Funds move low-income cancer patients, seniors, and chronically ill off waiting list
Organic Soup Kitchen hosted a Crab Boil on Saturday June 5, raising $30,000 to support low income cancer patients, seniors and chronically ill who have been placed on the organization’s waiting list. As demand for nutritional services skyrockets and funding declines, Organic Soup Kitchen has been forced to put people on a waiting list for their services. The Crab Boil is the first in a series of pop up fundraising events that will provide a critical stream of revenue to support home delivery of their immune strengthening SoupMeals to Santa Barbara’s most vulnerable residents. Event pictures can be found here.
“It was wonderful to see the community come together for a safe, outdoor celebration to support those who have been on our waiting list,” says Andrea Slaby, Chief Operating Officer at Organic Soup Kitchen. “The inundation of new clients has not slowed since the pandemic started, and our fundraising efforts will be critical in our ability to continue to nourish and provide food security to the thousands of residents facing medical and financial hardships.
A leader in the organic food industry, Organic Soup Kitchen has been recognized for their integrity in selecting only premium whole food ingredients including organic produce and medicinal quality herbs and spices. Working closely with leading oncologists, they work diligently to formulate SoupMeal recipes that strengthen the immune system, promote healing and increase vitality. SoupMeals are hermetically sealed in BPA-free containers providing clients with 100% safe, clinically-backed nutrition with no additives, preservatives or fillers. SoupMeals are available for purchase and every SoupMeal sold provides soup to a community member in need.
The fundraiser was made possible by the following organizations: Santa Barbara Fish Market, Andersen’s Bakery, Gethooked Seafood, SamSara Vineyards, Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Santa Barbara Winery, Arosha Inc, Wendy Foster Boutique, Mollusk Surf Shop, Presqu’ile winery, Carr Wines, Open Potions, Chef Ayda Robana, Heritage Goods and Supplies, Salty Strings Band, Taiana Designs, Minotti Los Angeles, John Rapp Artist, Covet Boutique, Imagine Boutique, Jason & Linda Baffa. Inc., Stardust Boats, Artist Josh Soskin, Yoga Soup, Tamara Honey Interior Designs, Artist Trevor Gordon, Atwill Pilates, The Merito Academy, The Giefer’s, Sol Wave Water, Merci, Bill Howard Photography, Bree’och Bakery, Alan Parsons Project, Klaus Moeller Inc. For information please visit www.organicsoupkitchen.org.
June Means it’s Poker Run Time
United Boys & Girls Clubs is excited to announce our summer event for our car enthusiasts, a Poker Run! Don’t worry, though. Our Rally 4 Kids will be back in April of 2022.
Rev your engine for this year’s goal to raise $120,000 during the Poker Run that will support the membership fee for an entire year for 100 youth at all seven locations. With your help, we can ensure no child is ever turned away and provide mentoring, sports clinics, and academic support to more youth throughout Santa Barbara County. While our services cost an average of $1,200 a year, our membership fees are only $40 per child annually. Your support is crucial to ensuring our fees remain affordable for families in need. With your support, we can continue to provide these opportunities.
Wish Upon a Montecito Star: MUS Fundraiser Gets Help from a Legend
Saturday, May 22 will be a very exciting evening for Montecito Union kids, parents, and the greater community, as Montecito Union School hosts a virtual gala featuring professionally produced musical performances from MUS students. Dubbed “Montecito Star,” the event is in lieu of the Montecito Union School Foundation’s annual gala, which raises money for various causes on campus. This year’s proceeds are earmarked for the school’s Nature Lab, located on the 2.3-acre parcel of land located adjacent to the campus on San Ysidro Road.
Foundation president Tara Fergusson tells us that earlier this year, the Foundation board was brainstorming ideas for a virtual, COVID-friendly event in lieu of an in-person gala. (Luckily, last year’s event was held just days before the pandemic shut down the majority of the country, at Montecito Club, and brought in much-needed funding that was utilized later in the year when kids returned to campus following months of virtual instruction.)
