Prior Lake, MN – Mdewakanton Emergency Services recently received the National Native American Emergency Medical Services Agency of the Year award for 2011. The award was presented November 10, 2011, by the National Native American Emergency Medical Services Association at their annual conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. EMT/firefighter and Lead Explorer Advisor Nate Crooks and Captain Brian Davis accepted the award on behalf of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community. Nate Crooks is also a member of the SMSC.
“It was a great honor to be chosen out of 70 different organizations as the best,” said Crooks. “We were nominated in a six-page letter; they’d never seen one that long before.” Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe EMS Director Monte Fronk nominated Mdewakanton Emergency Services for the award because of the tribe’s outreach with the mobile unit, the Automated External Defibrillator donation program, and department’s willingness to help others.
“I am very grateful for this award and would like to dedicate it to the staff of Mdewakanton Emergency Service, as well as thank the Business and General Council for allowing us to continue to do the work,” said SMSC Director of Emergency Services Jim Muelken.
During the conference Crooks and Davis attended meetings and discussed EMS activities with other professionals from around the country. They met firefighters and EMTS from diverse areas, like the Hopi Reservation, whose service area is 1.2 million acres responsible for responding to more than 7,000 calls a year. “It was really neat to meet them and hear their stories and challenges,” said Nate.
For twenty years the National Native American EMS Association (NNAEMSA) has committed to enhancing the quality of emergency services delivered to Indian Country. Through education, self-promotion and political action, NNAEMSA looks to the future and embraces opportunities to work with other emergency service stakeholders to build new models that will promote additional developments in Native American Healthcare. It is the mission of the National Native American EMS Association , established in 1986, to support the efforts of all EMS, rescue, and Public Safety organizations who provide services on Native American and Alaska lands.
Mdewakanton Emergency Services, a full-time, professional fire department staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, is owned and operated by the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community, a federally recognized Indian Tribe in Minnesota. Each month the department responds to an average of 120 calls and conducts an average of 60 patient transports in its ambulances. Through the Mdewakanton LIFE Program, the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community donates Automated External Defibrillators to tribes, schools, police and fire departments, and charitable organizations. More than 714 AEDs have been donated through the program, with 16 lives successfully saved due to their use.
About the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community
The SMSC utilizes its financial resources from gaming and non-gaming enterprises to pay for the internal infrastructure of the Tribe, including but not limited to roads, water and sewer systems, emergency services, and essential services to its Tribal members in education, health, and welfare. The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community has a charitable giving program which comes from a cultural and social tradition to assist those in need.
Over the past 16 years, the SMSC has donated more than $229.3 million to Indian Tribes, charitable organizations, schools, and Native American organizations. The SMSC has also made more than $396 million in loans to other tribes for economic development projects. Since 1996 the SMSC paid more than $7.5 million for shared local road construction projects and an additional $16.7 million for road projects on the reservation. The SMSC has also paid $12.7 million to local governments for services and another $5 million for other projects.
The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community, a federally recognized Indian Tribe in Minnesota, is the owner and operator of Mystic Lake Casino Hotel, Little Six Casino, Mazopiya, Playworks, Dakotah! Sport and Fitness, The Meadows at Mystic Lake, Shakopee Dakota Convenience Stores, and other enterprises on a reservation south of the Twin Cities.