What We Do

Our Mission

Foodbank of Santa Barbara County’s mission is to end hunger and transform the health of Santa Barbara County through good nutrition.

 A food bank is a non-profit organization working to eliminate hunger by providing food, education and other resources to a network of hunger-relief charities and their communities.       

Getting from hunger to health requires understanding the difference between eating enough calories and choosing healthy foods. We are pushing beyond the traditional scope of a food bank by providing more than just food.  With nutrition education, disaster preparedness, environmental sustainability and community resilience at the forefront of our mission, we are working to solve the underlying causes of hunger in Santa Barbara County. Learn more about the issue of hunger.


Nutrition Education

The Foodbank of Santa Barbara County is committed to taking a negative thing – hunger – and through our combined community efforts transforming it into a positive thing – health. This is achieved with three ingredients, food, education and empowerment, which build food literacy: the ability to look after oneself with food through buying, cooking, and using food responsibly. Developing food literacy combats not only hunger but also malnutrition and obesity. Learn more about our nationally recognized continuum of nutrition programs that provide pre-school to elder education for families, children, and seniors.


Disaster Preparedness

The Foodbank serves as the primary food resource during an emergency in Santa Barbara County. Operating as the lead organization of Volunteer Organizations Assisting in Disaster in Santa Barbara County (VOAD-SBC), we provide community relief and preparedness education. Since the devastating Thomas Fire and 1/9 Debris flow in Montecito, we have implemented an Emergency Food Box system, initiated a county-wide Emergency Feeding Plan, and hosted a preparedness conference to improve plans and communication with our partners.



Community Resilience

Through our partnerships with local non-profit organizations and combined with our nutrition education and disaster preparedness initiatives, we are working to improve the resilience of individuals and our entire community. The Food Action Plan addresses our local food system, sustainability, and the responsible use of food in our county to create a long-term roadmap to improve our economy, health, and foodshed. We distribute our food to other non-profits to share with their communities, ensuring we reach the broadest number of people seeking assistance and build a network of support.