Youth Development

Running Strong for American Indian Youth (American Indian Youth Running Strong)

aka Running Strong for American Indian Youth

Alexandria, VA

Mission

Running Strong's mission is to help American Indian people meet their immediate survival needs – food, water, and shelter – while implementing and supporting programs designed to create opportunities for self-sufficiency and self-esteem.

Ruling Year

1985

Executive Director

Ms. Lauren Finkelstein

Main Address

8301 Richmond Highway Ste 200

Alexandria, VA 22309 USA

Keywords

dreamstarter,dream, native,kids,children,change,indian youth youth,american indians native americans,Billy Mills,Lakota,self-sufficiency,Pine Ridge,gardens,women/child health, food, culture

EIN

54-1594578

 Number

4200239455

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

Cultural, Ethnic Awareness (A23)

Other Food, Agriculture, and Nutrition N.E.C. (K99)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Social Media

Programs + Results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Food, Water and Critical Needs

Dreamstarter

Youth, Organic Gardening, Language & Culture

Where we work

Our Results

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one. These quantitative program results are self-reported by the organization, illustrating their committment to transparency, learning, and interest in helping the whole sector learn and grow.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Number of Smart Sacks distributed to American Indian school aged children filled with nutritious food to take home for weekends and school breaks

TOTALS BY YEAR
Population(s) served

Children and youth (0-19 years)

Related program

Food, Water and Critical Needs

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of American Indians who received Smile Strong kits for improved dental care

TOTALS BY YEAR
Population(s) served

K-12 (5-19 years)

Related program

Food, Water and Critical Needs

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of families assisted through our Emergency Heat Match program on the Pine Ridge and Cheyenne River Sioux Indian Reservations to keep warm during the harsh winter months.

TOTALS BY YEAR
Population(s) served

No target populations selected

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Charting Impact

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?

What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?

How will they know if they are making progress?

What have they accomplished so far and what's next?

Running Strong for American Indian Youth® aims to strengthen American Indian communities across the nation. We focus on American Indian youth and work to create opportunities and improve lives. We tackle complex challenges that stem from years of oppression and poverty. Our longstanding partnerships in Indian Country work to create sustainable change in Native communities.

Running Strong works with local programs to strengthen American Indian reservation communities across the United States. Our National Spokesperson, Olympic Champion Billy Mills (Oglala Lakota) travels the country speaking to American Indian children and their families, encouraging them to live their lives with courage, dignity and pride. All of our programs grow out of community identified needs, matching our experience with local resources. Running Strong's long-term development programs range from organic gardening and nutrition, emergency heat assistance and home repairs We also support language and culture programs and do not shy away from capital projects. Many reservation communities need infrastructure and we've worked to provide it by building homes, food pantries, dialysis clinics and youth centers. Our ultimate goal is to build healthy communities to nurture today's and future generations of American Indian youth.

Running Strong is one of the most effective nonprofits serving American Indian families in the nation. For over 25 years, with our National Spokesperson, Billy Mills, we have improved the quality of life of American Indian families living on and off reservation. Billy recently received the Presidential Citizens Award, the nation's 2nd highest honor, for public service for his work with Running Strong. For more information, visit www.IndianYouth.org.

Running Strong has been awarded the Independent Charities Seal of Excellence after rigorous independent reviews certified that Running Strong meets the highest standards of public accountability, program effectiveness, and cost effectiveness.

The Better Business Bureau's Wise Giving Alliance has noted Running Strong's efficiency and found that Running Strong meets the "Standards for Charitable Accountability."

Running Strong is also an active member of the Native Ways Federation. In 2006, 7 leading national American Indian non-profits came together to strengthen the circle of giving by uniting Native organizations, to better serve Native communities by becoming more effective Native nonprofit organizations, and to ensure that nonprofit organizations working on behalf of Native communities observe the highest levels of ethical standards and fiscal responsibility. Our membership in the Native Ways Federation shows that the work of Running Strong is held to the highest standards of responsibility.

Our staff conducts a thorough review of its organizational effectiveness every two years. Our goal is to measure the organization's adherence to its mission and its efficiency in meeting that mission. The review covers administrative matters (Management/Staff and Fundraising) and program matters (General Direction and Specific Programs).

