Inmates jog to help Pixley-Tipton Youth Baseball Program
By Lt. Marshall Denning, AA/Public Information Officer
Kern Valley State Prison
Inmates at Kern Valley State Prison (KVSP) participated in an institution sponsored Jog-A-Thon to help raise money for the Pixley-Tipton Youth Baseball Program.
During an Inmate Advisory Council Meeting in October 2014, staff members from Facility C Special Needs Yard (SNY) challenged the inmate population about raising money for children/youth in the surrounding areas of the community. Instead of the normal fundraiser food sale, the idea of a Jog-A-Thon was proposed and planning immediately began.
On the morning of Dec. 2, 2014, despite the cold and rain, 86 Inmates from the General population SNY buildings, the Emergency Operations Plan building and the Americans with Disabilities Act housed inmates from Facility C participated in the 45-minute run. All had equal access to the event and they ran, walked, and even some were pushed in wheelchairs around the track.
Several of the inmates ran 28 laps in the 45-minute time frame, amounting to almost 7 miles. Facility staff committed to ensuring the fundraiser succeeded stood in the rain while the Inmates completed their symbolic run to earn money for the Pixley-Tipton Baseball Organization.
The inmate population set an initial goal of raising $1,000 and began to encourage all the inmates on Facility C to either participate in the event or donate money to “sponsor” the runners.
The participants were awarded prizes comprising soda, soups and candy for first, second and third place finishes. All participants received a small bag of candy, leaving no one empty handed.
In all, 110 Inmates donated money from their trust accounts by sponsoring the participants raising a total of $1,900, almost twice their intended goal.
“This was a positive experience that everyone had fun with and enjoyed despite the heavy rain. The sense of accomplishment that comes from participating in such an event is something that most prisoners have never had the opportunity to experience,” said Dustin J., an inmate. “We have made a positive contribution to a community in this ground breaking event and hopefully this will inspire more charity events in the future. We made history on this day, and it was done for the kids.”
On Dec. 16, staff from Kern Valley State Prison met in Pixley with the Director of the Pixley-Tipton Youth Baseball Program along with other stakeholders and presented the $1,900 check.