Dakota Foundation supports Lost&Found’s program development with $60,000 grant

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SIOUX FALLS, SD — The Dakota Foundation, a family foundation focused on promoting social entrepreneurship, has given a $60,000 grant to Lost&Found, a 501(c)3 nonprofit mental health education and research organization based in Sioux Falls. The grant will increase Lost&Found’s capacity to provide mental health resources, training, and evaluation services to campuses, community organizations, and employers in South Dakota, Minnesota, North Dakota, and Iowa.

The Dakota Foundation aims to help people help themselves by getting the skills necessary to become more self-sufficient, and this grant aligns with that goal both in its intended outcome and in its structure: It supports programming that will increase resilience in young adults throughout the four-state region, and it will pilot an earned revenue model that should help Lost&Found increase its own financial resilience as an organization.

“Lost&Found has a unique social enterprise model that is poised to scale to meet the concerning, growing need for mental health services, particularly in the era of COVID-19,” said Kelsey Nolan, Executive Director of the Dakota Foundation. “The Dakota Foundation is confident our partnership will further Lost&Found’s creative ability to foster both individual self-sufficiency and community resilience.”

The grant will support three objectives:

  • Piloting and testing new programs in evaluation services and training;
  • Increasing capacity to reach young adults with mental health peer support, resources, and advocacy on college campuses while also expanding Lost&Found’s reach to K-12 schools, community organizations, and employers; and
  • Identifying and developing sustainable revenue sources.

“Over the course of a year, we developed a strong connection to the work of the Dakota Foundation, and we couldn’t be more excited to see this partnership come to fruition,” said Erik Muckey, CEO and Executive Director of Lost&Found. “The foundation’s investment in actionable, effective mental health tools, research, and training delivered by Lost&Found is inspiring and certain to enhance mental health resource networks in South Dakota and the surrounding region.”

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Lost&Found delivers resilience education and mental health resources through student-led campus chapters at the University of South Dakota, South Dakota State University, Dakota Wesleyan University, and Augustana University. Founded in 2010, Lost&Found takes a data-driven, strengths-based approach to suicide prevention efforts, delivering research tools that allow campus administrators to quickly understand and respond to student mental health needs with programs, policies, and people.

The Dakota Foundation is a non-profit organization founded in 1997 by A. Bart Holaday to focus his philanthropic efforts on initiatives that foster social entrepreneurship. Its mission is to change lives by assisting people to achieve greater self-sufficiency for themselves and their families, providing them with tools to help them help themselves.

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Heidi Marttila-Losure
Communications Director


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