Sep 19, 2022
Re-Member: “To put back together that which has been broken” – a conversation with Kristin and Ted Skantze, who share their experiences working and living among the Oglala Lakota people on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota.
My guests for this episode are Kristin and Ted Skantze, joining me from shores of Lake Michigan. Ted is the former director of the non-profit organization Re-Member and former director of their board, and Kristin is a Nurse Practitioner who has worked for the past 20 years with Pine Ridge Indian Health Service on the Pine Ridge Reservation, in South Dakota. They share their personal story of their involvement on the reservation, and discuss the impact around cultural understanding, and the importance of listening in helping to heal broken relationships and build connections and bring to attention to the truly resilient spirit of the indigenous people. The term, Re-Member, refers to the idea of putting back together that which is broken, to re-member. What has been broken is a trust, and the treatment and relationship with the Oglala Lakota people. Through the work of Re-Member, volunteers have the opportunity to learn, and listen, and offer hope to those who have been marginalized, through relationship building and cultural understanding. Rather than attempting to fix or change what those from outside the culture perceive needs to be changed, the focus is on understanding and appreciating the diversity of cultures. I am reminded of the work of Edgar Schein, who developed the concept of Process Consultancy, which is built upon the foundation that assumes that “one can only help a human system to help itself”. To learn more about volunteer opportunities with Re-Member, check out this link: https://www.re-member.org/volunteering