Success Stories

Caregivers Giving Back: COVID-19 Update

Photo of Marvine shopping for another Elder Marvine, an Elder herself at 70-years-old, provides "partnership bags" and food boxes to Elders each month.

Marvine is the Elderly Advocate with the Rosebud Caregivers Program operated by the Rosebud Sioux Tribe in South Dakota. Serving about 250 Elders, she helps to get resources to elderly residents on the reservation.

An Elder herself at 70-years-old, Marvine provides “partnership bags” and food boxes to Elders each month. Community Health Representatives (CHRs) help to deliver items to Elders that are more isolated, but no longer go into homes. Marvine also provides educational materials via handouts sharing information on Health, Tribal Codes and other topics (CDC and Department of Health COVID-19 recommendations, as well as the Tribes Law and Order Code for Elder Abuse were two of the recent pamphlets distributed).

Her supervisor is part of the tribes Task Force mobilized for the COVID-19 response and she receives regular updates any guidance’s that impact her work. She was asked to reserve some items (food from the state food bank and hygiene/health items from NPRA) so there would be something to provide those households under quarantine.

“ We had one [COVID-19] case on the reservation… the person is off quarantine now and is much better. Our president has really taken this seriously and among other things has imposed a curfew/lockdown between the hours of 10pm and 6am. First stop you get a warning, but the second one, you get a $250 ticket. It seems to be helping.”

As far as her duties, “No one comes in the building anymore for pick up. The partnership bags and food boxes are taken outside, placed at the end of the sidewalk and are picked up [by family members or the Elder if they drive]. For those that live way out, the CHRs have been really helpful making sure Elders get these supplies, but they do not enter the homes right now. The Elders really like the blankets, toilet paper and paper towels — the dollar store shelves are empty and there is some price gauging with other stores [an eight pack of Charmin was $17]. I am so thankful for NPRA, we received extra hygiene items and even food back in December. We held off distributing some of these items — we didn’t know this [COVID-19 crisis] was going to happen, but it just fell in place and we are now making bags to give out later in the month when other benefits have been used.”

Photo of Marvine Marvine has credited NPRA for helping with their programs’ outreach efforts resulting in positive outcomes for the Elder and program.

In her monthly reports to NPRA, Marvine has credited NPRA for helping with their programs’ outreach efforts resulting in positive outcomes for the Elder and program:

  • Outreach to more outlying communities
  • Without this service, I do not believe our numbers would be as good
  • More resources to our Elders and they are very thankful — so are we
  • We have more Elders wanting to participate in our program who need the items we receive
  • Our enrollment (participation) in Elder programs has increased; incentives bring the Elders back and make our home visits so much easier

NPRA updates:

  • NPRA has been supporting Rosebud Caregivers Program since 2003
  • They receive regular shipments of hygiene, household and food to support their home visits and Elder Care and Wellness education
  • For 2020, they have received monthly shipments (4) through April totaling over 7,000 pounds or 3.5 tons of supplies. In 2019, they received shipments 10 of the 12 months.
  • They still need gloves, sanitizer and cleaning (Clorox) products.
  • 03.26.2020 — President Bordeaux and the RST COVID-19 Task Force has confirmed a case of COVID-19 in Todd County, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. The person is an adult, resides in Todd County, the entire family is in quarantine, and isolated at home.
  • Rosebud COVID-19 site -

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