indianz.com your internet resource indianz.com on facebook indianz.com on twitter indianz.com on Google+ indianz.com on soundcloud
phone: 202 630 8439
Native American Bank - Native people investing in Native communities
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
Native Sun News: Weekly meal a boost for Rapid City homeless

Filed Under: National
More on: native sun news, rapid city, south dakota
     

The following story was written and reported by Evelyn Red Lodge, Native Sun News Correspondent. All content © Native Sun News.


Community members gathered for the weekly homeless meal Sunday, Nov. 18, at the west end of North Rapid City’s Roosevelt Park, across the street from Prairie Market’s open field. Community organizers have been holding the event for years.


Some of the attendees at the weekly Sunday meal for the homeless Nov. 18 included, from left, Rodney Iron Hawk Sr., Thomas Twiss, Jay No Heart, Nelson Perry, Devin Lewis and Sun Bear.

Holding people in the heart through compassion
Community comes together every week in support of homeless
Story and photos by Evelyn Red Lodge
Native Sun News Correspondent

RAPID CITY — An entire, dedicated community of all races rethinks the definition of homelessness and much more every Sunday in Rapid City.

A meal for the homeless is served every Sunday at 11 a.m. — rain, snow or shine — across the street from the open field just east of the Prairie Market grocery store, which is located at 11 New York St., in the extreme west end of North Rapid City’s Roosevelt Park.

Between 50 and 75 people including volunteers come at various times during the weekly event until the food is gone.

Native Sun News spoke with several homeless citizens and community volunteers this past Sunday, Nov. 18, at the event.

Several Oglala Lakota College students under Associate Professor Bryant High Horse attended. One such volunteer student, Lacy Thompson, said, “Earlier, someone said there are 500 students in the Rapid City area schools that are homeless. A lot of times when you say the word ‘homeless’ you think of the person you see on the street that you walk by.

“A lot of families came by last week and pulled up in vehicles. They are staying here and there with various relatives and needed to eat. There were a lot of infants and toddlers looking for jackets, gloves and clothes,” Thompson continued.

“A lot of the clothes we had here were for adults. I felt guilty; I didn’t think of the little ones, and I don’t think most people do. Many students … live with relatives here and there or with five or six families to a house. Many people don’t think about that either.

“I know when I was younger we would go to school just to eat, and we would go to the weekend food programs.”

Thompson is not alone thanks to a retired nurse for Rapid City Area Schools, Nancy Zent, who High Horse said initiated this event years ago.

High Horse, a Rosebud Sioux Tribe member, explained this is not an event just to help one race of people, but a community of all races sharing an opportunity to express their values as compassionate beings.

Via telephone, he said, “(Zent has) been doing this many years, and I used to work with her. Some of her friends joined her and then I joined her with my classes.”

In High Horse’s many Lakota culture or related classes he teaches, he said, “Mostly, the two words that I am trying to teach my students is to have compassion for others. I have done it for four to five years in different classes at OLC to see and experience what our relatives go through. When we get back (to class from these events) our discussion is very emotional.

“Many have never seen that or felt that. Then they know what it is like. The Lakota words wacante ognake and waunsila are the two words in Lakota that we use. Hold people in your heart, and that’s what (wacante ognake) means. Waunsila means to have compassion for others. That’s what I am trying to teach them so when they get out into the world they’ll have that regardless of what they actually go through.

“They’ll carry those two values. They will have great integrity for themselves — and that’s what I am trying to teach them.”

OLC is a college not just for Native Americans. High Horse says he has students from all cultures and races that attend the school and the classes in which he tries to instill these two values.

Two homeless attendees expressed their thankfulness for the meal.

Rodney Iron Hawk Sr. from Minneapolis said, “Thank you for the food. I’m not from here. I enjoy the food, and thank you very much.” He said he will move on shortly.

Not only the compassion from others is shown from strangers, but from the homeless compassion is important as Thomas Twiss of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe said: “We are thankful for this (meal). When we meet someone (on the street) who is hungry, we usually carry food in our pockets and we will give it to someone who is hungry.”

