Additional Funding Opens Doors

Children smiling

Responding to the needs of the community is the mission of Sioux Empire United Way. Recently, we partnered with several area programs to make an even greater impact on the lives of children, vulnerable adults, and people in crisis. One of those programs is Emily’s Hope, which was founded by Angela Kennecke to help fight the opioid epidemic through prevention and education.

"The United Way's support of our Emily's Hope Prevention curriculum is invaluable in our mission to educate and empower children to make healthy and informed decisions. Through their commitment to support our prevention curriculum has allowed us to reach more schools and students and strengthens our efforts to combat the devastating effects of substance use in our communities. We are grateful for their partnership and dedication to creating a brighter, healthier future for all. Together we can save lives.”

These recent partnerships are another demonstration of Sioux Empire United Way's investment in the community. Brenda Kibbe, a member of the Sioux Empire United Way Board of Directors, adds how these efforts came to be and how these programs fulfill a need.

“This past year, our DEI committee held listening tours to gain a better understanding of how United Way could further impact our community. During these conversations, one common theme was the impact language barriers have on the ability for many in our community to access much needed services. United Way is pleased to help ensure information about these important services and programs is more easily accessible by providing local non-profits with financial support to help translate needed resources.

Here are some additional ways we are impacting the lives of those around you:

  • Providing children in 1st, 2nd, and 4th grade with educational opportunities focused on fire prevention, calling 911, safe kitchen practices, eating healthy, getting enough sleep and physical activity, and smoke alarm safety. With our support of the Avera Foundation’s Fire and Burn Prevention program, 600 children will be impacted.
  • Helping fight the opioid epidemic by partnering with Emily’s Hope to offer access to support groups for individuals who have lost a loved one to drug overdose or fentanyl poisoning. Additionally, providing prevention curriculum to educate children on the brain and how to keep it healthy as well as how substances impact the brain. Through this partnership, 40 classrooms and 800 students will be impacted.
  • Providing non-profit leaders with the tools, skills, relationships, and the confidence to lead effectively. The Leaders of Tomorrow program also provides an accelerated mentor program to give graduates the skills to turn around and mentor others in their community.
  • Supporting the integration of Multi-Cultural Center programming into Lutheran Social Services operations to help identify how best to serve the community without duplicating other efforts.
  • Increasing access to needed programs and services by breaking down language barriers. Through these efforts, local non-profits will receive financial support to provide interpreter services or translate marketing materials and educational resources. 
  • Strengthening neighborhoods by partnering with the Sioux Falls Neighborhood Soccer League to bring soccer directly to kids within their neighborhoods. By providing a community meal, relationships are built, and a stronger sense of community is developed.
  • Increasing enrollment, retention, and success for English Language Leaners attending Southeast Technical College, who often face barriers such as: limited English proficiency, complex immigration status, limited technology literacy/ access to technology, unstable living conditions, and unique trauma histories and mental health concerns.