drastic increase in price would cut into the contributions that we receive. This would take away from our students, the Elders, and other programs. The bottom line is that the education and care of our students must come first. We are happy to remove your father from our database, so he no longer receives communications from us. Please call us at our toll-free number at 1-866-753-5496 to speak with one of our friendly telephone staff members. Blessings & Peace
J’ai lu « mille femmes blanches » de Jim Fergus, livre prêté par une amie, jusqu’à la note finale de l’auteur, qui donne les coordonnées de votre école. Je suis enseignante, je crois au pouvoir bienfaisant des mots, à la transmission de la culture. Je crois en la jeunesse. Encouragements chaleureux à vous!
I have been a donor for years and have moved. I would like to get back on the mailing list please.
Mary Kay Oliva
325 Enz Dr.# E311
Thank you, Mary Kay. You will start receiving mail shortly. We appreciate your interest!
I was first contacted by St. Labre Indian School by mail with a nice gift of a dream catcher, a symbol of Indian culture. But at first I found it disturbing that the article was made in China! However, the Chinese are also a struggling people, so on that basis, by making a gift to St. Labre, you can help multiple people around the globe! But these are small details. St. Labre is located in Ashland, Montana far from major cities with infrastructure and a healthy tax base. The issue at had is whether to donate, with so many charities to pick from. In light of the lack of resources, and the dire need to educate future leaders from their children to compete in modern society, and a desire to preserve their culture, the need for compassion
is dire. Few Indian children obtain college degrees. So the question is, if these Cheyenne and Crow Indians are not deserving of compassion, who the Hell is? Most charities are far better capitalized than the Indian Schools, yet get donations.
What counts in life is what you give, not take. I say if need is the yardstick, than these Indian children deserve a bright outlook on their future. Give a donation to these children and God will bless you.
If you look at a map of Montana and look for Ashland, home of St. Labre Indian School, it becomes apparent that these Indians are out in the wilderness of Custer National Forest: Not
in a big city with infrastructure and financial resources. These folks are not practicing capitalism with your donations. So if 50% of donations goes to fundraising expenses, don't let that trouble you in the least. That is just the harsh reality of surviving off the kindnesses of a skeptical public. Their mission is a strenuous one: raise and educate their children to have Native American heritage and culture, and yet succeed in the modern computerized world. If you help them in this struggle, what more can they do to show gratitude that give you a blanket or other token gift? If you give and they see your gesture of friendship, they may still ask you for help and wonder what they may have done not to deserve your much needed help at a certain point.
Approximately 200 years ago the Indian Nations ran this country and thrived until being supplanted by the vast influx of White Men. The white man have thrived here and built a greatest nation at the expense of the Indian Nations, now a shadow of their heyday. So the efforts at fundraising from the incredibly prosperous public, might be thought to be something of a debt to these small remaining bastions of Indian civilization and culture. But
St. Labre does not come as a bill collector, but as people struggling out in the wilderness to
find a few friends to help them keep alive their identity as native Americans. I am an old man
on Social Security, but I can find a small gift to help their children. In this life, it's not what you take, but what you give that counts. Forget your concerns about malfeasance in the financial statistics, and be human enough to make a donation to a worthy cause. Give to these children and God will bless you!
I love this site. I git a couple of their throws an they are really nice, an for a great cause. Thank you Jesus for showing me this place in Montana! Great Place! Love, James Baker! 400Shelby Street, Apt 416, Bristol Tennessee, 37620.
St. Labre Indian School 09/11/2020
Dear James, Thank you for your kind words! It is friends like you who help to keep the "miracle" of St. Labre alive for the nearly 700 Native American boys and girls in our care. Thank you for your continued support, love, and gifts for the children. We will keep you and your loved ones in our daily prayers. Blessings & Peace
I received a mailing from the school. It was just that simple for me. As a man of faith, it is my obligation for God’s grace and mercy to me and my family help all God’s children.
St. Labre Indian School 09/11/2020
Thank you for being a friend of St. Labre. Without friends like you, we would not be able to provide an exceptional education to the Native American children attending St. Labre. We are thankful for your continued support, love, and gifts for the children. You and your loved ones will be in our daily prayers. Blessings & Peace
St. Labre is an essential and influential educational organization committed to their students and their futures.
As a donor, I know that each dollar donated goes to furthering the nonprofits mission to create a campus and community where an exceptional education is delivered alongside Native American culture and tradition. Their efforts are vital to ensure Native American languages, history ,and more are integrated with their educational programs.