“We thought a virtual concert would be a good option and sent out an email to all the parents asking if anyone had connections to the music industry,” she said. “Within minutes, Simon Fuller reached out to us, offering to help produce a musical showcase of sorts,” Fergusson said.
Fuller, an MUS parent, is the creator of the “Idol” franchise of television shows, which includes the wildly popular American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance. He is also a well-known, international artist manager and television producer, and was recently recognized by Billboard magazine as the most successful British music manager of all time. Fuller and his family moved to Montecito last year, and he says he is pleased to help MUS as much as he can.
“It’s a wonderful school, and whatever we can do to help, we will,” he said, adding that his oldest daughter, an MUS student, is participating in the singing showcase; his younger twin girls will be in kindergarten next year.
Earlier this month, a call for submissions was put out to the MUS student body, and it was expected that two dozen or so kids might participate. “We asked them to send in videos of themselves singing, and were thrilled that we received over 90 submissions,” said superintendent Dr. Anthony Ranii. Ten singers were chosen for solo performances, as well as six featured instrumentalists; an additional 80 kids are participating in the chorus.
This week, Fuller’s professional production team is on campus to record footage, coach the soloists with their chosen song, record the songs in a mobile recording studio, and film music videos for each of the performers, who will also be styled by Fuller’s team.
“Each of the performances will be shot in a different area of the campus, in a celebration of the amazing, gracious school we have here,” said Fuller, who says he’s a massive advocate for the arts in school. “That’s really where my heart is coming from in doing this.”
Fergusson is co-chairing the event with the Foundation’s fundraising and events chair Cathy Bunnin, and with the technological help of Ben Hyatt. The event will be pre-recorded but streamed online on May 22; tickets are $50 per person, with the option of purchasing a delivered meal for four from DUO Catering for $150 additional. The event will feature opportunities for naming rights at several locations at the Nature Lab, including the MUS prep kitchen, the A-frame low lying tree house, the tool shed, art shed, and others. Participants can also donate for the opportunity to win a campout or picnic at the Nature Lab.
“It’s all for a really fantastic cause. The Nature Lab is going to be transformative for our school,” Dr. Ranii said.
When fully realized, the Nature Lab will invite learners to imagine, build, and get messy in nature as they care for the planet and one another. The experiential outdoor ecosystem that is currently in progress includes a model of self-sustaining agriculture including gardens, produce, composting, and livestock and other animals; nature-inspired making and tinkering, such as pottery, collage, wood and metalworking, weaving and textiles, painting, dye, and mixed media projects using the natural materials found onsite; a riparian zone created by a water feature; a natural playground made from the logs of massive eucalyptus; and much more.
The Nature Lab is already being used in its current form, allowing for large-scale engineering, small-scale agriculture, and plenty of opportunities for student activism.
“If we realize the full potential of Nature Lab, we will have created a lasting resource and a living experiential outdoor facility that will help to nurture, excite, and inspire generations of Mustangs,” Fergusson said.
An old house on the property has already been demolished, a footbridge was constructed linking “MUS proper” to the Nature Lab, a low treehouse has been fully constructed and is already been well-utilized by students, and the Nature Lab is already home to a few animals, including three chickens and one sulcata tortoise. Students are helping to design animal enclosures that better meet the needs of these animals, are more permanent, and better designed.
In addition, a large-scale solar structure has been designed which will generate 100% of the electricity needs for the entire campus as well as provide shade for students using the northern section of the property. This structure will begin construction next month and should be completed by August. In addition, a full infrastructure plan has been designed (water, electricity, sewer, and gas) and this should also be completed by August.
By September, with the help of student designers and parent volunteers, the school hopes to create gardens, a farm stand, an outdoor kitchen, and more. The hope is that the virtual gala will bring in much-needed funds to accomplish this mission.
“I’m incredibly grateful for the MUS Foundation for putting this on,” Dr. Ranii said. “And grateful to Simon and his team for stepping forward to support the school and bring the community together. The skill and talent of our kids has been remarkable, and it’s going to be a great show.”