Here are some resources you can access if you are in need of help. Please reach out to us through our Help button on our homepage if you need mental health services, are living in your vehicle and want a safe place to park in the evenings, if you are a veteran experiencing homelessness or in danger if losing their housing, or if you want to enroll in one of our Life Skills Parenting and Education classes.
Emergency Rent Assistance: http://countyofsb.org/housing
Connection to Service Providers: https://www.liveunitedsbc.org/homeforgoodsbc
Rental Assistance, Child Care, Other Support: https://www.liveunitedsbc.org/homeforgoodsbc
Connection to Health & Human Services Information: https://211santabarbaracounty.org/
Social Service Resources: http://countyofsb.org/uploadedFiles/dss/Home/COVID-19_Resources.pdf
Amazon Wish List Donation Registry
We have an Amazon Wish List that helps us provide household items to our recently housed clients. Please visit our Wish List by clicking on the link. https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/3CF0G0TNXFF9B?
Adapting to Changes Due to Coronavirus
As soon as the pandemic started, we adapted our service delivery model and expanded our service offering to ensure the safety, health, and well-being of our clients. Our most important priority early on was to protect our medically vulnerable, unsheltered clients from contracting the virus. To date we have sheltered and continue to shelter more than 25 people in motels county-wide. We have transitioned more than 10 of our clients living in motels to permanent housing and are hoping to move all of these clients into long-term housing during this time. Programmatically, we consolidated our Safe Parking clients into fewer lots where they can access a restroom facility 24/7, and also so that they can practice social distancing.
We were also immediately able to transition all of our counseling clients to our new telemental health platform. We met all fee reduction requests associated with job loss, provided accelerated training to more than 40 of our mental health professionals, and built a telemental health platform operating at the highest security standards. In addition, we began offering mental health services for free to first responders.
Addressing food insecurity has been another major focus area for us, as many of our clients have lost their jobs or are seniors or are people who have a disability. Twice per week for more than three months, our Safe Parking team distributed hundreds of pounds of groceries and essential supplies to 70 of our unsheltered clients. During this time, staff and board members also delivered food twice per week to our seniors, our medically vulnerable clients, and to our veteran clients living at Johnson Court, the newly established veteran housing complex in Santa Barbara – part of the Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara.
In North County, our Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) Program Manager, Victor Virgen, has ensured food security for his clients, and on one occasion, delivered food to more than ten of his clients living in motels in a single afternoon. To supplement the food we were purchasing from the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County, we purchased $10,000 of food out of pocket and have also received more than 175 boxes of items from donors through our Amazon Wish List that we were able to distribute to our clients. We also distributed hygiene kits donated by Direct Relief, as well as art kits that were donated by the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. In total, we have fed 135 people weekly through our efforts.
Our Staff Were Featured in the News for All Their Hard Work!
To find out more information about how to support our clients during this difficult time, please reach out to Michael Berton at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a voicemail at (805) 963-7777 x112. Thank you! We hope you all stay safe and healthy during this time!