Archive for November 21st, 2012

Some of the attendees at the weekly Sunday meal for the homeless Nov. 18 included, from left, Rodney Iron Hawk Sr., Thomas Twiss, Jay No Heart, Nelson Perry, Devin Lewis and Sun Bear. (Photo by Evelyn Red Lodge/Native Sun News)


Story and photos by Evelyn Red Lodge, Native Sun News correspondent

RAPID CITY — An entire, dedicated community of all races rethinks the definition of homelessness and much more every Sunday in Rapid City.

A meal for the homeless is served every Sunday at 11 a.m. — rain, snow or shine — across the street from the open field just east of the Prairie Market grocery store, which is located at 11 New York St., in the extreme west end of North Rapid City’s Roosevelt Park.

Between 50 and 75 people including volunteers come at various times during the weekly event until the food is gone.

Native Sun News spoke with several homeless citizens and community volunteers this past Sunday, Nov. 18, at the event.

Several Oglala Lakota College students under associate professor Bryant High Horse attended. One such volunteer student, Lacy Thompson, said, “Earlier, someone said there are 500 students in the Rapid City area schools that are homeless. A lot of times when you say the word ‘homeless’ you think of the person you see on the street that you walk by.

“A lot of families came by last week and pulled up in vehicles. They are staying here and there with various relatives and needed to eat. There were a lot of infants and toddlers looking for jackets, gloves and clothes,” Thompson continued.

“A lot of the clothes we had here were for adults. I felt guilty; I didn’t think of the little ones, and I don’t think most people do. Many students … live with relatives here and there or with five or six families to a house. Many people don’t think about that either.

“I know when I was younger we would go to school just to eat, and we would go to the weekend food programs.”

Thompson is not alone thanks to a retired nurse for Rapid City Area Schools, Nancy Zent, who High Horse said initiated this event years ago.

High Horse, a Rosebud Sioux Tribe member, explained this is not an event just to help one race of people, but a community of all races sharing an opportunity to express their values as compassionate beings.

Via telephone, he said, “(Zent has) been doing this many years, and I used to work with her. Some of her friends joined her and then I joined her with my classes.”

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