Animal Control

A cat available for adoption at Animal Control.

A cat available for adoption at Animal Control.

The Ingham County Animal Control and Shelter provides services including temporary housing to domesticated animals and the opportunity to come in and adopt a pet.

Ashley Hayes, the volunteer coordinator and special events liaison, says it is the shelter’s job to protect animals from people, and protect people from animals.

Domestic animals and most farm animals that are found without an owner are picked up and taken into the shelter, where they are held for four days if they are a stray, or seven days if they have some sort of identification tags.

The animals that go unclaimed are put through a health test and temperament exam, just to make sure they are suitable for adoption.

To adopt a pet, an applicant must provide proof that their residence is allowed to house that animal, must be cleared from the ‘do not adopt’ list and interview with an Animal Control counselor.

Shelter number: 517-676-8370
Anonymous tip line: 517-676-8376

600 Curtis St.
Mason, MI 48854

Tuesday and Wednesday: Noon to 6 p.m.
Thursday through Saturday: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Closed Sundays and Mondays

—Cameron Billes

Haven House

Haven House provides temporary shelter for homeless families with children.

Haven House provides temporary shelter for homeless families with children.

The Haven House is a temporary emergency shelter for homeless families with children. The shelter runs a 30-day program for homeless families.
The Haven House has seven bedrooms.

The families are required to meet daily with a case worker as long as they are residents at Haven House.

The case worker helps families figure out a budget for their housing and utilities, and tells them how to manage their money.

Shelter Coordinator Taylor Cramer monitors the families’ job search. Cramer said that residents are required to apply to three jobs a day if they are unemployed.

Because of minimal security at the Haven House, it is unable to shelter families that have experienced domestic abuse if the abuser is considered to be an immediate threat to the family.
Instead, the Haven House will refer the family to a homeless shelter with more security.


121 Whitehills Dr.
East Lansing, Michigan, 48823

—Akshita Verma

Ingham County Farm Service Agency  

The Farm Service Agency office is located in Mason, Michigan and is part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Its role in the community is to stabilize farm income, help farmers conserve land and water resources, provide credit to new and disadvantaged farmers and help farm operations recover after a disaster.

The agency also helps area farmers comply with grant programs, the 2014 Farm Bill and other economic programs implemented by the USDA.  This particular office services both Ingham and Livingston counties. The location fits because of its proximity to the state capital, Michigan State University,  which is a land-grant university, and a highly agricultural area.

121 E. Maple St.

Mason, Michigan 48854


Monday through Friday: 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

— Alexa McCarthy

Lending Library


Tammy Heilman shows some of the bins available for checkout in Lansing

Run by the Office for Young Children, the Lending Library offers a variety of children’s toys and books that any local parent can borrow. It is free to check out material and convenient for pickup and drop off. Though many materials are housed in Lansing, there are many Lending Library sites established in Clinton, Eaton, Ionia, and Shiawassee counties.

“There is more inventory here in Lansing. We have toys, books, games, head start programs, and we just ordered more videos to be checked out soon,” said Tammy Heilman, and Early Childhood Consultant with the OYC. “The other counties have their own various inventories, some of which are the same as [Lansing], while some are different. It depends on the location for what you’re going to find.”

Check out items include “Experience Bins” with theme-based toys, “CARES” or “Children Acquire Rich Experience and Skills,” with a toy and activity book that guides a specific skill, and “Story Stretchers,” which contains a storybook and activity ideas for development.

Materials can be borrowed for up to two weeks. Before return, Lending Library asks that borrowers clean and sanitize the materials, as well as pay for any lost or broken materials.

Office for Young Children
5303 S. Cedar St.
Lansing, MI 48911
Monday through Friday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

(800) 234-6996
(517) 887-4319

—Erin Eschels

Ingham County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management

DSCN4012-1Safety and preparedness are the top priorities at the Ingham County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. This office, housed within the Ingham County Sheriff’s Office, is devoted to maintaining secure, protected environments throughout the county.