St. Labre is a fantastic organization and has helped countless kids throughout the years.
It is nonprofit organizations like St. Labre that really make a difference in the world. Giving to an organization that furthers children's educations is something so special. I can't say enough good things!
We love the work that St Labre Indian School is doing with Native American children. Education is critical to creating opportunities for future generations. We're happy to help them!
I love St Labre. They are genuinely dedicated to helping these children get a quality education. And you have to appreciate the challenges involved. St Labre is the example of what a servant's heart can accomplish in this world. God bless them and their work with these deserving children.
St. Labre is making an incredible impact in the American Indian community. They’re providing an outstanding education and many incredible resources, both essential and non essential, to American Indian children.
I love this organization. They celebrate the Catholic faith while embracing the Native American cultures of their students, giving them a chance to rise above poverty and make the best lives for themselves. The high school graduation rate for the entire state of Montana is 82% and the high school graduation rate for Native Americans in the state of Montana is 62%. However, the high school graduation rate at St. Labre is 93%. This indicates to me that they are doing something right! Also, I have read many stories from St. Labre graduates who speak very highly of their experience there, and credit their success in life to the education they received at this school.
This is a great organization that I trust and am proud to support.
Very good people, doing good things. Period. I am very impressed.
Another scam preying on the elderly! My mother has donated to them in the past, she donated recently $100.00 in hopes of receiving their Indian blanket that they promised. They said they never received her money order...Sure they didn't but they always received her money in times past, now that they need to stand behind their promise, all of a sudden....oh we never received her money. This is another scam, and I have told her as much. She will no longer be donating to such B.S. I will report them to the BBB.
If I could give less than one star I would!! People out there wisen up this organization is a fraud!!
St. Labre Indian School 05/29/2020
We understand your frustration and apologize for the delay in processing your mother's recent donation. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, St. Labre was closed for several weeks. Because all mail is processed here in Ashland, gifts were securely stored in our safe on campus. We recently reopened with limited staff according to health and safety guidelines. We are working to process the backlog of donations that came in during our closure and ask for your patience. We are diligently working to process gifts and send out thank-you gifts as quickly as possible. We would like to thank your mother for the support, love, and gifts she has provided for the children of St. Labre. We pray that your mother, you, and all of your loved ones have remained safe and healthy during these unprecedented times. We will keep you all in our daily prayers. Blessings & Peace
I first learned about St LaBre school when I was a student nurse 59 years ago. One of my first patients told me about this school in Ashland Montana. The school needed donations to educate and feed needy native american children.
I had little money, but I was compelled to help the school
In a small way. I sent them a small donation, and have continued to donate over the past 59 years. Please donate whatever you can.
St. Labre Indian School 05/11/2020
Dear Christine, Thank you for your kind words. It is friends like you who help to keep the "miracle" of St. Labre alive for nearly 700 Native American children. During these uncertain times, your support, love, and gifts help us to continue providing the exceptional education these young girls and boys deserve for a better, brighter future. The staff and students of St. Labre thank you and will keep you and your loved ones in our daily prayers. Blessings & Peace
My entire life my Grandmother supported St Labre. I still have some of the gifts the children used to send her. St. Labre will always be so close to my heart
St. Labre Indian School 05/11/2020
Dear Desiree, Thank you! Friends like you and your Grandmother are a blessing to the nearly 700 Native American boys and girls attending St. Labre Indian School. During these uncertain times, the children are counting on us more than ever to provide them with nutritious food, along with the exceptional education they need for a better, brighter future. We thank you for your continued support, love, and gifts for the children. Everyone at St. Labre will keep you and your loved ones in our daily prayers. Blessings & Peace
There are charities that prey on the elderly like vultures. St. Labre Indian School is one of them. My late elderly cousin used to donate to them. I handled all of her mail after her death. I replied back to their mail to remove her name from the mailing list. We still get mail from them. They are probably hoping that one of us will take over. That isn’t going to happen.
That small donation that my cousin was sending isn’t enough for them. Now they are preying on people trying to get this organization in their will. They don’t have to worry about getting money from my cousin because her immediate family got everything and have no intention of ever giving them a penny. They tried to tap into our money.
