On May 6, the Cheyenne River Youth Project® officially concluded its Heat Assistance Program for the 2015-16 winter season. The program provided much-needed matching funds to 190 families on South Dakota’s remote, 2.8-million-acre Cheyenne River Lakota reservation during the cold winter and spring months.
Nearly 200 families translates to more than 1,000 individuals, and more than half of them children. Their families were able to request matching grants up to $100 to help cover the cost of propane, electricity or firewood when they most needed it. Through its Family Services program, CRYP processed the requests and worked with local providers to ensure that each family received assistance as quickly as possible.
“To receive matching funds, all a family member needs to do is be a current member of Family Services and contribute between $25 and $100, which will be matched by the grant,” said Julie Garreau, CRYP’s executive director. “We’re deeply grateful to Running Strong for American Indian Youth. Its $20,000 grant made this year’s Heat Assistance Program possible, and that program is a critical one in our community. Families rely on us for aid, and without Running Strong, we simply wouldn’t be able to provide the help they need.”
CRYP created Family Services in 2002 to manage the increasing amounts of donated supplies that the not-for-profit youth project provides to local families year-round. To participate in the program, local families simply pay a $30 annual membership fee. That small, one-time payment covers all family members for the entire year, and the proceeds support the program’s infrastructure and operational expenses so Family Services can remain a reliable community resource in the years to come.
CRYP will announce dates for the 2016-17 Heat Assistance Program later this year.To stay up to date on the latest CRYP news and events, follow the youth project on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
The Cheyenne River Youth Project, founded in 1988, is a grassroots, not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing the youth of the Cheyenne River reservation with access to a vibrant and secure future through a wide variety of culturally sensitive and enduring programs, projects and facilities that ensure strong, self-sufficient families and communities.