Diversity's Sgt. Mamie Singleton and Lyle Rustad with Crow Creek's Donita Loudner, Mavis McGhee, and other Crow Creek TFT volunteers in 2009.
Since 1947, the United States Marine Corps, through their Toys For Tots program, have delivered millions of toys every year to millions of children. Not every child, however, was being served, especially the children who live in various Native American communities throughout the country.
Lisa Leegkeek's family and other Crow Creek neighbor children proudly display their TFT gifts they received from Diversity and the Marines.
Diversity Foundation Lends A Hand
Over the past several years, the Diversity Foundation, in partnership with the U.S. Marine Corps, has distributed toys to thousands of Native American children through the Toys For Tots program. In 2008, 2009, and 2010, over 10,000 youth on thirteen Dakota and Native Communities throughout the Great Plains and Manitoba, thanks to the cooperation of the Marine Corps Units in the Twin Cities and North and South Dakota, received toys along with Holiday "Cheer and Hope." These include communities in Minnesota and the Great Plains including Lower Sioux, Crow Creek, Santee, Lower Brule, Spirit Lake, Ft. Peck, Sioux Valley, Pipestone, Birdtail, among others.
"Diversity’s assistance with acquiring and transporting over 2000 new toys & books for our youth from the Marine Toy for Tots drive in Minneapolis for each of the past two years. Once here, the toys were distributed throughout the three districts. The smiling faces on both children and parents faces made the long hours we volunteered to complete the project well worth the efforts."
Dakota elder and Diversity Foundation advisor (the late Rod Steiner) helped initiate Diversity Foundation's Crow Creek/Dakota Outreach & Reconciliation programs shortly after his Crow Creek Memorial sponsorship & speech in 2002.