Outreach program serves as a safety net for county‘s seniors. (Courtesy photo)

Many older community members, particularly those living alone, are not receiving the support they need during the coronavirus pandemic.

To address this gap, several nonprofits in Santa Barbara County have joined forces to identify isolated seniors and connect them to essential services or critical needs, such as food and supplies.

Family Service Agency (FSA) of Santa Barbara County, also known as the Santa Maria Valley Youth & Family Center and Little House by The Park in Guadalupe leads the consortium. Partners include:

Central Coast Commission for Senior Citizens, Center for Successful Aging, Community Action Commission, Carpinteria Children’s Project, Community Partners in Caring, Cuyama Valley Family Resource Center, Lompoc Valley Medical Center, Lompoc Valley Community Healthcare Organization, and Santa Ynez Valley People Helping People.

“During California’s stay-at-home order, older Californians rely on friends and neighbors to help them obtain basic necessities like groceries and prescriptions,” said FSA’s executive director Lisa Brabo. “We are here to help those who might otherwise not have a consistent safety net of support to receive needed food and supplies.”

The provision of culturally competent outreach and assistance is a grass-roots effort, community by community. To obtain assistance, call the Senior Connection, 805-925-9554.

The project was initiated with an initial funding consortium of the James S. Bower Foundation, Wood-Claeyssens Foundation and an anonymous donor, and has received additional funding from the Zegar Family Foundation.

To make a donation, contact Family Service Agency, 805-965-1001 ext. 256 or visit FSAcares.org.

FSA is a nonprofit social service agency that has served Santa Barbara County since 1899. FSA helps the community’s most vulnerable children, families, and seniors meet their basic needs while simultaneously addressing mental health needs.

Central Coast Commission for Senior Citizens-Area Agency on Aging is a nonprofit organization responsible for allocating federal and state dollars to local agencies to ensure supportive, nutrition and health promotion services are available to older adults in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties.

Community Action Commission of Santa Barbara County works in partnership with the community to provide education and supportive services to residents of Santa Barbara County resulting in improved economic security and self-sufficiency.

Carpinteria Children’s Project nurtures a strong community that supports healthy families and successful children. Its Family Resource Center connects Carpinterians to community resources around access to physical and mental health care, financial assistance, nutrition, and social connections.

Community Partners in Caring is a community outreach organization that recruits, screens and trains volunteers to provide free non-medical support services to seniors (age 62 and older). Its mission is to provide volunteer support services that allow local seniors to live independently while maintaining dignity, respect, and quality of life.

The Cuyama Valley Family Resource Center (CVFRC) serves as the primary provider of social services to all Cuyama Valley residents. Working across generations and cultural backgrounds, CFVRC fosters community-led initiatives designed to address community-identified issues.

Lompoc Valley Community Healthcare Organization works to improve the health of the Lompoc community by ensuring equal access to a coordinated and local system of health promotion, disease prevention, and high-quality treatment service.

Lompoc Valley Medical Center (LVMC) is committed to improving and developing healthcare services in the Lompoc Valley. Services include a hospital, outpatient clinics, a skilled-nursing facility, and emergency medical services, as well as education and wellness programs. LVMC is governed by a locally elected board of directors accountable to the community. For more, visit LompocVMC.com.

People Helping People works to improve the lives of men, women and children in the Santa Ynez Valley, Los Alamos and surrounding communities by addressing emergency and basic needs, furnishing comprehensive integrated family and individual support services, and acting as a catalyst for positive community change.