2019 Fiesta Medal is HERE!!

Thank you to Melissa Wootan (mom to Kyley-Bug) and Stephanie Sheffield (aunt to Kyley-Bug) for sharing their design with the Center this year. Ten years ago, Melissa’s daughter died in a car accident and was buried on her 17th birthday. Melissa and her family began attending the Center’s Sibling Group with their son. Melissa shared that she was broken, her heart, her family and couldn’t see any hope for healing. She was afraid that if she moved forward, she would leave her daughter behind. The Center helped Melissa to know that it was okay to move forward and live a joyful life without her daughter.

Thank you to Jefferson Bank Trust for sponsoring the 2019 Fiesta Medal.

This year’s medal was inspired by Kyley’s beautiful life that was cut short at the age of seventeen. The butterflies appear to have just taken off in flight, the third butterfly’s wings are spread as if it is soaring. On the wings of all three butterflies are symbols that people commonly associate with lost loved ones: feathers, balloons, and rainbows. All of which are colorful, just like Kyley’s spirit. These are the little things Melissa and her family will take with them into the future that provide sweet reminders, and at times even assurance, that their lost friends and family are still with them.

 Melissa hopes that the takeaway from this medal is that you don’t have to stay in your brokenness. That’s it’s possible, even okay, to move forward in healing. And something that’s so important to the grieving heart… the knowledge that you carry your loved one with you always.

You can find this year’s Fiesta Medal at the Fiesta Store, located at 2611 Broadway St, SA, TX 78215!!

For more information, please contact Franchesca Velten at [email protected].



Staff Spotlight: Welcome Kim Fox and Kerry Quinn!

The Center would like to thank the two newest employees to the team: Kerry Quinn, Finance Director of the Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas and Kimberly Fox, LPC Intern, serving as a counselor at Paloma Place in Floresville. We’re excited to have you both part of the family. Welcome to the team!! If you run into either one of them in the near future, make sure you stop to welcome them to the team. 

Kimberly Fox, LPC Intern, MA, NCC
Counselor at Paloma Place

Kimberly Fox, LPC Intern, MA, NCC
Supervised by Elizabeth Hartwig, PhD, LPC-S, LMFT, RPT-S
Counselor at Paloma Place

Kim is a recent graduate of the Texas State University Professional Counseling program. Her passion has always been working with underserved children and adolescents. Her background is in improvisational theater and art, and Kim specializes in trauma and complex, traumatic grief. Utilizing Child Centered Play Therapy, Solution Focused, and Psychoanalytic based therapies, and she is able to incorporate intense therapeutic work through creativity with clients of all ages. Kim has served as the Communications Chair for the San Antonio Society of Psychoanalytic Studies since 2016, and has two cats, Mr. Deets and Tippytoe.

Kerry Quinn, Finance Director at the
Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas

Kerry Phillip Quinn has worked as a non-profit executive for the past 21 years.  Kerry received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Texas Tech University and completed post-graduate work at the University of Vienna as a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar.  In 2003, she earned a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from UTSA.

Kerry Quinn, Finance Director
Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas

Kerry is the proud mother of a 23-year old daughter, Ella, and son-in-law, Dalton, who serves in the Navy and is stationed at Point Loma.  In 2013, she married Chris — and his three sons.  The three live in Denver, Palmdale, CA and Austin, proudly making the couple empty nesters.  Kerry & Chris are both members of the Rotary Club of San Antonio, with Kerry serving both at the club and district level.  She is also the treasurer of the San Antonio Public Library Foundation, where she’s served on the board for two years.  Kerry is an active volunteer with Texas Public Radio and Impact San Antonio.  She and her husband reside in Olmos Park and remain active in both Boerne and San Antonio with volunteer involvement and community support.

Another summer coming to an end…

This past July was the second year that the Center’s Camp Heroes had the pleasure of partnering with  Hermann Sons Life to provide a Grief Support Camp at Hermann Sons Hilltop Campsite in Comfort, Texas. This camp was a momentous occasion that it was our largest camp to date: 63 campers ages 6-17! The Center provided 18 staff and volunteers to conduct various the grief activities for the group. Activities ranged from a ropes course, to volleyball, drum circles, soccer/basketball,  swimming, dancing, and so much more!!

If you are interested in more information regarding the Center’s grief camps or would like to refer someone, please contact the Center at 
(210) 736-4847 or email [email protected]

Happy Birthday to Wonders & Worries in San Antonio!

