Yesterday, an effort was started by a group at the Daily Kos to raise $6000 for Okiciyap through matching donations. They have put up $3000 and it's up to us to match that.
Here's Meteor Blades' diary announcing the effort (the photos did not transfer)
Quilt Matching Funders seek your help in raising $6,000 for Okiciyap
As readers here have learned in the past few days if they were unaware of it previously, Okiciyap—"We Help" in Lakota—serves the town of San Isabel, South Dakota, and the surrounding community on the Cheyenne River Reservation, one of the seven Lakota (Sioux) reservations in the state. Okiciyap runs a food pantry and a youth project with the help of volunteers and donors, including many Kossacks.
The current fund-raising effort, an auction initiated by the DK Quilt Guild, has once again shown us, in just five days, how generous the Daily Kos community can be. For the auction the quilters crafted a strikingly beautiful piece of art. Diarists crafted posts both personal and poignant in support. Scores of Kossacks opened their wallets, often-times wallets not all that full, to contribute directly to Okiciyap or to bid on the quilt (which is the Guild's first fund-raising project).
When the bidding slowed after reaching a few hundred dollars—out of reach for most Kossacks—efforts were launched to make group bids. The top bid has consequently reached $1,000. Since the auction began, donors have also contributed directly to Okiciyap without bidding on the quilt. Those separate donations have reached well over $1,000.
This is nothing to sneeze at. But four of us—belinda ridgewood, navajo, Shockwave and me—have decided we want to raise several thousand more. And we want to do so while simultaneously and permanently honoring the creator of Okiciyap. But before explaining the details, let me tell you why we are doing this by repeating what I wrote about her last week:
Georgia Little Shield (1959-2012)
[B]ecause of the ferocious compassion and strength of Eagle Wings Woman, also known as Georgia Little Shield, who in her all-too-short-life was a warrior for her people, Okiciyap was conceived and turned into reality. Even though she has walked on into whatever lies beyond this life, the project Georgia built has been reducing how many days each year those bellies aren't filled. [...] Georgia first came to the attention here at Daily Kos when she became the director of Pretty Bird Woman House, a women's shelter on the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation, from 2005 until 2010 when health problems forced her to quit. The Daily Kos community helped raise $30,000 for the shelter. Two years ago, her health improved. At Cheyenne River, south of Standing Rock, she became aware of an important need for a community-strengthening program to fight poverty, hunger and the epidemic of teen suicide.
Thus did Okiciyap come into being. In the summer of 2011, Okiciyap set up a temporary office in a small trailer. Later, Georgia found someone willing to donate a permanent structure, a modular 40-foot by 60-foot building. But it was 30 miles from Isabel. Moving it would cost $10,000, and another $10,000 was needed to set up utilities until Okiciyap could obtain grants to keep the facility running on its own. Under the auspices of AndyT and betson08, netroots fundraising began in late October and by the end of December enough money had been raised to get the building to Isabel, a move that was completed 14 months ago.
Sadly, Georgia suddenly died last spring. Her friend, betson08, wrote a heartfelt obituary that tells more of Georgia's story and her dedication to helping her people. Fortunately, her spirit lives on in the project she built with the help of friends and strangers. We want everyone always to remember what Georgia accomplished and how much it matters to the people she served.So we have established the Quilt Matching Funders. We want as many of you who can to join us. We are putting up $3,000. Between now and the closing hours of the bidding on Sunday, April 7, we will be urging people to match our $3,000 so that our final bid will be at least $6,000.
If that bid beats all the others, we will donate the quilt to Okiciyap in Georgia Little Shield's name to hang on their wall together with a plaque honoring her. The plaque will contain the names of all who contribute to the final bid and also those who have made separate donations since the beginning of the auction. Here's how it will work:
• The four of us have pledged a total of $3,000 to the Quilt Matching Funders.
• Kossacks who pledge $10 or more to match our $3,000 will be added to the count until we reach the $6,000 goal. Once the goal is reached, we will bid the full amount. Obviously, if we receive pledges totaling more than $6,000, we won't cry.
• Donations already contributed directly to Okiciyap since the auction began last Wednesday will not be counted toward the matching fund's goal, but the names of those who donated in this way will be included on the plaque.
• Many people have said they will contribute some portion (up to 100 percent) of the bids they have made for the quilt. We urge all who have done so to revisit that pledge now to help us reach our goal. We won't automatically assume anyone is doing that who doesn't say so in Kosmail or in this and subsequent comment threads.
• If we win the bid, we will provide the funds to Okiciyap as soon as they are in hand and provide the quilt and plaque (which will be designed with the guidance of Georgia's friends and family) as soon as this can be arranged.
Thanks so much to the quilters, to the diarists, to the donors and to all who have bid on the quilt for your generosity in helping Okiciyap and the people of Cheyenne River.
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