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Mar
19
2022

Over at Sun Vista RV Resort, a group of quilters helps bring peace through their pieced work. These quilters are known as the Sun Vista Piecemakers and all 68 members are residents of the resort who regularly donate quilts and funds for charitable causes. Among these causes is supporting Amberly’s Place, a family advocacy center that assists victims of abuse, and this year, the Sun Vista Piecemakers presented a $4,200 check to the nonprofit on March 12.

Marion Gilkey, leader of the Piecemakers, explained that the group has been donating quilts and raising funds for Amberly’s Place for years now.

“It’s a very worthy charity,” she said. “They handle domestic violence, child abuse, elder abuse and sexual assault.”

 
 
 

Gilkey and her peers shared that they were inspired because they wanted to do something for their community and not just themselves. The group has donated over $58,000 in total to Amberly’s since they got started.

The $4,200 donation is the result of a yearly quilt raffle. The Piecemakers put on a quilt show at their resort, sell tickets to a quilt raffle and donate all the proceeds to Amberly’s. But it doesn’t end there.

The Piecemakers have a sponsored closet of quilts at Amberly’s to be given to everyone who comes in needing help. The quilts in that room are in the hundreds and the Piecemakers make everything from baby quilts to twin-size quilts.

https://www.yumasun.com/news/sun-vista-piecemakers-donate-4-2k-to-support-amberlys-place/article_a1062d54-a6fb-11ec-8fdc-8776419539b3.html

 

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Jan
23
2022

Amberly’s Place closed the year with a 40% increase in physical child abuse, a 25% increase in domestic violence, and a 9% increase in child sexual abuse.

In 2021, the family advocacy center served 2,706 primary and secondary victims in Yuma County and parts of Imperial County. Secondary victims are those who witness and/or are directly impacted by the abuse of the primary victim.

The center helps victims of domestic violence, child abuse, sexual assault and elder abuse.

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Oct
1
2021

Yuma County Attorney Jon R. Smith (left) talks to the local law enforcement agencies who were present at Friday morning’s 2021 kickoff event for Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

Yuma Police Department motor officer Jesse Nunez applies his purple “End Domestic Violence” magnetic ribbon to his motorcycle during Friday morning’s 2021 kickoff event for Domestic Violence Awareness Month in the parking lot at Amberly’s Place, 1310 S. 3rd Ave. Law enforcement agencies from throughout the area are participating in the annual event. Domestic violence, according to the Amberly’s Place website, is defined as, “ ... the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and/or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another. It includes physical violence, sexual violence, threats, and emotional abuse. The frequency and severity of domestic violence can vary dramatically.” 

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Sep
6
2021

As summer continues, donations continue at a slow but steady rate at Amberly’s Place – but the need is always there.

Tori Bourguignon, Amberly’s executive director, says the nonprofit organization particularly needs snacks, Walmart gift cards and monetary donations for the victims of sexual abuse, domestic violence and elder abuse whom it serves.

Snacks are important, as some cases require forensic interviews and sexual assault exams, which can up to take three to six hours hours, she said. Gift cards to Walmart help provide emergency needs for victims, such as door lock replacements or perishable food items.

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Jul
18
2021

While abuse numbers are down overall, Amberly’s Place has seen a significant increase in domestic violence and child abuse cases in the last few months.

Additionally, the child abuse cases are much more severe in terms of the level of injuries.

Amberly’s Place, a family advocacy center, assists abuse victims in Yuma County and part of Imperial County. In May, the agency served 197 primary and secondary abuse victims. In June, the number of primary and secondary victims rose to 243. Secondary victims are those indirectly affected by abuse, perhaps the children or siblings of the victim.

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Jun
8
2021

Ten “lucky” people will soon be taking themselves and their families or guests on fun getaways after winning vacation packages in the Week in Paradise fundraiser.

The family advocacy center uses the funds raised from the drawing to help Yuma County abuse victims with emergency needs. This year the agency had hoped to sell 5,000 tickets but fell just short of the goal. It sold 4,900 tickets, raising $49,000.

The drawing was held Friday at Z Fun Factory and streamed live on Facebook. Foothills Rotary Club member Blade Anthony won the Week in Paradise top prize, a seven-day, six-night trip to Oahu, Hawaii, for two with hotel and airfare included, $300 travel money sponsored by Brian Butcher of Edward Jones and hairstyles for two by The Sassy Seale Hair Salon

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May
23
2021

South County Justice Court Judge Juan Guerrero presents a plaque of appreciation to Diane Umphress for her 20 years of service as the executive director of Amberly’s Place. The agency bid her farewell at a retirement party May 14, where colleagues, supporters and community members feted her. Councilwoman Karen Watts and State Rep. Tim Dunn also thanked Umphress for her many years of service. Umphress officially retired May 15 and handed the torch over to Tori Bourguignon.

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Apr
18
2021

The Amberly’s Place Board of Directors has hired Tori Bourguignon as the new executive director to replace Diane Umphress, who will be retiring in May. Umphress has served as the agency’s executive director since its founding in 1999.

Bourguignon was hired after a national search. After interviewing several candidates, the board said it “found the perfect candidate here in our own community.” Bourguignon will start May 1.

Bourguignon is a native of Yuma, graduate of Yuma High and worked as the crisis response coordinator at Amberly’s Place for nine years. Bourguignon left Amberly’s Place six years ago to pursue other interests “and is very excited to be back,” the agency said.

 Bourguignon has been trained in crisis coordination and management as well as being a former school counselor for Yuma Union High School. Her background and passion for Amberly’s Place mission will ensure the organization continues to move forward, the agency noted.

Umphress said she feels confident in turning the keys of the agency over to Bourguignon.

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Apr
12
2021

Amberly’s Place has the resources to offer meals to victims of domestic violence through summer’s end, thanks to students at Sunrise Elementary School.

Upon Yuma School District One’s return to in-person instruction in early March, the school’s eight-member student council – comprised of third, fourth and fifth graders – spearheaded a canned food drive for the local family advocacy center because “they wanted to give back.”

“They immediately thought of Amberly’s Place,” said student council advisor Megan Knueppel.

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Jan
31
2021

Founding member and longtime Amberly’s Place Executive Director Diane Umphress announced her retirement from the organization that has been a voice and a beacon of hope for abuse victims for more than 20 years. Umphress will retire on May 15.

Amberly’s Place, a family advocacy center, has helped thousands of victims on their journey from victim to survivor to thriver. Umphress has passionately carried the torch for victim rights throughout Yuma County and Arizona for more than two decades.

Her work started with the Yuma County Attorney’s Office as a victim advocate and evolved as a leader among her peers. She was instrumental in planting the seeds that led to the creation of the Yuma County Family Advocacy Coalition which eventually founded Amberly’s Place.

Umphress worked diligently to encourage the creation of best practice protocols for child abuse and sexual assault investigations in Yuma County. Working with local law enforcement agencies and with the training they provided for victim advocates, these protocols led the way for Amberly’s Place to be the first agency to offer on-scene crisis response. This has led to great improvements in how victims of these crimes are treated and assisted.

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