Mni Wiconi: Water Is Life
Running Strong has been bringing water to thousands of Pine Ridge Indian Reservation families since 1986. This year, our goal is to connect ALL the remaining homes to running water.
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Our Approach

We Put Youth
First

Our focus on youth programs fosters change across age groups and entire communities.

American Indian-Led

Our leadership is committed to preserving the traditions, languages and sanctity of American Indian communities.

We Help Where Needed Most

Rather than coming into a community and announcing what we will do, we listen to what our partners tell us they need.

Billy Mills

Billy Mills, Oglala Lakota (Sioux) is Running Strong’s National Spokesperson. An Olympic gold medalist at the 1964 Olympics, Billy has dedicated his life to serving Native American communities.

Program Spotlight

Organic Food and Gardens 

Our organic gardens and food programs tackle malnutrition by providing healthy meals and fresh produce to Native American children and their families. We help to establish community gardens, household gardens, and communal greenhouse programs while also integrating educational and cultural aspects and how to plant traditional gardens.

Program Spotlight

Clean Water

When Running Strong for American Indian Youth® was formed in 1986, getting clean, safe drinking water to the residents of Pine Ridge was one of our top priorities. Previously, Running Strong satisfied this need by drilling water wells. However, the need for wells declined as the Oglala Sioux Rural Water Supply System was created and water lines were laid providing access to water. This past year through Diné NaabehóTó (the Navajo People’s Water Challenge), Running Strong connected 13 households to water in these communities, providing 92 individuals with access to clean, running water.  

Dreamstarter

When Running Strong for American Indian Youth® was formed in 1986, getting clean, safe drinking water to the residents of Pine Ridge was one of our top priorities. Previously, Running Strong satisfied this need by drilling water wells. However, the need for wells declined as the Oglala Sioux Rural Water Supply System was created and water lines were laid providing access to water.

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As a new semester begins, Running Strong is thrilled to kick off another chapter of our impactful "Smart Sacks for Kids" program!

Smart Sacks for Kids is our backpack feeding program designed to provide a lifeline of nutrition to young minds.

Join us in ensuring that every child steps into the new semester with hope, confidence, and a Smart Sack filled with the promise of a brighter tomorrow.

Donate: runningstrong.harnessgiving.org/campaigns/11572

#SmartSacksForKids #BackToSchool
... See MoreSee Less

As a new semester begins, Running Strong is thrilled to kick off another chapter of our impactful Smart Sacks for Kids program!

Smart Sacks for Kids is our backpack feeding program designed to provide a lifeline of nutrition to young minds.

Join us in ensuring that every child steps into the new semester with hope, confidence, and a Smart Sack filled with the promise of a brighter tomorrow.

Donate: https://runningstrong.harnessgiving.org/campaigns/11572

#SmartSacksForKids #BackToSchool

In 2023, Running Strong was a beacon of hope across Pine Ridge Reservation, battling generational poverty and fostering positive change. As we reflect on impactful stories, we invite you to stand with us in the fight for a brighter future.

Read more about stories of hope: indianyouth.org/combatting-pine-ridge-reservation-poverty-2023/

#hopeforchange
... See MoreSee Less

In 2023, Running Strong was a beacon of hope across Pine Ridge Reservation, battling generational poverty and fostering positive change. As we reflect on impactful stories, we invite you to stand with us in the fight for a brighter future.

Read more about stories of hope: https://indianyouth.org/combatting-pine-ridge-reservation-poverty-2023/

#HopeForChange

When school is closed over the weekends, some native families struggle to replace meals over the weekend that are provided by the school during the week. That’s why each week, 600 students attending schools on the Menominee Indian Reservation in Wisconsin and the Standing Rock Reservation in South Dakota receive a “Smart Sack” filled with nonperishable food items – enough to feed themselves, their siblings, and other family members for a weekend. You can help. Check out runningstrong.harnessgiving.org/campaigns/11572 ... See MoreSee Less

When school is closed over the weekends, some native families struggle to replace meals over the weekend that are provided by the school during the week.  That’s why each week, 600 students attending schools on the Menominee Indian Reservation in Wisconsin and the Standing Rock Reservation in South Dakota receive a “Smart Sack” filled with nonperishable food items – enough to feed themselves, their siblings, and other family members for a weekend.  You can help.  Check out https://runningstrong.harnessgiving.org/campaigns/11572

With temperatures plunging below -30 degrees on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation tonight, Native Families confront the harsh reality of winter's brutality. Our Heat Match program ensures warmth for Native families. A family's $100 via money order triggers our 4 to 1 heat match, turning it into $500. This crucial support is utilized for propane tank refills or applied to local electric bills during this frigid season.

Donate today at - runningstrong.harnessgiving.org/campaigns/12829
... See MoreSee Less

With temperatures plunging below -30 degrees on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation tonight, Native Families confront the harsh reality of winters brutality. Our Heat Match program ensures warmth for Native families. A familys $100 via money order triggers our 4 to 1 heat match, turning it into $500. This crucial support is utilized for propane tank refills or applied to local electric bills during this frigid season.   

Donate today at - https://runningstrong.harnessgiving.org/campaigns/12829

With temperatures plunging below -30 degrees on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation tonight, Native Families confront the harsh reality of winter's brutality. Our Heat Match program ensures warmth for Native families. A family's $100 via money order triggers our 4 to 1 heat match, turning it into $500. This crucial support is utilized for propane tank refills or applied to local electric bills during this frigid season.

Donate today at - runningstrong.harnessgiving.org/campaigns/12829
... See MoreSee Less

With temperatures plunging below -30 degrees on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation tonight, Native Families confront the harsh reality of winters brutality. Our Heat Match program ensures warmth for Native families. A familys $100 via money order triggers our 4 to 1 heat match, turning it into $500. This crucial support is utilized for propane tank refills or applied to local electric bills during this frigid season.   

Donate today at - https://runningstrong.harnessgiving.org/campaigns/12829

Teachers are the unsung heroes, and we want to empower them to create meaningful and culturally relevant learning experiences. By supporting educators, we're investing in the future of Native students.

Learn about the Dreamstarter Teachers Program here: indianyouth.org/dreamstarter-grants-for-teachers-in-native-schoo#dreamstartergrantsr#NativeEducationa#EmpowerTeacherschers
... See MoreSee Less

Teachers are the unsung heroes, and we want to empower them to create meaningful and culturally relevant learning experiences. By supporting educators, were investing in the future of Native students.

Learn about the Dreamstarter Teachers Program here: https://indianyouth.org/dreamstarter-grants-for-teachers-in-native-schools/

#DreamstarterGrants #NativeEducation #EmpowerTeachers
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