High Horse encourages donations of clothing but also encourages non-perishable food items to put in the backpacks.

He explained, “I have been with OLC for 16 to 17 years teaching different classes in Indian studies. My title is associate professor at OLC. You can do many things with a master’s degree. I also teach the Lakota language at Horace Mann (Elementary School) among many other projects.

“We have been doing this for years, and I feel like we as Native people are invisible. They don’t realize there are educated Lakotas doing good.

“But when we are all together at the feed they see we are not all drunken Indians. I am trying to change that. The compassion part is I’m trying to teach the students to get along with all cultures. Rise above the racist treasured attitude.”

As all cultures attend and volunteer he said, “It’s good to see people who have compassion for others. I am teaching students of all cultures, (Asians) included. I teach the positive side of who we are, and we don’t look at skin color or blood quantum. That’s what I teach in the culture class, because Lakotas really have a problem with ‘iyeska’ (mixed-blood) and (other) issues. I’m going to rise above this and teach others not to dwell on that.

“What we do is a community service. We welcome everyone to come join us. Sometimes I teach culture at the feed when I’m standing there. My culture knowledge is going 24/7.”

Offshoots of the weekly meal for the homeless also are taking place.

Daphne Richards-Cook, who is Oglala Lakota, said she is working toward another community program for the homeless. She said Akta Tourism Advocates is trying to get a He Sapa (Black Hills) performing arts center behind The Journey Museum.

She explained, “What we are trying to do is build an opportunity where we can get the homeless, younger people and elders, to come in and help us to tell our stories through arts, dance, song and food. Bryant asked me to come in and talk about it to engage the students to come in and help us.

“We want the younger people to be on the civic end of it, too,” Richards-Cook noted.

Other students in attendance from OLC Nov. 18 were Eric Yellow Boy, Lacy Thompson, Sadie Schower, Anna Morrison and Bo Paulsen. “I enjoyed coming down here and making soup and giving what I can,” said Morrison. “I want to ask my employer for donations. I make food and help serve. I just made all the food this time from my house.”

In expressing his sentiment, Paulsen said, “I like coming down here, because one of the things Bryant has taught us about is the value system of Lakota culture and how generosity is one of the most important values in the culture. By coming down here and giving a little bit of what I have it helps so many people.

“I was here last week, and I brought two packs of socks. It was really cool, because someone grabbed them and split them up between about 14 different people. So I helped 14 different people with just a package of socks. What I like about this is it’s put on by just people in our community that want to give of themselves.”

Donations of food, clothing and other small items of everyday necessity are accepted during the weekly Sunday meal.

(Contact Evelyn Red Lodge at welakota@yahoo.com)


