The Foodbank of Santa Barbara County is hosting an innovative-format 9th Annual Table of Life — Picnic, 6 p.m. Saturday, July 25, to raise funds and awareness of the Foodbank’s work to support those affected by the COVID-19-related economic crisis.
The Foodbank has received a $150,000 matching grant from the John C. Mithun Foundation for Table of Life, which will double all donations made as part of this program. From July 26-Aug. 2, community members may join Table of Life – Community (click 2020 Virtual Event) to do the following:
Enjoy a virtual program that includes a song video recorded for this event by Jack Johnson.
Enter a raffle to win two prize packages each valued at around $300, which include three magnums of California wine, chocolates from Field + Fort, and a Foodbank eco-conscious apron. Raffle tickets are $50 each.
Donate any amount to the Foodbank, which will be doubled by the matching grant. Winners of the raffle will be notified during the week of Aug. 3.
For the Table of Life – Picnic (which is sold out), in lieu of its yearly gala at a private local estate, the Foodbank will provide patrons with a gourmet picnic for two delivered to their doors within 30 minutes of the start of an online program. Patrons will participate in a brief online program while they enjoy their picnic.
Table of Life — Picnic patrons’ gourmet meals are created by Marc Borowitz and Rincon Catering, and include a bottle of paired Grenache rosé from Monlieff Vineyards; handmade treats from Alison Hardey and Jeannine’s Bakery; gourmet chocolates from Field + Fort (which also is providing the baskets); checkered cloth napkins and wine glasses.
The 2020 Table of Life programs honor the community support of Yardi Systems, Inc. and the Mansbach family.
Yardi has partnered with the Foodbank for 20 years, making substantial monetary contributions along with staff volunteer service and donations of food.
Most recently, Yardi came forward immediately when a Foodbank refrigerated truck was totaled in an accident. Providing a $50,000 incentive matching gift, the firm initiated a community campaign that raised enough in two weeks to replace the $120,000 truck with a custom protective wrap.
Mike and Jennifer Mansbach, with their sons Jacob and Joe, founded and lead Foodbank Family Day, a monthly Saturday volunteer opportunity for families at Foodbank warehouses in Santa Barbara and Santa Maria.
Jacob and Joe, now 16 and 14, founded JOIN JACOB in 2012 and have raised more than $100,000 over eight years to provide healthy food for children and youth throughout the county. They have raced and built teams to participate in local triathlons, helping others train in collaboration with coach/ironman John Herzog, and building relationships with individual donors and sponsors to ensure local children have enough healthy food to eat.
Throughout the COVID-19-related health and economic crisis, the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County has leapt into action guided by its Disaster Feeding Plan, developed in collaboration with countywide government, health care, education, business and nonprofits, and published last November.
Beginning March 9, the Foodbank launched Safe Food Access for Everyone (SAFE) Food Net — more than 50 SAFE food distribution sites, including 20 no-contact drive-thru locations — in partnership with faith-based, nonprofit and community partner organizations.
The Foodbank has provided more than 8 million pounds of healthy food to local residents facing hardship due to medical or economic impacts of the COVID crisis, more than double what the Foodbank would normally distribute during the same time.
Thanks to relationships with local growers and produce distributors on the West Coast, the Foodbank has been able to continue to provide a ration of at least 50 percent fresh fruits and veggies.
When seniors countywide faced state-mandated stay-at-home orders, the Foodbank switched all food distribution for seniors through its Brown Bag program to SAFE Home Delivery and undertook an aggressive campaign to sign up all seniors needing home delivery of groceries and fresh produce. The Foodbank has completed more than 23,000 home deliveries.
With economic impacts from lost jobs and income expected to continue for 12-18 months due to COVID-19 response measures, the Foodbank expects to continue expanded operations throughout 2021. For more information, visit www.foodbanksbc.org.