Every 3 or 4 days in South Dakota, someone dies by suicide

Every 3 or 4 days in South Dakota someone dies by suicide…

What a heartbreaking but true fact. Native American youths have the highest rate of suicide of any group in the Nation. And, it’s no wonder – they live where unemployment rates are as high as 75%, money is very scarce and so are basic life necessities like food, clothing and heat. There is no money for toys, cd players or trips to the movies.

Native American Heritage Association, with the help of our generous donors, helps provide food, clothing and heating assistance. But with the holidays fast approaching, we would like to bring happiness to the children for one day by providing toys for Christmas. You can help us do this!!! Think how disappointed your own children or grandchildren would be to wake up Christmas morning and didn’t have even ONE gift to open. That is how it is for many of the Native American children on Pine Ridge, Rosebud, Lower Brule and Crow Creek Reservations in South Dakota.

But you can make a difference NOW! For several years, NAHA has been collecting toys to distribute to the Reservations. We would like to make this our most successful year ever. Please help us now with the NAHA Christmas Toy Program. All you have to do is collect new or used toys and ship them unwrapped to NAHA, 12085 Quaal Rd., Black Hawk, SD 57718. Also, you could ask your church or civic organization to conduct a toy drive or help pay shipping costs. Please forward this email to as many of your friends and family as possible to see if they have any toys that still have hours of play that a Native American child would treasure.

Also, with the teenagers having the highest suicide rate, let’s not forget them. Please send cd players, cds, watches, costume jewelry, Playstation games, anything that a teenage boy or girl would use and appreciate. We know this can make a difference to so many people. If you’re unable to send a toy or two, you can make a tax-deductible contribution to our NAHA Christmas Dinner program. $18 will feed a family of five Christmas Dinner, $36 will feed two families, $54 three families, $72 four families or whatever you can afford.

Please help NOW!!! It takes time to sort and pack the toys to get them to the Reservations. Don’t delay helping to make Christmas a special day for so many children at risk. Rush your toys to NAHA and let “Santa” deliver them so that every child has a gift to open on Christmas morning! Thank you for everything that you do and may I be the first to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas!!!

Last year we were able to take 3 ½ semi loads of toys to the Reservations. Currently, we only have 1/4 of a tractor-trailer load – so we have a long way to go before Christmas!!

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