The Center had a great month celebrating the ONE Year Anniversary since the our partnership began with Austin-based nonprofit, Wonders & Worriesand the START Center for Cancer Care. Being the first of its kind in the San Antonio area, the program provides much needed support to children and their families who have been given a life-threatening diagnosis. In the first year that we’ve been operating in the San Antonio office, we’ve hired two staff members and have a wait list for services. 

As long as the need continues, you can count on this partnership to be there and we’re proud to be a part of the solution for San Antonio families. 

Call 210-307-4853 for more information on services for you and your family.

Paloma Place is Now OPEN in Floresville!!

For the past several months, the Center’s staff has been called on to assist with the response efforts for the church shooting in Sutherland Springs. Counselors from the Center were called on  immediately to provide guidance and support for teachers and counselors in both La Vernia and Floresville schools and has continued to be on-site in the community since that time. 

From left to right: Marilyn Grubbs, JoAnn Flores, Ashley Jesse (Program Director), Taylor Brown and Sara Mann.

The Children’s Bereavement Center, in partnership with the University of Texas in San Antonio’s Academy for Crisis and Trauma Training, is pleased to announce the opening of Paloma Place, a counseling center in Wilson County. This collaborative partnership is funded in part through a grant from the Victims of Crime Act, Whataburger, a gift from the San Antonio Area Foundation and designated support from caring friends of the Center. Paloma Place is a replication of the program established in San Antonio in 1997 and will utilize innovative programming for children and families developed by the Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas.  

Paloma Place is now open to the community and ready to greet you with open arms. Photographed above from left to right: Marilyn Grubbs, JoAnn Flores, Ashley Jesse (Program Director), Taylor Brown and Sara Mann. Stop by Paloma Place at 140 Paloma Drive in Floresville, TX and say hello this wonderful group! 

You can also check out the website at www.PalomaPlace.org.

Silver & Black Gives Back!

Silver & Black Give Back (SBGB) has awarded over $240,000 in facility grants to seven local nonprofits, whose programs serve the youth of San Antonio and support SBGB’s mission to empower youth through service and sports. Grant recipients include Boys & Girls Club of San Antonio – Eastside Branch, SA Youth, Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas, SASTEMIC, YMCA of Coastal Bend, Young Women’s Christian Association, and Good Samaritan Community Services. 

Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas received a $35,535 facility grant from Silver & Black Give Back to build an outdoor therapeutic playground for its new Paloma Place Center, providing professional support to schools and families impacted by the loss of loved ones and neighbors. The Children’s Bereavement Center strives to help school staff of Floresville and La Vernia ISD in the aftermath of the Southerland Springs tragedy by bringing comfort, assistance and guidance with support extending to children and families. 

About Operation Renovation

Silver & Black Give Back’s Operation Renovation was implemented in 2014 to invest in the infrastructure of facilities that provide our students with safe places to play and learn the valuable life lessons gained through teamwork and competition. The funding is available to youth-serving nonprofit organizations.

About Silver & Black Give Back

Silver & Black Give Back is a 501(c)(3) public charity that invests in the community in partnership with the entire Spurs Sports & Entertainment family of teams. Since 1988 coaches and staff have focused on fostering young talent and enriching the community by encouraging local youth to become responsible adults and give back through programs like the Spurs Youth Basketball League, Team Up Challenge and Operation Renovation. Together, our community has the power to empower and create lasting change throughout San Antonio. More information on Silver & Black Give Back can be found at SBGB.org.


I am the Superhero of My Life Story

Heroes and stories about ordinary people doing extraordinary things are a huge part of children’s lives and have been the theme of this month’s activity during groups. At the Center we’ve been talking about what it means to be brave/courageous and what it means to be resilient.  This activity offers the opportunity to think about and talk about our innate strengths as super powers which help us make it through difficult times. 

We asked the children what does it mean to be a hero? And what does it mean to be brave? These questions gave them the opportunity to acknowledge and name some of their own strengths and recognize the strengths that their deceased loved one may have taught them. With all of these things in mind, we invited the children to design a Super Hero Cape for themselves. And our Pet Therapy Dogs joined in on the fun too.

Everyday the Center comes in contact with heroes in disguise… volunteers, donors, potluck partners, pet therapy dogs… everyone who makes this program possible is a hero in the eyes of the Center and the children that we serve. Thank you for all you do!

Our Hearts Are With El Paso

Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas is profoundly saddened by the inexplicable violence that has impacted both El Paso and Dayton this past weekend. The lives of children whose loved ones were killed or injured have changed overnight. The grief, anxiety and trauma is more than any child or teen should have to bear.

