Good News for Thanksgiving

65-year-old Audrey K. of the Oglala Sioux Tribe must sometimes choose between buying food and buying hygiene products at the local store. Thanks to the Northern Plains Reservation Aid® (NPRA) program of Partnership With Native Americans® (PWNA) and its Thanksgiving Individual Meal service, she can rest easier this year. Our Program Partner’s assistant, Tashina, distributed a Thanksgiving family meal bag to Audrey and other Elders on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota, thanks to NPRA and its donors. This meal bag will feed a family of six. 

Good News for Thanksgiving 

According to a 2021 report from Medicare Advantage, one-third of all seniors report trimming the size of their meals, skipping meals completely, or buying less nutritious foods because they didn’t have enough money for a proper meal. This is the case for many Elders on Native American reservations due to sparse grocery stores with higher prices and high rates of impoverishment. 

Working with our Program Partner’s assistant, Tashina S., the Northern Plains Reservation Aid® (NPRA) program of Partnership With Native Americans® (PWNA) distributed Thanksgiving Individual Meals to families in Kyle, South Dakota, on the Pine Ridge Reservation. Included was a generous-sized turkey and ingredients for classic side dishes sufficient to feed six people. 

One beneficiary of the Thanksgiving family meal bag was Oglala Sioux Elder Audrey K., age 65. She was excited to see cranberries and potatoes, recalling how her grandma used to make the holiday dinner. She shared, “Now I won’t have to worry about buying a Thanksgiving meal. It’s so good because I can use that money on bills. Turkeys are expensive, and the local store has limited options.” On a typical month, she spends $400 to feed her family of five, including two sons and two grandchildren. 

Retired from teaching, Audrey now runs the local elderly meal service and sees families in her community struggle with putting enough food on the table. She explained, “The donors who support your work help feed a lot of people who won’t have to worry about choosing between food or hygiene products at the store. Sometimes I have to choose.” 

The Thanksgiving meal was icing on the cake because Audrey is celebrating a good health outcome. She recalled, “I was really scared and didn’t know what to do. I lucked out.”  

Your donation to NPRA is vital for Native Elders like Audrey to provide healthy food for their families and celebrate Thanksgiving. 

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