April is Child Abuse Prevention Month

We All Can Play a Part in Building Community, Building Hope

The CAC will hold a groundbreaking ceremony on April 14th to kick off a building expansion and capital campaign that will nearly double the Center’s current footprint. The goal of the expansion is to increase space to meet the growing demands for innovative treatment therapy, expand resources for children and families, and increase prevention education and outreach throughout the community. 

April is nationally recognized as Child Abuse Prevention Month, and the Children’s Advocacy Center encourages all individuals and organizations to play a role in making Ottawa County a better place for children and families. By ensuring that parents and community members have the knowledge, skills, and resources they need to care for their children, we can help prevent child abuse by making meaningful connections and providing education and awareness.  The CAC has partnered with local businesses and municipalities to help raise awareness by displaying banners, hosting pinwheel gardens, and decorating parks with blue ribbons as a visual reminder to help protect children and in support for those who have been victims of abuse.

“April is a time to celebrate the important role that communities play in protecting children and strengthening families,” said Executive Director Darcy Komejan. “Everyone’s participation is critical. Focusing on ways to connect with families is the best thing our community can do to strengthen families and prevent child abuse and neglect. We are thrilled that our groundbreaking ceremony and capital campaign begin at the same time that our community is coming together to support Child Abuse Prevention Month. To learn more about the programs, resources offered by the CAC please call 616-393-6123 or visit cac-ottawa.org.

We would like to thank the following businesses downtown Holland for displaying Pinwheel Gardens to help raise awareness about child sexual abuse:

Holland Peanut Store, Cranes in the City, Orange Leaf Yogurt, Peachwave, Hops, Crust 54, Subs N More, Globe, Bores Shoes, Gliks (women), Gliks (men), Home, Chicos, Trends on 8th, Merle Norman, Design Works Interiors, 8th Street Grill, JosABanks, Engeti Salon, Sand Castle,Blue Veranda, Teermans , Fustinis, 8th St. Salon, Seasoned Home, Karla's Place, Francescas, Readers World, JB & Me, and the Bridge.

There will be large blue bows in Centennial Park in Holland as well as banners located throughout the county.

You can help raise awareness and protect children by purchasing our limited edition Keep Calm and Protect Children Prevention Month t-shirts here: https://goodink.com/keepcalmprotectchildren or you could win a shirt by taking a selfie by one of our pinwheel gardens located in businesses throughout Holland and tag #hollandpinwheels2017 and uploading it to Facebook and we will randomly select one selfie to win a Keep Clam and Protect Children shirt!



National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day (L.E.A.D.)

On January 9th, 2017, partnering organizations in support of law enforcement officers nationwide will promote National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day (L.E.A.D.).

The Children's Advocacy Center of Ottawa County would like to thank police officers who help protect our community and work with us as we serve children who have been victims of sexual abuse. We coordinated an Appreciation Day to show how grateful we are for their service and sent goody bags to all of our friends in Blue throughout the county! We would like to thank the businesses that have helped us say "thanks" to the officers with us: Butch's Beach BurritosBiggby Coffee of HollandBig Apple BagelsMcDonald's at 12645 Riley St, and Bigby Coffee on Baldwin in Hudsonville!

Bids & Bites Gala 2016

Our annual Bids & Bites Gala was held at Laketown Golf and Conference Center on Friday, November 18.  This evening would not be possible without the generosity and partnership of Co-Presenting Sponsors: Bradford Company and Comfort Research.

We would also like to thank:

Our Platinum Sponsors: John & Judy Spoelhof, our Guardian Sponsors: Barber Ford,  Shape Corp., Advanced Time Management, Gentex, and Rich & Marcia Lievense.  Our Advocate Sponsors: Ed & Nancy Hanenburg, BDO, Boar's Head Provisions Co., TwistThink, Herman Miller Cares, McShane & Bowie P.L.C.,  Conrad & Laurie Mutschler, and Scholten Fant.

Our Friend Sponsors: GMB Architecture & Engineers, Automatic Spring Products, Doug & Melissa Brenner, Haworth, Holland Hospital, Integrity Business Solutions, Dave & Karen Koop, Nichols, Clovis & Sandra Rayzel, Russ' Restaurants, Steve & Lauri Sisson,and Henry & Cora Visscher.  

The evening's theme was right out of the roaring '20s, with special events like Al Capone's Wine Cellar, 100 Bottles of Beer, and Money Bags.  The Dutch Auction had over 50 different packages with donations from many businesses and companies from Holland all the way to Traverse City!  The Dutch Raffle was comprised of 10 extravagant packages ranging from an entire set of Comfort Research furniture from their Orahh line to a weekend trip for 10 in a Disciples Ridge condo at Boyne Mountain.  

Emcee Jim Kaminski moved the evening along with his energy and our speaker, Taylor, bravely told her story as a victim of sexual abuse and how the Children's Advocacy Center helped her from the very beginning and walked alongside her and helped her on a path to healing.  She also raised money to donate back to the Center, for other children who endure what she had.

The culmination of the evening came when Executive Director Darcy Komejan took the stage to challenge everyone in the audience to stand up for kids and commit to financially support the services of the Center beyond the raffles and Dutch Auction, by standing in solidarity for the children who are victims of sexual abuse.  It was a powerful visual to see an entire room of over 200 people standing together for vulnerable victims of abuse.  

It was a beautiful evening, full of the beauty of people who invest their time and treasure in the Children's Advocacy Center.  The evening raised a record amount of money totaling $203,206.00!!!

The cherry on top was the take away provided by Hudsonville Ice Cream.  Hudsonville Ice Cream made sure every guest walked away with an insulated cooler bag full of ice cream.

Thank you so much to everyone who helped make the evening a smashing success.  Thank you to the business partners and people who support our Center and the children in our community that we serve. 

Ottawa County Law Enforcement Appreciation

Local law enforcement plays a large role in the multi-disciplinary services offered at the Children's Advocacy Center. As a token of our appreciation for all they do here, and to help keep our communities safe, we delivered cupcakes to all local agencies. The Children's Advocacy Center Backs the Blue! A special thank you to the Holland Cakery for assisting us in this show of gratitude!