(Chamberlain, S.D.) – On November 17, students at St. Joseph’s Indian School bundled against the late-fall wind and cold to participate in a Rock Your Mocs walk. Rock Your Mocs is a national annual event that creates a positive cultural experience, promotes unity and celebrates tribal individuality by wearing moccasins.
Students chose their moccasins from the school’s powwow regalia and wore them throughout the week to honor their ancestors and Indigenous people worldwide. The walk is one of many Native American Heritage Month activities taking place at the school. The walk looped around the school’s campus and finished at the Wisdom Circle with a round dance, celebrating the school’s thiyóšpaye (extended family). All staff was invited to participate.
“Waóhola” is the Lakota word for respect for self, higher power, family, community and all life. Respect is one of the seven Lakota values and a core value emphasized in the Circle of Courage®, the model of positive youth development based on traditional tribal values that students at St. Joseph’s Indian School follow.
Established in 2011, Rock Your Mocs continues to gain worldwide attention as more and more youth have put on their moccasins with pride and great honor. This event strives to teach youth about the importance of remembering their ancestors and how they can honor them in the way they live their lives. You can participate in this national event by using the hashtag #ROCKYOURMOCS and posting your photo to your social media (Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, etc.).
More Than 220 Native American students in first through twelfth grade find hope and opportunity through our educational, counseling, and residential programs. Strengthened by spirituality and culture, St. Joseph’s Indian School transforms lives—mind, body, heart and spirit—every day. Visit us at www.sjiskids.org and www.stjo.org.