What School Counselors Think About Mentoring

June 19, 2017

Every year, LSS surveys school counselors in the area about their partnership with LSS Mentoring Services. The results this year were excellent! ALL counselors agreed that mentoring makes an impact at their school – with 93% STRONGLY agreeing that it makes an impact. Here are just of the wonderful things they wrote in the survey:

  • The child’s attendance and mood is better on mentor days.
  • Mentoring is so beneficial for each student that I have involved in the program. It is so great for students to have a consistent fun time to look forward to, and for a lot of these students, mentoring is that positive future-oriented event in their life that they look forward to.
  • The child is happy and bubbly every week of the day their mentor is coming. Before the match, this student did not smile a lot, but now I know I will see her smile at least on mentor days and I even hear her laughing. She loves her mentor who is one of the only positive adults in her life outside of school.
  • Students with mentors look forward to coming to school – even when it’s hard or not what they want to do. They seem to brighten up at the attention they receive.

The counselors did have one universal request – more mentors. If you want to get involved with youth and make a difference, please consider mentoring! You can complete an application today.

Thanks to the school counselors for making this partnership work! We look forward to the upcoming school year!

Post by Michelle Madsen

World Refugee Day Open House

June 16, 2017

Tuesday, June 20th is World Refugee Day – a day set aside to raise awareness of the situation of refugees throughout the world.  Please join us for an open house at LSS Center for New Americans to learn more about the refugee experience.

June 20th 11:30 am – 1:00 pm

300 E 6th Street, Sioux Falls, SD 57104

Walk in the footsteps of refugees and see what they experience as they flee their homes, connect with the United Nations and eventually arrive in the US.  Tours of the Center for New Americans will be offered.  Local food trucks will be on site to offer food.

Co-hosted with Pax Christi South Dakota, Caminando Juntos, the Multi Cultural Center, Refugee Congress.  And special thanks to the local businesses and organizations that are helping at the event.


And the Winner is – Lutheran Social Services!

June 7, 2017

The Dakota Region Porsche Club held their second annual 2.4 Hours of Dakota fundraiser on February 25 in support of LSS Center for New Americans.

Winners: Second place finisher Laura Smith-Hill, winner Jacklyn Mollison with her Porsche Cup and third place finisher Jamie Lennon.

The event pits car enthusiasts of all ages against each other in a race for the finish line and the honor of claiming the coveted Porsche Cup. More than 40 cars participated with racers aged 8 to 70. A hotly contested competition was eventually won by Jacklyn Mollison (pictured proudly displaying her Porsche Cup).

The Dakota Region Porsche Club elected to donate proceeds from the event to LSS Center for New Americans to assist newly arrived refugees with transportation. With a record turnout this year, the Dakota Region Porsche Club was able to present LSS with a check for $1,550.

Dakota Region Porsche Club annual 2.4 Hours of Dakota

Representatives from the Dakota Region Porsche Club present a check for $1,550 to LSS Center for New Americans. Pictured left to right: John Mollison, DRPC Event Director; Sue Johannsen, DRPC President; Ahmed Abogn, LSS Center for New Americans; Jamie Lennon, LSS Development & Foundation.

“This is our second year and, on behalf of the club, we’re thrilled it was such a success for LSS!” stated John Mollison, DRPC Event Director. “It was so good that people of all ages raced. We had nearly 40 racers from age 8 to 70!”

Please join us for next year’s event. For more information on the Porsche Club and the 2.4 Hours of Dakota race, please visit www.24Dakota.com.

Thank you to all the members of the Dakota Region Porsche Club and to all who came out to compete in the 2.4 Hours of Dakota race. See you again next year!

Jamie Lennon, Development Director
LSS Development & Foundation


May 10, 2017

Thank you to all donors, volunteers and businesses who helped make the LSS Benefit Dinner in Aberdeen a huge success!

