Safe Bars….Providing Another Tool

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Check presentation at the Compass Center

The South Dakota Community Foundation (SDCF) recently awarded the Compass Center with a $9,940 Community Innovation Grant. Offered in partnership with the Bush Foundation, the Community Innovation Grant program supports efforts to find breakthrough solutions to community challenges. Funds will provide partial support to train five individuals to become a local training team and establish Safe Bars in South Dakota.

“By enabling a local team to be trained in delivering Safe Bars curriculum, this grant will provide the foundation for a valuable new resource in South Dakota”, said Jason Lemke, Development Director, The Compass Center. “By equipping restaurant and bar staff with the skills and knowledge learned in Safe Bars training, you can position them to become a powerful force in helping stop sexual assault.”

The Compass Center operates a 24-hour Rape Crisis Hotline in Sioux Falls, where staff and highly trained volunteers are contacted either directly by victims or by law enforcement or healthcare professionals to assist sexual assault victims in the aftermath of a reported sexual assault. The Compass Center is entering into a partnership with the area hospitality industry to engage bar and restaurant staff in Safe Bars training. Safe Bars is a training to equip front of the house bar and restaurant staff to recognize and respond to sexual harassment among staff and patrons.

“We are pleased to join with the Compass Center as they work to develop Safe Bars training in our state”, said Ginger Niemann, Senior Program Officer, SDCF. “The more proactive we are, the greater the chances that we can stop harassment before it escalates.”

The South Dakota Community Foundation will award $400,000 in Community Innovation Grants during 2018. For more information or to apply for a grant, visit

About the SDCF

Since 1987, the South Dakota Community Foundation has helped people reach their philanthropic goals and strengthened communities across the state. The SDCF gives its partners enhanced investment opportunities that provide long-term support to charitable causes. In 2017, the SDCF distributed more than $13.5 million in grants from all funds administered. For more information, visit

About the Bush Foundation

The Bush Foundation invests in great ideas and the people who power them. Established in 1953 by 3M Executive Archibald Bush and his wife Edyth, the Foundation encourages individuals and organizations to think bigger and think differently about what is possible in communities across Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and the 23 Native nations that share the same geographic area.