We’re pleased to announce that that we have received $125,000 in grant funding from the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe’s Tribal Equitable Compensation Act. TECA, which means “new beginning” in Lakota, is a landmark piece of legislation that allows more than $100 million in federal payments to the tribe to compensate for valuable lands lost during and after construction of the Missouri River’s Oahe Dam in the 1960s.
This month, teenage girls from across the reservation had a special opportunity to get everything they need for this year’s prom at our annual “Passion for Fashion” event. Approximately 75 teens will attend their 2013 high school prom wearing dresses, shoes, jewelry and other accessories they selected at the Cokata Wiconi teen center through this long-running, much-loved program.
But for the 55 girls who were able to participate in the special Passion for Fashion event on Saturday, March 9, the experience went far beyond selecting just the right prom look. These young women enjoyed a luncheon, a keynote speaker, spa-style pampering, shopping, a real catwalk fashion show and a photoshoot. They also got to travel back in time; this year’s Passion for Fashion theme was “The ’80s: Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.”
The Word Carrier Trading Post is returning to the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation this week. On Thursday and Friday, March 21-22, the Word Carrier will offer its large selection of Native American literature and an array of fair-trade products — including vintage clothing and jewelry — for purchase at the Cheyenne River Youth Project®’s Cokata Wiconi teen center on East Lincoln Street. All books will be available at a 20-percent discount to Cheyenne River community members.
The book fair is scheduled for noon to 5 p.m. on Thursday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday. Also on Friday, CRYP will host an Indian taco sale in its Keya Cafe. Staff and volunteers will serve the tacos on site; they also will be happy to take phone orders and prepare lunches for take-out. The Indian tacos will feature homemade salsa from CRYP’s 2-acre, naturally grown Winyan Toka Win Garden.
The Cheyenne River Youth Project® in Eagle Butte, South Dakota, has announced that it has $15,000 in grant funding for home improvements in communities across the 2.8-million-acre Cheyenne River reservation. The funding was provided by Alexandria, Virginia-based Running Strong for American Indian Youth, and it accommodates repair work up to $1,000 per family.
“We’ll officially launch the Family Services Home Improvements program in a couple of weeks,” said April Bachman, CRYP’s finance manager. “It will run until the funds are depleted or until the end of our fiscal year on June 30, whichever comes first.
Thanks to generous contributions from Running Strong for American Indian Youth®, Tribal Ventures and countless individual supporters around the world, the Cheyenne River Youth Project® has raised approximately $91,000 to put toward much-needed renovations at its beloved “The Main” youth center on East Lincoln Street in Eagle Butte. According to CRYP Executive Director Julie Garreau, the current Main Rehabilitation Fund will provide an excellent foundation for rehabilitating the nearly 5,000-square-foot building, which opened its doors in 1999.
"Between all the kids and all the volunteers, that little youth center has seen a lot of use," Garreau said. "And now it needs more than routine maintenance. Our renovations are projected to cost upward of $120,000, but the funds we have in hand are more than enough to get started with the must-do items.
In remote north-central South Dakota, facilities for large-scale group meetings, special events, workshops, seminars and sports camps are in short supply. That’s why the Cheyenne River Youth Project in Eagle Butte continues to make its state-of-the-art, 26,000-square-foot Cokata Wiconi teen center available to other organizations; what’s more, rental fees for the facilities can be covered through scholarships funded by Alexandria, Virginia-based Running Strong for American Indian Youth.
The name Cokata Wiconi means "Center of Life" in the Lakota language, and according to CRYP Executive Director Julie Garreau, the nearly 25-year-old, not-for-profit youth organization always had a big vision for the 2006 facility.
The Cheyenne River Youth Project® in Eagle Butte, South Dakota, has announced its March youth programming highlights, and local youth won’t be disappointed. The youth project’s calendar this month includes Passion for Fashion, the monthly birthday party at The Main and a series of late-night teen basketball tournaments.
Scheduled for 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 9, at the Cokata Wiconi teen center, Passion for Fashion will provide support for teens who need all the prom essentials, from dresses and shoes to makeup, jewelry and other accessories. More importantly, it’s designed to foster intergenerational exchange, bonding, self-esteem and positive body image. Thanks to the theme “The ‘80s — Girls Just Wanna Have Fun,” guests will enjoy a variety of fun food items at the formal luncheon; classic movie posters, music, MTV videos and other memorabilia; and a giant Rubiks Cube cake.
On Wednesday, March 13, the Cheyenne River Youth Project® in Eagle Butte, South Dakota, will kick off its 2013 "College Night" program with a presentation from Madison, Wisconsin-based Edgewood College. The free evening program will take place at 5-6 p.m. in the Cokata Wiconi teen center’s Keya Cafe, and CRYP staff is encouraging Cheyenne River middle- and high-school students to bring their parents and other family members.
The nearly 25-year-old, not-for-profit youth organization started hosting College Nights in 2007. The program allows visiting "Alternative Spring Break" volunteer groups from schools around the country to help educate local teens and applying for and attending college. Now in its seventh year, College Nights are still a mainstay of the spring calendar at Cokata Wiconi.