Yahi ki³ nina iyou³kpipi! (Welcome, we’re glad you came!)
One time a few years ago Jack Trope, the Executive Director of the Association on American Indian Affairs, asked us to give him a report of what projects we would like to complete and to include those projects that were “the moon.” The creation of a website - which included all materials we have made downloadable for free - was at the top of the list of what we thought of as unattainable goals.
So with the launch of this new website, we would be remiss not to thank those who made it possible. First and foremost is our donor who made a contribution to create this website through an advised donor contribution at the San Francisco Foundation. We cannot express how thankful this has made us. Secondly, we thank the staff at McQuillen Creative Group, Inc. for creating what we think is the first website in the world that has the buttons in Dakotah and for putting up with us when we forced you out of your comfort zone! We say wopida ta³ka to our Treasured Elders, Orsen Bernard, Wayne Eastman, Delbert Pumpkinseed and V. June Renville, who are the very heart of our program.
Most exciting to us is that launching simultaneously with this website is our on-line learning game. This game, which might be the first in Dakotah, was also created by McQuillen Creative Group, and was only possible through a grant from the Entertainment Software Association Foundation. This foundation took a chance on a small non-profit in South Dakota. We originally planned to have the game be on CD or DVD and then while the game was being created, we decided it would be the best time in the world to create this website and put the game on the site. We cannot extend enough thanks to the Entertainment Software Association Foundation for not only the funding, but the delay our decision cost us.
As always, we remind you that we cannot continue our work without help. If you can contribute to us, please do so. Every dollar helps, especially with the economy being the way it is. Times are hard for non-profits, ours included. Help us keep these educational learning materials free!
And I echo the words of Paul WarCloud in the dedication page of what is known as the WarCloud Dictionary, “May we hang on to our proud language as long as the Great Spirit will permit.” Mitakuye owasi³.