New Service Partnership Begins on Crow Reservation!

Global Volunteers has been invited by Crow Tribal Chairman Darrin Old Coyote and the Tribal Council to begin sending teams to the Crow Reservation in South Central Montana beginning with two service programs on August 10-17 and August 17-24, 2013.

Ross Whiteman, friend of Global Volunteers since he worked and lived on the Blackfeet Reservation, is responsible for introducing Global Volunteers to the Crow Tribe.  He and his wife, Roberta, a Blackfeet Indian, moved back to his home reservation, just 60 miles north of the Crow Reservation, in 2008.

“We have a great deal of work to do here in “Crow Country,” Ross said, “and I know Global Volunteers’ reputation for respecting cultural norms and providing excellent assistance to local people.  It was a pleasure to present them to our leadership.”

The first two teams will be based in the multi-purpose building in Crow Agency, the tribe’s government center, and begin work on the Black Canyon recreational buildings.  The facilities will be restored for their original use as a youth summer camp.  Additional work projects may include tutoring summer school students and stimulating elders at the tribal care center.

Plumbers, carpenters, roofers, painters, and trades professionals of all kinds, in addition to generally “handy” people will be especially helpful on these early programs.  Additionally, volunteers in good physical condition can help clear brush and landscape the grounds – and clean and prepare the buildings for rehabilitation.  Local adult and youth volunteers will work with team members to provide direction and assistance.

“Virtually all healthy volunteers of all ages and backgrounds can be helpful,” said Ross, stressing that living conditions at the multi-purpose building and Black Canyon camp are rustic, so team members must be physically — and mentally — flexible and fit.

The Crow Tribe lives on Montana’s largest reservation, which features picturesque landscapes of mountains, canyons, rivers and grazing land less than 200 miles east of Yellowstone National Park.  Black Canyon (Named Bighorn Canyon by the National Park Service), carved by the Bighorn River down 2,000 to bedrock in some areas, features some of the most pristine waters and greatest fly fishing in the Rocky Mountains.

The Crow Tribe is called “Apsáalooke” in the Crow language, which means “children of the large-beaked bird.”   Early white settlers misinterpreted the word as “Crow.”  85% of the Crow people speak the native language.  The tribe has a membership of 11,000, of whom 7,900 reside on the reservation of 2.2 million acres.

The tribe’s annual Crow Fair (native pow-wow) in August, called Baasaxpilue (to make much noise), it is the largest and most spectacular in the northern Plains. Volunteers on both service programs will take part in celebrating – and working with local people to set up and take down structures.

Please call 800-487-1074 to apply for one of the two Crow Reservation service programs in 2013.  Read more here on the Global Volunteers website.


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