VERMILLION, S.D. -- Twelve students from the University of South Dakota travelled to Sioux Falls, S.D., Saturday, Nov. 15 to work with the Teddy Bear Den, an incentive and education based program for the limited income pregnant women in the Sioux Falls community. The Alternative Week of Off-campus Learning (AWOL) program organized the project as one of their monthly Alternative Weekends, or short-term service-learning opportunities that focus on local and regional issues.
The students assisted in various volunteer projects including moving cribs onto the donation floor. In addition to the service component, the students learned about the difficulties women with limited incomes face in Sioux Falls in both affording and receiving early and regular prenatal care.
Like other AWOL events, Alternative Weekends are entirely student-led. The site leaders for the event were Sidney Heisler of Sioux Falls, S.D.; and Lara Williams of Pierre, S.D. Other students participating were Taryn Twite of Beresford, S.D.; Courtney Arney of Canton, S.D.; Brianna Brage of Watertown, S.D.; Kennedy Ischen of Brookings, S.D.; Kelsey Weber of Mitchell, S.D.; Shane Hansen of Hot Springs, S.D.; Heather Reikofski of Crescent, Iowa; Sara Napsey of Tomah, Wis.; Stacie Kjelden of Vermillion, S.D.; and Marah Smith of Groton, S.D.