Off-Grid Class to Benefit Pine Ridge Reservation Safe House

Submitted by admin on Sat, 09/13/2014 - 14:33

Great news! The class project for our upcoming November 8, 2014 Off-Grid Systems class will be to design electricity and water systems for the Fast Horse family of Wounded Knee, SD, so they can move back to their ancestral lands. More information below!
Right click and save to download the color brochure for the class HERE.
HEAD: Off-Grid Systems Seminar to Benefit Pine Ridge Reservation Family Safe House
SUBHEAD: Class project to design sustainable solar, wind and water systems enabling Oglala Sioux family to build homestead on their ancestral land
FORT COLLINS, CO, September 12, 2014 - The Sustainable Living Association is hosting an eight-hour seminar in Fort Collins on November 8, 2014 to demonstrate how efficient and low-cost housing, electricity and water systems can be designed, installed and maintained for families who need them most and can least afford them. In conjunction with Tiyospaye Winyan Maka (tee-OH-shpah WEE-yon ma-KAH), Buckville Energy and Engineers Without Borders CSU Chapter, the workshop will focus on bringing together integrated off-grid solutions for the Fast Horse family of Wounded Knee, SD and enable them to move off the grid to their own land--far from government housing--to build and maintain their own sustainable homestead and safe house on the Pine Ridge Reservation. The systems designed by the class will be installed by Tiyospaye Winyan Maka volunteers starting in 2015, and hands-on installation classes will be offered on the site.

The Pine Ridge Reservation is one of the poorest regions in America with an average per capita income of under $6,500, 80% unemployment and 49% of residents living below the Federal poverty level with 61% of those people under the age of 18. Every aspect of life on Pine Ridge is affected, including substandard housing, unhealthy foods and eating habits, inadequate transportation, lack of childcare options, alcoholism, gang violence and domestic abuse.

Tiyospaye Winyan Maka (translated "Extended family of women of the Earth") is a non-profit organization headed by Executive Director Christinia Eala to address these issues with inexpensive and sustainable solutions including efficient green building techniques, water catchment and purification systems, solar and wind electric systems, organic gardening and food preservation, local cottage industries, eco-tourism and simple community classrooms where these ideas can be spread to others.

"We are a strong, beautiful people here with a proud history, who now live in third-world conditions inside one of the richest nations on Earth," Eala said. "Our goal is to demonstrate to others in our community that with shared knowledge, experience and resources we can break out of this tragic legacy of two centuries of colonization together, and forge our own destinies on our ancestral lands."

The Fast Horse family safe house is currently an emergency placement home for foster children, and Joe and Lena Fast Horse volunteer for the Tiyospaye Crisis Center. They currently have nine children under their guardianship.

The Sustainable Living Association in Fort Collins is a non-profit organization that has been providing education and outreach for building strong, safe and sustainable communities for the last 15 years.

Buckville Energy is a local Northern Colorado business providing off-grid solar, wind and water solutions for remote communities, and training workshops on these topics throughout the USA accredited by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) and the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP). Executive director Dan Fink is an IREC Certified Instructor in both solar and small wind.

Engineers Without Borders is a nonprofit humanitarian organization established to support community-driven development programs worldwide through partnerships that design and implement sustainable engineering projects. The Colorado State University chapter has been advising Tiyospaye Winyan Maka and the Fast Horse family on the design of their new homestead and facilitating planning of the water and power systems.

WHEN: Saturday November 8, 2014, 9 AM to 6 PM
WHERE: Sustainable Living Association, 201 Linden Street Suite 204,
Fort Collins, CO 80524

WHO: Anyone interested in building
and living sustainably off the grid
WHAT: Site assessment, green buildings,
power and water system design, battery
storage, solar and wind equipment,
COST: $75, students $50


SIGN UP and more information about the Sustainable Living Association:
Contact Kellie Falbo, 970-224-3247,

For more information on the class content and format, and media interview requests, contact instructor Dan Fink, 970-672-4342, or on Facebook.

For more information on Tiyospaye Winyan Maka, contact Christinia Eala, 970-494-0700, and their website at

For more information on Engineers Without Borders - CSU Chapter, contact Cody Oser,, or on Facebook.