Giant Abandoned Homeless Camp on S. Fairview Removed

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Source: Heal the Ocean

While many of us were having a nice weekend relaxing and being with friends this past weekend, something wonderful was going on in the So. Fairview Avenue area of Goleta we want you all to see.

Andrew Velikanje (we call him Andrew V.) was tackling the cleanup of a huge homeless camp spread widely in the So. Fairview area – by himself – and at breakneck speed. (Well, this little 4-minute video is fast-forwarded so it looks like breakneck speed – but this job took Andrew all day.)

This is “Site #5” on a list of 29 abandoned camps identified in HTO’s Homeless Survey done by HTO Field Advisor Harry Rabin at the request of the City of Santa Barbara Encampment Response Group.

Meanwhile, back at the HTO home camp, we didn’t know Andrew was working on this site going into the weekend, so when it was all bagged up, ready for pickup on Saturday, we had no one to call. Coming to our rescue (again!) was Brian Borgatello of MarBorg Industries, who sent his crew out to pick up all of the bags collected by Andrew, and everything was gone by early afternoon on Saturday.

Andrew’s business is Earthcomb, “For a Cleaner California,” and you can see his great videos on his website, which tallies all the trash and litter Andrew picks up (now, nearly 16,000 pounds). As he scurries about picking up trash, you’ll see “Vroom Vroom” superimposed on the videos – so at Heal the Ocean we’ve decided to anoint Andrew with the name “Mr. Vroom Vroom” as he proceeds through the rest of the abandoned homeless sites identified in the HTO Survey. HTO funded this survey, as well as Andrew’s great work. 

Thank you, Andrew! Thank you, Brian Borgatello! 

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SBJeweler Aug 27, 2021 08:55 AM
Giant Abandoned Homeless Camp on S. Fairview Removed

I am so appreciative of the work Andrew is doing. Studies have been done showing that litter and tagging encourage more of the same. I hope seeing beauty and nature will discourage trashing.

sbsunshine Aug 26, 2021 10:29 PM
Giant Abandoned Homeless Camp on S. Fairview Removed

Goes to show you how EASY it is to get things done when you just do it. This man is an inspiration and GREAT human being. Is there a way to donate? To volunteer to help him? Everyone complains but so few actually put their money or time where their mouth is. And, it doesn't take millions in tax dollars to do something so simple. Imagine that! The truth is WE the PEOPLE are the ones we have been waiting for to create the change NOT politics, crappy mayors, entitled workers etc. Now, if there was a way to apply our time toward such efforts to tax credits that would be a real solution. Imagine how many people would be out in the city getting things done in record time!

sbpoodlelady Aug 26, 2021 09:26 PM
Giant Abandoned Homeless Camp on S. Fairview Removed

I looked at the HTO's Homeless Survey Interactive Map. I found several large structures missing. If the drones flew over the area in 2020, as stated, why is the Direct Relief builing missing; or the Marriott hotel. Direct Relief opened the doors to the new building in 2019 and the Residence Inn opened in 2017, this begs the question "when was the drone survey done and how reliable is the data they are using?"

lindsayg805 Aug 26, 2021 05:02 PM
Giant Abandoned Homeless Camp on S. Fairview Removed

Andrew is an incredible member of this community. He also volunteers with Wildlife Care Network as well and helps rescue animals from precarious places (helped me get a family of opossums out my car engine compartment). He really goes above and beyond for our community and deserves all the recognition! Thanks Andrew!

Basicinfo805 Aug 26, 2021 04:14 PM
Giant Abandoned Homeless Camp on S. Fairview Removed

Good work but unfortunately a drop in the bucket relative to the ongoing damage that the tsunami of Santa Barbara city voters have put in motion. It’s a sh-t show for the ocean and all of us.

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