CA with tag line 

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


caring parents


"It is better to bind your children to you by a feeling of respect 

and by gentleness,

than by fear."


- Terence -

In This Issue
Welcome Virginia
Car Seat Safety - Heat Kills
What is a Children's Advocacy Center?
Scheduled Classes
Summer Office Hours

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  


Pam Mahin
RRC Coordinator


Virginia Luedtke
GCSAC Coordinator
 Richelle Davis 
Prevention Educator 

Heather Gardner
 CAC Coordinator
Brenda Shafley
Office Assistant 

Board of Directors 

Kent Schulze
Dept. of Human Services

Vice President 
Wes Wickes 
Youth for Christ

Michael Hetzman
Community Mental
Health - Gratiot Co.

 Kim Vetter
MI State Police
Mt. Pleasant Post

Lori Apple
Comm. Mental Health - Isabella Co.
Dan Buschle
 Alma Products 
 Wendy Currie
Mid Michigan Dist. Health Dept. 
Colleen Davis
Prosecuting Attorney's Office 
Toni Davis
Women's Aid Service
Rob DuHadway
DuHadway Dance Dimensions
David Justin
 Alma School Board
 Jennifer Leppien
Governor's Task Force/Child Abuse & Neglect 
Kelly Piotrowski
DHS - Gratiot Co.
Jennifer Stambaugh
DeafBlind Central CMU
 Carolyn Studley
Retired - Alma Public Schools


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

Permanent Prescription Drop Off



Alma Police Dept.

525 E. Superior St.

Mon. - Fri. 

8 a.m. - 5 p.m.


Gratiot Co. Sheriff

226 E. Center


open 24 hrs./day

7 days/week


Both sites accept

prescription pills, liquids, and patches.


Lung Clinic

Lung cancer is the leading cause of deaths from cancer for both men and women. Tobacco use causes 87 percent of all deaths from lung cancer. Mid-Michigan Cancer Center is offering smoking cessation education.

If you are interested in learning more about the Lung Clinic, a free telephone screening is available by calling
(press 2).

Quick Links

Join Our Mailing List



Happy Independence Day!


Please take a moment to enjoy our newsletter and discover what is happening at Child Advocacy.   This month get to know Virginia, our new Gratiot County Substance Abuse Prevention Coordinator, learn about car seat safety, and read about the role of a Children's Advocacy Center.



Child Advocacy Staff


Check out our website


Welcome Virginia Luedtke!


Virginia is the new Prevention Coordinator for the Gratiot County Substance Abuse Coalition. She is excited to have the opportunity to work with the community and schools here in Gratiot County.  Previous to this, Viriginia worked in Saginaw County managing a residential behavior program for individuals with developmental disabilities and mental illness.


Viriginia moved to Midland from the Traverse City area in 2008 and currently reside there with her husband and their seven month old daughter, Olive. They also have a son, Codey, who is a member of the United States Air Force currently stationed in Tucson, AZ. Virginia and her family enjoy the outdoors, so you will often find them on their boat or at their cabin nestled in the Upper Peninsula. 

 Car Seat Safety - Heat Kills
Submitted by Pam Mahin
RRC Coordinator
Never Leave Children Alone in Parked Vehicles
On average, 38 children die in hot cars each year from heat-related deaths after being trapped inside motor vehicles.
On a day when the temperature outside is 86 degrees, the temperature inside a car can quickly reach 135 or even 150 degrees!
Research shows that leaving the windows open a crack does little to reduce this oven effect.
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Tips to Prevent Injury & Death
Never leave infants or children alone in an unattended vehicle, even if the windows are partially open or the air conditioner is on.
Make sure all passengers have left the vehicle after it is parked.
Do not let your children play in an unattended vehicle.
Always lock vehicle doors and trunks and keep keys out of children's reach.
Be sure to remove children from the vehicle during busy times, schedule changes, emergencies or shopping for the holidays.
Be extra careful when routines change; children can be forgotten in the back seat:
 - If you are bringing your infant or child to daycare, and normally it's your spouse or partner who brings them, have your spouse or partner call you to make sure everything went according to plan.
 - Ask your childcare provider to call you if your child does not show up for childcare.
- Put something you'll need like your cell phone, handbag, employee ID or brief case on the floor board in the back seat to remind you.
If you see a child alone in a hot vehicle, CALL THE POLICE.
If a child is in distress due to heat, get them out as quickly as possible and call 911.
Warning signs of heat illness may include: red, hot, and moist or dry skin, no sweating, a strong rapid pulse or a slow weak pulse, nausea or acting strangely.  Cool the child fast and call 911. 




