January 26, 2018
Just a little over a year ago, Pat Tiefenthaler started mentoring Egide, a student at Whittier Middle School. They have quickly formed a meaningful relationship and have no intention on stopping anytime soon.
“The reason I mentor is that God placed people in my life, whether it was family or a teacher or coach who made an impact on me and I want to do the same for Egide,” said Pat.
Egide, who comes from a family with seven kids, loves the one on one time with Pat. They have a shared passion for basketball and have enjoyed playing the game together. In fact, Pat taught Egide how to do an around the back move that Egide has inserted into his games playing for Whittier Middle School.
While basketball has been a common bond for this match, their relationship is much deeper than sports. “Having a mentor has helped make a difference in my grades,” said Egide. “If I feel myself start to slack I think of what Pat would think and push up.” Egide also was quick to point out that Pat is consistent and that he felt “safe around him and know that I can trust him.”
“Egide is such a great kid that can light up a room with that smile,” said Pat. “I tell him to dream big and to work hard to be whatever he wants to be.”
Most of all, both Egide and Pat have fun. “I look forward to our meetings every Thursday,” said Egide. “It’s fun and helps me with everything — school, home.”
Pat heard about mentoring from his employer, First Bank & Trust/Fishback Financial Solutions, as well as his church, Ransom. He is happy that he made the decision to apply. “It’s our time to give back and make a difference,” said Pat. “Mentoring takes so little time, but the impact on a child can last a lifetime. I wish more people would consider mentoring as it’s one of the most rewarding experiences there is.”
January 25, 2018
You’ve done it. You set a goal and, after years of work, have finally accomplished that goal. That’s right, you finished your college degree. With that accomplishment comes another question. “So now what?” That can be a pretty loaded question. Does it include career? Just finding a job? Location? Home purchase? Relationship? Family? Vehicle? More education? Vacation? There is a lot of think about when you ask “So now what?”. While these all matter, I have one more question you need to ask your self –
“So now what about my student loans?”
Unfortunately, many people respond with, “What do you mean? I just start paying them…. or something…. at some point in time….” Well, yes, that’s true. BUT THERE’S SO MUCH MORE! Read the rest of this entry »
January 12, 2018
All right, I’m not even Catholic, but it’s time for a little confession. In our department, we have committed an act of which we speak hesitantly in public. We are all in on it and equally guilty. We have high hopes and yet are quite unlikely to actually see any return. Yes, we who are so focused on credit counseling and building financial stability, are all together in a lottery pool.
And WE’RE OK WITH THAT! Read the rest of this entry »
January 10, 2018
Pat and Sue are a great Better Together match. Click on the video above to watch their story!
Better Together, a program of Lutheran Social Services designed to improve quality of life activities for older adults, has expanded to Brookings!
The program started in Sioux Falls in January 2015 in collaboration with the Sioux Empire United Way. In early 2017, LSS contracted with a consulting firm to look at opportunities to expand the program beyond Sioux Falls. Brookings was the community identified through this process as being the most capable and ready for Better Together.
To help carry out the program in Brookings, LSS has partnered with the Volunteer Service Bank. This organization, embarking on its 25th year of service will assist with local coordination and will help both volunteers and seniors get started.
In the program, trained volunteers will be matched with an older adult based on similar interests and schedule. Volunteer and older adult matches will spend four hours per month together going on outings, talking, pursuing hobbies, and other relationship-building activities.
With nearly half of people aged 65 and older in South Dakota living alone, there is need to use volunteers to help maintain or reestablish a connection to their community.
If you are interested in volunteering for the program in Brookings, apply here. If you know of an older adult who would benefit from this service, please let them know to call us at 444-7801 or complete an intake application.
Post by Michelle Madsen
January 5, 2018
January is National Mentoring Month, and this year LSS is celebrating the annual campaign aimed at expanding quality mentoring opportunities to connect more of our community’s young people with caring adults.
Last January, LSS welcomed a dozen new mentors. We hope recruit 31 new mentors this year – one each day during the month of January.
Research shows that mentors play a powerful role in providing young people with the tools to make responsible choices, attend and engage in school, and reduce or avoid risky behavior like drug use. In turn, these young people are:
- 55% more likely to be enrolled in college
- 81% more likely to report participating regularly in sports or extracurricular activities.
- 78% more likely to volunteer regularly in their communities.
- More than twice as likely to say they held a leadership position in a club or sports team.
Yet, the same research shows that one in three young people in our country will grow up without a mentor. Today, in our community there is at least one student at each public school in Lincoln and Minnehaha county — in other words, at least one kid in every neighborhood — who could benefit from having a mentor.
National Mentoring Month is the time of year where engagement from community members interested in becoming a mentor is highest. This year, with the support of the mentoring community, we are encouraging the public to go beyond just digital engagement – and become involved in real life. Mentoring relationships are at their best when connections are made between a caring adult and a young person who knows that someone is there to help guide them through those real life decisions.
LSS will host a Mentoring Try-It Session on January 23, 11:30-12:30 at Harvey Dunn Elementary. If you are thinking about becoming a mentor, please email us at Menotring@LssSD.org or call 221-2403 to register for this event today.
National Mentoring Month is led by MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, with support from the Highland Street Foundation. To learn more about the role mentoring plays in our community and to find
volunteer opportunities, click here
Post by Michelle Madsen