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Imagine you live in a small community and your town’s only dentist wants to retire. The closest dental clinic will now be at least forty minutes away. It’s a problem many rural areas face—and it’s one of the reasons Horizon Health Care exists in South Dakota.
“We currently provide medical, dental and mental health care services to 31 clinics in 22 communities across South Dakota,” explains John Mengenhausen, CEO of Horizon Health Care. “Just like decent housing and good paying jobs, having access to medical and dental services is important, especially if that access is in danger of going away.”
In the case of Wessington Springs, Horizon Health Care was able to help the community’s longtime dentist transition into retirement by providing two full-time Horizon dentists to the area.
“It’s generally easier to work with an existing clinic that needs our … Read More »
By Shiloh Appel
After a summer ripe with community and public listening sessions, coffee chats and discussions, the Greater Redfield area Community Engagement Process core team held their biggest community meeting on Thursday, August 24, 2017, at the SD Development Center activities center.
More than 150 people were present to discuss the future of Redfield and Spink County. All of the ideas that were brought up throughout the summer were brought forward at the meeting and 10 volunteer initiative teams were formed to help make these ideas a reality. The volunteer groups each had a focus, such as the following: tourism, a new community daycare, recreation, housing, community activities, a new community center, small business development, and others.
The meeting was led by Kristi Wagner and Mike Knutson, community coaches with Dakota Resources, and brought together by volunteers from the Redfield community. … Read More »
When was the last time you heard someone say, “We tried that before and it didn’t work!” In my early days as a local leader those words spoken by an experienced leader often stopped me in my tracks. Their words indicated to me that they had the experience of knowing what worked and what didn’t work in the community. Sometimes I would ask, “Why?” and rarely get a strong explanation about the failure that occurred, which left me determined to learn more.
My confidence as a leader has grown over the years and I have gained much more experience. Now when someone says, “We tried that before and it didn’t work!” my response is…”and, what did you learn from that?”
Learning about failed attempts, missed opportunities, and community history requires honest and focused conversations with local leaders. I strongly believe that as … Read More »
#thinkbigandtakeaction — Something big is happening in the small town of Tripp, South Dakota.
The ball started rolling when Bryan Bietz attended his first Tripp Area Community Foundation meeting.
“Bryan came home and told me he had been elected President, and we both kind of laughed because it had been his very first meeting. Neither of us had experience with community development, however, we both knew we wanted to do more for our community,” explains his wife, Shawn, a local veterinarian. “I started Googling rural development in South Dakota and Dakota Resources popped up, which led me to the RuralX event in Aberdeen. After exploring the website, reading reviews and watching the RuralX video, we knew we needed to go.”
Wall, South Dakota’s tagline is “Window to the Badlands.” Thanks to the efforts of a forward-thinking city council and a progressive economic development corporation, that window is opening to dozens of new opportunities for this tourism-based community.
One of those opportunities includes a strategic focus on housing development to help overcome Wall’s dire lack of available housing. To help generate new ideas and access more housing resources, the Wall Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) joined the Dakota Resources Home Address Plus learning network in 2016 to help connect with other rural communities and learn from their successes. The network offers online support for housing questions, monthly webinars, access to tools and resources and bi-annual Home Address Plus learning network gatherings.
“We were invited to try the network before we joined. The first gathering we attended was very inspiring. We could see the … Read More »