Community Involvement, Rehabilitation

CCWF incarcerated population sews happiness

By Lt. Gene Norman

Since the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown normal programming, the incarcerated population at Central California Women’s Facility (CCWF) have been making good use of their time.

In the spirit of giving, the incarcerated population also raised more than $9,000 to donate to a local food back.

Since March 2020, they have sewn over 3,000 fabric masks, 1,200 dresses, 500 beanie caps, and are now starting to sew shorts for boys.

The Gifted Hands group among other incarcerated volunteers at CCWF, sew the fabric masks for local frontline providers fighting the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dresses go to girls in need

The hand-sewn dresses are a collaboration with local faith based missionaries for a program called “Dress A Girl Around The World.” The dresses are sent to third world countries intended for girls who may have never had a dress of their own.

Most recently the program has expanded to serving boys, giving them a hand- sewn pair of shorts to wear.

The beanie caps are sewn in collaboration with YANA Cancer Comfort. This is an organization that provides beanies to someone battling cancer.

Warden (A) Michael Pallares said, “This program allows the inmates an opportunity to give back to society, which helps the inmate grow as a person.”

Food bank gets big donation

Most recently, the Central Valley has been devastated by the Creek Fire. Like local residents in the surrounding area, the incarcerated population too, have smelled the smoke and felt the ash come down from the sky.

Community Resources Manager Courtney Cipriani felt it necessary to meet with inmate facilitators and try to come up with a way CCWF can help.

She brought in a video made by the Madera County Food Bank requesting assistance in feeding families and victims of the fire. The inmate population agreed to sponsor the local food bank as part of their Oct. 22 inmate fundraiser. 

The CCWF incarcerated population raised over $9,000 to donate to the Madera County Food Bank, which will directly benefit victims of the Creek Fire.

“This is a great way to help out local people in need during these difficult times,” Warden Pallares said.

For more information regarding Dress A Girl Around The World, visit:

For more information regarding YANA Cancer Comfort, visit: