The True Sioux Hope Foundation, founded by Twila True, Oglala Sioux, and her husband, Alan, is on a mission to bring awareness to the plight on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota —the second largest Native American reservation in the United States, and also the poorest.
True is also the co-founder, president and CEO of True Investments, LLC, a real estate private equity business that has invested $38.3 million in properties in 16 states.
Pine Ridge has an average annual household income of $3,500, a 90 percent unemployment rate and a 70 percent high school dropout rate, according to the foundation. What’s more, True says that only about 40 percent of the more than 18,000 residents have electricity and running water.
“There are so many people who just don’t know about these third-world conditions right here in the U.S.,” True told ICTMN about the Pine Ridge, a reservation she grew up on. “I found that instead of me talking about it because I might as well be talking about the moon, I say, ‘Just watch this video,’ and they get it.”
The 9-minute video that True refers to tells a story about how poverty has affected the community on Pine Ridge. Watch it out below.