You were made to do HARD things

Anna Haydock with child

Shortly before she graduated from college this spring, Anna Haydock got the chance to paint an inspirational sign as a gift for her 2-year-old daughter.

Its message reads: Beautiful Girl, You were made to do HARD things, so BELIEVE in yourself

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Uplifting Parents Program participants like to have some fun too!

Earning a college degree as a single parent is hard work, so the Uplifting Parents Program likes to add some fun to the process with fantastic family activities planned and led by the program’s Peer UP Advisory Council.

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Lakota Circles of Hope Partners with Rural American Initiatives

Ateyape Wicozani staff

Lakota Circles of Hope prevention curriculum is now being offered to students in Rapid City middle schools thanks to a partnership between Catholic Social Services (CSS) and Rural America Initiatives (RAI). Ateyape Wicozani, a RAI program, staff received training in December and have begun offering LCH to students in the Rapid City Middle Schools, grades 6-8 in their after school program.

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The Third Time’s a Charm for Uplifting Parent’s Participant Dani Hersrud’s College Success

Dani Hersrud

Dani will graduate with a surgical technology degree from Western Dakota Technology in May, about 20 years after she first enrolled as a college student. Her second college experience came in 2011, following a stint as a U.S. Army medic, when she earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology, a degree that didn’t translate into a well-paying job with which to support her family.

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CSS Staff and Volunteers attend Catholic Charities USA Disaster Training Workshop in Colorado Springs in December


Staff and volunteers of CSS were able to attend a national disaster response conference due to a recent grant from Catholic Charities USA.  The Applied Institute for Disaster Excellence (AIDE) conference is a “by the network, for the network” training that strengthens local disaster response capacity. Attendees come away with best practices and new relationships that serve as a critical asset at a time of a disaster event.  In addition to the core training, peer-to-peer networking opportunities and daily liturgy, attendees had the opportunity to go the sites of previous disasters and witness the impact as well as recovery measures made post-disaster.

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CSS Staff and Volunteers helped with disaster relief in Oglala in November and December

volunteers smiling

The weather cooperated with sunshine and 60-degree temperatures on Nov. 20  and Dec. 11 as a teams of Catholic Social Services volunteers repaired Wilma Blacksmith’s mobile home and several others  that were  damaged  in a Pine Ridge Reservation hailstorm last summer.

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