“Pine Ridge Indian Reservation is a food desert, where many tribal members still do not have access to fresh produce and a nutritious diet. The Federal Commodity Foods Program serves food high in fat, sugar, and preservatives, causing Oglala Lakota people to suffer from epidemic levels of diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. Average life expectancy in Pine Ridge is 45 years old.
Sioux Nation is the only grocery store on the reservation and was caught selling spoiled food in 2012. Prices at Sioux Nation are gouged by a company in California, exploiting tribal members with a median income of $2,600 per year. The next closest grocery store is 120 miles away in Rapid City. With healthy food so scarce, Oglala Lakota people are in need of a revolution to reclaim food sovereignty.
Ota Au is an independent Lakota non-profit organization, with a vision of permaculture gardening, sustainable economy, renewable energy, and spiritual enlightenment. The first step of our strategy is to build a community garden on a family allotment in the foothills of Porcupine, South Dakota. We will provide fresh fruit and vegetables for at least 100 people, and the rest will be canned and used for wintertime feasts.
Ota Au needs funding to construct a rain harvesting system that will provide water for daily use and irrigation for the garden. The design is affordable by using gutters, filtering out debris, and connecting 55-gallon drums with PVC piping for storage. Well-water will be used as little as possible because the Oglala Aquifer will by dry within 30 years at the current rate of consumption. Water is life, and protecting sacred water for future generations is most important.”
More at Go Fund Me
Thanks to Gail for this tip.
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Whilst reading about this fundraiser, they also write about the very challenging housing conditions at Pine Ridge AND their vision to empower the residents with Natural Building of new homes made of earth:
“In its first year Ota Au will build a foundation, learning how to build a garden with recycled materials and working with compressed earth brick technology to construct housing. The earth houses are mold-free, preventing a major health risk on the reservation.
Sixty percent of homes in Pine Ridge are infested with deadly black mold and need to be burned down. The on-reservation housing crisis is severe, and some two-bedroom homes shelter thirty or more people at a time.
The long-term goal is to empower families by teaching them build earth houses complete with a permaculture garden, so they can teach their tiospaye or extended family this sustainable way of life.
Let us each honor these folks with even a few dollars. They are almost to their goal. We can help them exceed that goal EASILY!
Blessings to all our relations.