CA with tag line 

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

"My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person, he believed in me."

- Jim Valvano

In This Issue
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
Pam Mahin
Office Manager
Ty Warczinsky 
GCSAC Coordinator
 Richelle Davis 
Prevention Educator
Michelle Zombeck 
 CASA Coordinator
Heather Gardner  
 CAC Coordinator 

Heather Therrien  
CAC Case Coordinator
Staci Bigelow
Event/Volunteer Coordinator

Board of Directors 

Wes Wickes
Youth for Christ
Vice President 
Jennifer Leppien
Carolyn Studley
  Community Representative

 Kelly Piotrowski
Dept. of Human Services
Steve Benn
MI State Police

Sara Bonacci
Sara Bonacci Photography

Wendy Currie 
Mid MI District Health Dept

Colleen Davis
Prosecuting Attorney's Office 
Rob DuHadway
DuHadway Dance Dimensions 

Tammy Halfmann
Mercantile Bank

David Justin
 Alma School Board
Mike Morris
Detective, Gratiot Co. Sheriff's Dept. 
Jamie Richardson
Doehring Schultz Insurance Agency

Matt Schooley
City of Alma Transportation

Jennifer Siefker
Tri Lakes Petroleum
Jennifer Stambaugh
DeafBlind Central CMU
Steve Vernon
 Gratiot Co. Comm. Mental Health 

Joe Yourchock
Community Representative


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 Drug Drop Off
Gratiot Co. Sheriff
226 E. Center
open 24 hrs./day
7 days/week
Alma Police Dept.
525 E. Superior St.
8:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.
Monday - Friday
Breckenridge Police Dept.
 104 E. Saginaw St.
8:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.
Monday - Friday
St. Louis Police Dept.
108 W. Saginaw St.
Mon. 7 - 3 
Tues. - Fri. 8 - 4 
These sites accept
prescription pills and patches.
Program Needs

Gas Cards 
to help cover the cost for medical travel to Grand Rapids or help with transportation of foster children.

Gift Cards to Walmart and Meijer to purchase the specific needs of a child. 
Drawing Paper


New Children's Books


Games for younger children to play

Capri Sun Juice Box's

Bottled Water

Community donations help the quality of our programs and are greatly appreciated. Donations can be made directly at Child Advocacy or by contacting our office. (989) 463-1422

Your Feedback!

"Our experience at the center was pleasant, and the environment of the center made a difficult situation not so difficult." 
Parent of a child who visited the Children's Advocacy Center 

Quick Links

Join Our Mailing List

Happy Father's Day!

Step into summer with our June newsletter! This month we share the Child Advocacy award recipients, the Superhero 5K event results, information about our Lending Library, and some great program articles from our team here at Child Advocacy.
Child Advocacy Staff
Check out our website
More Voices for Children 
in Need 
By: Michelle Zombeck
CASA Coordinator

Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Gratiot County is thrilled to introduce the newest members of our volunteer team Kathleen Gatten and Rachel Letsche.
Kathy Gatten has spent the last three decades caring for people as a licensed practical nurse.  Kathy has also worked as a para-professional for the Gratiot Isabella RESD with special needs children. Kathy volunteers her time with her church and at the Donald L Pavlik Middle School. Kathy is a proud and dedicated parent of 3 children and a grandparent of 8. She feels strongly about the rights of children and when asked why she wanted to be a CASA volunteer she shared that "I think they are needed. Children need consistency and I am hoping that I can help be the voice for children in need."
Rachel Letsche a recent graduate from Central Michigan University received her Bachelor's degree in Psychology and Sociology with an emphasis on criminal and social justice.  Rachel currently works as a Shelter Advocate for Women's Aid Services and volunteers as a Shelter Aid.  Rachel is a proud member of the Central Michigan Marching Band and the Solid Gold Basketball Band. Rachel is currently the Vice President of the Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity, the President of the Justice Society and Chairman of Community Outreach for Delta Omicron for her Music Fraternity. When Rachel was asked why she wanted to be a CASA volunteer she shared that "I want to be able to help people specifically children, my whole life I have wanted to help people. I heard about this program and what CASA volunteers do and I felt in my gut that this is something I should do. I want to be able to help children."
We are so happy to have Kathy and Rachel as a part of our team and we thank them for their commitment to the children involved in abuse and neglect in this community.  Even with two new volunteers we still have more voices that need to be heard. Help us reach the goal of having a volunteer for every child. 
CASA of Gratiot County is currently accepting applications for our next volunteer training. 
Please contact Michelle Zombeck for more information at or 989-463-1422
By: Pam Mahin
Child Safety Seat Technician

