William Davenport: PeliPALS Story

It’s hard to understand what life is like for the incarcerated. That’s why we want to bring our PeliPALS stories to light and share their experiences with incarceration. Today, we bring you the story of William Davenport.

If you’d like your incarcerated loved one’s story featured, have them mail it to Pelipost.

Written By: William Davenport

Most people are incapable of relating to the loneliness being incarcerated can bring. My family will never fully understand how letters, photos, phone calls, and visits / video visits help me cope with all the negativity that surrounds me.

Although I put emphasis on my loved ones sending photos, no one gave my request any serious consideration. Fortunately, I found a Pelipost ad, created a prepaid account, and informed my family of an easy way to send pictures. Thanks to Pelipost, I now receive photos regularly!

Photos help me get through the day-to-day struggle of missing my family. Although it’s always great to hear a familiar voice, as an aspiring photographer it’s the photos from my family that I look forward to the most. To sum it all up, my family and potential friends are always welcome to send photos to keep my spirits up during these most difficult times!

Sincerely, William Davenport

Thank you for reading William’s story. Please enjoy 20% off your next 4×6 photo order with Pelipost! Simply enter code BLOG4X6 at checkout. Act fast, this offer is for a limited time only.

To download the Pelipost app, go to the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

Safandre Lindsey: PeliPALS Story

It’s hard to understand what life is like for the incarcerated. That’s why we want to bring our PeliPALS stories to light and share their experiences with incarceration. Today, we bring you the story of Safandre Lindsey.

If you’d like your incarcerated loved one’s story featured, have them mail it to Pelipost.

Written By: Safandre Lindsey

Since I was ten, I have been in and out of juvenile facilities, group homes, and prisons. So, you can say I’ve had a hard life, but that was only because I had a hard head. I came from a good working class family, but I was always rebellious. I found God and I’m now trying to turn my life around. I have never hurt anyone to get what I want; I’m incarcerated for a series of drug deliveries.

The most important things that help me get through my day are the photos furnished by Pelipost (who makes it easy for my family and loved ones to send them to me), the music on my tablet, and last but not least, the local news- the one thing that keeps me focused on the fact that I’m not missing anything. What I look forward to the most from my family and loved ones are visits, phone calls, and emails. What my family and loved ones can do to keep my spirits up is keep praying and know that I am now doing the right thing, and will continue to when I am released.

I would like to thank Pelipost for the opportunity to share my story. To people in prison all over the world- keep your head up!

Sincerely, Safandre Lindsey

Thank you for reading Safandre’s story. Please enjoy 20% off your next 4×6 photo order with Pelipost! Simply enter code BLOG4X6 at checkout. Act fast, this offer is for a limited time only.

To download the Pelipost app, go to the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

What is Love Your Inmate Day?

It’s almost time to celebrate our 5th Annual Love Your Inmate Day! Each year on August 8th, we dedicate this day to our incarcerated loved ones to remind them that they are loved, supported, and valued. Keep reading to learn more about this special day and how you can participate this year.

8/8 Love Your Inmate Day

This day was created to not only support our incarcerated loved ones but to shatter the stigma. Everyone makes mistakes, and it’s ok to talk about it. In fact, it’s good to talk about it because we’re all people, and we all deserve to feel loved and supported.

“We hope in turn this gives them the added peace of mind that their family and friends are thinking about them…”

Becky Calderon, Chief Operating Officer of Pelipost

“With everyday life on the outside racing by, we wanted to create a special day that reminds us to take pause and focus on our incarcerated loved ones, and what we can do to give them a little extra attention.  We hope in turn this gives them the added peace of mind that their family and friends are thinking about them, and are here to support them through these difficult times” says Becky Calderon, Chief Operating Officer of Pelipost.

The intentions of Love Your Inmate Day (LYID) are not only to show your incarcerated loved one that you care, but also to get in touch with other friends and families affected by incarceration. The significance of this day is to show that no one is alone in this journey, whether behind bars or on the outside. 