The department’s system is governed by officials specializing in emergency and natural disaster prevention, emergency response and recovery. The office takes action in power outages, severe thunderstorms, earthquakes, damage control, overturned semi-trailers, oil spills, and any issues that affect multiple responding units such as fire, police and hazardous materials. Sheriff Gene L. Wriggelsworth and Program Manager Sgt. Robert Ott head the office.

630 N. Cedar St.
Mason, MI 48854

Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Closed weekends and holidays.

Fax: 517-676-8299

—Rashad Timmons

Northeast Ingham Emergency Services Authority

NIESA serves northeast Ingham County, which includes the townships of Williamstown, Leroy, Locke and Wheatfield, as well as the city of Williamston and the Village of Webberville. The service area is made up of the Williamston Fire Department and NIESA Emergency Medical Services in Williamston, and the Leroy Township Fire Department in Webberville.

NIESA is run by a seven-member board, one from each community it serves, as well as one “at-large” member. It began on Jan. 1, 1999.

Paula M. Curtis, secretary/office manager, 517-655-3384
1296 W. Grand River Ave., Williamston, MI 48895

—Tyler Beck

Big Brother Big Sister

Children can be mentored by local high school students and adults through the Big Brother Big Sister Michigan Capitol Region in Lansing, Mich. The program is volunteer-based and parents can register their children online at the Big Brother Big Sister website. Bigs, the mentors, are able to interact with their littles, the children, outside of school in casual settings where they are able to aid them on anything they are going through. The main impact of Big Brother Big Sister is to create one-to-one interaction between the children and adults to specifically guide each child in a positive direction in life.

330 Marshall St.  #103
Lansing Charter Township, Mich, 48912517-372-0160

-Michelai Graham
The Department of Veterans Affairs

The Department of Veterans Affairs

The Ingham County Department of Military and Veterans Affairs website says that the DMVA is “committed to providing services and assistance to those distinguished men and women who have honorably served and protected our country. It is our privilege to ensure that you receive and are informed of all benefits to which you and your dependents are entitled.”

Counselors are available to assist veterans to their rights to federal, state and county benefits. Benefits include:
·      Disability compensation
·      Disability pension
·      Home loan guaranty
·      Vocational rehabilitation
·      Burial benefits
·      Military discharges
·      Military service records
·      Medals and ribbons
Department of Veterans Affairs

Department of Veterans Affairs

DMVA does not care about when you served in the military, be it during “war or a time of peace, your sacrifice and commitment are appreciated.”

3423 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

Lansing, MI 48906

—Lia Kananipuamaeole Kamana

Ronald McDonald House of Mid-Michigan

The Donor Wall inside the Ronald McDonald House of Mid-Michigan

The Donor Wall inside the Ronald McDonald House of Mid-Michigan

The mission of Ronald McDonald Houses according to their website is to “provide a “home-away-from-home” for families so they can stay close by their hospitalized child at little or no cost.  Our Houses are built on the simple idea that nothing else should matter when a family is focused on healing their child – not where they can afford to stay, where they will get their next meal or where they will lay their head at night to rest. We believe that when a child is hospitalized the love and support of family is as powerful as the strongest medicine prescribed.”

According to Ruth Lumbert, the resident house manager at the Ronald McDonald House of Mid- Michigan, this house is “truly the house built with love.”

Natalie Hoff volunteering at the Ronald McDonald House of Mid-Michigan

Natalie Hoff volunteering at the Ronald McDonald House of Mid-Michigan

The Ronald McDonald House of Mid-Michigan opened in June of 2000. The fact that it took more than 700 donations to start the Mid-Michigan house is what makes it so special. Lumbert said that it is rare to have that many donors, for most houses are sponsored by a few large donors.

Volunteers staff the house from 8 a.m.  to 8 p.m. with a range of duties. There are opportunities for high school and college students as well. To volunteer at the Ronald McDonald house, call or write.

