We at Running Strong for American Indian Youth® are proud to provide support to the Cheyenne River Youth Project (CRYP) for many years during its 25 years of service to youth on the Cheyenne River Sioux Indian Reservation.
In December 2014, we were especially proud to have been named as the CRYP “Partner of the Month” in recognition of the valuable programs and services CRYP and Running Strong have been able to provide on the remote reservation – made possible by our generous and compassionate supporters.
“Each year, the partnership with Running Strong successfully serves our local community through CRYP’s Heat Assistance program; scholarships to assist groups with renting facilities at CRYP’s East Lincoln Street campus; a food grant; a variety of in-kind donations; and important youth-programming support,” CRYP stated in its announcement naming Running Strong as its partner of the month.
CRYP noted that the Heat Assistance Program, which takes place each winter, assists local families with the propane and electric bills or with their firewood purchases. Through this program, Cheyenne River families may request matching funds up to $100 to help cover their fuel costs when they most need it.
CRYP processes the requests and works with local providers to ensure that each family receives assistance as soon as possible. All a family member needs to apply for the matching funds is a $25 minimum contribution and an annual membership in CRYP’s Family Services. During the 2013-14 fiscal year, thanks to $20,000 in grant funding from Running Strong, CYRP was able to provide matching funds to 1,318 individuals in 216 families – and 795 of those individuals were children.
CRYP executive director Julie Garreau commented that CRYP would not be able to offer such critical services as heat matching and home improvements without Running Strong’s support.
“The Running Strong grants allow us to offer these programs year after year, and we’re deeply grateful,” Garreau said. “Matching grants can mean the difference between staying warm and freezing during a brutally cold South Dakota winter.”
In addition, CRYP noted that to further support Family Services during the past fiscal year, Running Strong provided more than $125,000 in in-kind donations including sheets, blankets and other bedding, winter clothes and shoes, diapers, hygiene items, laundry detergent, backpacks filled with school supplies and toys for the annual Christmas Toy Drive.
Running Strong also provides grants to support rental scholarships to cover fees for using CRYP facilities which makes the state-of-the-art, 26,000-square-foot Cokata Wiconi teen center available to other organizations for large-scale group meetings, special events, workshops, seminars and sports camps.
With the on-going contributions of our supporters, Running Strong is also able to support CRYP’s efforts to provide fresh fruits and vegetables for snacks and meals at the teen center. Running Strong additionally provides funding through our food grant program for purchases of food from the Lakota Thrifty Mart in Eagle Butte and the food bank in Pierre.
“Once again, we’re deeply grateful to Running Strong for helping us meet so many needs in our community,” Garreau said. “With their assistance, we’re better able to support our families and our children, and we’re looking forward to continuing all of these programs in the new fiscal year!”
To that, we say thank you to Garreau and all the staff, volunteers of the CRYP, and to the supporters of Running Strong – all of whom are united in the mission of helping American Indian youth achieve their dreams for a happy, healthy and successful life.