Santa Barbara
82° F
Clear
Clear
Santa Maria
79° F
Clear
Clear
San Luis Obispo
80° F
Clear
Clear
Ventura
76° F
Clear
Clear

Homeless Head Back to Streets for Food

By Victoria Sanchez, KEYT - KCOY - KKFX Anchor/Reporter, victoriasanchez@keyt.com
Published On: Sep 18 2013 08:54:46 PM CDT
Updated On: Sep 18 2013 09:56:30 PM CDT

Homeless go without provided lunch

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -

Ramon Dixon found himself an empty bench on State Street hoping someone would help him out.

On the first day since Casa Esperanza closed its day center, many homeless went without a provided lunch, leaving dozens to fend for themselves.

"I survive, collect cans, do what I got to do. But I do it legally," said Dixon.

He'll talk to passersby and even sing to them. Dixon said he'll do what he can, now that the doors of Casa Esperanza are closed to those dropping by for lunch.

"That was like a sanctuary. They treated us well, but now you have to find another means," he said.

Dixon is just one of many who are returning to the streets.

Richard Ambrosi said he tries to find work, but he always gets the same answer.

"'We'll call you, don't call us.' One of those reactions. It hurts because you're trying your darndest to survive," he said.

Ambrosi wasn't asking for money on Wednesday afternoon, but he thinks now that the shelter's day center is closed, panhandling will skyrocket.

"A lot of times too you'll have one person here, one person there, one person down here and they're all panhandling," he said.

It's something business owners are aware of.

Alan Bleecker of the Milpas Community Association said there will be negative consequences because of the closure, but thinks in the long run, it will be good.

"Hopefully it will encourage those people to get into a sobriety program at Casa and get them to avail themselves of other services there and really focus on sobriety rather than just focusing on getting a meal," said Bleecker.

The Santa Barbara Downtown Organization is keeping in contact with the police just in case they see a panhandling increase.

"We, as an organization, talk about it in our safety committee meetings. We're trying to stay on the forefront of it, to make sure it doesn't catch us by surprise and say, 'Oh, my gosh, what do we do now?'" said Dave Lombardi, the organization president.

Both business owners and the homeless agree, it will take time to wait and see how it plays out.

Comments

The views expressed are not those of this company or its affiliated companies. Please note by clicking on "Post" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms Of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. 
blog comments powered by Disqus
  • Body of Isaiah Sanchez Recovered at Cachuma Lake

    Santa Barbara County sheriff rescue crews have found a body near the place where Isaiah Sanchez went missing.

  • Ellwood Fire

    Explosion at Goleta Apartment Complex Leaves One Man Hospitalized

    Santa Barbara County Fire crews responded to an explosion and fire at an apartment complex on 447 Ellwood Drive in Goleta.   Fire officials received the call at around 7:00 p.m. One person was injured and taken to the hospital with severe burns.  The apartment manager helped put out a small fire that broke out after the blast. The explosion and fire are still under investigation.  The fire did not spread to any adjoining apartments.

  • Santa Paula Reserve Police Officer Resigns After Posting Video About Bicyclists

    Volunteer posted a YouTube video joking about running over bicyclists.

  • Juvenile Hall Court to Host Gang-related Murder Trial

    The so-called "U-Haul murder trial" is expected to be another high security, gang-related trial that requires extra time and money to make it work at the Santa Barbara County Juvenile Hall courtroom which is seen as the most practical venue.

  • dangerous dogs

    Orcutt Family Starts Petition to Change County Ordinance

    An Orcutt family is fighting to keep their dogs from being euthanized, and is now trying to change a county ordinance on aggressive dogs. The family has an online petition spreading their message on the internet in an effort to get the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisor's attention.

    Peggy Henning remembers the day her family welcomed Daisy and Duke into their family like it was yesterday.

    "They immediately just became part of the family," said Henning. "They were very friendly with all the guests we had coming over."

    But things changed when Daisy and Duke got loose. They liked chasing cats.

    "Dogs are pack animals and that is their default instinct," said Henning. "If they are bonded or litter mates, it intensifies that. They would get out of the confines of our house or yard and this instinct would come to the surface."

  • inspection_report_public_health_notice

    Health Inspectors Look Into Restaurant Bug

    Old Town Mexican Café in Old Orcutt has never failed an inspection in the past according to the Santa Barbara County Environmental Health Services Department. On satruday several diners spotted bugs at the restaurant

  • New Family Friendly Tasting Room Opens in Solvang

     A new winery in Solvang recently opened their doors, and they are making their tasting room open to everyone.

  • Roundbout Giving Drivers in the Santa Ynez Valley a New Way Around

    An intersection that's become very busy because of its location near wine country and the Chumash Casino is now expected to be much safer.  The final phases of work on the roundabout in the Santa Ynez Valley are taking place.

  • Slideshow: Rescue Crews Find Body In Cachuma Lake

    Santa Barbara County sheriff rescue crews have found a body near the place where Isaiah Sanchez went missing.

  • Slideshow: Blondes VS Brunettes Charity Football Game

    A charity football game at the Polo fields in Carpinteria pits the Blondes vs Brunettes. The all-women football teams duked it out on Saturday to raise funds for the Alzheimer's Association. Both teams fought fiercely but in the end, only one came out the victor.

    Photography by Oscar Flores.