By Lt. Eduardo Mazariegos, AA/PIO
Salinas Valley State Prison
Prison staff and inmates at Salinas Valley State Prison (SVSP) have been busy helping the less fortunate during the 2017 holiday season as well as showing appreciation for those employed by the prison.
On Dec. 22, the first holiday basket silent auction took place. Departments from around the institution prepared a basket and staff bid on them, raising $2,000 for charity.
On Dec. 22, SVSP and Correctional Training Facility staff and inmates donated money, bicycles and time to the eighth annual “Cops Giving Tree” event for disadvantaged children and their families sponsored by the Soledad Police Department. Members of the Police Department joined together with the Soledad Unified School District, the Correctional Training Facility, Salinas Valley State Prison, and the South County YMCA in feeding over 500 people, providing 85-100 new bicycles and 500 presents to local children and their families. This year, the SVSP inmate substance use disorder treatment program raised $4,858 from food sale to put toward the event. Staff also raised an additional $2,600 for the event.
On Dec. 22, SVSP administrative staff handed out pastries and coffee to staff members as they came to work to show appreciation for all the hard work they do.
On Dec. 23 and 24, SVSP staff members passed out 207 gifts as part of the Angel Tree Program. SVSP staff donated specific gifts requested by a child and hand delivered them to the child for Christmas.