How to Participate

The Love Your Inmate Day website lists multiple ways to get involved in this year’s celebration. These include:

‘Love Never Gives Up’ Merchandise

Show support for your incarcerated loved ones by grabbing the latest products from our EXCLUSIVE Love Your Inmate Day Collection. Part of the proceeds are used to help children with incarcerated parents through Pelipost’s Student of the Month Program and Pelipost’s Overcoming Adversity Scholarship. You can purchase all ‘Love Never Gives Up’ Merchandise here

Dedication Wall

Get your picture on our Dedication Wall! Get your “LOVE NEVER GIVES UP” bracelet, snap a photo, and email it to us at love@pelipost.com to be added to the 2022 Dedication Wall. 

Love Your Inmate Day Giveaway

Finding ways to bring lightness and joy into a difficult experience is key to making it through the experience. Participate in the Love your inmate day giveaway for a chance to win all kinds of fun prizes, including a Visa gift card, a Pelipost t-shirt, a Love your inmate day bundle, and plenty of PeliPOINTS that you can redeem for free pictures on the Pelipost app. Learn how to enter here.

The Pelipost Team with their ‘8/8 Happy Love Your Inmate Day!’ Posters

8 Days of Dedications

Create a dedication to your incarcerated loved one on the LYID Facebook page. All you have to do is send us a photo and a message about your loved one. We will be sharing the dedications on our Facebook wall all day from August 1st-8th, 2021. 


Don’t forget to send your incarcerated loved ones photos in honor of Love Your Inmate Day! You can download the Pelipost app through the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

Pelipost Overcoming Adversity Scholarship

Joseph Calderon, the CEO and Founder of Pelipost, established the ‘Pelipost Overcoming Adversity Scholarship’ in 2021 to empower and reward students seeking a college education while overcoming the challenges of having an incarcerated parent/guardian.

“We know firsthand what it’s like to have a family member in prison while trying to attend college, and it’s not an easy journey. “

Joseph Calderon, CEO and Founder of Pelipost

Joseph was pursuing his college education while his mother was incarcerated. Because of his grit and endurance to overcome adversity, he was able to graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business. Together, he and Becky began the Pelipost mission to serve families who are fighting the same battle to remain connected in such an isolating season. Pelipost is committed to helping meet the financial needs of those experiencing family incarceration, so they can pursue a college education and improve their quality of life.

We are pleased to announce the recipients of the first annual ‘Pelipost Overcoming Adversity Scholarship!’  

Meet our Scholarship Recipients 

Destiny Sanchez

“My goal is to work with foster youth. I’m currently an intern for a nonprofit organization that works with foster youth and the at-risk homeless. Many adults who have entered foster care don’t have driver’s licenses, bank accounts, birth certificates, etc., and these are some things I help them achieve within my internship. I also help them navigate financial aid and sign up for their local community college classes. As a former foster youth, myself, I can understand the barriers and challenges in pursing higher education. I try my best to lead by example and show them that it’s possible. I want to do humanitarian work in other countries one day. Meanwhile, I’m staying focused in school and within my internship.”

Xiomara Lindsay with her Pelipost Overcoming Adversity Scholarship Recipient Certificate

Xiomora Lindsay

“Although I haven’t fully decided what branch of business I want to work in, I plan on being an independent businesswoman and I have the work ethic to do what it takes to reach my goals. I would describe myself as optimistic, independent, and goal oriented. I am a very dependable and reliable person because if I say that I will do something, then I am bound to do it. I am a person that keeps their promises because I feel as though loyalty is a very important aspect of life. I am the type of person that works on a skill until I have perfected it. I’m always interested in learning new skills and interested in taking  action to things that will help me advance in my career.”

Gabriella Marquez

“I am a sophomore studying political science and on the pre-law track at the University of Southern California. I am passionate about social justice and equality. I am determined to engage in legal advocacy and make a positive impact on under-represented communities.”

Jeremiah Coleman

“My goal is to take my nurse practitioner degree and work in impoverished communities to help those less fortunate despite their inability to pay. My uncle is 66 and watching his continuing demise is a reminder every day of the healthcare needs that beset minority communities. I just want to accomplish everything God has for me. The same miraculous God in the bible is the same God that is working in our favor today. He gets his done through people, I believe wholeheartedly I am one of those people. I live in a single parent household; my mother takes care of me and my 3 siblings. She also works as a caretaker over my uncle. We realistically don’t have the funds for me to go to school, but student loans are not an option. The funds will go straight to my schooling, I simply wish to accomplish my goals.”