Running Strong also conducts a pre-grant review to determine the capability of the applicant agency to carry out the proposed project. If Running Strong decides to award the grant, Running Strong enters into a written grant agreement with the grantee and requires financial and narrative reports setting forth the objectives accomplished by the project and funded by the grant. Staff conducts field visits and interviews program recipients. Photographs, videos and other documentation are also used to validate and measure program impact.

Dreamstarter™ - In 2014 Running Strong celebrated Billy Mills' 50th Anniversary of achieving his dream – to win the Olympic gold medal, and he has used this victory ever since to give back to the American Indian communities, we believe in a brighter future and know that our youth are the ones that can lead us there. In honor of this historic anniversary, Running Strong launched the Dreamstarter™ grant program. Each year, $10K grants have been awarded to projects addressing a different theme. The themes are:
Year 1 (2015-2016): Wellness
Year 2 (2016-2017): Arts & Culture
Year 3 (2017-2018): Education
Year 4 (2018-2019): Science & the Environment
Year 5 (2019-2020): Any combination of the above

Food & Basic Needs – (Pine Ridge, Cheyenne River Sioux Indian Reservations in South Dakota, Menominee Indian Reservation in Wisconsin). Each year Running Strong provides healthy foods to feed thousands of families on Pine Ridge and Cheyenne River Indian Reservations along with seasonal meals of turkeys and new toys for Christmas. Essential supplies of coats and boots along with an emergency heat fuel match program are provided each winter. We distribute back packs filled with school supplies, smart sacks for students to take food home with them over the weekends and support summer long food programs to help keep children fed when out of school.

Youth Language and Culture - (Pine Ridge, Cheyenne River Sioux and Yankton Indian Reservations in South Dakota, and other Native communities nationwide). Running Strong provides substantial support to the Cheyenne River Youth project for programs at the Main (ages 4-12) and the Cokata Wiconi Teen Center (ages 13-18) on the Cheyenne River Indian Reservation.

Organic Gardens, Housing and Health – (Pine Ridge and Cheyenne River Sioux Indian Reservations in South Dakota, and other Native communities nationwide). Running Strong's support helped Slim Buttes Agricultural Development Program on Pine Ridge and the Cheyenne River Youth Project's Children's Garden create greenhouses and a hoop house to protect gardens from intense weather conditions. We also support the Euchee (Yuchi) Language Project's traditional garden in Sapulpa, Oklahoma, the Oyate Teca Project's Family Gardens in Medicine Root, the Brave Heart Society's White Swan garden and helped Loneman School on Pine Ridge. We partner with Oglala Sioux Tribe Partnership for Housing on Pine Ridge and Cheyenne River Youth Project providing funding for materials with all labor done by volunteers to stretch our funds. Repairs include plumbing, new water heaters, repairing roofs and rotten floors.

Clean water has been a major part of our work since we first began. Running Strong has returned to its roots to provide families with what most Americans take for granted – running water – by connecting their homes to the Rural Water Supply line.

External Reviews

Awards

Presidential Citizens Award 2014

United States of America

Affiliations & Memberships

Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance - Organization 2015

Financials

Running Strong for American Indian Youth (American Indian Youth Running Strong)

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Board Leadership Practices

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Yes

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Yes

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Yes

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

Yes

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?

Yes

Organizational Demographics

In order to support nonprofits and gain valuable insight for the sector, GuideStar worked with D5—a five-year initiative to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in philanthropy—in creating a questionnaire. This section is a voluntary questionnaire that empowers organizations to share information on the demographics of who works in and leads organizations. To protect the identity of individuals, we do not display sexual orientation or disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff. Any values displayed in this section are percentages of the total number of individuals in each category (e.g. 20% of all Board members for X organization are female).

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Gender

Race & Ethnicity

Sexual Orientation

This organization reports that it does not collect this information for Board Members.

Disability

This organization reports that it does not collect this information for Board Members.

Diversity Strategies

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We track retention of staff, board, and volunteers across demographic categories
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We track income levels of staff, senior staff, and board across demographic categories
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We track the age of staff, senior staff, and board
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We track the diversity of vendors (e.g., consultants, professional service firms)
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We have a diversity committee in place
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We have a diversity manager in place
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We have a diversity plan
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We use other methods to support diversity