Reservation-based school in South Dakota reaches out to community to improve health

January 05, 2021

Reservation-based school in South Dakota reaches out to community to improve health
American Horse School in Allen, SD, which is located on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, hosted a health fair last week. The event was in conjunction with the FACE Program, which is a childhood/parental involvement program for Native American families in Bureau of Indian Education-funded schools.

Donna Looks Twice, sales specialist and customer care at Tanka Bar, and I, worked a booth at the event. We set out samples of our Tanka Wild Sticks for attendees and vendors to try. Most of the people who sampled were happy with the taste and said they would come by our headquarters in Kyle, SD, which is about 20 minutes away, to buy our products.



Camrin and Kasey Ironshell try our Tanka Wild Sticks.




Jim Rodriguez, Tam Randall and Jay Thompson with Pine Ridge Fire Prevention.


This is the second year American Horse School has hosted the event which focuses on family health and wellness. Parent Educator Lucy Cottier said she has seen improvements from families who have participated in the FACE program.

"They are becoming more aware of what they should be eating," she said. "They learn how to buy good foods and have an exercise program. They are realizing there are healthier things out there."

Several vendors attended including the Oglala Sioux Tribe Food Distribution Program and Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation. Thunder Valley has been working on community gardening and sustainable housing.



Lucy Cottier and DeVonna Bush, parent educator.


"I really think this event is good," DeVonna Bush, parent educator, said. "We have a high rate of diabetes and heart, liver and kidney disease here. FACE pushes weight-loss and nutrition. We educate parents to be a child's first teacher."


Donna Looks Twice contributed to this story.


 

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