By Lt. L. A. von Savoye, PIO/AA

Sierra Conservation Center

Sierra Conservation Center (SCC) staff last month donated 2,000 cell phones to the Cell Phones for Soldiers Program.

Also, a SCC Correctional Officer donated $858 to a local veterans group through a fund-raising project he formulated.

The 2,000 cell phones that were donated will provide more than 60,000 minutes of free talk time to troops who are deployed all over the world and will allow them to connect with their loved ones back home cost-free.

SCC Correctional Officer Ronald Gamble presented an $858 check to the Disabled American Veterans of Sonora.  Officer Gamble came up with the fundraising idea when he requested that SCC have a Family Military Troop Board.

This board is a way for SCC staff members to recognize family members (past and present) that have served in the United States Armed Forces.

Officer Gamble began asking if any other staff would support this idea and he received overwhelming support.

The fundraising idea came in to play when Officer Gamble realized that he might collect more money than he would need for the troop board.

Officer Gamble made some calls and found that the Sonora area Disabled American Veterans Organization had lost its federal funding of $850.

A Tri-Tip lunch fundraiser was held with the assistance of Martinez Catering (staff snack bar owner), and other donations seem to pour in, including donations from another area veterans group (Vietnam Veterans Chapter 391) as well as from the local California Correctional Peace Officers Association (CCPOA) chapter.

The Disabled American Veterans Representatives came out to SCC and participated in the luncheon and were extremely appreciative of the donation.