Helping kids set goals

May 31, 2013

When you ask a young person, “what do you want to be when you grow up” the answers can vary, but oftentimes, you are met with a response of “I don’t know.” Goal setting is an important skill for youth to develop, and there are several fun ways that adults can help steer the conversation in the right direction, without coming across as telling the child what they need to do or not do. Read the rest of this entry »

You’re invited: World Refugee Day celebration!

May 30, 2013

Adhikaris Tej pray

“We have to focus on humanity—not religion, not color, not caste. If we start to focus on the humanity, then it will leave our life very happy.” –Tej Adhikari

Come and celebrate WORLD REFUGEE DAY 2013 with us this year!  

In honor of World Refugee Day, Lutheran Social Services Refugee and Immigration Center invites you to view mini-documentaries sharing the stories of refugees and volunteers in Sioux Falls. We’ll also hear from the people featured in the mini-documentaries with a panel discussion.


Monday, June 17, 2013

6:30 to 8:00 p.m.

Main Library, 200 N. Dakota Ave, Sioux Falls

The event is FREE, but please RSVP to reserve your seat:

Call (605) 731-2000 and ask for Amy S.Z.

More details to come, but please save the date and call to reserve your seat.

See you soon!

[Post by Amy S.Z.]

Insurance Pricing: How’s Your Credit?

May 29, 2013

Insurance companies use a risk based method called insurance scoring to determine whether to grant, renew and price your auto and homeowner insurance.

Do those words sound familiar? They should, since almost the same language is used by lenders using your credit score to determine whether to grant, renew and price your credit cards and other loans.

Flikr Creative Commons | Some rights reserved by Alan Cleaver

Flikr Creative Commons | Some rights reserved by Alan Cleaver

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Reasons to Become a Foster Family

May 28, 2013

As National Foster Care month comes to a close this is an additional opportunity to encourage you to consider opening your home and heart to a child in need of a safe, nurturing home. Our LSS Foster families have shared that they felt called to do foster care for several reasons. These include:


  • They felt that God had blessed them with opportunities and gifts that they wanted to share with children.
  • They had a special place in their hearts for all children and understood what kids need to overcome obstacles and to grow and develop.
  • They were going to become empty nesters and felt they weren’t ready to have a child-free home!
  • They grew up as a foster family and it was such a big part of their life that they choose to become foster parents.
  • They had a desire to expand their family though foster care or foster care to adoption.
  • They just wanted to make a difference in a child’s life and foster care seemed like the best way to do that.

 These are great reasons to consider becoming a foster family but it also takes support from a team to nurture and empower a foster family!  The LSS Foster Care program and staff doprovide the support, the education and the tools foster parents need to grow and gain the skills they need to help our kids. We feel blessed that we are able to work with our foster families in our shared ministry to make a difference in a child’s life. 

 If you see yourself in this list of reasons and you feel you may have a call to be a foster family check out our website, send an email or make a call to find out more information! LSS has Foster Care Programs in the Rapid City and Sioux Falls areas as well as a shared effort with the Department of Corrections to recruit and train families in Northeastern South Dakota.

 Submitted by Dede Mogck, Director of Adoption and Foster Care

Memorial Day

May 25, 2013

Memorial Day often feels like the start of summer, the moment we take a breath and relax for a long weekend. For some it is the day we pull out the camper or work on the yard.  However, Memorial Day is intended to be a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. Many visit cemeteries and memorials and some place flowers or flags at gravestones.

Flag Read the rest of this entry »

“The World is Our Home” New LSS Mini-Documentary

May 24, 2013


Click here to see Tej’s story.

Because I hear them often, it’s easy for me to start believing that the stories that grow out of the work at Refugee & Immigration Center are normal. We have hundreds of refugee clients and about one hundred volunteers serving at any given time, so stories of connection and care are sprouting every day.

But, even when they become familiar, I have to remind myself that these stories aren’t ordinary; these connections aren’t unimportant—they’re the stuff of life.

Take Tej Adhikari. She hasn’t lived in the United States for one full year yet, but she already has an adopted sister.

“My friend Sarah, she inspires me in everything. We are not only friends, we are like family members,” she says of her mentor. Tej adds Sarah to the rest of her family members who have moved here with her from refugee camps in Nepal—her older sister, younger brother, mom, dad, 3 grandparents, 8 aunts and uncles, and 14 cousins. 

Tej works the night shift—10:00 p.m. to 10:00 a.m. While not at work, Tej regularly spends time practicing meditation and yoga. She also enjoys the company of Sarah—they cook meals together, apply for jobs, and Sarah shows Tej around the city.

“I wish other people who are living in the U.S. would meet this type of friend so they can have a wonderful life in a new country,” she said in an interview with me. “I’m very happy and I like to give thanks to God and Lutheran Social Services that they give me a chance to meet a friend like her.”

When people from other sides of the world discover a connection—a bond of sisterhood even—when money and caste and skin color lose all meaning—the result is, I suppose, what I imagine heaven to be like. It’s nothing short of miraculous.

See for yourself in this mini-documentary, where Tej Adhikari shares her views on life after moving from Bhutan to Nepal to the United States.

And call (605) 731-2000 if you’d like to be a part of a mentor connection like Tej’s and Sarah’s.

LSS greatly appreciates Fresh Produce, Pixelbox Productions, and Passenger Productions who donated their time and talent to make this video possible.

[Post by Amy S.Z.]

Vacation Planning for the Savvy $pender

May 23, 2013

Summer is coming! Are you ready?? Students and parents alike are counting down the days until their family vacation. Whether you are traveling by car to a destination nearby or by plane across the world, it’s important to plan a vacation your family can afford.

Flikr Creative Commons | Some rights reserved by drp

Flikr Creative Commons | Some rights reserved by drp

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