Tell Me A Story

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Check presentation SD Discovery Center

The South Dakota Community Foundation (SDCF) presented a $4,700 Community Innovation Grant (CIG) to the South Dakota Discovery Center located in Pierre, SD. Offered in partnership with the Bush Foundation, the Community Innovation Grant program supports efforts to find breakthrough solutions to community challenges across the state. The grant will provide support to build the capacity of South Dakota educators to integrate National Geographic style storytelling into their classrooms.

“Thanks to the South Dakota Community Foundation for funding our Storytelling for Explorer Educators project”, said Anne Lewis, Special Projects Director, South Dakota Discovery Center. “With this funding the South Dakota Discovery Center will develop a platform to equip educators to tell vibrant, interesting stories about their experiences to engage students in learning content.”

This two-phase project will be done in conjunction with National Geographic Certified Educators. Phase 1 will convene in the Badlands National Park for three days to develop a framework and exemplars for subject matter storytelling. In phase 2, a cohort of ten south Dakota educations will participate in a pilot. At the conclusion of these two phases, the South Dakota Discovery Center will create professional development to engage the broader South Dakota educator community.

“The South Dakota Community Foundation is proud to partner with the South Dakota Discovery Center as they build the capacity of South Dakota educators to integrate National Geographic style storytelling into their classrooms”, said Ginger Niemann, SDCF Senior Program Officer. “We applaud their efforts to use the ancient practice of storytelling to broaden student’s learning experiences.”

A total of $400,000 will be available to nonprofits in 2019 through the Community Innovation Grant program. The second round has just been completed with successful applicants announced at the end of August. Applications for Round 3, 2019 will be accepted starting September 2nd.  Visit our website at to learn more about eligibility guidelines, deadlines for 2019 and application instructions.

About our donors

The SDCF distributed more than $18.8 million in grants in 2018 which made a tremendous difference in communities statewide. This would not have been possible without the generosity of our donors. If you have a specific cause you would like to support or would prefer to give for the general good of our state, please visit to learn more or give us a call at (605) 224-1025.

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.