Support Appeal

Mitakuye (my relative),

Anpetu Waste (good day), Cante Waste ya Nape Ciyuzape (I want to greet you with a warm handshake from my heart). I apologize for not meeting you in person. Therefore, I hope this letter finds you and your family in good spirits and in good health. My name is Vimber Long Wolf. I am a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe. I am writing to you on behalf of the Tasunke Wakan Okolakiciye (Medicine Horse Society) located in porcupine, SD. The Tasunke Wakan Okolakiciye (Medicine Horse Society) works to provide Lakota cultural, language, and hands on education services to the Lakota Oyate. Our mission statement is as follows;

 “When the people followed the Lakota life ways and laws, the people flourished. Therefore, the Tasunke Wakan Okolakiciye promotes the rebirth of the Lakota life ways and laws through education, healing, and collaboration”.

Our primary goal is to develop and implement Lakol Wicohan (Lakota life ways and laws, which includes language, values, beliefs, ceremonies and laws of the Lakota people) within the Oyate (Community). Our objectives are:

  1. To revitalize and implement the Lakota language through education and practice.
  2. To strengthen the cultural identity of the Lakota Oyate through linking the Lakota Philosophy with the Lakota language.
  3. To empower the Lakota Tiwahe (families) in reclaiming their individual Lakota identity, through integrating the Lakota Customary, Natural, and Spiritual law within the educational process.
  4. To provide education training and assistance regarding cultural competency.

In July of 2011, the Wakanyeja Pawiciyapi, Inc. (Children’s’ First, Inc.) transferred leadership to the Tasunke Wakan Okolakiciye (Medicine Horse Society). This transfer was made in hopes of saving the land and resources used to help and heal many indigenous families through traditional healing. With this transfer, the Tasunke Wakan Okolakiciye (Medicine Horse Society) assumed all services, assets, and debt. Although, we continue to provide services to many families, youth, and programs that serve indigenous people… we continue to struggle financially in order to sustain the land and resources.

In, 2010 the Wakanyeja Pawiciyapi, Inc. Board of Trustees authorized a mortgage on the land and the building, through the First National Bank of Gordon Nebraska. This mortgage loan was made in a desperate attempt to maintain the level of services provided to the people, over the past 13 years. The total amount of the mortgage is around $150,000.00.

Since, the transfer of leadership, the Tasunke Wakan Okolakiciye (Medicine Horse Society) has worked feverishly to make the annual payments. In 2011, the first annual payment was made to the First National Bank of Gordon. The first payment was made possible through fundraising efforts within the community and donors abroad. Due to the terms of the loan, we are subject to a balloon payment in the amount of $150,000.00. This payment is due in December of 2012. Therefore, we have increased our efforts to raising money in order to maintain the building, provide services to the people, and raise money to keep the land and resources.

We are in the process of scheduling a benefit conference, tentatively titled Uncangleska ya un wicozani na wookahnige ecu pi kte (Participants will gain an understanding of healing and health using the concept of the circle from a Lakota Perspective) to be held December 11-13, 2012, located at the Howard Johnsons Hotel, in Rapid City, SD. This conference will be opened up to all indigenous people who wish to participate and gain an understanding of healing and health, using the concept of the circle from Lakota perspective. The target audience may include: service providers, educators, mental health professionals, parents, youth groups, etc. All proceeds will be applied directly to the loan payment in hopes of retaining the land and resources.

Despite all of our efforts, we may not raise enough funds to meet our goal in December. Therefore, we are requesting monetary donations to help sustain the land and resources. If you would like to contribute a monetary donation, the Tasunke Wakan Okolakiciye, EIN number is 45-5404686. Monetary donations can be made out to Tasunke Wakan Okolakiciye P.O. box 100, Porcupine, SD. However, donations are preferably transferred Village Earth our fiscal agent and/or donations can be forwarded directly to the First National Bank of Gordon Nebraska. All proceeds will go toward sustaining the buildings and land.

Your payment will greatly contribute the Tasunke Wakan Okolakiciye to continue to provide services to the grass roots people. Alcoholism, suicide, and neglect are just a few of the devastating social ills we face as indigenous people. We strongly believe that strengthening the individual identity by connecting them to their indigenous language and customary cultural practices of their ancestors, will empower their spirit. In turn, they will be able to draw upon the values and attributes that helped so many of our ancestors face adversity and hardship. With the ultimate result of becoming self-sufficient and with the strength to continue to help themselves, their family, and in turn help others.

I look forward to hearing from you. If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact me at PUT YOUR PHONE NUMBER HERE. or Warren Giago at (605) 454-0217 or Dawn Frank at (605) 441-2558 or email me at PUT YOUR EMAIL HERE. .

Pilamaya ye,

 

Vimber Long Wolf, Tasunke Wakan Okolakiciye member

 

Cc: Warren Giago, Naca

Stanley Holder, Akicita

Vimber Long Wolf, Akicita

Gene Giago, Ozuye

Lenore White Lightning, Katela Winyan

Mabel One Horn, Katela Winyan

Ramona White Plume, Katela Winyan

Dawn Frank, Katela Winyan