Self surrendering can be a scary and overwhelming experience for a woman as well as for her family and friends. At the Hospitality House we are here to support the women at Alderson FPC and their families, and we see helping with Self Surrenders as an important part of our mission.
If you or your loved one is self surrendering, please give us a call as soon as possible to make a reservation. Most women who are self surrendering are ordered to do so on a week day, so reservations at the House for the night before are usually available.
If you are coming to Alderson by yourself via train or airplane to self surrender, please notify us of your travel itinerary so that we can be at the train station or airport to pick you up when you arrive. It takes about 45 minutes to drive from the Greenbrier Valley airport in Lewisburg to the camp in Alderson so please make travel plans accordingly. It is also a good idea to notify FPC Alderson of your travel plans for your self surrender, and if your plane or train is late or delayed, you should call the camp.
We are not able to keep items for women who are self surrendering so it is important to pack light. The camp will send home any items such as clothing that you are not allowed to keep with you when you enter Alderson FPC.
How It Works
Some women come with their family who see them off, whereas others come by themselves. Either way is just fine with us and we will be happy to assist you and your family in anyway possible.
Most women are ordered to surrender in the afternoon between noon and 2pm. It is usually not a problem to arrive early on the day of your self surrender; though, if you are going to be late for any reason, it very important that you notify the camp of the reason for your delay.
When you are ready to self surrender, you will drive into the front gate of FPC Alderson (the gate is always open) and continue straight ahead until you reach the camp compound. There is a parking lot and a gate with brick columns. On the column to the left of the road, there is a box with a telephone in it. Simply pick up the telephone, dial 313. When the control room answers, state your name and say that you are there to self surrender. We are happy to make that call for you if you prefer.
They will tell you to wait there at the gate while they send an officer in a vehicle to get you. Sometimes they come out in 2 minutes; other times it is 20 minutes. Usually they will drive out in what looks like a Frito Lay delivery truck without all the decals, but sometimes it will be a pickup truck.
If your family is dropping you off be sure to say all your “good bye for nows” and share your hugs quickly since once the call is made, the truck could be out right away. If we are dropping you off, we will stay with you until they come. We have been inside the camp and can point in the direction of the dorms, chow hall, visitation room, etc. If you would like to sit quietly that is fine, if you would like to chit chat that is fine as well. Often women like for us to pray with them while we are waiting and that, too, is fine. We understand that this can be a very nervous time, full of questions, fears and uncertainty. Please know that we are here to be with you and provide as much comfort and support as we are able.
Helpful Self Surrendering Tips
The quickest way to get money onto your commissary account is to bring cash or a money order.
Aside from the clothes on your back, you are not allowed to bring very much into the camp with you when you self surrender. For more detailed information about self surrendering please visit the Bureau of Prisons website, www.bop.gov. You can also call FPC Alderson to ask questions prior to your self surrender date (304) 445-3300.
You will most likely not be able to call home to family and friends for about 5 days after you surrender because phone numbers need to be approved and money needs to be processed into your commissary account. We suggest that you make your family aware of this so they won’t worry about not hearing from you right away.
Even if you are not staying at the AHH the night before you self surrender or using our transportation, feel free to stop by and see the house. We will show you around and hopefully be able to calm your and your families’ anxieties about your time at Alderson FPC.