Connecting Youth and Law Enforcement

November 17, 2021 // South Dakota Fund Grants

Camp POSTCARD will help youth and law enforcement officials build positive, trusting relationships.

Sarah Hanson, Managing Director, Volunteers of America, Dakotas

Volunteers of America (VOA), Dakotas is implementing its first Camp POSTCARD. This summer camp will bring together law enforcement officials and youth who are at risk. The South Dakota Community Foundation awarded VOA, Dakotas with a $20,000 South Dakota Grant that will support year one efforts to pilot this project and collect evaluation data.

“Support from the SDCF will help Volunteers of America, Dakotas launch Camp POSTCARD and provide opportunities for youth and law enforcement to connect in an environment that pushes them out of their comfort zone, encourages them to learn from one another, and helps them see each other in a positive light”, declared Sarah Hanson, Managing Director, Volunteers of America, Dakotas. “Camp POSTCARD will help youth and law enforcement officials build positive, trusting relationships while youth gain confidence, learn to make better decisions, and become leaders who can go back to their community as a positive role model for their peers.”

Camp POSTCARD will be hosted at NeSoDak, a summer camp facility on Enemy Swim Lake in northeastern South Dakota. Funds from this grant will allow approximately 50 middle school students from the Sioux Falls area to participate in its first year. The week-long camp, held for students identified as needing additional supports and opportunities, will be led by School Resource Officers and other law enforcement leading youth through activities to build social skills.

“We are pleased to partner with the Volunteers of America, Dakotas and support their efforts to strengthen relations between area youth and law enforcement”, said Ginger Niemann, Senior Program Officer, SDCF. “We funded Camp POSTCARD in the Black Hills area in past years; and are happy to see its expansion to another region of our state.”

To learn more about funding opportunities offered by the SDCF, please visit our website at https://www.sdcommunityfoundation.org/

About the SDCF

SDCF is a public non-profit organization established in 1987. SDCF, with offices in Pierre, Rapid City, Sioux Falls and Aberdeen administers over 1050 funds benefiting hundreds of charitable organizations annually. The Foundation distributed nearly $18 million in grants in 2020 which made a tremendous difference in communities statewide. This would not have been possible without the generosity of our donors. If you have a specific cause you would like to support or would prefer to give for the general good of our state, please visit https://sdcommunityfoundation.org/giving to learn more or call 1-800-888-1842.