Local News

Inmates raise money for hungry families in Washington

AIRWAY HEIGHTS, Wash. - Inmates at Airway Heights Corrections Center raised more than $4,000 to make sure no family goes hungry here in Eastern Washington.

This is an extremely important resource in our community. This year alone, the Women and Children's Free Restaurant and Community Kitchen plans to feed more than 60,000 meals to the underserved in the Inland Northwest. On Friday, they got a big bump in that mission.

Pizza Rita has teamed up with the Department of Corrections for the last five years to raise money for local charities. Here's how it works: all day long, inmates can order delivery from all Pizza Rita locations. Those pizzas are brought out to the Airway Heights Correction Center and the proceeds go directly to a charity of the inmates choice.

"It gives the incarcerated population a chance to give back to the community," said Airway Heights Superintendent James Key.

This year, those inmates chose the Women and Children's Free Restaurant and Kitchen. Three times a week, the non-profit organization offers a restaurant-like dining atmosphere for women who are struggling.

On Friday, they were preparing lunches for a picnic day, an event they try to do each month.

"The more than $4,200 is a huge amount of money for us," said Paige McKee, Development and Communications Director. "We are grateful. This goes a long, long way to help our programs."

The inmates that participate in the program have to show good behavior and social skills while they're in. The program also helps them make connections in the business and non-profit world which could help to set them up for success once they're out.