Thank You to Our Sponsors

South Dakota Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America; L&S Agency; Lutheran Disaster Response; Aberdeen Federal Credit Union; Molded Fiber Glass; Plains Commerce Bank; Runnings; Aberdeen American News; Aberdeen Development Corporation; Dakota Broadcasting; Harr Motors; Lamar Advertising; Malchow’s Home Furnishings; Moccasin Creek Country Club; Sanford Health Aberdeen; US Bank; Bremer Photography; Health Care Plus Federal Credit Union; South Dakota Wheat Growers; 3M; Aberdeen Hearing Clinic; Aberdeen Parks & Recreation; Aberdeen Sports Recreation; Aberdeen Wings North American Hockey League; Advanced Auto; Airport Travel Center & Café; Ashley’s Furniture; Bethlehem Lutheran; Betty Tewksbury; BoHo Closet Boutique; Bremer Photography; Buffalo Wings & Rings; Butler Machinery; Canaries Baseball; Caribou Coffee; Courtyard Suites by Marriot, Sioux Falls; Crawford Trucks & Equipment, Inc.; Culver’s; Dairy Queen; Dakota Sioux Casino, Watertown; Dempsey’s Brewery Pub Restaurant, Watertown; The Flame; Foote Creek Bed & Breakfast; Gold Dust Casino and Hotel; Good Shepherd Lutheran; Heiser’s Jewelry; Herberger’s; Hitch’N Post Western Wear; Holiday Inn Express; Home 2 Suites by Hilton, Sioux Falls; Jimmy John’s Restaurant; The Junction; Kathy Bangasser; Ken’s Super Fair Foods; Kessler’s Food & Liquor; Lamont Companies; Mac Tools; Marlin’s Family Restaurant; Maurices; Mavericks Steak & Cocktails, Deadwood; Max & Erma’s; The Millstone Family Restaurant; O’Reilly Auto Parts; The Oil Room; Perkins Restaurant & Bakery; Philip’s Diner, Sioux Falls; Phnom Penh Restaurant, Sioux Falls; Pizza Ranch, Aberdeen; Pizza Ranch, Watertown; Pounder’s Pub & Grub; Pro Nails; Quality Quick Print; Riddle’s Jewelry; Ruby Tuesday; Super 8; Starbucks; Target; Texas Road House, Sioux Falls; Tip & Toe Nails Salon; Titan Machinery; TownePlace Suites by Marriot; Twist Cone; Wal-Mart; Watertown Confectionery; and Wells Fargo Bank.

A Special Thank You

A special thank you to Pastor Cassandra Lamb, Deacon Kris Wollman, Lori Langford, Pastor Tim Sersen, Dixie Garrett, Dan Huettl, Lew Koch, Pastor Rhia Strohm, Tasha Hoeltzner and Adrianne Korbakes for all of your involvement and volunteering your time. Thank you also to The Dueling Duo Pianos Show with Dan Witte.

Money raised at the LSS Annual Benefit Dinner will stay right here in Aberdeen, SD. The money raised will go to support LSS services such as Counseling Services, EAP, Center for Financial Resources, Adoption Services, Pregnancy Counseling, Foster Care, Kinship Services, Residential Services for Children and Youth–New Beginnings Center, Disaster Response Services and Community Resource Program.

Liesl Hovel, LSS Development & Foundation
Development Director, Northeast Region
110 6th Ave SE, Suite 200, Aberdeen, SD  57401
605-262-6301 direct, 605-290-2533 cell, 605-262-6357 fax

The Gift of a Lifetime: Bequests

April 26, 2017

Lutheran Social Services has recently received funds from several estates of donors who wanted to leave a legacy of hope for those we serve. These funds are put into our Foundation, with the interest earned each year by the fund going to LSS programs to strengthen individuals, families and communities.

If you don’t have a plan for your estate, now is the time to make one! LSS staff can help you decide the best way to meet the needs of your family while leaving a legacy gift that will help LSS fulfill their mission for years to come. Step by step guides available on the Lutheran Planned Giving of South Dakota website will allow you to explore a variety of planned gift options to meet your needs and your goals. View your own personal Illustration to see the benefits of a plan for you.

