Friday, January 9, 2009

Predicted Wind Chill Temperature: -1 Degree (1/9/09)


Three houses have burned on the reservation in the last three weeks. Twenty people lived in those houses. The fires were started from efforts to keep warm by burning clothes and whatever was available.

During the past week, One Spirit volunteers found conditions that are difficult to comprehend:

A young couple who have a severely handicapped baby are staying in one room with the heater we gave them to keep warm. They are out of propane and have been for some time.

A mother and 4 children in an older house saw part of their roof blow off during a high wind. Some of the Lakota people who work closely with One Spirit gathered what scraps they could and repaired the roof temporarily, but it is still lacking insulation and lets in the bitter cold.

At one heater delivery, the people they were looking for were not at home. The grandmother next door offered to keep the heater until her neighbors returned. The men hauled the heater inside and found that the grandmother's house was very cold and she had been out of propane for quite a while.

An older couple live in a 2 bedroom trailer with garbage bags taped over their missing windows. Huddled in the living room for warmth, they have a wood stove but no wood.

An elder had no propane. A very old furnace was sitting on her lawn; it was not working. She had been using the oven of her kitchen stove to keep warm.
With your help we have been able to place 1000 heaters in homes on the reservation. Our goal is to send another 150 at a cost of $6000.

The economic times are hard for everyone and even more so for those who live in this extreme poverty.


Love and Peace,
Jeri, Diane and the One Spirit Staff

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