Picture this because it must be happening. Think of a grandparent that wants to leave their grandchild money so they can get a college education. As the grandparent ages, they get dementia. On the St. Labre’s donation card, there is a box to check to put them in that grandparent’s will. When the grandparent passes away, the poor grandchild doesn’t get anything because the grandparent changed their will so St. Labre will get the money instead.
If you want to donate and help someone, do it with somebody locally. If someone really is starving, throw them some money. They aren’t going to try to tap into your family’s wealth.
Prior to St. Labre removing their full financial statement from the website, their statement for 2018 showed an amount in excess of $170,000,00.00 in reserve funds. They no longer provide full financial transparency and that concerns me greatly. We used to donate to this organization for some time but ceased. They spend in excess of $20,000,000.00 annually in fundraising activities. For a non profit to spend such an amount on fundraising certainly presents a question to the validity of this 501 c 3 non profit. We still receive numerous mailings with pens, pads, card, and many other things requesting donations. Before you donate check out all financials first.
I know St. Labre Indian School firsthand and can speak to their integrity and their mission to provide Native American children with not only a quality education, but also all the daily necessities each child deserves to live an emotional, physical and spiritually healthy life. There’s nothing like being on the St. Labre campus to see the smiling faces of the children, to see them learning and thriving knowing they truly are receiving a firm foundation for a brighter future. The good Lord can see the beautiful hearts across the country who generously give and are making a real difference to meet the needs of the Indian children that St. Labre Indian School serves. I'm proud to support St. Labre!
St. Labre Indian School 03/04/2020
Thank you, MrsPam, for your kind words. We are thankful for the generosity of friends like you who help to provide an exceptional education for nearly 700 deserving Native American girls and boys. We hope you can visit us again in the future.
Great organization doing great work for Native American children. I have seen the impact the school is able to have on the children and the difference education makes.
St. Labre Indian School 02/18/2020
Thank you for your kind words and continued support. It is friends like you who help to keep the "miracle" of St. Labre alive for hundreds of Native American boys and girls.
Amazing organization! Doing great things, providing a well-rounded experience and education to raise up the next generation!
St. Labre Indian School 02/17/2020
Thank you for your kind words. We appreciate your continued support, love, and gifts for the children of St. Labre. It is friends like you who help keep the "miracle" of St. Labre alive.
So many hearts and lives impacted by this organization! Theirs is a mission that is fueled by a tireless determination and obedience to protect lives in need. I thank St. Labre Indian School, its leaders, teachers, elders, volunteers and supporters for carrying the light of Christ to so many young lives and families in Montana! Your reach travels far beyond that region, as many wonderful Native American students graduate and take steps that impact this world, for the better. God's continued Blessings over all who play a part in this mission!
St. Labre Indian School 02/17/2020
Your continued support helps to keep the heat on, put food on the table, and helps with the many other necessities these growing children deserve. Thank you for helping to keep the "miracle" of St. Labre alive!
I just received an unsolicited text message on my phone from St Labre from someone going by the name of "nell," asking for money. Never heard of St Labre and never heard of "nell." But she(?) called me a "great friend," and said that I should give more money. So I looked it up. Apparently they send out texts to random phone numbers in hopes of reeling in some gullible fish.
St. Labre Indian School 02/04/2020
We apologize for the inconvenience. We attained your number from one of many databases of publicly available information, but your number must have been associated with the name of a current donor. Please call our toll-free number at 1-866-753-5496, and we will be happy to remove your cell phone number from our database. Blessings & Peace
I first started giving to St. Labre Indian School back in the 1980s.
I actually flew on to the school property back in 1990 in a homebuilt Spezio 2holer aircraft.
I went to the museum and walked around the area. I think they are doing a commendable job of assisting the local kids with education and housing.
I gladly donate (perhaps partly to assuage my guilt for all the truly horrible things our government has done to the original caretakers of this land.)
Jim Franklin, Meridian, Idaho
St. Labre Indian School 11/18/2019
Dear Jim, Thank you for taking the time to share your review of St. Labre Indian School. The staff and students of St. Labre thank you for your continued support, love, and gifts for the children. It is friends like you who help to keep the "miracle" of St. Labre alive. If you are ever in the area again, we welcome you to stop by and see how our campus has grown and changed since you visited in 1990. Blessings & Peace
I learned of this non-profit St. Labre in Montana. I have researched their website to learn.
I must admit shamefully I never thought of one solely for our American Indians and I’m sure many others should be ashamed as well.
