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Review for The Tipi Raisers, Oglala, SD, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

Tipi Raisers gave me the most important week of my life when I volunteered with them from March 4-11, 2017. Each day was carefully planned by the executive director and involved 3 days of 6-hour shifts working on the demolition of an abandoned retreat center in order to salvage lumber to build a home for a local family and working on the construction of a community garden. We also retrieved and delivered firewood and food to a family in need. We personally met with and worked alongside all of the individuals we were serving and were able to get a real sense of how they struggled on a day to day basis. Additionally, we had daily activities and outings that taught us so much about the Lakota culture, history, and way of life. We visited schools, churches, national parks, powwows, and learned from many leaders and elders from the Reservation. By the end of the trip, I felt so moved and inspired by the people that Tipi Raisers had brought in to talk to us and so motivated by the work the organization helped us get done that I plan on coming back to Pine Ridge many more times in the future. Tipi Raisers was extremely thoughtful in its planning of our itinerary, professional in the execution of our work projects, effective in making a direct impact on Pine Ridge families, and personal in its investment in bettering relations between natives and non-natives. I cannot stress how effective and inspiring this organization is, and the fact that the executive director, Dave, and his family and board members are so well-loved and known on the Reservation is proof of the enormous impact of Tipi Raisers.

Role:  Volunteer