It's not what you think...
Project: Distributing Dignity has come a long way since it started. We're a group of students working to help students in need. But the way we started our mission is a little different then what you're probably thinking.
Project Distributing Dignity had an unusual beginning. Helping students on the Pine Ridge Reservation was actually initiated by Mackenzie’s brother, Casey, who is on the autism spectrum.
He was at a summer camp at the South Dakota School of Mines in his junior year of high school when he met three Natives from Pine Ridge, who attended the camp on a scholarship. It was here that Casey learned from the three fellow students of the horrible conditions on the Reservation: Lack of water. Food insecurities. Lack of heat. Lack of housing.
Casey was struck by the information that those three indigenous students had given him with a new motivation to make life better for those affected on the Reservation. Casey decided he wanted to actively do something to help. So he began a boots, hats and coats drive at his high school. The drive was unbelievably successful. He and his school’s efforts won the National Honor Society Project of the Year.
And this is where the initial concept of students helping fellow students began…
Makenzie saw what her brother was doing to help and sought out another way to help communities in need! She got together a group of friends from school who she believed to have a connection to her new mission, to provide hygiene products to people who don't have access.
The rest is history in the making!