I am working to create a plan for my community in Marion Illinois to establish various avenues of regular support with St. Labre Indian School in Ashland Montana 59004.
St Labre provides a full spectrum support for the Northern Cheyenne and Crow Indian includes education kindergarten through high school accredited with Montana State Office of Public Education. Children who live farther than 40 miles Dorms are provided. Bus routes begin 5:20 am and concludes 8:00 pm a 105 mile round trip requiring 1000 gallons of fuel per week
You can easily research St Labre Indian School by going to www.stlabre.org. Telephone 866-753-5496, 406-784-4904. Executive Director Curtis Yarlott e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your time reading my comments
St. Labre Indian School 11/18/2019
Thank you for taking the time to review St. Labre Indian School, Frankie Joyce. We appreciate your kinds words and your continued support, love, and gifts for the children of St. Labre. Through the generosity of our many benefactors, like you, we are able to provide nearly 750 Native American boys and girls an exceptional education that will lead them to a better, brighter future. Blessings & Peace
THERE IS A MISTRUTH in these reviews meant to turn people off to this organization:
"Michael407" says in his review, "If you go to GOOGLE and type in the name - St. Labre Indian School - you'll see that it no longer is rated because it "cannot qualify and prove some information and, it does not (or is not available) IRS forms 900's to verify its activities."
THE TRUTH IS that Charity Navigator simply says:
"Why isn't this organization rated by Charity Navigator?
Portions of a Charity Navigator's evaluation are based on information published in IRS Form 990. The IRS does not require this organization to publish a Form 990.
What does it mean that this organization isn't rated?
It simply means that the organization does not meet our criteria. A lack of a rating does not indicate a positive or negative assessment by Charity Navigator."
Shame on you, Michael407.
My father in law recently passed away, and his mail was forwarded to our home. We started receiving solicitations addressed to him from the St. Labre School almost immediately. They were always accompanied by gifts such as wrapping paper, dream catchers, address labels, greeting cards and the like. I had a "form letter" typed up to inform anybody of his death, and I began to return their solicitations (in their postage paid envelope) letting them know not to expect anything. The solicitations kept coming. I called the 800 number twice and had his name removed from their mailing lists. Both times I was told that they printed up their mailings in advance, and in about 6 weeks the letters would stop. They keep coming. I have to wonder how serious they are about helping the poor Indian kids when they spend a lot of cash mailing gifts to dead people. All of the other charities I contacted thanked me and the letters stopped. Not the Labre School. . .
I am sorry to hear that this happened. St. Labre has to rely on direct mail donations and since our average donor can only give a small amount compared to other larger organizations, we have to rely on a large volume of mail to fund our programs. This also means that our limited staff that handles this mail(all located at the campus in Ashland, MT) are not able to process requests in a timely manner. This unfortunate circumstance is certainly not the fault of our donors, and we apologize for situations like this that arise. Please know that we try to do everything in our power to limit this and will make our best efforts to remedy situations such as this when possible.
A few years ago I was invited to a breakfast on Chicago"s Navy Pier. I was a guest of the school as well as 400 other donors. I met with school administrators, teachers, students and other donors. I came away feeling very happy . Knowing that I met people who really care about the children at St. Labre. Some folks feel that the school spends too much money on fund raising. What they do seems to work. So I say don't fix something that is not broken. If you know how to raise money for a lower cost...TELL the school about your knowledge in fund raising. Don't just complain fix it. The tribe that has filed a suit against the school for using it's name...REALLY! And would like a share of the money the school raised.. I say to the elders of the tribe. The school is not for profit. The school provides food and schooling and a place to sleep for many. So do you want to start omitting some food or will it be clothing that that the kids need. So that the tribes treasure can grow. Shame on you all. Taking in a child who has only a shirt , pants and shoes is what the school is all about. I wish all of us could do what the school is doing. I cannot do it so I send what dollars I can to st. Labre so they can do what I cannot do alone. Thank OUR LORD for ST. LABRE INDIAN SCHOOL.
Review from Guidestar
I've been giving to St Labre for many years. I feel and always have that they're helping the terrible situation that is running rampant through the Indian nation. Time for the greedy chiefs to help their people instead of lining their own pockets. If I can help just one child become a better person then I'm all in!
This group sends relentless emails and now is calling my 90 yo father with Alzheimer's. I have called them many times, returned their solicitations with "NO" and "remove from mailing list" to no avail. Today I filed a complaint with the FTC. I urge you to do the same. They are a dishonest group.
