WEATHER »
Dr. Lynne Jahnke loads her car with donated jackets that will be distributed at warming centers downtown

Paul Wellman

Dr. Lynne Jahnke loads her car with donated jackets that will be distributed at warming centers downtown


Winter Gear to be Distributed to the Homeless

Local Group Collects Private Donation


On December 2, social worker Ken Williams and members of Interfaith Initiative of Santa Barbara County collected winter gear to distribute to the homeless to suit up for the cold winter ahead.

The cold-weather gear — which included higher-quality jackets, raincoats, pants, and socks — was mostly given by a private donor.

Father Jon-Stephen Hedges loads his car with donated jackets that he will be distributed to those in need in the Isla Vista/ Goleta area
Click to enlarge photo

Paul Wellman

Father Jon-Stephen Hedges loads his car with donated jackets that he will be distributed to those in need in the Isla Vista/ Goleta area

The recent death of 56-year-old Robert Lester Bunch — the 31st homeless death in Santa Barbara due to the near-freezing temperatures — has raised awareness efforts to offer aid to the homeless community. According to Williams, the private donor empathized with the homeless in light of recent deaths. Williams said he hopes other people will follow suit.

The gear was evenly distributed among six groups to target different communities. In addition to Williams, Father Jon-Stephen from Isla Vista, Lynn Jahnke, and local minister Jeff Shaffer, also participated in collection and distribution efforts. Williams said that he hopes distribution efforts will also take place in January and February.

“Unfortunately, you don’t have an unlimited supply,” said Williams. “You have to really judge who needs it more and is more vulnerable. You have to make the hard calls, but we have to do something to cut down on these deaths,” he added.

To submit a comment on this article, email letters@independent.com or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email tips@independent.com.



event calendar sponsored by:

192 Bridge Work Update

Delays expected as utility lines are replaced.

Goleta Target Store Confirmed

Set to open at Kmart location in 2019.

County Fire Chief Calls for More Fuel Breaks

Peterson wants to create a continuous front-country line from Montecito to Goleta.

Crime Rates Down, Youth Arrests Up in Santa Barbara County

A 'high percentage' of misdemeanor citations happen on school campuses.

Will Hollister Ranch Access Deal Hold Up Under Public Scrutiny?

State commissioners are taking a closer look at settlement over beach access to Santa Barbara County gated ...