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The Compass Center
Guiding Renewal and Recovery
from Sexual and Domestic Violence

Pointing the Way to Safety and Security for Everyone

In 1975, a grassroots organization was born in the Sioux Empire. Local citizens recognized the need for programs to deal with problems that are not often addressed. The goal of the organization was to reduce the incidence of rape and domestic violence in our rapidly growing region.

This non-profit organization, now known as The Compass Center, offers many programs to help individuals with rape, sexual assault, and domestic abuse issues.

In an average year, the various programs and services offered by The Compass Center assists over a thousand individuals in the surrounding area. The Compass Center is continually reviewing its programs to fit the needs of our ever-changing community. The agency also strives to make outreach efforts to underserved populations.

Our mission is to help break the cycle of sexual abuse and domestic violence.

Survivor Empowerment Program

The Compass Center is committed to assisting survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence through the healing process. The Survivor Empowerment Program serves primary and secondary victims of violence, which includes family members. The program also serves both males and females, as well as children. Services include:

  • Ongoing individual or group therapy with a licensed mental health professional
  • Advocacy at the hospital, courthouse, or police station
  • Specialized treatment program for children
  • Assistance with safety planning
  • Help filing protection orders or victims' compensation applications
  • Information, support or assistance in obtaining necessary resources
  • Partnership with Child's Voice to provide on-site crisis counseling and advocacy for families with children who may have been sexually or physically abused
  • All services for victims are provided at no charge

Play Therapy

The Compass Center offers FREE play therapy services with a Registered Play Therapist (RPT) to children, ages 3-12, who have either witnessed or experienced domestic violence or sexual assault. Through play therapy, children:

  • Process traumatic experiences in a safe environment
  • Express themselves and feel understood
  • Facilitate their own decision-making process
  • Relieve feelings of stress and anxiety
  • Learn new social skills

Play therapy sessions vary in length based on the child's age level and individual needs.

SART- Sexual Assault Response Team

The Compass Center is a member of a multidisciplinary team consisting of law enforcement, prosecutors, advocates and medical staff called SART. The SART team responds to sexual assault or rape victims 24 hours a day at the emergency room or on the crisis hotline. (605-339-0116) Services include:

  • Immediate crisis response, 24 hours a day
  • Emotional support, advocacy, information and referrals for survivors of violence and their family and friends
  • Free follow-up services to the survivor, family or friends by mental health professionals

Court Watchers Program

Serves victims of rape, sexual assault or domestic violence who are involved with the court system. Trained volunteers assist by providing the following services:

  • Outreach to victims of violence at the courthouse
  • Information about the services available at The Compass Center
  • Observation of court cases

Education and Prevention programs

The Compass Center strives to decrease the incidence and prevalence of domestic violence and sexual assault in our region. Services include:

  • Educational presentations to schools, churches, service providers and community organizations
  • Training to area professionals on how to respond to individuals who have experienced sexual assault
  • Topics include dating violence, healthy relationships, sexual assault and domestic violence

Family Violence Project

The Family Violence Project is a 25-week program that aims to help individuals explore the intent and source of their abusive behavior, as well as possibilities for change in how they relate to others. Each client is challenged to be accountable to learn skills to:

  • Develop the ability to identify non-violence alternatives to abuse and control
  • Make thoughtful and respectful choice in resolving conflict
  • Establish respectful, safe and constructive ways of being with a partner

There is a fee for the initial assessment, and the small groups meet weekly with the cost determined on a sliding fee scale. Several group times and days are available.

Teen Violence Project

The Teen Violence Project is a 16-week program to address the use of violence, power and control. The goal of the program is to assist teenagers in developing skills for healthy relationships. Services include:

  • Assessments
  • Weekly groups which are therapeutic and educational
  • Parent groups to promote family relationships

Women's Program

The Women's Program is specifically designed to treat women who have used violence against a partner or family member and who are also victims of violence themselves. Services include:

  • Assessment and orientation sessions
  • Weekly therapeutic groups for 25 weeks
  • Individual counseling as appropriate

Michelle Markgraf, Executive Director
The Compass Center
1704 South Cleveland Avenue, Suite 3
Sioux Falls, SD 57103
Phone: 605-339-0116
Fax: 605-336-3874

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The Compass Center
Guiding Renewal and Recovery
from Sexual and Domestic Violence