Since 2010, I have donated to several Native American organizations, ones I believe are worthy of, and good stewards of, my financial assistance. But I am sure that some of those organizations have sold my name and address to other groups, such as St. Labre Indian School. While some of those groups may solicit donations once in awhile, St. Labre is relentless in constantly sending me requests, bordering on harassment. Many times I have sent back the request, asking to be removed from their list. But that does not work - I still get the requests. Since March 2016, when I started keeping track, I have received St. Labre mailings on 3/7/16, 6/1/16, 6/21/16, 7/5/16, 10/15/16, 11/15/16, 12/13/16, 2/25/17, 3/15/17, 4/5/17, 5/4/17 and today (5/17/17). I wonder why they waste their donors' money, sending out these constant requests. I have let the school know I have no intention of ever sending them a donation. Maybe they do good work, but all these mailings leave a very bad taste in my mouth. I gave one star, but really, they deserve no stars.
I am sorry to hear about your frustration. To raise sufficient funds to provide for the many services we provide for the Native American children we serve, we, unfortunately, have to send out many mailings. We have many ways to reduce mailings and love it when our donors ask us to help save money by reducing those mailings. We thank you for your previous support and we hope that you continue with your philanthropy, whether you support the children we serve or another worthy cause!
My wife initially was moved by what appeared to be "thank you" letters on elementary ruled paper and crayola crayon art. We realized these letters are manufactured and the surprise they weren't hand done made me suspicious. I started doing some research, and Give.org by the BBB says this charity has refused it's attempts to verify it's legitimacy. I was puzzled by the obvious amount and quality of the school's advertising dollars and wanted to know we are giving to a cause, not a for profit organization. I feel they should comply with Give.org to validate themselves, before we continue donations. There are MANY charities in need, so I feel due diligence is not unreasonable.
I am sorry to hear that you are dubious about our organization but I can assure you that not only are we registered as a 501(c)3 nonprofit and that is verifiable with the IRS. Our good work is verifiable in many ways and we encourage further research. As for the hand-drawn "thank you" letters, those are authentic. We have so many donors, however, we cannot send out the original letters to every donor. Our children would not have time to learn if they were writing personal notes to every donor, so we send out copies of these letters so that multiple donors can see the appreciation the nearly 700 children they support have for them for sponsoring their education. Thank you!
My father had dementia and they were one of many that sent multiple solicitations and he responded with multiple checks. He moved to a memory care facility and they insisted I send a copy of my POA to verify. They were not protecting donors, only their opportunity to solicit the vulnerable elderly with dementia. Every other charity I contacted offered sympathy for my father's dementia and gladly removed him from their list, but not this one. Now I stuff their mailings back in their business reply envelopes with the request to remove him. Let them pay twice for the mailings if they don't want to honor a simple request. Two years have passed, I still get the mailings and now my father is deceased. I made one last attempt to get him off the list so I don't get these reminders in the mail. I fully expect them to ask for a copy of the death certificate now.
I have been living here in Ashland for 16 years and I am an immigrant from Philippines. I have seen, how St. Labre cater to the needs of the Cheyenne and Crow kids wonderfully. St. Labre provides good education and provides healthy meals breakfast and lunch and snacks for the students. Besides that, St. Labre provides jobs to the Native Americans. They built a beautiful dormitory for the kids that live so far away from school. They assure that the environment is drug and alcohol free! They have great teachers and staff.
It's not fair to rate or judge this school according to the news you are reading or hearing from someone's sayings/stories. If you like, you need to come here and see it for yourself as the other donors did. I met some donors that came here and my husband and I thanked them for helping St. Labre. Lots of teachers and staff are came from out-of-state. Some said, that they would like to stay or work for the school for just a year or two, but lots of them end up staying for years and bought house close by to continue their mission as teachers/staff for the Native American kids.. The proof to it is my husband, taught here for 17 years and now he is the campus ministry coordinator. He loves teaching/working at St. Labre. In fact, he can go to the big universities/colleges and enjoy big salaries but we chose to live here. We love it here at St. Labre and our kids loving this school. I don't work at St. Labre but this mission school is doing a good job of not wasting your money that you donate for the Native American kids. Thank you so much for your donations. Every dollar that you donate will go towards for shaping the future of the Native American kids. Also, preserving the Cheyenne and Crow heritage/culture/customs/traditions.
