Montana Operation Underground Railroad Volunteer Team
The Montana Operation Underground Railroad Volunteer Team (Montana O.U.R. Team) consists of a group of local volunteers determined to fight against the plague of human trafficking. We were formed under Operation Underground Railroad, an international organization that exists to rescue children from sex trafficking. Our local team is grateful to have such inspired founders and to be partnered with many amazing organizations through the Yellowstone County Area Human Trafficking Task Force. Together we are fighting back against the fastest growing criminal enterprise in the world.
Since early 2016, Montana O.U.R. Team has been working to address both the supply and demand sides of human trafficking. We do this by shining a light on the connections between all forms of sexual exploitation, strengthening individuals and families against the dangers of exploitive media, and supporting Operation Underground Railroad’s domestic and international rescue efforts.
For more information on MT O.U.R. Team, visit: https://ourrescue.org
RESTORATION: HER Campaign is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that exists to provide holistic restoration for victims of sex trafficking. Our organization includes the HER Refuge, a safe home located in Billings, MT that provides a loving, home-like environment and a long-term residential program with resources to trauma informed care, therapy, life skills, mentorship, and job opportunities for women stepping out of a life of sexual exploitation.
COMMUNITY & AWARENESS: We believe healing happens within community. We strive to equip a network of local organizations, businesses, ministries, and volunteers to take a stand against this illicit industry though prevention for the vulnerable and trauma-informed care for victims of sexual exploitation through community building and awareness.
For more information on HER Campaign, visit: https://www.hercampaign.org
Cassie’s Gifts of Love Foundation
We are a non-profit foundation set up in memory of our daughter Casandra. Casandra was diagnosed in 2009 at the age of 14 with stage 4 Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma. During the almost 3 years of Casandra fighting this ugly disease, she was deeply touched by the out pouring of help we received.
Casandra passed away in March of 2012 at the age of 17, but before she left us she talked about wanting to set something up to raise money to help other families going through what we had. In 2014 Cassie’s Gifts of Love Foundation was set up. We help primarily families going through pediatric cancer but are not limited to children. We help with what ever is needed, whether it travel cost, prescriptions, car repairs, or just day to day necessities. To date we have been able to help 38 families.
For more information on Cassie’s Gifts of Love Foundation, visit: http://www.cassiesgiftsoflove.com/
Eagle Mount Billings
Eagle Mount Billings provides adaptive recreation for children and adults with disabilities in the greater Billings area. 2018 represents our 30th year of providing adaptive therapeutic recreation for persons with cognitive or physical disabilities.
Our recreational programs include skiing and snowboarding at Red Lodge Mountain, swimming, biking, equestrian, golf, arts and crafts, social night and summer day camps for children with disabilities. In 2018 Eagle Mount Billings provided recreational opportunities to over 200 participants.
For more information on Eagle Mount Billings, visit: https://www.eaglemount.us/
Institute for Peace Studies
As we approach our 29th year in operation, the Institute for Peace Studies continues to grow and evolve. Now more than ever we see our mission striking true to the very core of Billings and its surrounding community.
Here at the Institute for Peace Studies, we pursue peace in many forms, striving to reach every age and demographic. You will find us in over 70 classrooms in the spring teaching about diversity and inclusion; we celebrate the heritage and cultures of our communities in June with a daylong celebration and educational festival that is free and open to the
public; we hold a lecture series to educate about history, conflict, and local issues; we honor individuals each fall with the Jeannette Rankin Peace Award who reflects the very essence of what Jeannette Rankin stood for; we educate our local area youths in week-long summer camp that focuses not only on having fun, but cultural respect and conflict resolution; and finally, each January we hold a conference that allows us to focus on promoting and empowering women.
The Institute for Peace Studies works year around to teach that peace is just not about being kind to one another but cultural
understanding and respect, solving our differences through non-violent means, and the empowerment of those around us through the open-minded pursuit of knowledge.
For more information on the Institute for Peace Studies, visit: https://www.rocky.edu/peacestudies
Montana Veteran’s Meat Locker
The Montana Veterans Meat Locker was formed in January 2017 by Chris and Kristin Grudzinski. This is an all-volunteer, no paid staff nonprofit ran primarily by Chris and Kristin with help from a couple board members. This organization takes donated wild and domestic animals and has them
professionally processed to provide free to ALL Veterans and their family members. All past and present service members qualify if they have valid proof of service. Each Veteran and or family member receives a 10-15lbs of professionally processed bag of various meats.
Since January 2017, the Montana Veterans Meat Locker has handed out over 28,000 pounds of meat to over 2700 Veterans and family members, throughout the great state of Montana. They have freezers placed at two colleges, Billings and Bozeman holding meat for Veterans attending school, five different major cities in Montana that are housing meat to handout to Veterans and their families. The Montana Veterans Meat Locker is made possible from the great hunters and ranchers donating animals to the amazing processor at 4th Ave Meat Market who give them a greatly reduced processing fee, so the Montana Veterans Meat Locker can raise money to pay for the processing. This is a small token that the great state of Montana can say thank you to all Veterans and their families for their service.
For more information on Montana Veteran’s Meat Locker, visit: https://www.facebook.com/vetmeatlocker
Big Sky International Balloon Rendezvous
Our non-profit organization is run by a board of volunteers. The board works all year to put together a family friendly free event for the Billings area. The event is three fun filled days. Hot air balloons can be seen over the sky on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday mornings in late July or early August. The community can join the fun on the field and be up close with the balloons, or they can follow the balloons as they fly over the community. Everyone enjoy taking pictures of the balloons as they inflate, as they ascend or as they float away into the morning skies.
