Hunger Relief Through Partnership 

Glenn G., age 80, supports a nine-person household on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota. Sometimes he doesn’t eat full meals to make sure that his kids and grandkids eat. He gets relief by having lunch at the Rosebud Senior Citizens Center, where he works as a caretaker. As a Program Partner, Heather H. receives regular food deliveries at the senior center through the Northern Plains Reservation Aid® (NPRA) program of Partnership With Native Americans® (PWNA). With this support, the senior center provides 80 meals a day to tenants in senior housing, drive-through pickups, and delivery to seniors in rural areas. 

Hunger Relief Through Partnership 

“It’s a challenge to support everyone,” said Glenn G., age 80, who has a nine-person household on the Rosebud Reservation. Between kids and grandkids, it can be a struggle to make sure everyone has enough to eat each day, especially with rising food prices. Glenn pays up to $250 a week for food and sometimes doesn’t eat a full meal to “make sure all the little ones eat.”  

Glenn supplements his diet by eating lunch at the Rosebud Senior Citizens Center where he works as a caretaker. He explained, “I keep an eye on the tenants and deliver meals to them because of the pandemic. They’re thankful.”  

A 2022 report from a congressional economic committee found that Native American households make $25,000 a year less than non-Hispanic White households, contributing to issues such as food insecurity. 

Heather H., our Program Partner at the senior center, receives regular deliveries through our Standard Food service to help feed Elders. The service is offered through the Northern Plains Reservation Aid® (NPRA) program of Partnership With Native Americans® (PWNA). With this support, Heather provides 80 meals a day for tenants in senior housing, drive-through pickups and home-delivery to seniors. 

Glenn knows that people appreciate the deliveries, noting his own health issues that he’s had since his early 30s after working construction.  

The Rosebud Senior Center provides support to Elders in 20 independent living apartments, but half are vacant now. “We lost a lot of Elders the last few years,” Heather told us. “We lost three from the same family one month because of COVID-19.” 

As head cook at the center for 16 years, Heather knows that Elders who get their lunch from her often don’t eat full meals every day. She shared, “Oh my gosh, the Elders really appreciate the meals they get. A lot of them are supporting families.” The food deliveries “really help,” she added. “Everyone loves soup, and rice helps a lot. We need more fruit. It’s great when we get water because Elders ask for it. Sometimes we run out of supplies.”   

The senior center follows state guidelines on nutrition and meal planning. Heather noted this is especially important considering that most people who eat there have diabetes. Native American adults are almost three times more likely than non-Hispanic White adults to be diagnosed with diabetes. 

PWNA and our NPRA program offer more nutritious meals through food deliveries to our program partners. Your support helps Native Elders like Glenn and their families. 

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