Lakota Voice Project: Ad Campaign Takes Aim at Teen Suicide on Reservation

Lakota Voice Project is a public service campaign started to help stem a tide of suicide among reservation youths. The radio and television messages feature Pine Ridge residents and focus on a message that hope can overcome bullying, dysfunctional home life and relationships gone bad on the reservation.

Suicide is a leading cause of death among young people ages 15 to 24 on the Pine Ridge Reservation. Though recent statistics aren’t readily available, the Oglala Sioux Tribe reported 97 suicide attempts or completions between October 2008 and September 2009. Bullying, family dysfunction, sexual abuse and failed relationships all are seen as causes for suicide. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says tribal youths are two to three times more likely than other youths in the country to kill themselves. In this region of the Northern Plains, it estimates the rate is five to seven times higher.

Population of focus: Native American youth

Link to resource:

Date: 2012

Organization: A collaborative effort between the American Advertising Federation of the Black Hills and Oglala Lakota College