525 N. State Street  Suite 4 Alma, MI 48801 
(989) 463-1422

baby happy new year


             "Cheers to a new year

             and another chance for

             us to get it right." 


               - Oprah Winfrey -  




In This Issue
CAC Update
What You Need to Know
Family Expo 2012
Lending Library News
Scheduled Classes
Thank You Meghan


About Us 


 Child Advocacy is a non-profit agency with a mission to improve the welfare of children and their families through education, training, and support for the prevention of substance abuse and child abuse and neglect.

 Our Staff
Audra Stahl -
Executive Director

Ronda Sorensen -
 Parent Educator  

Brenda Shafley-
Office Assistant 
Pam Mahin -
RRC Coordinator
Lisa Cannon- 
GSAC Coordinator
 Kris Olejniczak -
CAN Coordinator 

Board of Directors 

President -
Kent Schulze
Dept. of Human Services

Vice President -
Wes Wickes 
Youth for Christ

Treasurer -
Madonna Adkins
EightCAP inc.

Secretary -
 Kim Vetter
MI State Police
Ithaca Post

Lori Apple
Comm. Mental Health - Isabella Co.

Kristin Bakker
Prosecuting Attorney's Office
 Wendy Currie
Mid Michigan Dist. Health Dept.
Toni Davis
Women's Aid Service
Rob DuHadway
DuHadway Dance Dimensions

 Mike Hetzman
 Comm. Mental Health - Gratiot Co.
 Mary Hunt
Retired-EightCAP inc.

David Justin
 Alma School Board

Dan Buschle
Community Member
 Carolyn Studley
Retired Alma Public Schools

 Jennifer Leppien
CASA Volunteer 


Seat Safety


Did you know that at Child Advocacy we can install and provide a safety inspection for your child safety seat?  Child Advocacy has a nationally certified safety seat technician available!
To make an appointment call
 or 800-552-4489

Good Company -

Adult Respite Care

Respite care

 is designed to be a place a person will enjoy visiting while their spouse or other caregiver takes a break and tends to other needs.


11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Mon., Wed., Fri.


Contact First Presbyterian Church - Alma at (989) 463-2940


Quick Links

Join Our Mailing List



Happy New Year!


We, at Child Advocacy, are looking forward to a productive and rewarding 2012! 


To start the year, we are holding a "What You Need to Know" parenting class that will discuss emerging drug trends.  Our second annual Family Expo is scheduled for Saturday, January 28.  Positive progress is happening to make the Children's Advocacy Center of Gratiot County a reality.   We are grateful for another year to make a difference.



Child Advocacy Staff

Children's Advocacy Center of Gratiot County Update

by Audra Stahl


Renovations have begun on the Children's Advocacy Center of Gratiot County. The United Way of Gratiot County and Child Advocacy have collected $60,000 for building renovations. Donations for the renovations came from the Gerstacker Foundation, DTE Energy Foundation, Consumers Energy, and the Gratiot County Community Foundation.


The Children's Advocacy Center is a program being developed by Child Advocacy; however the Center will be located on the grounds of the Wilcox Non-Profit Center, owned by United Way. Child Advocacy and United Way partnered in July to begin working on securing funding for the building renovations necessary to turn a free standing storage unit into a fully functioning child friendly forensic interviewing center.


The Children's Advocacy Center of Gratiot County will be a child focused, facility based approach to child abuse and neglect prevention in the county. The Center will emphasize the coordination of investigation and intervention services by bringing together professionals and agencies as a multidisciplinary team to work with children who are victims of abuse. The Center will also coordinate services necessary for follow up to children and their families. Child Advocacy was awarded a development grant from the National Children's Alliance in January to begin planning for the Center. For more information on this program contact Audra Stahl at Child Advocacy, 989-463-1422.



Parenting Series



Did you know......... Synthetic marijuana is being sold in Gratiot County under the disguise of Potpourri?


