My name is Jo-El Jade Clifford. I was born on June 28thhere on the Pine Ridge Indian reservation in 1990. I am 20 years old. I am the oldest of five children. I have 3 sisters and one brother whom I admire and love with all my heart. My mother is Catherine Clifford and my father is Rodney Jackson. I was raised here on the reservation in Manderson, S.D until the age of 4. That following year my mom moved us to Rapid City, S.D where I lived and went to school at General Beadle Elementary until the age of 10 . My mom raised us 5 children on her own. My father was barely around, so she had a tough time raising us by herself, which led to our family having to move back to the reservation with my grandparents. At the time of our moving home, I was in 6th grade, so when we came back to the reservation I had to transition into a new school and environment, which I had a hard time with. I got used to it though and adapted quickly, I attended the Wounded Knee District School where I graduated 8th grade in the year 2004. After I graduated 8th grade, I went straight into high school at Pine Ridge High School where I finished and received my diploma in the year 2009. Now I am currently taking college courses here at the Oglala Lakota College. I am working on getting my associates degree in Early Childhood and my CDA. Growing up I had a hard time coping with the fact that my mother was a single parent. I played a big role in being the oldest because I helped a lot and couldn’t really do all that I wanted and it matured me quickly. This is what influenced me to stay in school and continue to pursue my education. I am happy to have been hired on at the Head Start here in Pine Ridge, because I get to be hands on with the children and teach them new and different things. Not only this, but I am getting great experience in what I am majoring in and it makes me happy to know that this is what I will be doing for the rest of my career.