Heatstroke is the leading cause of non-crash, vehicle-related deaths for children. On average, every 8 days a child dies from heatstroke in a vehicle. So far for 2016, 9 children have died after being left in the vehicle; 5 have been confirmed heatstroke deaths and the other 4 are considered probable heatstroke deaths, according to the website In 2015, 24 children ages 3 months to 5 years died after being left in the vehicle, 18 of those were confirmed heatstroke deaths.

Babies and young kids can sometimes sleep so peacefully that we forget they are even there. It can also be tempting to leave a baby alone in a car while we quickly run into the store. The problem is that leaving a child alone in a car can lead to serious injury or death from heatstroke. 

Young children are particularly at risk, as their bodies heat up three to five times faster than an adult's. These tragedies are completely preventable. Here's how we can all work together to keep kids safe from heatstroke.

Reduce the number of deaths from heatstroke by remembering to ACT.

A: Avoid heatstroke-related injury and death by never leaving your child alone in a car, not even for a minute. And make sure to keep your car locked when you're not in it so kids don't get in on their own.  

C: Create reminders by putting something in the back of your car next to your child such as a briefcase, a purse or a cell phone that is needed at your final destination. This is especially important if you're not following your normal routine. 

T: Take action. If you see a child alone in a car, call 911. Emergency personnel want you to call. They are trained to respond to these situations. One call could save a life.

Go a Step Further

Create Extra Reminders and Communicate with Daycare

* Create a calendar reminder for your electronic devices to make sure you dropped your child off at daycare.

* Develop a plan with your daycare so that if your child is late, you'll be called within a few minutes. 

Teach Kids Not to Play in Cars

* Make sure to lock your vehicle, including doors and trunk, when you're not using it. Keep keys and remote entry fobs out of children's sight and reach.

* Teach kids that trunks are for transporting cargo and are not safe places to play.

* If your child is missing, get help and check swimming pools, vehicles and trunks. If your children are locked in a car, get them out as quickly as possible and dial 911 immediately. Emergency personnel are trained to evaluate and check for signs of heatstroke.
Child Advocacy 
Superhero 5K Results
A BIG thank you to everyone who participated, sponsored, and/or volunteered at the 5K Superhero Event!  
Kids Fun Run Results
Overall Female -  Sevarah Leonard
Overall Male -  Nico LeBron
5K Walk Results
Overall Female - Riley Bowker (41:42)
Overall Male - Bryan Crouch (35:46)

5K Run Results
Overall Female - Sarah Kasabian-Larson (18:10)
Overall Male - Carlos Espinoza (18:48)

Click here to view the full results.
Congratulations to all the winners!! 
 2016 Child Advocacy Award Recipients
Congratulations to Detective Sergeant Mike Morris -  
2016 Child Advocate of the Year!

Congratulations to the First Presbyterian Church in Alma - 2016 Child Advocate Organization of the Year!
Lending Library

Do you need something new to do with your children this summer?  Come check out our lending library and see all the materials that are available for you to use free of charge.
We have "Story Stretchers" that include a book and an activity sheet, with activities included to stretch the story over several days,  theme based totes that include books, puzzles, music, games, puppets, dramatic play items, etc.  
These items are available to be checked out for 2 weeks at a time and can be checked out by parents, grandparents, child care providers or anyone who is caring for young children.  For more information call Child Advocacy at (989) 463-1422 or visit us at 525 N. State Street, Suite 4, Alma
Summer Hours
Starting the week of June 13  
Monday - Thursday
9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Closed Friday
Scheduled Classes
Foster/Adoptive/Relative Care Support Group
Tuesday, June  14
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. 
Central Michigan Youth for Christ - Alma

Please call our office at (989) 463-1422 to register for the class.
A sincere thank you to everyone who participated in our events this Spring!  We appreciate the sponsorship's, volunteer hours, and participation from the Gratiot County Community!  This truly is the best place to live and work!

I wish all of you a safe and happy Summer!
Audra Stahl
Executive Director