Itali Jones

“I believe in following through with my dreams with dedicated, hard work. It is my goal to achieve my PharmD to not only better the future for me and my daughter, to start an organization dedicated to preventing and supporting substance abusers. I want to show my daughter that dreams are never too far from your reach, and that with consistency mixed with passion, anything is in your reach.”

Congratulations to all!

For more information about the Pelipost Overcoming Adversity Scholarship and to read each of the winning applications please visit: https://bold.org/scholarships/pelipost-overcoming-adversity-scholarship/

Veronica Martinez: Sharing her PeliPALS experience.

I cannot begin to express my gratitude and am beyond thankful for your service. I’m a single mom and my children are young. I was able to set up my PeliPALS account and it was a breeze. My daughters uploaded their pictures and it’d be here in a matter of days. The fact that my daughter didn’t have to “bother” our family to get a ride and pay for printed pictures. It was a relief on both our ends. She enjoyed it because she was able to add captions. Helping me meet new members of family I’ve missed. Yet making me feel a part of with a simple picture. So thank you so much for that.

I treasure those pictures dearly and close to my heart. I’ve put them on my bunk so I wake up to see them, the sights of nature that bring me peace. Reminding me, I’m closer to that freedom and my babies. I go to bed and look up at all the pictures and know that I’ll wake up to see those smiles of the ones I love most and who love me as well. Hearing from my children via calls, emails, video visit, and pictures help me and make me so happy. The fact it’s so simple for them to upload and send pictures make it all worth it. Especially when my mom struggles with English and apps. Again, thank you so much!

My daughters enjoy but no more than I when I hear my name and see Pelipost knowing I’m receiving pictures. This helps relieve a burden from my busy family raising my children. Something so small can contribute but be a part of the family still. Thank you so much! I highly recommend your service. We will continue to use your service once I’m released because my fiancé will be happy to receive weekly and monthly pictures. Thank you so much! I’d rate you 5 stars online but til then this will do.

Sincerely,

A very happy mom!

Veronica Martinez

Use a Prison Catalog to Send a Gift to Your Incarcerated Loved One

As people, we send gifts to loved ones for birthdays, holidays, or just to show that we care. However, due to the rules and regulations of what inmates are allowed to receive in the mail, gift-giving is not the same. But did you know you can buy gifts for your incarcerated loved ones through approved catalogs? These catalogs can include anything from food, clothing, and other items that are approved to send to your incarcerated loved one. Many of these care packages can be ordered online and shipped to your incarcerated loved one’s facility. We have listed a few care package resources below. Just as a reminder, always check your loved one’s specific facility for their rules and regulations. 

Access Securepak:

Access Securepak allows family members and friends to send packages to inmates. This company was developed to eliminate contraband and greatly reduce the time and labor required to process packages. You can create an account and purchase a care package from them here: https://www.accesscatalog.com/index.html?PageID=8 

Union Supply Group:

Union Supply Group offers inmate and family package programs for either state-wide agencies or individual facilities. Union Supply Group uses the entire range of products offered by Union Supply Company and Food Express USA to create completely customized programs. To purchase, visit: https://www.unionsupply.com/sp_union_supply_direct.aspx 

Jack L. Marcus Company:

The Jack L. Marcus Company offers care packages to send to incarcerated individuals in select states. These states include California, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Vermont, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. To send a gift from their catalog, go to: https://jlmarcuscatalog.com 

iCare:

iCare offers snack packages that friends and family can send to their incarcerated loved ones to show them how much they care. From salty to sweet, they have the perfect package to send your loved one a treat. Send your loved one a snack pack here: https://shop.icaregifts.com/shop 

Inmate Care Packages:

Inmate Care Packages offers a wide range of options to send to your incarcerated loved one. The categories for their bundles include Food, Clothing & Apparel, Personal Care, Books/Magazines, Electronics & Accessories, and even inmate phone plans. You can find their care packages here: https://www.inmate-packages.com 

Pelipost: 

Through Pelipost, you can send photos to your incarcerated loved one. Photos are a tangible token of your love that your loved one can physically hold and cherish. Photos mean so much to incarcerated individuals, and help you to keep in contact with them. 

