By: Virginia Hayes
"The Foodbank of Santa Barbara County, with offices in Santa Barbara and Santa Maria, delivered 11 million pounds of food to 102,000 individuals throughout the county in 2011. Foodbank’s mission is to provide nourishment to those in need by acquiring and distributing safe, nutritious foods via local agencies and providing education to solve hunger and nutrition problems in Santa Barbara County. They do this with donated food from many sources, both locally and statewide. Using surplus food that would otherwise go to waste from retail outlets and governmental agencies, they also find that Santa Barbara County farmers and ranchers are among the most generous contributors of fresh fruits and vegetables in the country.
This year the group is launching a new initiative to further its goals to eliminate hunger in our community. Grow Your Own Way/La Comida Crece en Casa aims to teach participants how to grow at least a portion of their own food, gives them the supplies and tools they need to succeed, and requires that they then give back to their community through volunteer activities to help even more people achieve at least partial food independence.”