Lower Sioux Indian Community
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Lower Sioux Indian Community


The Basics

The Lower Sioux Indian Community is a federally recognized Indian tribe, located in south central Minnesota, in Redwood County. As an organization, it offers a plethora of community and mental health services, including Woniya Kini, an outpatient clinic that provides treatment for adults and adolescents struggling with substance abuse and co-occurring disorders.

Treatment and Staff

The services offered at Woniya Kini place a special emphasis on Native American cultural and spiritual values. All clients must be of the Sioux tribe or related to a member. Both 12-step and Red Road approach (based on The Red Road to Wellbriety, a recovery and wellness book written by Native Americans for Native Americans) are utilized.

The first step in treatment is an assessment by a licensed substance abuse counselor. While it does not offer specific Intensive Outpatient (IOP), the outpatient program at Woniya Kini meets for two hours a day, three days a week, for 10 weeks; by the end of the program, clients have participated in a total of 60 hours of treatment.

Days at Woniya Kini consist of a combination of  individual therapy and group therapy where discussion topics include addiction education, relapse prevention, family and addiction and anxiety management. Grief counseling and process groups are also offered. Clients are encouraged to attend outside 12-step meetings, particularly the AA meeting hosted in the Woniya Kini group room every Thursday at noon.

Though not as intensive as the adult program, Woniya Kini does provide individual therapy for adolescents who are struggling with substance abuse. The number of sessions and length of treatment are based on the client’s initial assessment.

The treatment team at Lower Sioux Indian Community consists of substance abuse counselors, caseworkers and traditional cultural spiritual leaders. There are also psychiatrists on staff who see clients with co-occurring disorders for medication management.


Since the Woniya Kini outpatient program is for the Sioux tribal community, the spiritual practices and sweat lodge ceremonies of the tribe, as well as educational classes on strengthening the family and community, are an integral part of the program.

Once clients complete outpatient treatment, they are referred to aftercare, which meets on Tuesdays from 2 to 4 pm. Ongoing relapse prevention groups, open to alumni, are held on Mondays and Thursdays from 1 to 3 pm.

In Summary

Woniya Kini outpatient program provides a safe and familiar environment for people who are a part of or affiliated with the Sioux tribal community. By integrating the 12-step philosophy with traditional Native American spiritual practices, along with educational and process groups, Woniya Kini provides a treatment team that does their best to ensure that all clients have the information and tools necessary to begin and maintain recovery.

Lower Sioux Indian Community
Woniya Kini Substance Abuse Clinic
39527 Reservation Highway 1
Morton, MN 56270

Lower Sioux Indian Community Cost: Sliding scale. Reach Lower Sioux Indian Community by phone at (507) 697-6185 or by email at dwillemssen@lowersioux.com. Find Lower Sioux Indian Community on Facebook and LinkedIn

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Photo courtesy of AlexiusHoratius [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons (resized and cropped)

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