Latest News

Foundation Announces Community Grant Recipients

Our most recent Community Fund grants support nonprofits working to address some of our community's most pressing issues, including the successful employment of people with disabilities, prevention of child abuse, support for those struggling with addiction, community planning, help for those reintegrating, support for foster and adoptive families, and help for survivors of labor trafficking.

The grants were made possible thanks to the Community Fund, the endowment behind the Foundation’s most visionary grant-making. The Fund is supported by unrestricted gifts from donors who entrust the Foundation to award grants based on community needs and opportunities.

Learn more about the Community Fund grants awarded from July-September 2022:

Established in 2010, the Business Resource Network (BRN) provides area businesses with education, awareness and resources to promote the successful employment of people with disabilities.

The Community Foundation grant will support a rebranding project to help BRN develop a more descriptive name and build greater community awareness. Through rebranding, BRN aspires to become the go-to resource for those who wish to hire people with disabilities. Through increased awareness and more partnerships, the organization aims to decrease the unemployment rate of people with disabilities and help local businesses tap into this pool of qualified workers to fill their open positions.

The Center for the Prevention of Child Maltreatment was created in 2017 to help end child sexual abuse in South Dakota and to increase the State's capacity to address all forms of child maltreatment.

The Community Foundation grant supported the Community Response to Child Abuse Conference, a conference for professionals responding to and preventing child abuse.

In collaboration with Sanford Child's Voice and the Unified Judicial System (UJS) Court Improvement Program (CIP), the Community Response to Child Abuse Conference was held October 6-7 in Sioux Falls. The event offered education, networking, learning and collaboration for those who work to prevent and respond to child maltreatment including medical professionals, educators, social workers, therapists, law enforcement, attorneys and community representatives.

Emily's Hope was founded in 2019 in the name of a prolific painter whose life was cut short. The organization aims to raise awareness of the opioid epidemic, eliminate the stigma of addiction and offer hope and recovery to people struggling with addiction by removing financial barriers.

The Community Foundation grant will support the new Emily's Hope Prevention Education Curriculum. Developed by teachers, administrators, addiction health professionals, parents and community members in partnership with existing South Dakota health curriculum and standards, the curriculum is designed to teach children the effects of substances on the brain, body and life in order to promote healthy choices.

Lessons will address the scientific, social and health aspects of substance use; misconceptions about commonly used legal and illegal substances; and how the body and brain are affected through drug use.

The curriculum will be implemented in third grade classrooms in the Dell Rapids School District this fall. Future plans are to expand the curriculum to service K-5 students next year.

Forward Sioux Falls works to grow and improve the Sioux Falls region. Created through a joint venture between the Greater Sioux Falls Chamber of Commerce and the Sioux Falls Development Foundation, the organization works to outline strategic initiatives to grow jobs, businesses and quality of life. Since 1987, Forward Sioux Falls has raised more than $52 million for initiatives to enhance our region.

The Community Foundation grant will support a new community-centered planning process to help develop the city’s next 10-year strategic plan. Learn more about the grant.

Journey of Hope envisions a world in which all communities can offer real, tangible hope for individuals and families reintegrating. Founded in September 2020 by Kari and Darin Palmer in memory of their son, Sven Godwin, the organization works to spread hope to others reintegrating, offer support services to individuals and families, and support and partner with local nonprofits that provide mental health, addiction, and reintegration services.

They understand the challenges of helping a loved one with a mental illness find the help they need but also providing hope along the way when leaving places like jail, prison, treatment, and/or experiencing homelessness. Often, there is a feeling of shame and questioning about how they will start anew in their community.

One of the organization’s signature programs is its Journey of Hope drawstring bags, filled with hygiene items, socks and words of inspiration. The bags are given to agencies or churches supporting individuals reintegrating from behavioral health hospitals, incarceration, or experiencing homelessness.

The Community Foundation grant will support a project called Finding Hope Through the Arts, consisting of short-term multidisciplinary art workshops to spark interactions, experiential learning, and the production of stories, poems, paintings, and other artistic work for youth in detention and adults in reentry.

The Gathering Well supports, educates and inspires adoptive and foster families by offering resources and relevant opportunities for connection. Through its monthly meetings, the organization aims to educate and create community among the courageous families and professionals who care for children from hard places.

The Community Foundation grant will support technology upgrades to support the monthly meeting registration process, database management, volunteer recruitment and planning and mass communications.

The Naomi Project serves survivors of labor trafficking within a two-hour radius of Sioux Falls through advocacy, education, legal support and leadership development.

The Community Foundation grant will support new efforts by the organization to reach and support survivors of labor trafficking through training sessions, community-building events, deeper collaborations Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Wage and Hour Division to hold human traffickers accountable, and help with basic needs such as providing help with rent and groceries, connecting survivors with medical and mental health care and finding lawyers who will represent these people.