California Model, Community Involvement

Charities benefit from staff, incarcerated efforts

Thanks to the efforts of CDCR/CCHCS staff and the incarcerated population, charities and community organizations are getting much needed help.

CRC, PVSP donates to autism groups

Two CDCR facilities focused efforts on Autism Awareness Month, observed annually in April. Autism charities benefited from the generosity of staff and the incarcerated population.

California Rehabilitation Center (CRC) donated $4,500 to a local Autism Society in honor of Autism Awareness Month. Representative for the Autism Society Inland Empire Melissa Cardona said the donation will be able to help provide services for families.

Incarcerated artists at Pleasant Valley State Prison joined forces with the Community Resource Office and the local parks district to raise autism awareness.

The population donated artwork to be sold during an autism awareness event at Keck Park in Coalinga in early April. Aside from the artwork, the population also held a food sale, raising $2,500 for autism charities.

In addition, the CRM team placed a resource display in the Administration Lobby so staff could find resources in the Central Valley and learn more about autism. Justin Nugent, CRM, also asked staff to join in bringing awareness and acceptance of autistic voices in the community by wearing wristbands or pins to show their support.

Valley State Prison distributes bikes to disabled

Valley State Prison (VSP) held their first Adaptive Bike Distribution. The bicycles were distributed to Merced County Office of Education. VSP’s Adaptive Bicycle Program serves disabled and impaired individuals of all ages.

The Adaptive Bicycle Project is a combined effort involving:

  • Valley State Prison
  • Madera County Office of Education
  • Merced County Office of Education
  • Valley Lutheran Church
  • other vested stakeholders.

The program collaborated with General Builders Supply and Home Depot to collect donated bikes, parts, tools, and materials. The supplies are hand fabricated by the incarcerated population to create new custom adaptive bicycles.

PVSP incarcerated raise $5k for youth baseball

During a break between two games at the Coalinga Youth Baseball Complex, Pleasant Valley State Prison leaders presented a $5,000 check to the organization. Warden (A) Tristan Lemon, Community Resource Manager Justin Nugent, and PIO Lt. Jason Martin were on hand to present the donation to the youth league.

The money was raised by the incarcerated population who were eager to support youth activities in the local community. They said, “Sports keeps kids from riskier activities.”

Moreover, with the help of the Community Resource Manager team and prison Administration, the fundraising efforts will provide for much needed sports equipment and enable the All Star Teams to travel throughout the state.

“We are proud to be a part of the Coalinga community and being able to the youth baseball program here,” said Lemon.

By Lt. Jason Martin.

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