SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Sioux Falls’ largest domestic violence shelter is getting closer to a new facility. Last year, T. Denny Sanford donated $11 million to the Children’s Inn to purchase land and start construction on a new, larger facility
“We’re getting close to having that land secured,” Children’s Inn Operations Director Amy Carter said.
The Sioux Falls City Council approved the first-reading of a rezoning for the piece of land the Children’s Inn is in the process of buying.
“We’ll be located at the Empower Campus on East 10th Street, we’ll be a neighbor to that campus (the former School for the Deaf). It’s a great location for those that we serve being near schools and bus routes and other social service agencies,” Carter said.
This piece of land will allow the non profit to expand services to more women and children in need of a safe place to restart their lives.
“For the last several years Children’s Inn has pretty much been bursting at the seams. We’ve been operating overcapacity in our current facility,” Carter said. “Last year alone we saw an 11 percent increase in the number of women that sought shelter from us and a 25 percent increase in the number of kids.”
Plans for the new facility would more than double the number of beds available at the current Children’s Inn–they’re also working to make sure the new facility will serve the Sioux Falls region for years to come.
“We’re working right now on how that layout will look on the inside,” Carter said. “A lot of things to take into consideration as far as security and functionality.”
Not only are they trying to build a facility that will sustain the city’s growing population, they’re also working to raise enough money to make sure they’re able to pay for the extra cost of operating a larger facility.
“At this point, we don’t have a specific number or a specific timeline but those are the things we’re working on in order to identify what do we need in order to break ground and make this happen and it’s going to take the support of the community absolutely,” Carter said.
The second-reading of the re-zoning for the land purchase near the old School for the Deaf will be in July. After that, the Children’s Inn hopes to have the land fully secured.