Santa Barbara Rescue Mission Thanksgiving Feast
By Bonnie Carroll
The Santa Barbara Rescue Mission held its annual Thanksgiving Feast on November 22, where an army of volunteers from Schipper Construction, who are doing the remodel on the Rescue Mission, along with board members and community volunteers who were happy to serve meals to the expected 300 men, women and children in need. The Rescue Mission is currently in the midst of a 40,000 square foot remodel, but their contractors broke long enough to help serve attendees at the holiday feast.
From Santa Barbara Boy Scouts of America preparing slices of pie to John Palmenteri, KEYT3 senior reporter, making people laugh it was all a delicious and grace-filled afternoon at The Santa Barbara Rescue Mission. Volunteers including Gerd Jordano and Fredrik, along with residents from the Samarkand community served food, poured beverages and shared in the wonderful experience of giving back at the Thanksgiving.
Gerd Jordano, SBRM Past Board Member helps SB Boy Scouts get the donated pies served.
Rolf Geyling, president of The Rescue Mission gave a special blessing to the large group in attendance to start the feast. According to Geyling “As the holiday season approaches, the need to serve the homeless is great. So many men, women, and children in need turn to the Santa Barbara Rescue Mission every day. This year, we plan to serve more than 10,000 meals between now and the end of the year.”
The remodel to enhance and expand The Rescue Mission will provide an updated woman’s dorm that will double the number of beds for women at the facility, as well as provide a private woman's shower/bathroom area. Rolf Geyling stated there is a rising number of homeless women from 55 to 75 coming to the mission for help, and these improvements are not only needed but necessary. Additional Improvements to the first and second floor, renovation to enlarge the chapel, men's recovery program areas (including an ADA bathroom) and the kitchen facility that prepares over 90,000 meals annually are all included in this vitally needed remodel.
Kudos to the SBRM Cooks at Thanksgiving Feast
Santa Barbara Sheriff Bill Brown believes the Rescue Mission is what every community needs desperately – a place where broken lives can be rebuilt, and Joyce Dudley, Santa Barbara District Attorney believes the programs at the Rescue Mission result in giving hope to those struggling to find hope, prevents crime and supports public safety. 85% of The Rescue Mission resources are used to provide outpatient and residential recovery programs.
The 501(c)(3) organization has served the country and city of Santa Barbara for 50 years, providing emergency services and long-term recovery for the homeless and addicted. It is the only emergency shelter that is open 365 nights of the year from 'Santa Maria to Ventura. In 2016, the Mission provided 143,051 meals and 51,627 safe nights of shelter for individuals with no place else to turn. The Mission's 12-month residential recovery program aims to bring individuals from decades of addiction, institutionalization, and homelessness back to sobriety, health, and wholeness. Certification through the California Department of Alcohol and 'Drug Programs ensures that participants receive the highest standard of treatment in a non-medical facility. The mission receives no government funding.
Those wishing to donate to 'The Mission of Hope' remodel and expansion campaign please contact: Rolf Geyling, President A Mission of Hope at [email protected].
Rolf Geyling, President Gives me a Tour of SBRM Renovation Site