At Sicangu CDC, we are doing our part to make sure the most basic needs of our people and families are met-- food, housing, education, and health. We are looking to build a strong foundation for each individual, family, and our community as a whole to maximize our potential and positive impact on the world.
For generations, Lakota people had a strong education system that effectively conveyed practical skills and knowledge, shared cultural values, and instilled a sense of self-worth and identity. The Sicangu CDC Education Initiative is working to revitalize these principles of Lakota education within a modern context. Our first project, Wakanyeja Tokeyahci Wounspe Tipi (Children First Learning Center) is a Sicangu Lakota immersion school opening in Fall 2020. When children see themselves and their culture in the curriculum, it affirms their identities. Indigenous children deserve indigenous education.
Our Food Sovereignty Initiative works to create sustainable systems of food and empower tribal members. Our seasonal farmers' market provides opportunities for tribal entrepreneurs, increases the availability of fresh, healthy foods, and supports community-building by serving as a positive gathering space.Our Lakota Food Ways project focuses on reviving traditional Lakota food knowledge and youth engagement, through workshops, demonstrations, and community education efforts. We lead activities in wild food harvests, buffalo harvests, and more. Established in 2014, our Keya Wakpala Community Garden is a one-acre teaching and market garden site located near Turtle Creek Crossing Superfoods. Its mission is to model small-scale production and to provide local and nutritious food to the Sicangu Oyate. The garden was recently awarded a grant to build a greenhouse and a high tunnel. Check out our blog for recipes, gardening tips, and more!
Launched in early 2020 (talk about serendipitous timing!), the Sicangu CDC Health Initiative works toward the physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being of tribal citizens. Recently, the Health Initiative has worked toward COVID-19 relief, providing Elder Kits to elders in the community. Kits included items such as traditional medicines, personal protective equipment, medical supplies, gardening tools, seeds, and ingredients for family meals. The Health Initiative continues to expand their impact and is currently working with medical partners to launch a Food Prescription program. Check out our blog for updates!
Our Housing Initiative is currently in the planning phase! We want to explore what a 21st century tipi looks like and means to the Sicangu Lakota Oyate. Stay tuned for updates on this initiative!