By Lt. Gregory R. Bergersen, AA/PIO
Valley State Prison
Valley State Prison (VSP) hosted recently its first Get on the Bus (GOTB) event for the male inmate population.
Prior to the conversion in 2013 to an all male facility, 25 buses of families from throughout California would embark upon VSP to visit the female inmate population. However, this was the first opportunity since then to participate in the Get on the Bus event. The crowd was small, but the excitement was still there.
Chief Deputy Warden F. P. Field III stated, “This is our first Get on the Bus event and we had three weeks to put this event together. I am very proud of our staff and their ability to facilitate this program quickly and safely. It is important that we continue to strengthen family ties through projects like Get on the Bus. Family reunification is a cornerstone in positive programming.”
The Cabrera children, David, Katherine and Marjory, traveled from Southern California to see their father. It was the first time in 11 years inmate Cabrera has seen Katherine and David. Inmate Cabrera said, “This is a very nice early Father’s Day gift.”
In total, nine inmates had family members participate in this event. It is not quantity, but quality when it comes to celebrating an early Father’s Day, according to those with the program. It is anticipated the Get on the Bus event will continue to grow and be held closer to Father’s Day in June.