"Drive Out Domestic Violence" campaign begins next week
Beginning next week, Dakota News Now will be part of the annual 'Drive Out Domestic Violence' campaign to benefit the Children's Inn.
The campaign shines a light on the family violence that is happening in our community. It's a problem no one likes to talk about. But at the Children's Inn they see on a daily basis the need in Sioux Falls to help those who need protection.
When the Children's Inn started in 1977 the facility only had two beds. It now has 24 beds with plans to expand and add more.
"What was happening in our community prior to that is that if a child was in a home and had to be removed in that emergency situation there wasn't a safe place to take them." Amy Carter with the Children's Inn tells us the original intent was to protect chldren who were victims of at home violence. Before the Children's Inn existed abused kids really had no where to go.
"Tthey'd end up riding around in the back of a police car or hanging out at a police station while law enforcement and social workers tried to figure out where can we find a safe place for these children." Carter said.
Not too long after opening, the Children's Inn came face to face with the sad reality that if kids were being abused at home, more likely than not, their mom was being hurt as well. To understand how great the need is at this moment in time all you have to do is check the numbers.
"Llast year alone we had a little over 1,000 individuals come through our shelter doors and so the need continues to grow and the number of people who need our services as well as the diversity of those people continues to change." Carter says.
Their budget comes from a combination of grants and donations....mostly donations. Carter says those who take the time to donate are vital to the Children's Inn future. "Children's Inn couldn't exist if the community didn't help support us. whether it's financially or volunteering, through donations, and so that's what our drive out domestic violence campaign is all about, it's to get the awareness out there."
That "Drive Out Domestic Violence" campaign that begins next week is predominately a social media campaign with people in the community reaching out to their friends to let people know that the work the Children's Inn is doing is vital. For it to continue, people need to do what they can to help.
"We're looking for support financially to be able to do what we're doing. What we've been doing for the last 40-some years we want to be able to continue to do for the next 40 and more." Carter said.
An interesting fact here about the history of the Children's Inn. they were one of the first ten domestic violence shelters to open in the United States. Their work in our community has been groundbreaking.
You can help us drive out domestic violence. beginning next week, go to "driveout d-v-dot-com" and make a donation to help support the efforts of the Children's Inn.