As I grow closer and closer to graduation, I remember why I started this journey in the first place. I am reconnecting with my community through service projects. I have recognized a major need in the community. The number one issue I hear arise over and over is the lack of activities and opportunities for youth to be involved in. With your help, we can create opportunities for youth to explore a trade while providing activities for their peers.
Basketball and volleyball are two of the most loved sports on Standing Rock. Many communities lack the proper infrastructure to provide space for these activities. In Cannonball, the outdoor basketball courts are the hub of the summer. That said, they are also in dire need of some TLC. The concrete is currently shifting, causing a major safety concern. Although the youth see the danger in playing on the uneven surface, this rarely keeps them from starting a pick-up game of basketball nearly every day.
A group of Native American youth ages 12-20 are partnering up with a local construction company called Ideal Construction & Contracting (ICC) to update the basketball courts, build a regulation sized volleyball court and recreation area that includes picnic tables and shelters in Cannonball, North Dakota. ICC is an Indian-preference company that was created with the goal of providing sustainable, affordable products for Native American communities while also creating jobs on the reservation. ICC owners, Dicky Toledo and Jorge Rodriguez, have offered an in-kind donation and will be cutting all labor costs associated with this project.
We have been in contact with local district officials who have voiced their support and are just as eager as we are to get this project completed. We are asking that you consider the impact that these facilities will have on the Native American communities. With your donation to this project, we can create an opportunity for learning a trade all while encouraging an active lifestyle from a young age.
If you would like more information on the community, the project, or how you can help, please contact me here or email me at [email redacted].
Your generosity is appreciated!