St. Vincent’s Receives Major Grant from Women’s Fund of Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara, CA | Women’s Fund of Santa Barbara | May 11th, 2023

Hundreds of members of the Women’s Fund of Santa Barbara gathered on May 9, 2023 to celebrate the positive impact of collective giving and to award 10 large grants to nonprofits located in south Santa Barbara County.

The annual Celebration of Grants event, held at Santa Barbara’s Marjorie Luke Theatre, included a lively welcome reception followed by the announcement of each grant recipient that will share in a pool of member contributions totaling a record-breaking $925,000.

The event marks the 19th year that the Women’s Fund has been growing its membership and increasing its level of funding to support nonprofits that are on the frontlines doing vital work in the community.

This spring, over 1,200 Women’s Fund members voted to select projects that address critical local needs in the areas of family support services, youth engagement, housing assistance, transportation, education, mental health, domestic violence, and food and nutrition.

The 2022-2023 grant recipients are:

2nd Story Associates – $50,000 to fully furnish 28 new studio units in a supportive housing development for extremely low-income homeless individuals.

Alpha Resource Center of Santa Barbara – $140,000 for the installation of automated doors and air conditioning in program areas of a building serving the needs of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Alzheimer’s Association (California Central Coast Chapter) – $30,000 to help pay for targeted educational materials, outreach, and support programs to inform and educate 150 Spanish-speaking families about Alzheimer’s and dementia and facilitate access to appropriate care.

Family Service Agency of Santa Barbara – $100,000 to hire a half-time bilingual community mental health navigator for a two-year pilot program that will work with clients to find and access appropriate mental health resources.

Food from the Heart – $75,000 for a truck to be customized for use in its harvesting program that uses local surplus produce, which becomes part of the meals supplied to low-income clients who are recovering from surgery or dealing with a serious illness.

Hillside House – $100,000 for a van adapted to accommodate four wheelchairs or 14 seated passengers to serve low-income residents with severe intellectual and developmental impairments.

Independent Living Resource Center – $100,000 over two years to hire a youth advocate to provide focused, personalized services to 45 youth with disabilities who lose the specialized help they have been receiving from the school system when they graduate.

Legal Aid Foundation of Santa Barbara County – $100,000 over two years to help hire a legal assistant who will relieve attorneys of administrative work so they can take on more cases and help more survivors of intimate partner violence.

Santa Barbara County Immigrant Legal Defense Center – $130,000 over two years will help the Immigrant Legal Defense Center (ILDC) hire a social work case manager to address a range of needs of the children while the ILDC attorneys provide legal services.

St. Vincent’s – $100,000 over two years to pay for the salary of a peer support specialist to help families successfully navigate the critical and often challenging 90-day orientation period that begins a 27-month program providing on-site transitional housing and wraparound services to help families become self-sustaining, stable community members.

More information about each agency and grant purpose is available at:

Front Row (from left to right) Alice Villarreal Redit, Resident Programs Supervisor, 2nd Story Associates, Kathryn Westland, Director of Programs, Alzheimer’s Association (California Central Coast Chapter), Lisa Brabo, Executive Director, Family Service Agency of Santa Barbara, Elizabeth Sorgman, Board President, Independent Living Resource Center, Julissa Pena, Executive Director, Santa Barbara County Immigrant Legal Defense Center

Back Row (from left to right): Joshua Weitzman, Executive Director, Alpha Resource Center of Santa Barbara, Kathryn Westland, Director of Programs Alzheimer’s Association (California Central Coast Chapter), Steven Sharpe, Executive Director, Food From the Heart, Cheryl Sweeney, Chief Development Officer, Hillside House, Flo Berger, Director, St. Vincent’s, Jennifer Smith, Executive Director, Legal Aid Foundation of Santa Barbara County