While many students around the country were spending their spring break sunning themselves at the beach, skiing, or just taking it easy, 12 students from Colorado State University’s “Alternative Spring Break Program” spent their week long break helping out with community projects on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. This is the second year of the program on Pine Ridge which is jointly organized by the CSU office of Civic Leadership and Student Involvment and Village Earth.
Above: CSU students preparing breakfast burritos outside of their temporary home.
For the past two years the students have slept in Tipis on the Red Cloud’s land near the village of Oglala. This year the group helped elders with projects around their homes, worked with school kids on a community-film project, and helped build a cook shed that can be used by their group next year and other groups that come to help throughout the year. Henry Red Cloud also organized a number of cultural exchange activities including a drumming and dancing with the Crazy Horse Singers, storyteling, hiking in the badlands, touring the reservation and group reflection. Overall this year’s program was a huge success and was enjoyed by both the students and the residents of Pine Ridge who were involved.