121 S. Holmes St.
Lansing, MI 48912

—Lia Kananipuamaeole Kamana

The Haven House

Haven House welcome sign as seen from Abbott Road.

Haven House welcome sign as seen from Abbott Road.

According to the Haven House website, the mission of Haven House is to “provide emergency housing and support services for one-parent and two-parent families with children. The shelter helps families who are homeless prepare for permanent housing by developing and promoting self-sufficiency, stability and financial responsibility.”

Haven House has been serving homeless families of the Greater Lansing Area since 1983. Basic needs such as shelter, food and clothing aren’t the only things provided to residents. Programs are offered with the hope that they will help families stay on track and have less of a chance of becoming homeless in the future.

There are numerous ways for volunteers to help. If you would like to volunteer at Haven House, you can call Haven House and ask to speak to Gabriel Biber, Volunteer and Special Projects Coordinator.

Haven House is run on funds donated from Ingham County, private donors, businesses and organizations throughout the area. To donate, contact Haven House or check its website.

121 Whitehills Drive
East Lansing, MI 48823


—Lia Kananipuamaeole Kamana

Ingham County Waste Management

Green Way and Recycling

Ingham County waste management is a resource for citizens to use for recycling needs.

The waste management website includes detailed recycling services such as instructions on how to recycle materials such as mercury thermostats, leftover paint, batteries, fluorescent bulbs and much more.

There are nine locations in Ingham County for citizens to drop off their recycling including sites near Mason, Williamston, East Lansing, and Michigan State University.

MSU Recycling

The county also puts on events that have to do with recycling, like Recycle-Rama in April. At the event, the county will be taking more specific items like bicycles, dehumidifiers and eyeglasses.


—Gabriela Saldivia

Ingham County Land Bank

Ingham County Land Bank coordinator Joseph Bonsall works at his desk in the remodeled house that houses the Land Bank offices.

422 Adams St.
Lansing, MI 48906

Fax: 517-267-5224

Mary Ruttan, executive director
Fax: 517-267-5224

Eric Schertzing, chairman of the Ingham County Land Bank as well as Ingham County Treasurer
Fax: 517-676-7242

According to the Ingham County Land Bank, “The Ingham County Land Bank is a strategic economic tool that supports growth and investment within our community. Dedicated to improving the quality of our neighborhoods and strengthening our communities, the Ingham County Land Bank was created to return tax reverted, purchased, donated and unclaimed land to productive use more rapidly than may have been possible otherwise.”

Ingham County Land Bank coordinator Joseph Bonsall said that the house in downtown Lansing where the land bank offices are held was saved and restored like many other Lansing homes that once faced vacancy.
— Emily Fesler

CodeRED and Nixle:
Ingham County Information Services

“CodeRED” is a free emergency notification system that is accessible to all residents of Ingham County. Occupants can apply to receive information about emergencies happening in the area by landline, business line, pager or cell phone. “CodeRED” will only contact residents when situations that merit a notification arise.

Nixle is an information service that allows Ingham County residents to receive information concerning the local police department, schools, community agencies and organizations. By signing up you can receive such updates via text message or email. Registration is free and can be customized to preference.

For more information on CodeRED or Nixle, contact the Ingham County Sheriff’s Office.

630 N. Cedar St.
Mason, MI 48854

Fax: 517-676-8299

Hours: Monday–Friday: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Parking: Available in lot outside of building.

—David Topham

Lansing Regional Chamber

500 E. Michigan Ave., Suite 200
P.O. Box 14030
Lansing, MI 48901

Phone: 517-487-6340
Fax: 517-484-6910

Hours: Monday–Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Parking: No lot available. Visitors must use meters located in multiple places along Michigan Avenue. Meters in effect Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. One hour of parking runs $0.75. There is a two hour limit.

The Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce supports local employers and businesses in the area. For more than 100 years, the organization has been helping local businesses prosper by providing a number of connections and resources. It connects members to a very broad and excellent network, which gives them the ability to achieve economic growth.

The chamber currently serves over 11,000 businesses in Ingham, Eaton, and Clinton counties. Those interested in joining can apply online. The Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce is located directly across the street from Cooley Law School Stadium on.

—David Topham

Ingham County Office on Aging

Antoine Johnson is a supervisor for the Meals-On-Wheels program in Lansing, a sector of the Office on Aging. As meals are prepared and packed Martein Carter loads the coolers into vans that leave early to deliver a piping hot fresh meal.

5303 South Cedar, Suite 1
Lansing, MI 48911-3800

8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday

The Tri-County Office on Aging was chartered in 1974 and aims to aid older adults, persons with disabilities and their families in leading healthy, active and independent lives.

According to the TCOA, “Our mission is to promote and preserve the independence and dignity of the aging population. To accomplish this mission, we connect people who need help to service providers, volunteers, donors, businesses and governments throughout Eaton, Clinton and Ingham Counties and the cities of Lansing and East Lansing. Although TCOA’s Meals On Wheels is our best-known program, our reach goes well beyond providing nourishing meals. Many of our services are provided at no or low-cost or have fees based on a sliding scale.”

Martein Carter, a runner for the Meels-On-Wheels program loads and delivers meals to the elderly that are prepared and packed at the Lansing location.

Supervisor Antoine Johnson proudly stands in front of a mixer in the Lansing location as meals are prepared early in the morning before they are packed and delivered.

Greater Lansing Meals-On-Wheels

Greater Lansing Meals-On Wheels 
Includes East Lansing, Okemos and Haslett


Senior Dining Sites (tri-county)
517-887-1440 or 800-405-9141

Medicare/Medicaid Assistance Program
MMAP toll free

Crisis Services for the Elderly
Greater Lansing Area
(24 hours)

— Emily Fesler

Tri-County Regional Planning Commission

3135 Pine Tree Road, Suite 2C
Lansing, MI 48911

Phone: 517-393-0342
Fax: 517-393-4424

Hours: Monday–Friday: 8 a.m. to noon, 1 to 5 p.m.

Parking: Available in lot right outside of the office building.

The Tri-County Regional Planning Commission (TCRPC) serves Ingham, Clinton, and Eaton counties. The commission solves growth-related problems in the region to meet the needs of the people within the community, and has been doing so since 1956. Its main areas of focus include: the environment, economic development, land use, transportation and a regional data center.

Recently, the TCRPC created the “Regional Growth: Choices for Our Future” initiative. The program was designed to create long-term sustainability for the three counties. “Regional Growth” has been improving the quality of the life in the area since 2005.

David Topham

Ingham County MSU Extension


Ingham County MSU Extension Lansing, Mich. office.

The Ingham County MSU Extension’s mission is to “help people improve their lives through an educational process that applies knowledge to critical needs, issues, and opportunities.”

The extension provides residents with opportunities and educational programming in areas such as agriculture and agribusiness, childr

Outside the Ingham County MSU Extension

Outside the Ingham County MSU Extension Mason, Mich. office.

en and youth commissions, environmental and “green” solutions, and health and nutrition.

Recent programs include the annual 4-H fair, ServSafe certification class, and a home ownership tutorial class.  The extension also provides online guides in horticulture, as well as the possibility of joining the youth commission, which performs community service and holds government and marketing projects throughout the year.

Mason Office (Main Office):

121 E. Maple St.
P.O. Box 319
Mason, MI  48854

Fax: 517-676-7288

Lansing Office:

5303 S. Cedar St.
Lansing, MI  48911


Hours: Monday–Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Closed on Saturday and Sunday

— Abbie Lennox

The Ingham Conservation District


The Ingham County Conservation District office.