What is a Children's Advocacy Center?

Submitted by: Heather Gardner

CAC Coordinator



Child abuse and neglect are a major problem, and a major concern for communities throughout the United States.  We all know that the problem exists.  The real question becomes "What happens to a child victim once he or she discloses abuse?"


Often, agency personnel from law enforcement, child protective services, prosecution, medical, victim advocacy and mental health services will respond to child abuse cases.  Traditionally, each agency or professional has a different role in the investigation and intervention process.  Sometimes, their efforts to fulfill these roles will result in multiple interviews of the victim- and in re-traumatizing the victim they are seeking to assist.


In the past, there was no mechanism for coordinating these services.  In 1985, however, a quiet revolution took place with the establishment of the first children's advocacy center in Huntsville, Alabama.  Now, instead of the child victim navigating a difficult and confusing system of multiple, repetitive interviews, the system could be brought to the child.  Children's advocacy centers are modeled on the simple but powerful concept of coordination between community agencies and professionals involved in the intervention system.


From the first center in Huntsville, a national movement was created.  Today, there are nearly 700 children's advocacy centers nationwide, and more on the way.  Children's advocacy centers are community-based programs, designed to meet the unique needs of the particular community in which it is located-so no two centers are exactly alike, but all adhere to national standards for accreditation.


Article obtained from the National Children's Alliance

Scheduled Classes


Daycare Provider Trainings  

(Parents are welcome to attend)


Wow, I Didn't Think of that

Saturday, July 13

10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Veteran's Memorial Library - Mt. Pleasant

3 Class Hours

Cost $25.00

To register, visit



Great Start to Quality Orientation 


Friday, July 19

8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Wilcox Non-Profit Center - Alma

No Cost


Other Trainings/Groups


Free Webchats for Parents and Caregivers

C.S. Mott Children's Hospital is pleased to partner with MetroParent Magazine to once again host a series of free webchats for parents and caregivers. To view the webchat topics, please click here


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

11th Annual Gratiot County
Back-to-School Event 
Wednesday, August 28
10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Free to the Public
Central Michigan Youth For Christ
2550 W. Cheesman Road, Alma
Volunteers are needed to assist in the set-up as well as donations of children's clothing, new socks/underware, and school supplies.
If you have any questions, please contact Shelly Buschle with the United Way of Gratiot County 
at (989) 463-6245 ext. 1003.

Summer Office Hours


Monday - Thursday

9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.


Closed Friday


Thank you for taking the time to read our newsletter this month.  I don't typically use the newsletter as a forum to ask for money, but this month I am going to do a little self promotion or begging, call it whatever you want.  :)  July would be a great month to make a donation to Child Advocacy!  Most organizations ask for money around the holidays or right before tax season, but why not consider making a meaningful donation today?  Child Advocacy is currently looking for funding to assist with the Children's Advocacy Center of Gratiot County (See article above).  The CAC opened it's doors in January and is a wonderful resource to families in Gratiot County.  We had projected that the CAC would provide interviews to approximately 100 child victims of abuse and neglect per year in Gratiot County.  It appears we were wrong.  We are currently interviewing anywhere from 1 to 5 children a week at the CAC.  At this rate we will definately surpass 100 interviews in a year's time. The need is here, and we need your help to run this worthwhile program in the county, so please consider making a donation today.
For more information or to make a donation please contact us at -
989-463-1422 or
Thank you, 
Audra Stahl
Executive Director