DPSCS Holiday Giving
December 2, 2011---From one end of Maryland to another, the benevolence and caring of DPSCS personnel is in full view this holiday season. From parties for kids to glove, hat and coat collections and hot meals for the poor, DPSCS employees are showing compassion from the heart.
Keep checking back with this page for updates on the activities of our staff, and see our Seasons Greetings photo album on the DPSCS Facebook page.
Metropolitan Transition Center’s Breakfast with Santa: On December 2, employees from MTC in Baltimore continued their 20-year tradition of providing a hot breakfast with Santa to school children in East Baltimore. The annual party is at Saints James and John School, which is the closest school to the seven DPSCS correctional facilities clustered along Greenmount, Eager, and Madison. The kids see a lot of correctional officers on their way to and from school, but the ones who visit every year leave the most wonderful lasting impression. But the food may not be the true highlight of the day, because after the meal, a special bearded visitor saunters in. Don’t tell the kids, but in real-life, this Santa’s a correctional officer named Maurice Smith. Every child gets to visit with Santa and take a candy cane, books, crayons and games.
Eastern Correctional Institution’s Holiday Parade Float: Each year ECI inmates create a parade float out of recycled or donated materials that is then displayed by correctional staff at holiday parades around the eastern shore. This year the parade dates are: Princess Anne on December 3rd, Salisbury on December 4th and Crisfield on December 9th. Thanks to the staff that donates their time to ensure the float arrives at each of these community events, spreading holiday cheer for all!
Adopting Families: Many correctional facilities and DPSCS offices are adopting families this holiday season including Central MD Correctional Facility in Carroll County, the Maryland Correctional Adjustment Center in Baltimore and the Roxbury Correctional Facility in Hagerstown.
DPSCS Executive Staff Serves Breakfast for Our Daily Bread: On December 14th and 15th members of the DPSCS executive staff showed up bright and early to Our Daily Bread in Baltimore to prepare and serve breakfast for the homeless. From setting the tables to scooping out hot oatmeal, staff got a chance to give back to those less fortunate this holiday season. Our Daily Bread serves more than a quarter million meals every year – all of which are made possible through volunteers like the DPSCS staff.
Food and Clothing Collections: Across the state staff is collecting everything from gloves to toys to food for those less fortunate. Cumberland’s two facilities Western Correctional Institution and North Branch Correctional Institution are collecting Toys for Happiness and will present the night of their holiday party. Southern Maryland Pre-Release Unit is making donations to Christmas Connections which allows families to shop for free. Hats and gloves will be donated to the Cecil Elementary School by staff at the Baltimore City Correctional Center, while the Eastern Correctional Institution is working with the facility's medical provider to collect coats for H.A.L.O. Ministries in Salisbury. And staff at the Police and Correctional Training Commissions will continue their tradition of collecting needed items for residents at the Springfield Hospital Center, located next to their grounds in Sykesville.
Maryland Correctional Training Center Supports Salvation Army: Staff at MCTC is collecting Toys for Tots, while an inmate Veteran group is holding a food drive this month. In mid-December, a crew will head over to the local Salvation Army in Hagerstown to help sort donated food and toys for their annual Christmas distribution.
Holiday for Children of Incarcerated Parents: Many of our correctional institutions are trying to brighten the holidays for the children of offenders residing in their facilities. The MD Correctional Adjustment Center, which houses federal detainees, is partnering with the National Women’s Prison Project to sponsor a holiday celebration for female detainee’s children where each will receive a gift. The Baltimore Pre-Release Unit for men is also hosting children through a Inside/Outside Dad program, as well as through the Chaplain’s Office. And institutions on the eastern shore are participating in the Prison Fellowship Angel Tree Christmas Project.