The Southwest Native Americans And The Importance Of Safe Wood Stoves
The Native Americans of the Southwest rely on wood stoves for warmth. Sadly, most of the homes on these reservations do not have a real wood stove. What they have is a makeshift stove created from crafted plumbing pipes and a sawed-off water barrel plated in metal. While you can certainly admire the Natives' resourcefulness, you should know that this is a matter of life and death to them. Without a stove, they would freeze to death in the winter.
Safe wood stoves for these homes on the reservation are scarce because of the cost. Most of the government provisions for Native Americans do not cover more than $1,000 for wood stoves including installation. Worse, older Native Americans who have health conditions that require the use of oxygen tanks cannot and should not be using their makeshift stoves because of the dangers of explosion and fire. Thankfully, you can help them with their wood stove situation.
Work with a Local Habitat for Humanity Program
Some of these nationally recognized programs typically rebuild homes for the indigent, but they also provide other basic necessities. Sometimes it is a roof replacement. Other times, as is the case in the Southwestern states, these programs provide and install stoves for Native Americans. You can help, if you live in these states, by donating your time and building skills to these projects/charities.
Donate Money to a Southwest Native American Charity Fund
There are a few Southwest Native American charity funds that assist Native Americans with acquiring better housing and safer wood stoves. They also often accept donations to buy farm animals for the Native Americans to raise for food, but without a wood stove to cook the food on, the animal donations are less of a necessity. Find the charity that can provide the most stoves to the most homes of these Native Americans, and give your monetary donation to them, earmarked for the number of wood stoves you would like to see installed.
Find Fully Functional, Recycled REAL Wood Stoves and Drive them to the Reservation
Finally, you could also track down recycled wood stoves that are fully functional and safety-tested. Make sure the wood stoves are in good or better condition. Collect as many as you can, load them onto a truck, and take them onto a reservation. Ask to speak to the Elders, and then ask if you can distribute the wood stoves you have collected to the homes with the greatest need. They will appreciate your generous gift.