We offer prayers to all those affected and will be providing bilingual child grief workbooks and art therapy supplies to our sister center, Children’s Grief Center of El Paso. Thank you for supporting the mission of helping children’s hearts heal.

~ Staff and Board of Children’s Bereavement Center

Staff Spotlight: Welcome Leticia Villareal and Kristina Hernandez!

The Center would like to welcome the two newest employees to the team: Leticia Villareal, Licensed Professional Counselor and Kristina Hernandez, serving as Development Director at the Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas. We’re excited to have you both part of the team. If you run into either one of them in the near future, make sure you stop to welcome them to the family!!

Leticia R. Villareal, M.S., LPC, LCDC-I Licensed Professional Counselor at the Center

Leticia R. Villareal, M.S., LPC, LCDC-I
Licensed Professional Counselor at the Center

Leticia, also known as “Letty” to clients, is a graduate of the University of Texas at San Antonio and the University of Missouri at Kanas City. Leticia previously worked at Laurel Ridge Treatment Center and Family Violence Prevention Services as a therapist the last couple of years. Leticia’s past work experience with adults and children includes work with parenting groups, foster care, victims of crime advocacy, and military veterans. Leticia is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor Intern. Leticia is trained in Cognitive Processing Therapy, a therapy utilized to help reduce PTSD symptoms. Leticia has a passion for walking with people in their greatest time of need and providing a safe space to express their inner voice freely.

Kristina Hernandez, MNM
Development Director at the Center

Kristina Hernandez, MNM Development Director at the Center

Kristina Hernandez joined Children’s Bereavement Center this February as the Director of Development. Most recently, she served as Director of Community Investments for the San Antonio Food Bank, where she oversaw all corporate fundraising including special events, food & fund drives, and volunteer operations. Prior to her role at the Food Bank, she spent 17 years at a $2.8-billion credit union – the last 11 of which were spent in marketing and community relations. Kristina holds a Bachelor of Business Administration with a concentration in marketing and a Master of Science in Nonprofit Management. She has served on the national Board of Directors for the nonprofit Bright Pink and on the Strengthening Families Issue Council for the United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County. Kristina and her husband, Scott, have three amazing children – Brianna, Riley, and Keller. Kristina and Scott enjoy spending family time watching movies, playing board games, and watching live music.

The Big Give is Around the Corner!!

Support The Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas on March 28th during Big Give 2019! #BigGive2019 is a full day of fundraising for nonprofits in San Antonio and surrounding communities.

Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas works to foster healing for grieving children and youth, their families, and the community through individual counseling, grief support groups, and educational opportunities.

By donating to Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas on March 28th, your gift can help qualify the organization to win additional monetary prizes that significantly impact the lives of children and family who are in need of support following the loss of a loved one. For more information on how you can give, visit https://www.thebiggivesa.org/organizations/children-s-bereavement-center-of-south-texas.

Want to do more? Help us fundraise! Visit the link above and select “Fundraise” to become a champion for kids in our program. Need help on setting up your page? Contact Franchesca at [email protected].



Tour of the Heart (April Make-Up Date)

Come on out for Tour of the Heart!!

Join Leslie Wood for a tour of the Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas at 11:00 am on the first Friday of each month. Take this opportunity to get a firsthand look at our facility, as well as learn more about our services and how you can help support our mission.

**Tour of the Heart for Friday, April 5th was been moved to Friday, April 12th.**


For more information, please contact Leslie Wood at [email protected].



Help Design the Center’s 2019 Fiesta Medal!

CBCST’s 2018 Fiesta Medal, designed by Core Creative

For the past several years, you and your family may have seen the Center’s float in the River Parade or even seen us at Fiesta Fiesta, selling our Fiesta medals to raise awareness about the needs of grieving children in our community.

This year the Center is asking our supporters to help design the 2019 Fiesta medal for the Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas! You may come up with your own design for the medal, but we also have some templates below to help get the creative juices flowing. All submissions must be received by Friday, November 2nd by 5pm and the winners will be announced the following Monday on our Facebook page.

Submissions can either be emailed to [email protected] or mailed to:

Attn: Fiesta Medal Contest
205 W. Olmos Drive
San Antonio, TX 78212

If you would like more information on the Fiesta Medal Contest or would like to sponsor the 2019 Fiesta Medal, please contact Franchesca Velten at [email protected] or call the Center at 210-736-4847, ext. 244.

**Make sure to include your name and contact information on your submission!!**

Fiesta Medal Templates:
Blank Circle
Design Your Own!