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Grant Assists 22 Groups Offering Basic-Needs Services

The Santa Barbara Foundation awarded $882,500 to support 22 organizations providing safety-net services for underserved people in Santa Barbara County.

The grants, most for $50,000, were awarded to well-managed and effective nonprofits providing essential food, shelter and health care services, including behavioral health.

"From the start, and throughout more than eight decades, we have supported efforts, programs and organizations that are in some meaningful way building vibrant communities," said Ron Gallo, president/CEO of the Santa Barbara Foundation.

"However, our communities throughout the county often lack access to the most basic of human needs, such as food, shelter and health care, which is why the Santa Barbara Foundation prioritizes supporting the nonprofits that are working to overcome the numerous challenges in meeting those needs," he said.

To review the 41 proposals submitted by organizations countywide seeking $1.7 million, the foundation assembled a committee of community leaders and experts to focus on the new ways nonprofits are addressing the demand for basic needs services.

"I am always struck by the needs in our community and what people are dealing with," said Michael Young, Santa Barbara Foundation trustee and chair of the Core Support for Basic Needs committee.

"It reminds me how fortunate I am and how important supporting basic needs is to our community. I admire and am proud to support the nonprofit agencies that refuse to give up and continue to do this important work," he said.

Funding was designated for operating expenses and direct costs related to sustaining and/or expanding service delivery. A common theme in this year's applications included concerns regarding the anticipated shifts in the healthcare landscape.

The selection process was challenging and illuminated the realities that nonprofits are facing on the ground.

"This year's selection process was an unforgettable experience that challenged our committee in so many ways," said Tracey Taylor, a member of the Core Support for Basic Needs committee.

Taylor also is housing development specialist for the Housing Authority of the city of Santa Barbara.

"It was heartwarming to learn of the many services available in our community and an honor to participate in a very thoughtful process to provide financial support to continue such valuable work," Taylor said.

Working on the committee alongside Young and Taylor were Phil Alvarado and Laurie Ashton, Santa Barbara Foundation trustees; and Polly Baldwin, Santa Barbara County Public Health Department.

Also, Michael Gorodezky, past chair of the Santa Barbara Mental Health Commission, Valerie Fuette of Cavalletto Charities; Takashi Wada of CenCal Health; and foundation staff members Amy Schneider, Phylene Wiggins and Guille Gil-Reynoso.

2017 Core Support for Basic Needs Grant Recipients

Channel Islands YMCA, Youth and Family Services - $35,000
Child Abuse Listening Mediation, Inc. - $50,000
Community Action Commission of Santa Barbara County- $50,000
Cuyama Valley Family Resource Center - $20,000
Domestic Violence Solutions for Santa Barbara County - $25,000
Family Service Agency of Santa Barbara County - $50,000
Foodbank of Santa Barbara County - $50,000
Good Samaritan Shelter - $50,000
Mental Wellness Center - $50,000
New Beginnings Counseling Center - $40,000
Planned Parenthood California Central Coast - $50,000
Peoples' Self-Help Housing - $25,000
Sanctuary Centers of Santa Barbara, Inc. - $50,000
Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics - $50,000
Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center - $35,000
Santa Barbara Rescue Mission - $35,000
Santa Barbara Street Medicine - $20,000
Santa Ynez Valley People Helping People - $50,000
Sarah House Santa Barbara - $12,500
The Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse - $50,000
Transition House - $50,000
Transitions-Mental Health Association - $35,000

— Tara Schoenborn for the Santa Barbara Foundation.

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