Established in 1893, Children's Home Society (CHS) is South Dakota's oldest human service, nonprofit organization, with a mission to protect, support and enhance the lives of children and families. In 1998, CHS merged with Children's Inn, which was established in 1977 as an emergency shelter to serve victims of domestic violence and child abuse.
CHS programs include emergency shelter, residential treatment, education, forensic interview & exam centers, foster care & adoption services and prevention services. While serving victims of domestic violence and child abuse, it is also part of CHS' mission to partner with caring parents to help any child with emotional or behavioral problems.
Children's Home Society of South Dakota FAQ
What ages of children do you serve and how long do they stay?
Diagnostic services are available for boys and girls, ages 4-14, who exhibit emotional disorders or behavioral problems. The length of the evaluation period is 45 days. Short-term treatment may last 30 - 90 days and the average length of stay in residential treatment is 12-14 months.
How do you help children with emotional or behavioral problems?
It is the belief of Children's Home Society that building and maintaining healthy relationships is the most significant factor in healing children with emotional and behavioral problems.The setting at CHS could best be described as a therapeutic milieu. This "milieu" is a total, planned environment that creates a therapeutic atmosphere for troubled children. It is a coordinated effort by every individual at CHS to provide an environment that demonstrates to children the healthy interactions of adults and children. Every person brings his/her special expertise to the positive resolution of a child's difficulty.
What can you tell me about becoming a therapeutic foster parent?
Choosing to become a foster or adoptive parent is a big decision. Parenting any child can be challenging, and the additional responsibilities and issues that come with parenting a child who has experienced extreme problems with family life can seem overwhelming at times. Children who have experienced hurt need healing. Children who have been rejected need unconditional acceptance. And children who have been abused need to be safe.
Being a foster or adoptive parent to a child with such needs is not easy. These children will often challenge the skills of even the best parents. But seeing the smallest signs of progress can be very rewarding. As a foster or adoptive parent, you have the opportunity to provide a healing family experience for a child in need—an experience that will be an important step toward a healthier future for that child.
Does CHS utilize volunteers?
There are a variety of volunteer opportunities available at each of the Children’s Home Society programs. Contact us to learn more!