Kids 'n Kinship
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Non-Profit of the Year!

Kids 'n Kinship was named "Non-Profit of the Year" by Dakota County Regional Chamber's Business Excellence Awards!

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Kids 'n Kinship
14870 Granada Avenue #127
Apple Valley MN, 55124
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Proud user of Innovative Mentoring for managing our program data.

Thanks to our Wonderful Gala Sponsors!

Partnership Sponsors

Blue Cross Blue Shield of MN
Boeckermann Grafstrom Mayer CPA's
Burnsville Breakfast Rotary
Burnsville Rotary
Dale and Bette Schenian
Hess & Hess Inc
Home Federal
Joel and Kris Carberry
Think Mutual Bank

Contributing Sponsors

Bill and Margaret Traiser
Lakeville Behavioral Health
Park Nicollet – Burnsville
The Urgency Room

Collaborative Sponsors

Arnold Orthodontics
Curlee State Farm
Dakota Electric
Don Hess
Jan and Dave Belmore
Mike and Kris Hess
Monica Jensen
Pam and Ron Bernal
Re-Max Advantage Plus

Gala Donors

Beverly & Richard Mayer Brad and Barb Mayer Carol and Mike Milligan
Christin Gigstad Dave & Dawn Kalb David & Laurie Knutson
Doug and Deb Anderson Doug Daniels Elizabeth Younger
Jackie & Calvin Shannon James & Elizabeth Mandell Jim Arbuckle
Jim Olson Marc & Mary Kay Anderson Martha & Chris Hoyt

Gala Donors

Terri & John Pedace
Tim & Sandy Ake

With Special Thanks to

Blue Cross Blue Shield Volunteers
Brackett's Crossing
Cornerstone Printing
Life Development Resources
Media Relations, Inc.
Michael Moschogianis
Scott Swenson

Local Kids ‘n Kinship Volunteer is recognized

Eagan Man Receives National Community Hero Award

Volunteer mentor, Nick Varien, of Eagan, was nominated and won his employer's (Simpson Strong Tie) national Community Hero award. The Award was presented in Arizona. Nick is matched with a 16 year old Eagan teen; they have been together nearly four years. They enjoy food, friendship, movies, sports and family. Nick and his wife, Bree consider the mentee a part of their family. Every conversation with Nick includes a recognition of his mentees' abilities, personality, manners or attitude. Nick talks about the very bright future his mentee has; his athletic accomplishments, goals, his academic struggles and triumphs, his maturity beyond his years and how he 'looks out' for his younger sister. Think about a young teen hearing a respected successful adult talk about you that way. It is very powerful.

Along with the award came a donation for $2,500 for Kids 'n Kinship. Kids 'n Kinship staff say " Nick is an excellent supportive role model and he is caring and interested. We value Nick and all he does for his mentee and our organization."

Rick's Bike Sale

The 8th annual Rick's Bike Sale was a very big success thanks to all the volunteers and customers!

Rick, Randy and crew gathered and tuned up hundreds of bikes and brought in $27,094.00 in sales. All to benefit Kids 'n Kinship, matching kids on the wait list with an awesome mentor! Thanks to everyone involved; bike donations for next year can be directed to Rick at:

Featured Video

Chat Group Information!!!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Mentor Reminder: 

We have some new guidelines  for 
2 Chat Group Training's Required Per Year!
Ongoing training directly impacts the quality and outcomes of mentoring relationships. It motivates you as a mentor, helps you handle the challenges that arise in your mentor relationship, lets you know you have support from staff, and allows you to talk with other mentors To this end, all mentors are required to attend a minimum of 2 chat sessions over the course of a calendar year. This is not optional.   You need to document your chat attendance using your mentor portal.  

Hooray it is here - the Chat Topic you have been asking for:

Truancy and Educational Neglect

We are delighted to welcome Beth Kaler and Ryan Miller from Dakota County Truancy as well as Kristie Janusch from Dakota County Social Services.  Beth, Ryan and Kristie will share their considerable experience and wealth of knowledge through a power point presentation on:
- what happens when a student does not go to school?
- what are the differences between elementary and secondary school refusal
-what are the laws for school attendance?
- can the county compel attendance?
- are there tips for mentors to support families and encourage their mentees away from school refusal?
- what are some causes of educational neglect or truancy or avoidance?
The presentation will be followed by a lively discussion among mentors celebrating successes and seeking support for challenges with their matches.

Register with us now!  email Rita at to let us know you can join us!
Date Thursday February 9 from 6:00 to 7:00 pm
Location:  Western Service Center, 14955 Galaxie Avenue, Apple Valley MN  55124
Room:  L139 (this is to your left after you come through the main entrance, down a hallway - We will have a sign out)
Snacks:  We will have waters and snacks for everyone

We sought the expertise on School Refusal because some of our mentees have been dealing with this.  Even if you are not dealing with this right now, you can be prepared and in the know.  These three staff from the county are top notch and you will gain a lot of knowledge!  Plus you will learn from and share with other mentors.

Please remember that we now require attendance at a minimum of TWO Chat Training's annually.  Let's get the New Year started off well!

Mentoring Partnership of Minnesota

Kids 'n Kinship has achieved Expert Partner status through Mentoring Partnership Minnesota's Quality Mentoring Assesment Path (QMAP) and has a 100% overall implementation rating on an extensive list of best practices and quality standards for mentoring programs. We are 1 of only 9 other programs to earn this distinguished rating under these rigorous guidelines.


Medical Monkeys

Kids 'n Kinship wishes to acknowledge the partnership with Medical Monkeys. Funds received from the purchase of the Medical Monkeys goes towards finding mentors for our waiting youth.

Kids 'n Kinship wishes to acknowledge the generous support of Mail Pack and Ship, Apple Valley and their wonderful donation of printing of our newsletter, and Media Relations, Inc for their pro bono work on publicity.