We are developing seven years of curriculum (2nd grade to 8th grade) that will be known as Lifeskills for the Young Lakota for our children in order to help them develop the life skills necessary to have happy and successful lives. We will use a cultural approach that includes that of a medicine wheel to help them develop a healthy self identity.

      Oceti Wakan’s goal was to break the existing barrier of less than 2% of our young people understanding or speaking the Lakota language. We have machines at stations in the back of classrooms where children go and put on headphones and learn to speak Lakota words and phrases each week. At Porcupine School, they have used our program for the last four years.

A set of primary and secondary prevention workbooks that are using a culturally-based program for the prevention of alcohol and drug abuse. Over 80% of our schools have used this curriculum prior to ‘No Child Left Behind’ came into our school system and programs like this were dropped. Now, with our children in such trouble, schools are interested in ordering this program again.

       Oceti Wakan has been working with children and youth groups for many years towards the goal of lifting them out of the cycle of alcohol, drug abuse and suicide. Living in homes that more than likely include alcoholism and drug abuse, unemployment, extreme poverty, depression and hopelessness, we strive to provide culturally-based educational and enrichment activities to prevent these conditions in their futures.

       While our country shops for gifts and makes elaborate preparations for celebrating Christmas and the holidays, there are many children here who will get nothing, probably thousands of them. For the fourth year, Oceti Wakan is having a drive to bring a ray of hope to these children’s lives.

ABOUT Oceti Wakan

Oceti Wakan is a non profit organization on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota.


Oceti Wakan, P O Box 1958  
Pine Ridge, SD 57770  (Email :





If from time-to-time you would be interested in information and updates about our projects and activities, please subscribe to our newsletter below: