By Lt. Rosie Thomas, AA/PIO
California Institution for Women

Since 2016, California Institution for Women (CIW) volunteers have followed through on their commitment to fight cancer with their Avon 39 Breast Cancer Walk team, Lockdown for a Cure. This year, the walk partnered with the American Cancer Society (ACS) and the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer event was born.

CIW reached out to the ACS and spoke with Susan Heppner, who was excited to hear CDCR was supportive and assisted CIW with their opening food fundraiser in August 2018. Heppner spoke with staff and distributed cancer awareness information.

On Saturday, Sept. 29, the Lockdown for a Cure team participated in the Making Strides against Breast Cancer walk in Rancho Cucamonga. CIW was joined by staff from the California Institution for Men (CIM), California Rehabilitation Center and Backgrounds. Lt. F. Esqueda (CIM) also showed real men wear pink during the walk as he showed support for his wife, a cancer survivor.

On Sept. 30, the inmates’ Lockdown for a Cure team showed their support and participated in a walk on the Recreation Field at CIW.  The inmates walked, played games and enjoyed the sounds of DJ Richterscale, who volunteered his services. The walk was also attended by ACS staff; Janessa Larios, Jimmie Herrick and Tillie Aker. During the check presentation, Herrick thanked CIW for their support and stated with the donation of $2,482, ACS had reached their $100,000 goal.

In addition to participating in the walk, ACS also donated pink ribbons and handouts to CIW to show support for October due to being Breast Cancer Awareness month. The pink ribbons were placed in the Visiting Room and the handouts were distributed throughout the institution for staff, inmates and their visitors to view.