I have been donating a small amount to St Labre for years and realize that they must raise money to run the school. Education is so important whether it be for Indian children or any other. Our country is currently going to the dogs and we need educated citizens to run our great country. Those children at St Labre may be the ones to get us back on track.
My in-laws have been giving to this charity for years, and receiving fleece blankets with 'tribal' prints as thank-you gifts. Do not give to them! They have been sued by the tribe, as only a few Northern Cheyenne children attend the school, and it is marketed as being 100% N. Cheyenne. It's really just a rich private school that solicits donations using false pretenses. Do your homework!
The major objections I read here, have to do with the expenditure of 50% of their budget for fund-raising. Now, there are a number of schools with similar missions, who serve less people, are constantly financially strapped and consequently can't do the job St. Labre does. Few people have heard of these schools, and fewer still support them. St. Labre may spend a lot of money fund-raising, but it looks to me that they are raising two dollars for every one they spend. Yes, it would be nice if they could spend less, but common sense tells me that if they spent less, they would likely raise less. I am greatly impressed with their success with graduating students, and how many go on for higher learning. So I don't care how much they spend to raise the money to do this. What is important to me is they seem to be succeeding very well in their mission. I am happy to increase my donation now.
I, too, have received numerous solicitations for this outfit. At first, many years ago, I was tugged by the heartstrings to donate because of the charity and what it is doing; however, when someone suggested Charity Navigator as a good site to check with before donating any money to any charity, I did so with these folks. too much wasted money on fundraising and "administrative" money goes out and not nearly enough to the charity itself. If you go to GOOGLE and type in the name - St. Labre Indian School - you'll see that it no longer is rated because it "cannot qualify and prove some information and, it does not (or is not available) IRS forms 900's to verify its activities. Now, I just throw away the wasteful mailing that I know I have repeatedly asked to be taken off the mailing list.
I will not donate to this charity.
I have read both positive and negative reviews, but my experience has been all good. I donated money and received my blanket...which was never promised to be handmade...right away. Then I received a student-written thank you note for my gift and photos of the children. After that, I received a card which played "Let Me Call You Sweetheart" sung by the children when opened. The response of thank yous impressed me and demonstrates the values taught at the school.
I read a review written by a reporter about how one tribe had sued the Catholic Church and Diocese because they feel the school is exploiting the Cheyenne tribe who are not benefiting enough from the school. I am not donating to a tribe, I am donating to a school who is spreading the values of Catholicism. If a person donates to a school, then he or she needs to realize, unless the donor explicitly states what the money is to be used for, the school can use its own discretion. 700 students are getting a free education and three meals a day. That is what I am donating toward.
My husband and I have been donating to St. Labre since 1985. My parents long before that. We usually go to the school every summer and this last year went to their ranch. What a great place!! We have had some very interesting talks about St Labre's educational opportunities with Curtis and the staff, for students, especially the cultural experiences they receive. I know that the fund raising goes directly to support the school. I'm a little confused as to why the Cheyenne Indian Nation thinks they should share in the monies donated to the school. After all the money is to educate the Cheyenne and Crow students. The educational opportunities are excellent and the resulting statistics surpass ordinary public school high school and college graduation rates for peers. Our family will continue to support this school and other Native Schools.
In the early 1970s, I donated to St. Labre each month and at the time 90% of the money went to the charity. I just got the first solicitation in years and was going to donate, but not after reading all these reviews.
My mother has dementia and receives loads of solicitations from this charity. Six months ago I placed her name on the "Do Not Mail" list and yet, they are still mailing her. Former reviewers have indicated that they spend half of their revenue on advertising. I believe it.
My father has dementia and is now living in an assisted living facility. While he still lived at home he sent hundreds of dollars to various charities and sweepstakes. I have now assumed responsibility of handling his finances and mail. St Labre is the only charity so far that is unwilling to stop mailing the frequent requests without my providing the copy of my Power of Attorney. Strikes me more as an attempt to protect their ability to bleed seniors dry.
