News Archive:

Celebrating Our Summer Graduates

We held our Summer Graduation ceremony on Saturday, July 24, for nine men and two women completing our 12-month Drug and Alcohol Treatment Program. These men and women endured all of the COVID-19 requirements and hardships with us. We are pleased to see how well they have succeeded in a virtual setting without many of the social outlets we’re accustomed to offering our residents.

South Coast Church hosted us in their new sanctuary and treated everyone to a tri-tip dinner on their stunning patio. It was a tremendous celebration and the final return to a traditional format that we have not been able to have in 16 months.

4th of July Festivities

We held our fourteenth annual 4th of July celebration for our homeless guests on the holiday. The men in the Mission’s 12-month Residential Recovery Program were present to cook, lend a helping hand, and celebrate with guests. This was an opportunity to build relationships, and the men and women who attended were able to learn more about the services the Mission can offer them.

This year we were able to bring back fun games to play, including a dunking machine. Our homeless guests were able to dunk their favorite staff members! Our Women’s Auxiliary provided fun and useful raffle prizes for the lucky winners.

Camp Out on the Bayou

OCTOBER 2, 2021, AT 2:00 P.M.

20th Annual Benefit for the Santa Barbara Rescue Mission at the historic Rancho Dos Pueblos and virtually as well

Honoring Gerd Jordano with the Léni Fé Bland Award

Santa Barbara’s most popular Silent Auction with gifts and getaways

Tunes by The Idiomatiques

Campsite Dinner by Lorraine Lim Catering

For information and to purchase tickets, go to

Summer Graduation

Our Summer Graduation ceremony will be hosted by South Coast Church located at 5814 Cathedral Oaks Road in Goleta. Please join us on Saturday, July 24 at 5 PM for the ceremony and reception. There will be indoor and outdoor seating provided with a big screen to watch the ceremony outside on the patio, or you can catch the live stream on

4th of July BBQ Fun and Games

We are excited to hold our annual 4th of July BBQ for our homeless guests! We will have our traditional raffle with prizes for our winners, and we will bring back some of the carnival games we couldn’t have last year. We are thankful for our donors who make it possible to create a safe place for our men and women to come and celebrate this important holiday.

Easter Feast 2021

Our annual Easter Feast was a happy and festive occasion. We had all of the special touches for our homeless guests, thanks to our donors’ generosity and creativity. In the absence of volunteers, we had the support of a fleet of Westmont College interns who have braved COVID with us and cared for our guests throughout this dark season.

Spring Graduation Success

On Saturday, March 13, Santa Barbara Community Church hosted the first graduation ceremony of 2021! Last year we were confined to celebrating in our parking lot due to COVID-19 guidelines, so we were grateful for the opportunity to have it in this beautiful setting. We are proud of these eight men and women who not only endured the demands of our recovery program but all of the challenges of a worldwide pandemic.

We were thankful that Santa Barbara Community Church could live-stream our event on YouTube, and if you missed it, you can watch the recording by clicking here: Spring Graduation 2021 Video!

A Tribute to Volunteer, Jane Blair

The SBRM community was grieved to learn of the passing of our most dedicated volunteer. A retired teacher, Jane Blair, tutored hundreds of men and women through our Learning Center. She was a patient and caring teacher who took great joy in seeing her students develop confidence, attempt the GED—with many of them passing, and go from there to employment and further schooling. As men and women came through the recovery process, Jane helped them develop practical skills. Many graduates credit her investment leading them on to lives they never imagined possible. We are so grateful for her dedication, generosity and friendship.

Easter Feast

This year’s Easter Feast will look very similar to last year’s feast due to the absence of volunteers and social distancing. We served 300 meals at our dinner the previous year, and we will be well prepared to serve even more. Our hurting and hungry neighbors are ready for a fresh start, and that’s what these meals communicate to our guests. We will be holding this celebration on Thursday, April 1, from 4 – 6 PM.

Our First Graduation Ceremony for 2021

Santa Barbara Community Church will be hosting our first graduation ceremony of the new year. The celebration will be held on Saturday, March 13, 2021, at 1 PM. We will live stream the event on our SBRM YouTube channel.

Christmas Traditions

We kept our annual Christmas traditions with some modifications due to the pandemic. Our men in the recovery program enjoyed a BBQ lunch prepared by staff members in place of volunteers and gift cards were provided by our Women’s Auxiliary.

The Auxiliary also gifted the ladies at Bethel House with a special catered dinner and presents to open. The community came together with donations of new items for our homeless guests to receive as Christmas gifts. Everyone under our roof was remembered and blessed at Christmastime.

Annual Thanksgiving Feast Accomplished

We celebrated Thanksgiving with our homeless guests by holding our annual feast. We made changes due to guidelines for COVID-19, which included masks, social distancing, and the absence of volunteers. Our residents in the recovery program cooked 70 turkeys for the feast and also helped to serve. We wanted to continue our tradition of serving restaurant-style, so our staff members, including our president Rolf Geyling, stepped into these roles to make it possible to wait on our guests.

We are thankful for the outpouring of generosity from our donors, who made it possible to offer Thanksgiving meals to our homeless guests. We are looking forward to doing this again in celebration of Christmas!