The C.A.N. Council will he hosting a "WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW" parenting series over the next few months. The first topic of the series will be Newly Emerging Drug Trends. Lisa Cannon, Substance Abuse Prevention Coordinator, along with local law enforcement will be discussing the current drug trends and how they are affecting children in our community.


They will also discuss how tobacco advertising has transitioned over the years to almost exclusively targeting children and young adults. This event is open to the public and I would encourage you to tell your friends and co-workers about the event. Please join us on Tuesday, January 17, 2012 from 7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. at the Alma Public Library. If you have any questions, please contact Lisa Cannon, Substance Abuse Prevention Coordinator 989-462-0142. 


Family Expo 2012


Saturday, January 28

10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.


Youth for Christ

2550 W. Cheesman Road



FREE refreshments


Free Kids Activities

- Make and take crafts

- Clowns

- Magician

- Inflatable bounce house

- Games and prizes


FREE Information for families

- Local health care providers

- Free health care screenings

- Recreation organizations

- Clubs

-Local businesses


Join us for a day of information

and fun for the enitre family!



Our lending library has been rearranged and is now more easily accessible! 
The items in the library can be checked out for two weeks at a time and are available to childcare providers, parents, grandparents or anyone caring for young children. 
There are resource books on many different topics, story stretchers (book, activity item and sheet of other activities to do), theme based totes (includes puzzles, games, music CDs, puppets and other items related to the theme), as well as the Reading Rainbow Kits that we have acquired from CMU Public Broadcasting which includes a book, video and an activity sheet.
Please contact our office to make arrangements to check out some new and educational material for kids.

New Website


Child Advocacy has a new website!  Please take a moment to check it out.




A big thank you to Dr. Myles McNally, Alma College Professor,and Kevin Clements, Alma College Student, for creating our new website.  We are very exciting to have a fresh and

up-to-date website.

Scheduled Classes


What You Need to Know Parenting Class  

Topic - Newly emerging drug trends

Tuesday, January 17

7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. - Alma Library

Class is open to anyone - FREE 


Parenting Classes

12:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.

Wilcox Non-Profit Building

Wednesday, December 4 & 18


Foster/Adoptive/Relative Care Support Group

Tuesday, January 10 and 24  

6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Youth for Christ - Alma

2550 W. Cheesman Road 



Child Care Administration Class -

We offer a Child Care Administration class that offers the participant 30 total hours if both part 1 and part 2 are completed.  This correspondence course is completed through email or postal mail.  This training offers the participant 3.0 CEU's and is accepted by child care licensing.  The topics covered are business basics, hiring & retaining staff, recruitment of families, observing & recording, etc.  This course is for current or prospective program directors in licensed facilities.  Group child care providers have taken this course and benefited from it as well.  The cost of this training is $85 per part plus an additional $8 per part for the CEU's that are associated with it. 


We are working on developing more trainings to be offered in the very near future.  Please watch your email for notification of when these will be available.


Please call our office at (989) 463-1422 to register or to get more information.

Thank You Meghan


The staff at Child Advocacy would like to thank Meghan Mahaffy, our student intern, for the great work she did at our agency from August until December. Meghan designed a wonderful logo for our Children's Advocacy Center, created an agency power point presentation, and spent many hours observing and working with staff on multiple programs and projects. Meghan graduated from Central Michigan University in December. We would like to wish you success wherever your future takes you. Thank you Meghan!

Happy New Year!  We hope you enjoyed our January newsletter. 
 I encourage you to attend our upcoming discussion on Emerging Drug Trends (See Above).  As a parent of a 20 year college student and a 13 year old middle school student I have been shocked by the information I have been learning on current drug trends in our community.  I have learned that here in Gratiot County there have been incidents of middle school and high school students getting high on bath salts, synthetic marijuana (sold in our local party stores), and deadly combinations of drugs.  Cocaine, Heroine, prescription drug abuse, and Meth is on the rise in Gratiot County, and there are brand new tobacco products in the stores marketed towards children. 
You will NOT want to miss this event.  If you are a parent, teacher, coach, mentor, or anyone who works or cares for children please attend this informative discussion.
Audra Stahl
Executive Director