WHO WE ARE
At the Boys & Girls Club of Rosebud, everything we do is focused around providing youth with pathways to brighter futures. Our local youth face a number of challenges growing up on the Rosebud Reservation. Todd county was recently ranked by USA Today as the second worst place to live in the U.S. based on an index of three measures - poverty, the percentage of adults who have at least a bachelor’s degree, and average life expectancy at birth. While a measure like this fails to capture the many positive aspects of our communities, this does speak to the tremendous need which exists.
In the midst of this challenging environment, we believe that our Club is ideally positioned to meet the needs of some of the youth who need it the very most, with interventions that are consistent, culturally-informed, and locally lead. Youth on the Rosebud Reservation are in great need of a safe, positive place, with adults who care about them - and what we aim to provide daily in our three Club sites located in Mission, Rosebud, and Parmelee.
We believe that our organization empowers youth to be the future leaders of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe.
WHAT WE DO: A DAY AT THE CLUB
During the academic year we pick up our Club members directly from school. Our youth then spend around three hours participating in academic and extracurricular activities. The core of our daily schedule is our academic program, Project Learn. Project Learn is a structured small-group academic time with stations in math, reading, and writing as well as programs such as STEM Mentoring, Healthy Habits, and Career Launch (for our Teen Club). Recently we started using a computer program called Let’s Go Learn that has helped our Club members‘ reading scores improve significantly.
We have a large variety of extracurricular activities that appeal to our Club members’ varying interests. Youth participate in a number of activities including art, board games, cup stacking tournaments, Just Dance, archery, baseball, nerf gun battles, and so much more. Our youth love to be active and we guarantee one hour of physical activity at the Club per day.
Every day we serve a hot, healthy, balanced dinner; because we know that when kids are hungry and sick, they cannot learn to their full potential - and poor nutrition is a significant problem on our reservation. In May 2015, we launched our food program.
In 2016 our program was honored with a national USDA award. We also partner with the REDCO Food Sovereignty Initiative, where our Club members make and eat healthy recipes every week, often incorporating indigenous food gathering and preparation. Some of our kids have been experiencing fruits and vegetables they never tried before, and they are sharing their new knowledge with the rest of their families.
Our team works hard to build relationships and provide mentoring for our youth. As essential as providing a safe space and quality programming are, we believe relationships are the primary reason that youth keep coming back to the Club. Mentoring has been, and always will be, at the core of what our Club does. Our team also keeps our Club buildings safe and clean, cook the meals, and provide a safe ride to and from the Club every day. We are blessed to have such a committed core of local staff who really care about making the Club the best it can be for our kids.
We believe that through providing this kind of holistic, steadfast programming we are giving our youth the tools they need to achieve their dreams for themselves and their communities. We know this generation of youth has the power to change the course of our reservation and our world, and we are so excited to be a part of that.
The Rosebud Sioux Reservation is located in south central South Dakota and borders the Pine Ridge Reservation on its northwest corner and the State of Nebraska border to the south. It is the home of the federally recognized Sicangu Oyate - also known as Sicangu Lakota, and the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, a branch of the Lakota people.
In the 1880's, the Tribes of the Great Sioux Nation signed treaties with the United States establishing the boundaries of the Tribes and recognized their rights as a sovereign government. The Sioux Tribes consist of the Seven Original Council Fires, one of which is known as the Lakota. The Sicangu (Rosebud) people are from that Council Fire. The Sicangu people were moved five times before the Rosebud agency was finally established.
The Sicangu Lakota (Rosebud Sioux) have the status of a sovereign nation which gives them the right to elect their own officials, regulate their own territory, manage tribal affairs, and create and enforce their own tribal laws.