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Honoring John DuBray

On Friday July 13, at the Allen Youth Center, a structure he caused to be built, John DuBray was honored by his community for daring to dream of a place for the youth of Allen and then making that dream come true.

John DeBray
Honoring John DuBray Quilt for John Dubray

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The Allen Youth Center Art Program Springs Forward

Thanks to a grant from the South Dakota Arts Council, which covers half of the artist-in-residence's fee, and in particular thanks to the outpouring of generosity from our loyal One Spirit family, the previously announced four-week Art Camp is now in full swing at the Allen Youth Center.

Randy Blaze At the workshop

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Building Community where Conditions are dire

Everyone except the most die-hard introvert or hermit among us feels a desire for some sort of community.

Among the Oglala Lakota, traditional culture has always placed paramount value on wacantognaka (generosity), which means sharing and giving freely among one's people (oyate). In other words, building community by caring for one another is an important value for the Lakota.

2 Visitors at AYC

Helping the Oglala Lakota achieve better lives, whether through our food programs, athletic programs, and cultural development that respects and build pride among the people: all of these have been guideposts for how One Spirit tries to help the oyate help themselves. When we first realized that community facilities providing a place to foster good health, education, activities, and cultural involvement were needed---especially for the youth---we decided to begin our efforts to meet this need in the town of Allen, with the One Spirit Allen Youth Center.

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Art Camp at AYC

Artist in Schools and Communities Residency Grant
Approved by South Dakota Arts Council


We are excited to announce that the our request for an Artist in Residency grant has been approved by the South Dakota Arts Council! This means that now we will only have to pay half of the artist's fee and the rest will be paid by the Art's Council.

South Dakota's Art Council


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About the Allen Youth Center


The Allen Youth Center is operated by the Oglala Lakota of Allen, SD. It works to enrich the lives of community youth through culturally-based activities and learning experiences.

The guiding principles for all programs and activities focus on the Lakota virtues: Generosity, Respect, Wisdom, and Fortitude.

The mission of the youth center is to create a stronghold that inspires, educates, and informs the young people of the community.

The youth center offers support, mentoring and tutoring to help kids be successful both personally and academically. It’s programs are designed to teach kids about their culture, develop skills for their future, and be proud of who they are.


Postal and physical address of the Allen Youth Center

Allen Youth Center
P. O. Box 695
406 Water Tower Road
Allen, SD 57714

Mission, Vision and Values

  • Our Mission: to Create a stronghold that Inspires, Educates, and Informs our youth.
  • Our Vision: to Enrich the lives of the youth though Culturally Based activities.
  • Our Values: to Teach our youth Generosity, Respect, Wisdom, and Fortitude. 

Youth Center Activities

The Allen Youth Center is continually developing new programs to meet the needs of youth and the entire community.

Some of the regular weekly activities include:

  • Daily meals/snacks 6-7pm Monday-Saturday
  • Emergency food boxes are also available
  • Nature hikes
  • Classes in Art, Woodworking, Sewing
  • Library
  • Telescope
  • Musical Instruments
  • Movie Nights
  • Computers and internet
  • Pool table, Ping Pong and Football

The center hosts events, concerts, lectures, classes, etc. for any individual, group or organization on the Pine Ridge Reservation. There is no fee charged.

The facility is open to the entire reservation. The center has microphones and a PA system for lectures and performances, music equipment including drums, amps, guitars, bass etc.

Bands are welcome to rehearse there. If they want, they can give a performance (as long as youth from Allen could attend).

Performances of all kind are welcome: music, dance, theatre.

The Allen Youth Center also offers opportunities for those with expertise in an area to hold seminars that are open to the entire reservation.


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