Review from Guidestar
This is a sad commentary of Native American heritage. 1st no one should give in hopes of receiving anything; and should the school insist in doing so - than how about true Indian art work that is bought and purchased from the tribal peoples. I do have a problem when 50% of contributions are for marketing in any charity - Its about the Children, and I honestly believe that people are willing to give for the sake of giving (everyone wants to make a difference but no one wants to be exploited nor do they want the purpose of their gift exploited). Even an adoptive program for each child with several donors (receiving semi-annual updates on the child's progress while preserving the child's name is worth considering. I hope that all donations are kept local and within the school - none going to the Catholic Church; I do not support religious organization, but do support them when they keep God's mandate :"True religion is the care of the widow and the fatherless child". And this is all charities. It is easy to say that I will not give my donation because 50% will go to jobs in China and obscene gestures of abject poverty to tear jerk a donation. This is proud Nations of Native Americans (the only true Americans without benefit of law). I send my donation that they can be successful in a changing world and maintain their proud traditional heritage at the same time. I will continue to donate at this time and pray God that you change your marketing methods to bring that figure closer to 10% or less. One fully realizes that teachers and staff cost money and should be included in the cost of educating and schooling children as well as bills relating to building maintenance and grounds up keep and that should be that 90% inclusion. It is obscene that 50% of contributions is going into a toilet or Neverland. I'm sorry to hear of the Tribes lawsuit against the school and I hope that some lease agreement can be reached on the lands and/or some involvement with the tribes that they can clearly understand that the future economic benefit that a well ran and highly educating school can provide in the long term for the future of their peoples and especially their children. Educate them to the fact that I already pay taxes into a dead beat public school system. I'd rather donate my money to them through your school. I also donate to ST Joseph Indian School as well. I'm not into "well this Indian tribe is more worthy than that one", tell them to shove that crap. It's about the children and their future, not about past hatreds-divisions-derisions. It's about moving on and forward.
Don't believe everything you read on the internet, and don't jump to conclusions. These people appear to be doing significant work, of considerable social value. That's a guess; when I can, I would like to visit the place, and get some sense of the whole situation. What I think, on no hard evidence, is that a dysfunctional tribal group is trying to get their hands on as much money as possible. It seems fashionable to sue the Catholics these days, but I don't see anything actionable in what St. Labre is doing. The Northern Cheyenne are on a fishing expedition, seems like. They have little to lose, and plenty to gain.
Review from Guidestar
Yesterday I received a solicitation for donation from this organization. Having never heard of it I decided to investigate on Guidestar. No 990's have been filed so I reviewed their annual reports for 2012 and 2011. They spend approximately 50% of annual revenue on fundraising so 50 cents of every dollar one donates goes towards printing,paper,postage and gifts. After other expenses only a small % goes to help the 700 or so students! Stated another way fundraising costs over $35,000 per student. I'll send my money elsewhere.
There is a lot of jealously among Native American tribes and internally with their members. A close relative taught on the Rez in NM, loved the kids and what she did, but hated the parental and tribal council infighting. She left after a couple years for the local public schools.
In the case of St. Labre, don't believe everything you read on the internet and remember anyone can sue anyone for anything. St. Labre did a better job of marketing their good works than some other tribes.
This charity seems to do good work by all accounts. People seemed miffed at the gifts, but I am not sure why anyone would require a blanket or any other gift to donate to a charity anyway. Use SouthwestIndian.com if you just want stuff to order and still get a tax writeoff. The lawsuit by the tribe sounds absurd. If the tribe cared so much and did even 1/2 the job the school does to take care of these kids, there would never have been a need for this school, but they didn't, they don't, and as far as I can tell, they never will.
INVESTIGATE this charity by using the great tool of the Internet...you may discover, it is a ruse and NOT a charity that benefits the Native American Indians it claims to help....but it DOES enrich the church and the people who are on salary at the "Charity." The tribes in question has SUED this charity AND the church, for reasons of using the Native People to make money...CHECK IT OUT!!! By the way...those "trade blankets" that are sent as promos to donors are made in china out of poly fleece...commissioned in factories in China by this "dubious charity." CHECK! INVESTIGATE!
My wife and I have never had a problem receiving gifts from this charity. Most of the time, we tell them not to send anything to us. No organization is perfect and things can "fall through the cracks". If a gift was not received, the person should have informed the charity before complaining about it.
We support this organization and believe in the work they are doing.
Mike & Ann Mills
My mother gave a gift a few months ago. Her reward was to be a handcrafted blanket. She still checks the mail each weekday waiting for her "Gift". That seems a cruel joke to me. My family is of Irish and Cherokee descent. We donate to a cause we believed worthy and were jilted by those that should understand broken promises better than most!