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Needs Assessment of Three Communities on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation
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by Monica Y. Bartlett - Lewis & Clark College
In this needs assessment 3 communities on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation were surveyed. The objective was to locate the most pressing concerns for each community and to compare these findings with the results from a 1987 reservation-wide survey. The communities surveyed included: Browning, the urban center on the reservation; St. Mary/Babb, a tourist community located along St. Mary Lake and adjacent to Glacier National Park; and Starr School, located 15 min west of Browning. Top 3rd concerns that reach into all 3 communities include: funding for small businesses, a recreational facility for youth, difficulty in finding a job, high dropout rate in schools, drug use among youth, alcoholism, and lack of organized activities for youth. As was reported in 1987, economic development and community services are still important. Although educational concerns were the next to last priority in 1987, they are currently a top 3rd concern for all 3 communities. Significant findings show that individuals age 18 to 29 say they are most likely to leave the reservation within 5 years.