The Ingham Conservation District’s goal is to provide educational sessions and environmental cleanup projects that will enable county residents to help maintain the community’s healthy and diverse ecosystem.

The district provides classes and projects throughout the entire year, ranging from hunter safety classes, to annual river cleanups and volunteer opportunities such as Adopt-A-Stream.  During the fall and spring of each year, the ICD holds a tree sale, which offers residents and non-residents the opportunity to buy and plant their own trees, aiding in the maintenance of the community’s environmental resources.

The district has partnered with local environmental associations that can assist residents with their own conservation plans for wildlife habitat and water quality improvement.

1031 W. Dexter Trail
Mason, MI 48854

Phone: 517-676-2290

District’s Facebook page

Hours: Monday–Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Closed on Saturday and Sunday

— Abbie Lennox

The Ingham County Department of Human Services

Outside the Ingham County Department of Human Services building.

The Ingham County Department of Human Services is a public support and aid agency for children and families.

Through a network of service programs, assistance is available to Ingham County residents in areas such as food and cash assistance, foster care and adoption, refugee assistance, and abuse and neglect protective services.

The department provides assistance for families, children, and adults.  Programs such as the Family Independence Program help families with cash assistance and other benefits.  Eligibility for cash and/or food assistance is based upon assets, countable income and residency.  Emergency relief is also available in cases that threaten direct health or safety such as home repairs, heat and utilities, and burial assistance.

Children’s services available through the department include child development and care programs, Children’s Protective Services, and foster care and adoption opportunities for families.  Parents can make child support payments online, as well as review court orders and upcoming court dates.

Adult services include Adult Community Placement and Independent Living Services, which both work to allow adults to live independently in the community through education, job placement, and housing assistance.

5303 Cedar St.
P.O. Box 30088
Lansing, MI 48909

Fax: 517-887-9500

Report Abuse & Neglect 24-hour hotline: 855-444-3911

Hours: Monday–Friday 7 a.m. to 5:45 p.m.
Closed on Saturday and Sunday

Director: SuAlyn Holbrook
Children Services Director: Randy Rauch
Child Welfare Director: Zoe Lyons

—Abbie Lennox

American Red Cross: Central and Northern Michigan Region

The Central and Northern Michigan Region of the American Red Cross serves Ingham, Clinton, Gratiot, Eaton and Shiawassee Counties. The American Red Cross is a humanitarian organization led by volunteers and is funded by community donations.

The American Red Cross provides assistance with disaster relief, services to the needy and armed forces, collection and distribution of blood and classes to educate on health and safety.

The Red Cross chapter in Lansing provides all of the services listed above. A recent venture of the chapter was volunteering in Florida, Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana to aid communities affected by Hurricane Isaac.

The Central and Northern Michigan Region of the Red Cross is directly off East Grand River Avenue right before Marshall Street. Parking provided in front of building.

1800 E. Grand River Ave.
Lansing, MI 48912
P.O. Box 30101

Fax: 517-484-3799

Monday-Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

—Samantha Watson

Capital Area Transportation Authority

Capital Area Transportation Authority or most commonly known by its acronym CATA. CATA operates bus routes in and around Lansing. Since the opening of the Capital Area Transportation Authority in 1972 the number of routes provided has.

The CATA is the bus system used on the campus of Michigan State University. The Spartan services provided by CATA operate only during the MSU academic calendar. Other special services CATA provide include Shopping bus that is offered Monday-Friday and travels to shopping locations each week.

CATA accepts cash and token fares as well as bus passes. Fares vary by zones and services.

Board of Director and Local Advisory Committee meetings are open to the public. Opportunities called Listening Sessions are also available where riders can share thoughts and concerns with a CATA representative.

More information on fares, services and other amenities are provided at

The CATA administrative office is located on Tranter Street before East Jolly Road. Parking is available.

4615 Tranter Street
Lansing, MI 48910

Phone: 517-394-1100

Monday-Friday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

—Samantha Watson