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February 2020 eNewsletter

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Did you guess blankets?

Susan, Kerry, Debby, EJ, and Ian have learned something very important. They are part of the Exploration Room team and several weeks ago they decided they wanted to make sure others in the community are able to be warm so came up with the idea to make fleece blankets. Using donated fleece, these five worked the better part of two months to make 18 blankets. They wanted the blankets to go to the St. Francis House so made them for men, women, and children. They then realized that working to help others stay warm, also made themselves feel warm and useful. Susan and Ian delivered the blankets to St. Francis House in early February and the team is already planning their next community project.

Clockwise are Ian, Debby, EJ and Susan showing off their creations. These blankets would not have been possible without the generous donations of fleece from staff's family members.
The new Exploration Room is used for creative projects, teaching basic cooking, exercise class, and other life skills. It is a popular, busy room!

It's pretty obvious how much delivering the blankets meant to Susan and Ian!

Being a valued member of our community is an important part of being in the DakotAbilities family. The people we serve regularly volunteer at Feeding South Dakota, Snicklefritz Day Care, and The Butterfly House. Our newest volunteer venue is Dow Rummel to play BINGO and socialize with the residents.

Helping out in the community has many benefits. They strengthen greater inclusion, help form lasting friendships, and give the individuals who receive services at DakotAbilities increased self confidence.



During this month when we celebrate the many ways we show love, perhaps you are asking yourself what your options are regarding showing the people we serve that you care. We are glad you asked!




DakotAbilities Staff News

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Shelley Graham. Shelley was with DakotAbilities for 30 years as the Director of Program Services before passing away on February 3.

Shelley always had a smile for everyone and considered the staff and people supported as her second family.

Shelley leaves behind her husband, Charles and daughter Aubrey Byrnes as well as grandchildren and siblings.

Joining the DakotAbilities' family is Brad Hilscher as our Finance Director. Brad previously worked at the South Dakota Foundation for Medical Care.

Brad's has an extensive accounting background and is familiar with nonprofits and healthcare.

He lives in Sioux Falls with his wife, Dena and their three children.

Welcome Brad!


Happy Valentine Week!




Working together, we create opportunities and meaningful lives for people with disabilities

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