Printer Friendly

LITTLE SIX DONATES HALF A MILLION DOLLARS TO MINNEAPOLIS SOCIAL SERVICE AGENCY; GAMING PROCEEDS TO BENEFIT INDIAN AND NON-INDIAN PEOPLE

 MINNEAPOLIS, Nov. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- In what is believed to be the largest charitable gift ever given by an Indian organization in the United States, the Shakopee Mdewakanton Dakota Community is donating half a million dollars to a Minneapolis social service agency serving Indian and non-Indian people.
 The Division of Indian Work (DIW), a partner agency of the Greater Minneapolis Council of Churches (GMCC), will use the gift to help fund a new building, the centerpiece of "Weaving a Circle of Hope," GMCC's capital campaign.
 The donation is being made by Little Six, Inc., the corporate arm of the Shakopee Mdewakanton tribal community. The funds come from gaming proceeds from the tribal casinos run by Little Six -- Mystic Lake Entertainment Complex and Little Six Casino.
 DIW, the oldest Indian-serving agency in the Twin Cities, provides education, youth leadership, teen parenting skills, emergency assistance and family violence programs. The building will include program and meeting rooms, administrative offices, a library and a community room in the sacred shape of a circle. The community room will be called "Mystic Lake Lodge" and will provide room for ceremonials.
 The building is designed by Native American architect Dennis Sun Rhodes of AmerINDIAN Architecture, Inc., who is leading a movement to incorporate American Indian symbols into contemporary architecture.
 The new building will allow DIW to serve an additional 1,600 people each year, according to Mary Ellen Dumas, associate executive director of the Greater Minneapolis Council of Churches and director of DIW. "The generosity of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Dakota people will extend our ability to help the people who need it most," Dumas said. DIW programs now reach 12,000 clients a year, she added.
 "The Division of Indian Work provides a crucial service to Indian people, and we are proud to be a part of their efforts," said Leonard Prescott, chairman and chief executive officer of Little Six, Inc. "The organization helps to empower Indian people by providing them with the resources to use their own strengths and talents."
 The Rev. Dr. Gary Reierson, GMCC executive director, said, "We are extremely pleased with this commitment from the Shakopee Mdewakanton Dakota Community. It continues and strengthens the partnership between Indian communities and the broader community in working together to address urgent needs."
 The Division of Indian Work was created in 1952 to help Indian people moving from reservations to cities. Two-thirds of the organization's governing board are Indian people; two of those are Little Six, Inc., executives -- Bill Johnson, president and chief operating officer, and Lenor Scheffler, vice president, corporate and legal affairs.
 "We know this organization first-hand, and we know the quality of service," Scheffler said. "We are particularly pleased with their educational work, as young people are the future of our tribes and the future leaders of the entire society." The programs are effective because they are culturally attuned to Indian people, she added.
 DIW programs include: the Youth Leadership Development Program, developing self-esteem, academic success and leadership skills; the Teen Indian Parents Program, promoting self-sufficiency in adolescent parents and skills for healthy parenting; the Family Violence Program, providing assistance and counseling to battered women and children, sexual assault and abuse survivors and violent partners; and the Emergency Assistance Program, providing food, clothing and basic needs.
 "This donation is a continuation of our giving program that has focused on education and self-sufficiency skills," Bill Johnson said. "We are taking care and planning now for those who come after us," he added.
 The Little Six, Inc. gift and other capital campaign gifts will be announced at a gathering at the current DIW building, 3045 Park Ave. S., Minneapolis, at 11:30 a.m., Wednesday, Nov. 24. The site of the new building, 1001 E. Lake St., Minneapolis, will be blessed in a private ceremony by Dakota and Ojibwe elders, a Christian minister and a Rabbi.
 "For our people to have survived for thousands of years, often in the face of great adversity, we have had to share our resources," said Leonard Prescott. "We lost our economic base to the Europeans, but gaming is helping us restore our self-sufficiency. While some tribes, such as ours, now have the ability to help others, most Indian people still live in poverty. We feel privileged to help our people, as well as the larger society."
 Officials of the Bureau of Indian Affairs say they are not aware of a charitable contribution of this magnitude being given by any Indian tribe.
 Little Six, Inc. and the Mystic Lake Entertainment Complex are wholly owned enterprises of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Dakota Community located in Prior Lake, Minn.
 -0- 11/23/93
 /CONTACT: Patrick Murphy of Little Six, 612-496-7210; or Rev. Gary Reierson of the GMCC, 612-870-3660, ext. 133/


CO: Little Six, Inc. ST: Minnesota IN: CNO SU:

AL-DS -- MN012 -- 7308 11/23/93 13:36 EST
COPYRIGHT 1993 PR Newswire Association LLC
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 23, 1993
Words:804
Previous Article:CHEVY'S PERKINS DISCUSSES FORD-CHEVY SALES RACE WITH CALIFORNIA AUTOWRITERS
Next Article:CONSUMER SURVEY REVEALS SLIGHT CAUTION IN HOLIDAY SPENDING AMERICAN HOUSEHOLD TO SPEND AVERAGE $797 ON HOLIDAY GIFTS
Topics:

Terms of use | Copyright © 2016 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters