7 Calvert Hall students and 2 chaperones are currently in Browning, Montana on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation. They are serving the De La Salle Blackfeet School, a Catholic LaSallian Brothers-led school.
The De La Salle Blackfeet School set up the immersion program called O-KI-NI-SOO-KA-WA (come and see) in 2002 for student groups to immerse themselves in the Blackfeet culture and serve the Blackfeet community and De La Salle Blackfeet School. The main components of the immersion experience are faith, community, service learning, social justice, and simplicity. Immersion students spend time in the school classrooms tutoring and mentoring students as well as assisting teachers.
I had the opportunity to go on this trip just last year, and can honestly say this trip is more than just a service trip. Led by Calvert Hall Campus Minister, Marc Parisi, students go in to the trip with personal goals that are met throughout the week. While the immersion students do participate in community service, the Blackfeet people end up serving the students by indirectly helping them to meet their personal goals as well as group goals.
(Photos courtesy of Marc Parisi)
For more information about O-KI-NI-SOO-KA-WA visit the immersion program page on the De La Salle Blackfeet School website.
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