CMF grants 100 holiday wishes
By Lt. Megan Cherinka, AA/PIO
California Medical Facility
California Medical Facility (CMF) partnered with Solano County to help assist low income families at Christmas time for the 36th Annual Christmas Wish Program. Working with the local Family Resource Center, all families went through an eligibility process and once accepted to the program they were able to submit special requests from their children.
Red ornaments were then created with the child’s name, age, gender and three wishes. Sponsors were asked to purchase any of the suggested gifts, spending approximately $50 per child. CMF received 100 of the thousand-plus ornaments distributed throughout participating locations in Solano County. From bikes, to scooters, Legos, LOL Dolls, and more, staff swooped up the ornaments without hesitation. The red ornaments disappeared this year in record time, under 48 hours, signed out to staff and their families to help bring a smile this holiday season.
DAPO Harbor District gathers food for families
By DAPO staff
Harbor District Staff, comprising parole units Compton 1 and GPS, along with Long Beach 1, 2 and 4, in addition to Clerical and POC staff, joined forces recently to extend the spirit of the season to three local community social agencies this holiday season.
As Harbor District Administrator Ms. Ronquillo related, “ We sought to target three agencies within our catchment areas that provide services to our parolees and their families, doing our part to extend what the holiday season is about.”
As a result toys were collected for His Nesting Place, in Long Beach, a non-profit agency for families in need. PAIII Irma Gonzalez added, “Despite our best efforts, unfortunately, many of our parolees find themselves in dire straits when it comes to housing.”
Socks were also collected for use and distribution at the Long Beach Rescue Mission. And as food insecurity remains a constant challenge for so many canned goods were included to supplement the efforts of the Long Beach AIDS Store.
“This year, thanks to the collective efforts of the Harbor District team, we are able to multiply our efforts to extend the spirit of the season to those in need,” added POC Clinician Vanessa Yap.
El Monte Parole District holiday concert benefit families
By DAPO staff
Southern Region’s El Monte Parole District, Harbor Parole District and the Day Reporting Center in Compton held a holiday canned food drive event to benefit the AIDS Food Bank. Part of this effort involved a free holiday concert on Dec. 9.
DAPO, in collaboration with award winning community activist Justin Rudd and his Community Action Team (CAT), hosted a free 24-piece percussion/brass/harp holiday concert Joy To The World. Admission was free with a canned food donation. The AIDS Food Store is the longest serving HIV/AIDS food provider in Southern California feeding men, women and children affected with HIV/AIDS.
The participating Southern Region Parole Districts, El Monte and Harbor sponsored this event by holding a canned food drive to support the AIDS Food Store in Long Beach. Parole Agents Karen Reed, David Davila and Nick O’Neal delivered multiple boxes overflowing with cereal, peanut butter and canned goods to the holiday concert event.
AIDS Food Bank President John Newell was grateful for the parole agents’ help.
“Thank you to parole for your continued support. Every year, we look forward to seeing you guys here because of the contributions you make. Next time, we’ll give you a wheelbarrow to fit all of this food,” he said.
DAPO Southern Region El Monte Supervisor Karen Reed and Harbor Parole District Administrator Diana Ronquillo wanted to raise their efforts by making a bigger social impact within the communities they serve by sponsoring a nationally recognized event that has over 200 attendees every year.
DAPO collected large boxes of canned goods benefitting the AIDS Food Store and delivered them to the Joy to the World holiday concert event. Parole agents engaged in meaningful conversations with the public about the role of a parole agent and the department’s mission of rehabilitation and public safety. Community awareness and organization partnership strengthens DAPO’s social impact efforts.