Members of British Parliament pay visit to Red Cloud

posted on June 19, 2012

Recently, Red Cloud had the privilege of hosting a group of dignitaries whose journey brought them thousands of miles to the South Dakota prairie.

The British delegation included one member of the House of Lords, four members of the House of Commons, and various other high-level administrators and appointees within the British Parliament.

The group’s visit to South Dakota was coordinated by the Dakota Territory International Visitors Program in Rapid City. They came to view the state’s primary election processes, and also requested a tour of the Pine Ridge Reservation.

The tour was guided by community member Randy Ross, a board member for the DTIVP. It included a visit to The Heritage Center, a personal meeting with Oglala Sioux Tribal President John Steele, and a stop at the Wounded Knee massacre site.

The group reported that they came away with a deeper understanding of the history, conditions, and governmental challenges facing the Oglala Lakota people, including the impact of broken treaties. But at Red Cloud School, they also witnessed the possibility of a positive future through education.

The Dakota Territory International Visitors Program frequently hosts international visitors, most of whom are sponsored through the US State Department’s Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs. The bureau, in turn, works with contracted sending agencies and providing English language officers and translators when needed. The focus of this program is citizen diplomacy and to build international relations.

DTIVP is always pleased to share a bit of Indian Country by taking these various delegations and groups to visit the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation as part of the mission to increase understanding and goodwill.