July 20, 2017
This post continues our Dream Series of blog posts.
You get the phone call……
“Hey, I’m lost. Can you help me find my way back?”
“OK, where are you?”
“I don’t know. I’m lost. That’s why I called in the first place! Can’t you just give me directions to get back?”
“Ummmmmmm…..” Read the rest of this entry »
July 17, 2017
Here are a few common misconceptions on how open adoptions work.
- Open adoption is confusing to the child. This is false! Children growing up in open adoptions do understand the difference between parents and birth parents. In healthy open adoptions, both adoptive and birth parents help define their own roles and responsibilities.
- Open adoption is a form of co-parenting. This is false! Open adoption is not shared custody between adoptive and birth parents. Adoptive parents have full legal responsibilities over the child once the adoption is complete.
- All open adoptions eventually turn into closed adoptions at some point. This is false! As in any relationship, contact with one another can change as life events happen. It is important that the unique relationships formed through open adoption are recognized and honored. All relationships involve challenges at some point. The key to positive relationships is mutual understanding and respect. When children know their adoption story from the very beginning there is less chance for resentment about being adopted.
Adoptive and birth parents are supported through each stage of the adoption process at LSS. Birth parents receive free options counseling and decision making services. Adoptive parents are provided education to equip them for successful adoptions. For more information on how open adoption works, or for pregnancy counseling services, contact LSS at 605-221-2346, toll free at 888-201-5061, or http://www.LssSD.org.
-Submitted by Hayley Van Den Brink, Supervisor, Adoption Program
July 13, 2017
The LSS Better Together program is hosting a BINGO Night – and the public is invited to join. BINGO Night will be on August 15, 6-7:30 PM at LSS, 705 E 41st Street.
The LSS Better Together program connects volunteers with older adults. Since beginning in 2015, the program has worked with over 60 matches. However, we know that there are more older adults who need a friendly visit and occasional help to get things done. To help people learn more about the program, the BINGO Night will bring together older adults and potential volunteers as well as current matches who can talk about their experiences.
Better Together is looking for volunteers to provide friendship, socialization and four hours of their time each month to spend with people over 65 in the Sioux Empire. Whether it’s swinging by for coffee, going out to lunch or playing some cards – you can do these little things that can mean so much to people who enjoy – and need – a friendly face around. LSS requires volunteers to commit to one year when they sign up for the program. Potential volunteers need to apply, successfully complete a background screen and attend an orientation before being matched with an older adult.
If you know an older adult who would benefit from having a volunteer through the Better Together program, please let us know! We want to be a service to the community and connect seniors with resources they need.
To register for BINGO Night on August 15, call LSS at 605-221-2403 or email us at Mentoring@LssSD.org. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, click here. Keep in mind that individuals, couples and families can apply to be a Better Together volunteer.
Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net
July 7, 2017
After about a month on her new job at Raven Industries, Sara Lopez-Jauregui knew she wanted to volunteer to mentor. “Raven has a culture of service and volunteering, so it was easy to get started,” said Sara. She met with a student at Edison for a few years. When that student changed schools, she was matched with Ashley. The two have been together the past three years.
“We have a lot in common and also have a good connection that makes me look forward to seeing Ashley each week,” said Sara. The two have made the best of their time together. In addition to the typical mentor activities of playing a game and chatting, the two have used the foods classroom to cook together! They have made lots of different cookies and pancakes.
“I am happier when she’s around,” said Ashley. “She gives me courage to talk with friends.” Ashley and Sara also talk about being women in typically male-dominated careers. Sara works in the Ag division at Raven, and Ashley is interested in construction.
Ashley was very excited to get a mentor like Sara and looks forward to continuing their relationship in the future. She is looking forward to meeting with Sara in high school through the LSS USucceed program. She says the first thing she wants to do is take Sara to McDonald’s since Sara has bought that for her before. They both say the best thing about mentoring is that it is fun! And while they are anticipating more fun together in the coming year, it is evident that both Ashley and Sara have gotten something they needed as a result of this relationship.