2017-06-15 / Headlines

Oglala Sioux Tribe Announces Homeownership Month During Annual Convening

KYLE, SD – In support of National Homeownership Month, the Oglala Sioux Tribe presented its Proclamation of Oglala Nation Homeownership Month, acknowledging the many benefits of homeownership and its commitment to support strategies that increase homeownership for its tribal members. The announcement kicked off the South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition’s Annual Tour & Convening, which explored several innovative pathways to homeownership currently underway on the Pine Ridge Reservation.

“We are grateful to have this support from President Weston. It is a meaningful statement that will help raise awareness of the importance in helping families toward homeownership,” says Tawney Brunch, a member of the Coalition’s Executive Committee.

The Coalition’s Annual Tour & Convening, hosted on a different reservation each year, uses a peersharing model to showcase successful homeownership programs. This year’s event was attended by approximately 50 individuals from nonprofit organizations as well as tribal, local, state, and federal entities, including Joyce Allen, Deputy Administrator for Single Family Housing of USDA Rural Development. Homeownership models shared on the tour included the following examples:

A subdivision built in the 1990’s utilizing Low Income Housing Tax Credits, which is now being converted to privately-owned homes.

The construction of “tiny homes” adjacent to other homes to help alleviate overcrowding.

A case study of a veteran who was previously living in a veteran’s homeless shelter, moved on to subsidized housing, and then to homeownership.

The new construction internship program at Oglala Lakota College, designed to help increase the construction workforce and available housing stock.

The Self-Help Housing development currently under construction at Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation’s regenerative community.

“The Coalition’s collaborative approach has been highly successful so far. It gives stakeholders a hands-on opportunity to build knowledge, bring it back home, and then apply it in our own communities,” says Brunsch.

She adds, “Many of the homeownership practitioners who have attended Coalition events are inspired. Homeownership is a long-term effort, and events like this give us fuel to keep going.”

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