The city of Goleta has expressed thanks to the community for the impressive turnout at its Dec. 11 Community Open House on Homelessness, as well as to the service-providers for taking the time to speak with residents.
About 150 people attended the event, which offered an opportunity for local residents to interact one-on-one basis with city staff and homelessness-service providers, as well as present ideas on homelessness in the community.
Representatives from such organizations as the county of Santa Barbara, Peoples’ Self-Help Housing, Isla Vista Youth Projects, New Beginning’s Safe Parking Program, Showers of Blessing, Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office, Santa Barbara County Behavioral Wellness, and Equalitech were on hand to talk to attendees.
In addition to members of public, city staff and service-providers spoke with a number of current or former homeless individuals.
Local office holders or their representatives who attended included Goleta Mayor Paula Perotte, Mayor Pro Tempore Kyle Richards, Councilmember James Kyriaco, 2nd District County Supervisor Gregg Hart, and representatives for 3rd District Supervisor Joan Hartmann and State Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson.
Community input is an essential part of Goleta’s effort to develop its first comprehensive Homelessness Strategic Plan. The city has released a survey, which was also available at the Open House, in which it hopes to hear from residents, businesses, service-providers, and those who are or who have experienced homelessness.
To date, the city has received about 300 completed surveys. The survey can be found online in both English and Spanish at the following links:
English Community Survey on Homelessness: https://tinyurl.com/goletahomelessness.
Spanish Community Survey on Homelessness: https://tinyurl.com/lafaltadeviviendaengoleta.
The Community Open House and survey are elements of a larger homelessness strategic planning effort, which has included stakeholder meetings, best practice discussions with communities nationwide, and years of partnership supporting regional homelessness efforts.
While Goleta has a history of supporting organizations and regional efforts serving those at risk of homelessness and those experiencing homelessness, the city currently does not have a comprehensive plan analyzing the state of homelessness in the area and the most effective steps forward.
City Council and staff believe having a strategic plan will provide important direction and clarity around needs, service gaps, and priorities to make effective and strategic funding decisions that serve both the existing homeless population, as well as those at risk of becoming homeless.
Once adopted, the Homelessness Strategic Plan will help guide and coordinate efforts to prevent and address homelessness within the city of Goleta.
For more information, contact Dominique Samario, management analyst for the city of Goleta, at email@example.com or 805-690-5126. For more about Goleta’s Homelessness Strategic Plan, visit https://tinyurl.com/GoletaHomelessnessPlan.
— Jaime Shaw for city of Goleta.