On Saturday night we have a hot air balloon glow, which includes beautiful lite up balloons, musical entertainment, food trucks, and fun events for children. The balloon glow is free for everyone and has something for all ages. We strive to bring around 15 balloons to the Billings community every year and can some times even get a special shape or two to join us. We are the only hot air balloon event in Montana. We have pilots from all over the United States and Canada that enjoy coming to our community year after year.
For more information on Big Sky International Balloon Rendezvous, visit: https://www.facebook.com/bigskyballoonrally/
Rez Dog Rescue of Montana
We are a local group of volunteers going out to the Indian Reservations in South Central Montana to rescue dogs and find them good homes. We work to promote spay/neuter and vaccinating as well as educating on the importance of good care for dog ownership.
We are a foster home based rescue. We take in pregnant moms, young motherless litters, single pups, injured dogs and adults into our foster homes. This year alone we have taken in over 500 pups/dogs. We strive to get them healthy with good food, shelter and love. We begin teaching them what it is like to live in a home and feel safe and warm. We vaccinate
and provide any medical care needed by working closely with a couple of vets. Many times our pups/dogs come in mangy, malnourished, with injuries and in need of extra care. Once our pups are healthy, we spay/neuter them and prepare them for adoption. We hold adoption events at PetSmart when we have litters of puppies and we also adopt out from our foster homes. We strive to find each pup’s forever home so they can live the good life they
For more information on Rez Dog Rescue, visit: https://www.facebook.com/mtrezdogrescue/
NAMI stands for National Alliance on Mental Illness. All of our classes and support groups are offered at no charge to participants. Our programs are for those persons living with mental illness and their families or loved ones. It is estimated that 1 in 5 individuals in our country suffers from a mental illness. When you add those who love and support them, nearly every other person can use the information and encouragement that NAMI-Billings provides.
Our organization struggles due to the fact that we serve people that our society often rejects because of misunderstanding. Stigma is fueled by lack of information and negative stereotypes. Those who come to us have often been beaten down by lack of empathy and by trying to get the help they need without the cognitive and relational resources that are required to treat any serious illness.
For more information on NAMI-Billings, visit: http://www.namibillings.org/
Global Village is a nonprofit Fair Trade organization dedicated to the support of the world’s low income artisans and farmers through the operation of a Fair Trade retail store and educational activities that promote the values of Fair Trade, tolerance, and cultural appreciation.
In 1987, three Billings women decided to gather friends and funds to start an organization that would make a difference to artisans and farmers around the world. With the help of the local faith community and a group of committed volunteers, they started Global Village. Since then, we have grown and relocated. We continue to grow and work to fulfill our mission. While supporting world artisans, we engage in educational activities that further the values of tolerance and understanding of the world’s many
diverse cultures. Global Village is overseen by a Board of Directors. More than 40 volunteers staff our store and we employ a director to
co-ordinate our store and activities.
For more information on Global Village, visit:
Family Tree Center
The Family Tree Center’s programs provide support and education for parents and caregivers, in order to Build Strong Families in our community. Services are provided at no cost for self-referred families and are available to all families in the community.
The Family Tree Center provides a variety of programs for families including Parenting Classes using the Nurturing Parenting Program which facilitates knowledge in child development, positive guidance, self-care, and many other issues that affect families, in age-appropriate classes. In-Home Parent Mentoring Program provides families of children ages 0 to 12 with a Family Advocate who will work individually with them on goals identified together to help lesson the stressors within the home and improve family relationships. Parents as Teachers In-Home Education Program teaches parents about child development and how to be their child’s first teacher. Respite Childcare provides quality, nurturing childcare at no cost to parents and caregivers. Family Fun Nights provide families with a time to participate in activities, games, and crafts together along with other families. Montana Women’s Prison Parenting Program provides 8 parenting classes and groups, one-on-one parent/child mentoring visits, and monthly
kid’s day activities at the prison. Voices of Incarceration Project (VIP) is an 8 week psycho educational group for parents re-entering the community following incarceration and Family Advocate services designed to work with both the incarcerated parent and caregivers so that their children have a stable, supportive environment in which they have the best chance of succeeding, both personally and socially. The Family Advocate is able to provide caregivers with information regarding community resources available in their area, explaining incarceration to children, and reunification plans. Prevention Programs which teach parents, teachers, childcare workers, service groups and others about recognizing, reporting, and preventing child physical abuse, sexual abuse and neglect.
For more information on the Family Tree Center, visit: https://familytreecenterbillings.org/
Share, Create, Reuse and Promote. Our goal at SCRaP is to be the place- that place where artistic abilities can be explored and encouraged, to keep art accessible and affordable for all, the space for a creative community to develop, shared resources to help others become sustainable in their passion, and to help everyone who visits succeeds.
We are a Creative Art Center and Makerspace. We take in donations of anything creative people can use to make arts and craft affordable; we provide a shared space, tools and knowledge for creative people and entrepreneurs. We outreach to younglings to help their creative minds.
We developed a philanthropic partnership with local businesses and nonprofits to raise awareness and funds for other youth-oriented organizations. We have helped raise over $107,000 for other local services and individuals. So far, the beneficiaries are Nathan Sullivan- Eagle Scout, Alyssa West-exchange student, Instruments for Kids, Blankets and Bears, Youth Dynamics, Family Tree Center, Angel Horses, ZooMontana,
Playhouse Parade, Relay for Life, Wise Wonders Children’s Museum, Billings Clinic Classic, Billings Trailnet, Better Billings Foundation, Billings Community Foundation, Healthy by Design and 4-H Club. The schools are
Washington Elementary, Medicine Crow, Laurel Middle School, Billings Christian School and Senior High.
For more information on SCRaP, visit: http://scrapinbillings.com/