Ready to send pictures? You can download the Pelipost app through the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

Bobby Bostic: PeliPALS Story

To Becky Calderon and Team at Pelipost, 

I am Bobby Bostic and I was sentenced to die in prison at 16 years old. In 1995, an older man and I committed the robbery of two people who were in a crowd of five people, and committed another robbery of a single individual thirty minutes later a few blocks away. No one was seriously injured in these crimes. The judge at my sentencing hearing pronounced: 

“Bobby Bostic, you will die in the Department of Corrections. You do not go to see the parole board until 2201, and nobody in this courtroom will be alive in the year 2201.”

I have been in prison since 1994 (over 25 years now) and I have rehabilitated myself. I have completed several college courses from Missouri State University. I obtained my Associate of Science degree from Adams State University in the spring of 2020, and now I am only 30 credits from obtaining my Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. I have completed over thirty prison rehabilitation classes and programs. In addition to this, I have written five non-fiction books and eight poetry books. I also have the blueprints for several nonprofit organizations for troubled teens, and a charity that I will establish soon. Furthermore, I have many more goals that I am currently pursuing. 

I want to thank each and everyone of you for hearing my story and trying to help me. I am also doing what I can to help others. It is a struggle but we are claiming victory. If we keep saying “struggle” it will remain just that, but words can have power. 

Becky, you have lived it so you know this struggle, but you saw victory. Each photo that Pelipost sends to an inmate is a victory. Pictures mean so much to us in prison. So to the Pelipost team: all inmates in America thank you for giving us victory by each picture that you send us. Those pictures are a light in a dark prison. Each picture brings us hope, each picture makes us stronger, each picture lets us know what we are missing in the world and with our loved ones. Each picture offers us power against oppression, each picture that Pelipost sends to us prisoners gives us victory. 

Victory Over This Struggle,

Bobby Bostic 

How to Stay Positive in Jail

The period of incarceration can be a scary, confusing, and lonely time for your loved one. Removing a person from society and stripping them of their normal lives and responsibilities can greatly alter an incarcerated person’s outlook on life, and can even affect their brain chemistry. In fact, 37% of people in state and federal prisons have been diagnosed with a mental illness, along with many others who simply struggle with keeping a positive mindset. To help your incarcerated loved one make it through this difficult period with high spirits, you can send along our tips for how to stay positive in jail. 

Focus on Yourself

While incarcerated, it can be difficult not to succumb to distractions, like the actions and opinions of others. Remind your incarcerated loved one that they should not worry about others and to focus on themselves. Goal setting, staying focused, and working on personal growth will help your incarcerated loved one keep their head up and not succumb to the negativity of others. 

Educate Yourself

An excellent way for your incarcerated loved one to work on themselves and keep a positive mindset is to further their education. Although it varies from facility to facility, many jails connect  with local schools to offer a variety of academic courses, life skills education, and career and technology education for incarcerated individuals. Your incarcerated loved one can participate depending on their academic skills, disciplinary record, level of custody, length of sentence, and program availability at their specific facility. Furthering their education will give your incarcerated loved one goals to accomplish, a sense that they are making good use of their time, and wider opportunities upon their release. 

Work on Your Physical Health

Another way for your incarcerated loved one to make use of their time and keep a positive attitude is by working on their physical fitness. Although it varies, many facilities offer fitness centers, classes, and/or equipment for their inmates to use. Working on their physical fitness can help an incarcerated individual boost their self-confidence, improve their mental health, and improve their physical health. This will not only help their mindset, but reduce the risk of injury or disease while incarcerated as well. 

Work Towards a Goal

Goal-setting gives a person a sense of purpose, direction, and motivation. Although the goals may be different than on the outside, it is important for incarcerated individuals to have something to work towards. These can be goals related to education or physical fitness like mentioned before. However, they can also be goals along the lines of improving artistic ability, writing, keeping good behavior, or working towards having a more positive mindset. Whether big or small, encourage your incarcerated loved one to set specific goals for them to work towards during their time on the inside. 

Stay in Contact with Your Loved Ones

One of the most beneficial ways to keep a positive outlook while incarcerated is to keep in contact with your loved ones on the outside. For the members on the outside, using services like Pelipost to send photos to your incarcerated loved ones can make a huge impact on their mindset. This will help them feel loved, supported, and connected to you during your time spent apart. Phone calls, in-person visits, and letters are also great ways to stay connected during this time. 

