Protecting our clients and staff during COVID-19

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, and in protection of our community’s health, we’ve made alternative arrangements for many of our services, info meetings, and events. Please see our events and meeting tab for details on each specific event, some of which are changing to an online format. Please contact our office with questions on office hours, services, or events.

Meet The Team

Renee Eggebraaten

Renee Eggebraaten

Branch Director - Rapid City

Welcome to Bethany Christian Services of Western South Dakota and Cheyenne! It is my privilege to serve as branch director in Cheyenne, Rapid City and Sioux Falls. I have worked in this field for more than 30 years and love the work and ministry of this agency. Whether it is the services we provide to adoptive families or the support and counsel we provide to expectant parents, all of this is done with genuine compassion and care by our staff. I am also excited to have Safe Families for Children™ as an active and growing ministry in our branch. Thank you for taking the time to visit us and we look forward to assisting you.

Vanessa Mader

Vanessa Mader

Assistant Branch Director - Rapid City

Vanessa Mader joined Bethany Christian Services in 2014 and now serves as the assistant branch director. She enjoys walking alongside people as they begin their adoption journey, supporting families the entire time. She has a heart for both clients and staff and has witnessed the fact that Bethany’s mission statement is more than words on a wall but rather a way of life.

Tracy Folkerts

Tracy Folkerts

Safe Families for Children™ Coordinator - Eastern South Dakota

Before Tracy joined the Bethany team in 2013, she worked as a children’s pastor for more than 20 years in Minnesota, Connecticut, California, and South Dakota. Looking for a change, Bethany’s Safe Families for Children™ ministry matched Tracy’s passion for both children and the local church. She finds meaning in unleashing local church volunteers to make a significant impact in the lives of vulnerable families who are experiencing a temporary crisis. Tracy graduated from Northwestern College in St Paul, Minnesota with a bachelor’s degree in communications and a master’s degree in Christian education from Sioux Falls Seminary. She and her husband, Jason, have three teenagers and she is an avid movie fan who enjoys walking and spending time with family.

Melissa Steltz

Melissa Steltz

Adoption Specialist - Eastern South Dakota

Melissa has been a licensed social worker for over twenty years and with Bethany since 2008. She graduated from Augustana College with a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Dakota with a master’s degree in Social Work. She has held a lifelong passion for adoption and loves seeing how God creates relationships and families. She and her husband Michael are blessed with three children biologically and through adoption. Melissa enjoys traveling, hiking, and reading.

Heidi Thomas

Heidi Thomas

Safe Families for Children Intake and Family Coach Coordinator - Eastern South Dakota

Heidi joined Bethany Christian Services as a Safe Families for Children Intake and Family Coach Coordinator in March 2020. Heidi has her bachelor’s degree in Social Work and will graduate with her Master’s in Social Work from USD in May 2021. Heidi brings a wide variety of professional experiences to the Bethany team including working with victims of domestic violence, human trafficking, teen mothers as well as liasioning and supporting community and local families within an international community for 4 years with her husband and three children. Heidi’s passionate about meeting people in their greatest time of need and believes that everyone deserves to have help and hope in ways that are meaningful to them. Heidi feels privileged to continue to build relationships with families in crisis while supporting them through Safe Families for Children. Heidi and her husband, Tim have been married for 17 years and have three children together. They’ve settled in Sioux Falls 5 years ago and are originally from the West coast. Their family enjoys biking, traveling, camping, reading and spending quality time together.

Morgan Jarding

Morgan Jarding

Expectant Parent Advocate - Eastern South Dakota

Morgan began working at Bethany in 2018. She attended both undergraduate and graduate school at the University of South Dakota and recently graduated with her master’s degree in Social Work. After spending time at Child Protective Services, Morgan realized her passion for being a voice to those in need of an advocate. She is excited to continue this work with expectant parents and is here to listen to, educate, and empower parents to make the best decisions for their children and ensure loving futures for the families Bethany serves.