Turkey Drive

We are accepting turkeys, canned food, and monetary donations in preparation for our annual Christmas Feast. The turkeys are prepared and cooked in advance. The holiday dinner will include turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, pie, and all the trimmings. Approximately 300 turkeys are needed for all of the meals that will be served throughout the holiday season. We are planning to provide thousands of meals including 300 meals just for Christmas alone.

Christmas Feast and Giveaway

We will be holding our Christmas Feast this year for our homeless guests before the holiday. Thanks to our Women’s Auxiliary, we will have gifts for all of our guests. As part of the Christmas giveaway, each guest receives at least one brand new item – many haven’t received something new in years! But of course, for the event to be a success, we need enough gifts for everyone. Will you help? We especially need:
• Shoes (all types and sizes, especially work boots)
• Socks
• Sweatshirts
• Sweatpants
• Hats
• Warm jackets and coats
• Backpacks
You can either make a financial gift so that the Auxiliary can purchase items or make an appointment to drop off brand new items to the Mission up until December 14. Contact Rebecca Weber at 805-966-1316 for more information.

Thanksgiving Feast

Our annual Thanksgiving Feast will deviate from the long-held tradition of including volunteers due to our adherence to COVID-19 guidelines. We regret not being able to have the festive restaurant service for our guests, but we will make it as special as possible with a traditional menu and all the comforts of home.

Virtual Fall Graduation Ceremony

WATCH our virtual fall graduation ceremony on Saturday, November 14 at 1 PM. There will be nine men and women who will be completing the 12-month Drug and Alcohol Treatment Program. We will live stream the ceremony on Facebook:

The Bayou Derby a Virtual Success

Our 19th annual fundraiser and first virtual event was a complete success raising almost $500,000 to help the men and women struggling with addiction and homelessness at the Rescue Mission. We were thankful to be able to publicly honor Chief of Police Lori Luhnow for her strategic partnership with our organization in protecting the most vulnerable in our community. Our Women’s Auxiliary made this event possible!

Special Summer Graduation Ceremony

On Saturday, July 25, we held a special graduation ceremony for 15 graduates of our 12-month Residential Recovery Program. For social distancing and health purposes, the ceremony was outside in our parking lot and attendance was limited to close family members of the graduates.

The event, which included powerful testimonies from Addie and Ricardo, and an inspiring message from Pastor Paul Nelson of Emanual Lutheran Church, was live-streamed on Facebook. If you didn’t catch the ceremony live, you can still view it by going to our Facebook page.

We had a Modified July 4th BBQ and Raffle









Amid so much uncertainty, we decided that it was still necessary to offer joy and keep some sense of normalcy for our homeless guests. They were already feeling so displaced in society. While we did not have the full spectrum of carnival games and activities we usually offer our guests at our annual 4th of July celebration, we still had a BBQ Dinner and Raffle. The Women’s Auxiliary provided raffle prizes such as backpacks and gift cards for the guests to win, and dinner was delicious and plentiful as always!

The Bayou Derby


Saturday, October 3, 2020

We are holding our 19th annual fundraiser through virtual means. This year we will honor Chief of Police Lori Luhnow with our Leni Fe Bland award. For more information, please contact Rebecca Weber at or 805-966-1316 ext. 105.

60 Minutes at the Mission

We have paused our monthly tours in light of the COVID-19 precautions we are taking to protect our homeless guests, residents, and community.

4th of July BBQ

We are going to have our annual 4th of July BBQ Dinner and Raffle for our homeless guests. We are disappointed that we will not be able to have our full carnival of games, but due to social distancing and safety, we will be serving dinner in our chapel. Our Women’s Auxiliary is providing fun raffle prizes for the guests to win, such as backpacks and gift cards to restaurants. We need to offer joy and keep some sense of normalcy for our guests who were already feeling displaced in society.

Easter Feast Fulfilled

It wasn’t the Easter Feast we had envisioned for our guests, but in light of COVID-19, we have been serving dinners in our chapel with six feet of separation between our guests every night. We realized that although volunteers were not allowed to participate, we could still have special touches with donated flowers from Trader Joe’s and placemats that donors signed and colored. Our meals were served in compostable to-go boxes, and the menu included ham, mac and cheese, Wes’ Famous Carrots, salad, and an option of carrot or chocolate cake for dessert. We are grateful to our donors who provided the over 300 meals served at the feast and more Easter meals on the actual holiday.


Easter Feast

We will be holding our annual Easter Feast on Thursday, April 9, 2020, in our remodeled chapel. In order to prevent the spread of the Cornavirus we will not be able to have volunteer help which is a necessary break from tradition.  It will be served in shifts to be able to create safe social distancing for all who attend. Our staff will serve meals to men, women and children.  Through charitable donations of food items and gifts from the Santa Barbara community we are able to serve up to 300 people in need.

The holidays can be a joyful time, but a lonely time for those that are struggling with poverty, homelessness and addiction.  We offer hope and a new beginning, so many of the graduates of our 12-month residential recovery program started here with a simple holiday meal.

We are accepting hams in preparation for the feast!

Grateful for the first graduates of 2020

We are so grateful to have had the opportunity to celebrate the first graduation ceremony of 2020. Santa Barbara Community Church hosted the celebration and reception! We had eight men and four women who participated in the ceremony. We are proud of these courageous individuals who have been able to stay the course and meet the demands of our 12-month recovery program.