Ready to send pictures? You can download the Pelipost app through the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

Creative Mail Ideas For Inmates

For our incarcerated loved ones, tangible items are cherished and appreciated because it gives them a physical reminder that they are loved. In addition to written letters, there are a variety of creative things you can mail to your loved one to give them a reminder of home. Receiving mail is something special regardless of someone’s love language, especially for those who may be struggling due to the separation from their friends and family. 

Keep in mind that every facility has their own rules and regulations, so make sure you review the specific facility’s mail policies before sending. Here are some of our favorite mail ideas that include creative items to remind your friend or family member of your love and appreciation.

Children’s Drawings and Artwork

Sending a handmade and personal piece of mail is one of the best ways to remind an incarcerated person how much they are loved back home. Creating a drawing or piece of artwork is a simple way for children to comprehend making something for someone who is in a facility.

This piece of mail can be anything from a painting to a simple sketch that the child decides to create for the incarcerated person. A one-of-a-kind personal creation is both a great way for a child to express themselves, and a way to give the recipient a unique reminder of the artist’s love for them. Consider asking the child to draw themselves and the loved one, encouraging them to think of their family member or friend even while they are apart from one another.

Acceptable Food, Clothing, and Gifts 

Giving a gift in the form of a care package is another great way to show your appreciation and love for an incarcerated individual. These items must be sent through private vendors and prison catalogues in order to abide by facility standards.

Items that seem simple to us can be greatly valued by those in facilities, because they do not have access to the same thing they would have while living at home. These types of gifts do not have to be complicated, and are an easy way to remind someone of home.

Photographs through Pelipost

Pelipost allows you to send pictures to your incarcerated loved ones through an easy three step process. With your incarcerated loved one’s mailing address and inmate ID number, you can upload a photo that will then be printed and delivered through Pelipost.  Pelipost is also the top-ranked mobile app to send photos to incarcerated persons for its ease and affordability. It is important that you feel supported throughout the process, so our customer support team is here to help via email at support@pelipost.com.

Our program is a simple and affordable way to deliver pictures right to your loved ones, and it is made possible by an experienced team who understands what it is like to have someone you love in a correctional facility. The app was born out of first-hand personal experience, and you can read more about the Pelipost origin story on our blog.

Jonathan Mayer: PeliPALS Story

Dear Pelipost Company,  

Hello there – I hope that the entire staff are doing well. This may come as a surprise, because this is simply just a letter. I know it’s a bit unorthodox, but I really wanted to send you all a letter, and simply say thank you. Your business makes it very easy for my friends and family to send me pictures, and that is a huge blessing. 

You recently sent out a flyer with a picture of the staff holding up signs saying, “Happy Love Your Inmate Day!” with a very touching message in the back. It’s nice to know the story of your company, and know that you understand firsthand how important it is to get mail/pictures when you’re doing time. Unless you experience it first hand, you could never fully understand the heartbreak in a person’s face when they go to the mail call, and at the end, their name is not called. It’s a heartbreaking sight— like you said in your flyer, even though we are incarcerated, we are still human, and still have feelings. We most definitely still want to feel connected and included to the outside world. COVID has infected the entire world, and the impacts are felt in here. We have been on COVID lockdown for over a year and half now. The first year with no visits allowed. They do allow visits now, but it’s no contact and six feet apart with a face mask. With the Delta variant going around, we could go back to no visitation at all very soon, thus making receiving pictures at mail time so important. 

I have been down for over ten years now. With that much time down people on the outside tend to draft away. It’s an out of sight, out of mind sort of thing. Mail calls for me have been slim to none lately, and it honestly has had me down these past couple of weeks. Between worrying about the pandemic and my parents’ health out there, and being locked up with no mail coming in, I was in my feelings in a bad way. Then last week, I received your flyer for Love Your Inmate Day, with the teaching message and the group photo. It honestly touched me, and I’m not afraid to share that it made me shed a few tears— of joy of course.

Your flyer let me know I was not “forgotten” by the outside world— even as corny as that sounds. So, thank you from the bottom of my heart to the entire Pelipost company and staff, know that you all are doing a great thing and making positive impacts. You make us feel that we are still human, and that we still matter. Though we all made mistakes to land us in here — our mistakes do not define who we are. There is always a bigger story. Thank you again everyone, I truly hope you and all your families are doing well and staying healthy. By the way, thank you for letting me share what was on my heart.

Take care and keep smiling.

Always, 

Johnny

“A man is so much more than his worst mistake.”