A charitable bequest is one of the easiest ways you can leave a lasting impact on your favorite ministries. A bequest may be made in your will or trust directing a gift to LSS. There are several benefits to you with a bequest:

  • Receive an estate tax charitable deduction
  • Lessen the burden of taxes on your family
  • Leave a lasting legacy for LSS

A bequest is one of the simplest gifts to make. With the help of an advisor, you can include language in your will or trust specifying a gift to be made to family, friends, church, and LSS as part of your estate plan. A bequest may be made in several ways:

  • Gift of a percentage of your estate
  • Gift of a specific dollar amount or asset
  • Gift from the balance or residue of your estate

Here are some examples of bequest language;  please feel free to change the numbers or percentages as you desire.

  1. Bequest of cash: “I bequeath the sum of $10,000 to Lutheran Social Services of SD.”
  2. Bequest of a percent of the estate: “I devise and bequeath 20% of the remainder and residue of property owned at my death, whether real or personal, and wherever located to Lutheran Social Services of SD.”
  3. Contingent Bequest: “If my brother John Doe survives me, I devise and bequeath 20% of the remainder and residue of property owned at my death, whether real or personal, and wherever located to John Doe. If John Doe does not survive me, then I devise and bequeath 20% of my residuary estate, whether real or personal property and wherever located to Lutheran Social Services of SD.”

A retirement asset, such as an IRA account, also makes an excellent bequest to LSS. If the IRA were given to your family, much of the value may be lost through estate and income taxes. By designating LSS as the beneficiary of all or part of your IRA (using a beneficiary designation form provided by your custodian), the full value of the gift is transferred tax-free at your death and your estate receives an estate tax charitable deduction.

Please contact Linda Jensen at LSS if you are interested in setting up an appointment with LSS staff. There is no obligation when you schedule a visit!

Linda Jensen, LSS Development & Foundation
Church Relations and Planned Giving Development Officer
705 East 41st Street, Suite 200, Sioux Falls, SD  57105-6048
605-444-7536 direct, 800-568-2401 ext. 7536 toll free, 605-310-9865 cell

Open Adoption – the Best Mother’s Day Gift

April 17, 2017

Every May LSS has an annual event to honor birth mothers. It provides them with an opportunity to visit with others who have traveled the same path in choosing to place their children for adoption. It serves as a support group as they struggle with grief and loss, but also allows them to celebrate their child. Read the rest of this entry »

One Night Makes All the Difference

April 12, 2017
Dueling Duo Pianos Show with/Dan Witte

Dueling Duo Pianos Show with/Dan Witte

Would you like to enjoy a fun-filled Saturday evening and support a great organization and a wonderful cause? If the answer is yes then please join Lutheran Social Services in Aberdeen for its annual benefit dinner and performance of Dueling Duo Pianos Show! This annual event goes to support the following programs in the Aberdeen area. Your attendance will help make a difference in many lives in the Aberdeen area.

  • Counseling Services
  • Employee Assistance Programs
  • Center for Financial Resources
  • Adoption Services
  • Pregnancy Counseling
  • Foster Care
  • Kinship Services
  • Residential Services for Children & Youth – New Beginnings Center
  • Disaster Response
  • Community Resource Program
  • Center for New Americans

The annual LSS Benefit Dinner will be held on:

Saturday, April 29, 2017
Silent Auction begins at 5 pm
Dinner and Program at 6 pm
Dueling Duo Pianos Show with/Dan Witte begins at 8 pm
The Ward Plaza Downtown Event Center
104 South Main Street, Aberdeen, SD

Ticket Information
Dinner Ticket: $12 each
Dueling Duo Piano Ticket: $20 each
Dinner & Dueling Duo Pianos Package: $30 each
Gifts & Pledges for LSS will be requested at the event.

Please RSVP  by calling Liesl Hovel at 605-262-6301, or by emailing Liesl.Hovel@LssSD.org by Friday, April 21. Click here to RSVP online.

Please join us April 29 to have some fun and help LSS strengthen individuals, families and Aberdeen area communities.

Liesl Hovel, Development Director, Northeast Region
LSS Development & Foundation

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