Since 1999, Volunteers of America, Dakotas has provided afterschool and academic supports to students in our community.
The newly updated Volunteers of America, Dakotas Youth Center space includes:
Monday - Friday (school year hours): 3 PM - 9 PM
Monday - Friday (Summer hours): Noon - 6 PM
Volunteers of America, Dakotas' child care centers offer programs to promote the healthy development of children and their families. We offer a balanced day of enriched learning experiences to enhance the social-emotional, physical and cognitive growth of a child.
We have a team of highly qualified teachers where lead teaching staff have obtained a BS, AA or CDA degree in Early Childhood or Elementary Education. Our caring staff provide a safe, secure, and stimulating environment appropriate to meet the developmental needs of the children enrolled. We utilize High Reach curriculum that incorporates experiences that permit learning through guided play and active discovery. It also fosters self-confidence, academic readiness, social and emotional development as well as cultural awareness. From the curriculum, we incorporate assessments and developmental checklists that help us meet the needs of each child and share this information at our parent/teacher conferences twice a year. The High Reach curriculum is aligned with Head Start standards and with the SD Early Learning Guidelines.
Volunteers of America, Dakotas operates two child care centers in the Sioux Falls Metro Area with different eligibility guidelines.
Volunteers of America, Dakotas is one of only four programs in the nation that works with mothers in prison, their children, and the children's caregiver to break cycles of poverty and incarceration and to change the future for these families. Look Up and Hope is a national initiative started by Volunteers of America aimed at strengthening families who have been disrupted by the incarceration of mothers. Volunteers of America saw that mothers were the fastest-growing segment of the prison population and that there were very few programs tailored to their complex needs.
We provide counseling and case management for the families, as well as assistance in finding housing, education, food, employment, and transportation to enable families to become healthier, self-sufficient, productive members of their communities.
Each member of the family also has coaching and mentoring—individuals who help them to overcome their challenges and reach their full potential, as well as to help the family function in positive and productive ways. Volunteer mentors for the mothers are also matched for ongoing support throughout the transition out of prison. These services are specifically designed to lend continuity with the goal of healthy children emotionally and a stable family life.
Kidz Count offers at-risk children from Terry Redlin Elementary School a safe, structured and loving after school environment. It is operated in a partnership between Wesley Neighborhood Outreach and Volunteers of America, Dakotas, and located at Wesley United Methodist Church in Sioux Falls, SD.
While at Kidz Count, students experience a secure, nurturing setting where they can play, create arts and crafts, read, work on homework and spend time in the computer lab. Each student receives one snack and one meal while at the program. Kidz Count operates Monday through Friday and serves kindergarten through fifth-grade students daily.
Enrollment requests come through Terry Redlin Elementary School, and the staff there make enrollment decisions based on the needs of the child, family and Kidz Count Guidelines. Support from the Sioux Empire United Way ensures consistent, professional staffing who work hard to create an environment where students achieve their full potential.