Pleasant Valley SP employees get locked up for charity

A "jail" was constructed for those who were "Doin' Time on Your Dime," a fundraiser by employees of Pleasant Valley State Prison.

A “jail” was constructed for those who were “Doin’ Time on Your Dime,” a fundraiser by employees of Pleasant Valley State Prison.

By Lt. Reagen Athey, AA/Public Information Officer
Pleasant Valley State Prison

Employees at Pleasant Valley State Prison recently put their heads together to create an innovative way to raise money for charity – by “locking up” kind-hearted coworkers.

PVSP Medical CEO Donald McElroy was locked up for charity.

PVSP Medical CEO Donald McElroy was locked up for charity.

During the California State Employees Charitable Campaign (CSECC) committee meetings, members brainstormed ways to raise money for the Staff Appreciation Day and Barbecue. One suggested a quirky way to raise enough money and donate to a non-profit organization. The event was dubbed “Doin’ Time on Your Dime” and the group selected Valley Children’s Hospital as beneficiary.

People could confidentially purchase a warrant for $25 to have someone “arrested.” Once arrested, the staff member needed to raise $50 to post “bail.” A “wanted” poster was created, along with a pledge form, and posted in the Administration Building for everyone to see. People could list their donations if they so chose.

A jail cell was fabricated, the IST Lieutenant acted as the Judge, and other staff were the Bailiff and Deputies.  The arrests and bail were conducted over a three-day span, with close to 50 staff members getting arrested.

During court, many staff were found to be in contempt, which cost them an extra $5-$20, depending on the severity, which was donated directly to Valley Children’s Hospital.

On each of the three days, CSECC held a food fundraiser, offering different options on each day ranging from popcorn and snow cones to hot dogs and a bake sale.

Money is still being collected. However, with the food sales, fundraiser, contempt fees and extra donations, organizers expect the fundraiser to fetch close to $5,000.

The event was such a success, it will become an Annual event, with a different non-profit each year.

IST Lt. Rand Hoyt served as the judge while Sgt. Brandon Cleveland served as Bailiff.

IST Lt. Rand Hoyt served as the judge while Sgt. Brandon Cleveland served as Bailiff.

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2 Responses

  1. M. Robles Friday, October 16, 2015 / 10:16 am

    I agree, great idea about the photos.

  2. J. Carrillo Friday, October 16, 2015 / 9:24 am

    I’ve heard of people being “locked up” for charity events in the past, but the way this one was done takes it to a different level. On top of being a big success, I bet it created a lot of of fun memories for the staff. I’d suggest that next year, a contest be held for those being locked up to give their meanest or silliest “R&R photo” and staff could purchase tickets to vote for their favorite as yet another way to raise more funds towards the cause. Imagine the years of laughter that would come out of those photos! Great job, PVSP.

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