“It’s the poorest place in the country, and nobody knows.”
Twila True, the founder of nonprofit True Sioux Hope Foundation, is well aware of conditions on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. Even though it’s the second-largest reservation in the United States with 38,000 registered Lakota tribe members, it’s one of the most destitute; the average annual household income is $3,500. Many residents don’t have running water, and there’s only one small grocery store to serve the entire community.
Extremely high unemployment, diabetes diagnoses, and suicide rates trouble the population, and for years the reservation has gone ignored by the outside world. Fortunately, things are changing.
Thanks to the generosity of Thrive Market members, Thrive Gives and True Sioux Hope have been able to deliver hundreds of boxes of healthy, wholesome groceries to the residents of Pine Ridge. Because so many people don’t have adequate transportation—and live as far as 45 minutes from the center of town via car—getting healthy food is really challenging. On her last visit to the community, Crystal Strait, executive director of True Sioux Hope, had the opportunity to hand-deliver boxes of food and household items to those who really need it.
It’s a small step, but one in the right direction. True Sioux Hope is busy raising money to build a school, securing scholarships for students on the reservation, and creating infrastructure on Pine Ridge property to help the tribe long-term.
Every box delivered was sponsored by generous donations—from individuals like you—to the True Sioux Hope Foundation. Over the next year we at Thrive Market will continue putting our hearts into supporting this groundbreaking program. Want to take part in next month’s donation? Click here to sponsor a box!