Tipi Raisers: Moving Forward
We find ourselves in these uncertain times - with all of you - and wonder in what ways it will change our lives, our work and play, in the long run. We look at pictures, like the one above, and remember that day: the hugs, the hard work and the joy that came from being in service – physically and together - in service.
We LOVE what we do, and we love WHO we do it with: our Lakota friends and relatives, our amazing community of volunteers and supporters. When we look at the calendar that we set for 2020 it was FULL (in January we joked that our next break in activities would be in December). We had A LOT to do, for and with our friends on Pine Ridge. Like so many of you, our call to action has become to figure out how to shift, how to flow and how to make the greatest, mission informed impact while doing things differently- very differently!
This is where Covid-19 Action Initiative comes in which is something we can coordinate remotely while targeting the part of our mission aimed at alleviating conditions of poverty. The initiative provides income to our friends on Pine Ridge who are doing the on-the-ground work, aids in helping to keep more people staying safely at home and provides desperately needed food and supplies to the families most impacted. Of course, that is a hard call to make, as so many on Pine Ridge are facing deep poverty and food insecurity. Our Covid-19 Action Fund campaign will help us grow this new, emergency effort in order to make the greatest possible impact through the summer of 2020.
Other activities such as the online Lakota Culture Workshop Series and our re-imagined Gen7 virtual activities are ways that we hope to continue to advance those parts of our mission that aim to honor indigenous wisdom and work toward reconciling a deeply complicated and painful history. We are currently discussing other ways to advance our mission in this new context and welcome any input from anyone who is reading this!
While we have cancelled all April – June in-person events, we are closely monitoring the evolving Covid-19 situation and the needs and restrictions on Pine Ridge (there is a current travel ban on Pine Ridge). We will make a decision by May 15th as to our ability to effectively and safely launch LakotaRide 2020, which is scheduled for July 10 – 31. And for our fall volunteer groups, Gen7 events and the Race to Winterize, it is too early to call but please know that we will thoughtfully weigh all of the factors and make a decision that is in the best of our interest of all involved.
And so, Tipi Raisers is moving forward and we are deeply grateful to you, our community, for your ongoing support and for your dedication to helping us get this messy work right! We are optimistic about the future and remain steadfastly committed to you all - and to this work -as we are shown new ways to navigate what we do and how we do it.
Lori and Dave
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