Santa Barbara Homelessness Collaborative
Since Fiscal Year 2020, the City has contracted with the Santa Barbara Alliance for Community Transformation (SB ACT) to assist the City in developing a unified, strategic response to homelessness. At the core of SB ACT’s work has been the development of a Common Agenda/Strategic Plan to address homelessness to be achieved by the end of 2023.
Guided by a steering committee of community stakeholders, the plan identifies four main goals: increase the number of affordable housing units by 20 percent; increase the rate of housing retention by five percent; reduce the percentage of people entering homelessness from a housed situation by ten percent; and strengthen the coordination and availability of outreach and case management services by 25 percent.
Additionally, SB ACT leads monthly working groups of housing agencies, service providers, and individuals with lived experience to increase coordination and collaboration. Staff from the City’s Rental Housing Mediation Program, Library, and Environmental Services, among other City programs participate in these work groups.
SB ACT also convenes regular neighborhood-centered group meetings known as Regional Action Plans (RAPs) that bring together area stakeholders to discuss issues of concern, inform the public about efforts to address homelessness, and develop strategies to reduce the impacts of homelessness. There currently are three RAPs for the Downtown and Waterfront area, the Eastside neighborhood, and Upper State Street area. Meetings are attended by residents, business leaders, and service providers. City staff from the Encampment Response Team, Police and Fire, Library, and Community Development actively participate in the meetings and address issues of concern among the community. To receive updates from SB ACT and notices of upcoming RAP meetings, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
In 2021, SB ACT formalized and expanded the Neighborhood Navigation Center (NNC) model in which service providers come together in a “one-stop-shop” location. Services include case management, food distribution, medical and veterinary care, sanitation services, and more provided by many nonprofit organizations.