Copyright © Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:
On Facebook

On Twitter

On Google+

On SoundCloud
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Native Sun News: Lakota riders complete journey to Little Bighorn (7/2)
Lakota Country Times: Newspaper takes home top honors at NAJA (7/2)
Brandon Ecoffey: Delivering stories that matter to Indian Country (7/2)
Ivan Star: Creating a culturally appropriate economy at Pine Ridge (7/2)
Elizabeth Hawksworth: Being patriotic and being Native in Canada (7/2)
Micah A: Blood quantum does not make me any less of an Indian (7/2)
David Shorter: Learning not to speak on behalf of Native peoples (7/2)
Marc Simmons: Legend of Catholic priest saved by grateful tribe (7/2)
Sen. McCain deemed responsible for land swap at sacred Oak Flat (7/2)
A Tribe Called Red releases free remix of Buffy Sainte-Marie track (7/2)
Pamunkey Tribe wins final federal recognition decision from BIA (7/2)
Duwamish Tribe rejected for federal recognition for a third time (7/2)
BIA accused of blocking road access on New Mexico reservation (7/2)
Chippewa Cree Tribe elects Ken St. Marks as chair for fourth time (7/2)
Mississippi Choctaw leader comes out on top in unofficial results (7/2)
Bois Forte Band grows economy with second Tim Hortons Cafe (7/2)
Chickasaw Nation hails selection of permanent Indian law chair (7/2)
Editorial: Gila River Indian Community to blame for highway path (7/2)
Cow Creek Band continues to oppose new Coquille Tribe casino (7/2)
Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes renovate casino resort (7/2)
Four more tribes in New Mexico enter Class III gaming compact (7/2)
Editorial: Pojoaque Pueblo gets pass on illegal gaming operation (7/2)
Save Oak Flat caravan plans journey to DC to protect sacred site (7/1)
Court reluctantly backs NLRB in Saginaw Chippewa Tribe dispute (7/1)
Native Sun News: Opposition grows to delisting of grizzly bears (7/1)
Lakota Country Times: Reservation counties rank as deadliest (7/1)
Steve Russell: Professor outed as Cherokee fraud once again (7/1)
Harlan McKosato: Indian people survive despite mistreatment (7/1)
Marshall Matz: Fight for $380M in Keepseagle funds continues (7/1)
BIA acquires former military site in trust for Ho-Chunk Nation (7/1)
Appropriations bill adds $10M for tribal courts in PL280 states (7/1)
Sen. Murkowski questions definition of 'Indian' for health care (7/1)
South Dakota board won't back name change for sacred peak (7/1)
Fort Peck Tribes take on cost for homes promised by Brad Pitt (7/1)
Hoopa Valley Tribe orders water restrictions as tanks run dry (7/1)
Cherokee Nation certifies results of election for top positions (7/1)
Secretary Sally Jewell reaffirms opposition to racist mascots (7/1)
Virginia tribes hindered by racist policies created by one man (7/1)
Column: Native Code Talkers defended nation with languages (7/1)
Guilty plea for stabbing of BIA superintendent in South Dakota (7/1)
Opposition group rallies over Miccosukee Tribe land-into-trust (7/1)
Pojoaque Pueblo keeps casino open after gaming deal expires (7/1)
Court allows lawsuit for incident at Tonto Apache Tribe casino (7/1)
Navajo Nation Council approves bill to share gaming revenue (7/1)
Soboba Band celebrates 20th anniversary for gaming facility (7/1)
Mashantucket Tribe extends agreement for $1.7B casino debt (7/1)
BIA adopts new policy regarding federal recognition process (6/30)
Supreme Court agrees to resolve another Indian law dispute (6/30)
Patrick Murphy: Star Trek's William Shatner visits Navajoland (6/30)
Yvette Roubideaux: Making progress at Indian Health Service (6/30)
Native Sun News: Wambli Ska group shares culture with youth (6/30)
Lakota Country Times: Oglala Sioux leader pushes zeolite mine (6/30)
Native Sun News: BLM to update plan for land near Bear Butte (6/30)
Alex Jacobs: Fake Indians damage the real Indian community (6/30)
Sarah Sunshine Manning: Even toys carry harmful messages (6/30)
Ponca Tribe sends twelve youth to White House conference (6/30)
Lobbyists met at White House to discuss federal recognition (6/30)
Alaska Native man finally out on parole in 1997 homicide case (6/30)
Gyasi Ross gets nod for 'Marlon Brando' single off new release (6/30)
Washington governor supports repatriation of Kennewick Man (6/30)
Morongo Band interested in acquiring Colt gun manufacturer (6/30)
Gila River Indian Community files suit to protect sacred place (6/30)
Lac Du Flambeau Band man sentenced for abusing young girls (6/30)
Sault Tribe protected by sovereign immunity in casino dispute (6/30)
Pojoaque Pueblo at critical juncture with Class III gaming deal (6/30)
BIA releases scoping report for Coquille Tribe's Class II facility (6/30)
Local leaders talk Tohono O'odham Nation casino controversy (6/30)
Editorial: Extend Class III casino compact with Seminole Tribe (6/30)
Rep. McCollum vows support for Tribal Labor Sovereignty Act (6/29)
BIA issues long-awaited update to federal recognition process (6/29)
Native Sun News: Tribal youth share traditions and technology (6/29)
Lakota Country Times: Treaty council slams mine at Pine Ridge (6/29)
Mark Trahant: Action plan needed for health in Indian Country (6/29)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.