Thirty participants from across the state of South Dakota are currently participating in a three-day intensive train-the-trainer session in Pierre, South Dakota focusing on financial education for Native communities. The training is sponsored by the South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition (Coalition), which works to increase homeownership opportunities for South Dakota’s Native people to build strong and healthy communities.
Rosemarie Dillingham, Oglala Sioux Tribe Partnership for Housing, is a participant and states, “We appreciate the faith the trainers and the SD Native Homeownership Coalition members have in our organization’s purpose; getting families into homes.”
Participants representing nonprofit organizations, tribal housing entities, tribal departments, and community development financial institutions, will become certified to provide financial literacy training for Native community members. The class focuses on budgeting, savings, understanding credit, and planning for the future and provides sample training materials, best practices, and encouragement. These classes will provide a critical foundation for families working to achieve homeownership.
“The materials, discussion, and experience of the trainers is not only benefitting me,” stated Andres Ake Hede Najin Davis, Tenant Services Coordinator at the Flandreau Santee Sioux Housing Authority, “it is benefitting my people in obtaining our ultimate goal of homeownership.”
The Coalition is a collaboration of representatives from South Dakota’s tribes, federal and state agencies including South Dakota USDA Rural Development, the South Dakota’s Governor’s Office, tribally designated housing entities, nonprofit organizations, housing developers, lenders, and community development financial institutions. The training is being facilitated by First Nations Oweesta Corporation in partnership with Seven Sisters Community Development Group.