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‘Tools for School’ event provides school supplies, COVID vaccines to Santa Barbara students

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - This year's eighth annual "Tools for School" event funded by Union Bank provided over 400 Santa Barbara students with school supplies and some even got their COVID-19 vaccine.

The event was held at Presidio Springs in Santa Barbara from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

The Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara (HACSB) and its nonprofit affiliate 2nd Story Associates, teamed up for the annual giveaway. Santa Barbara Mayor Cathy Murillo was also in attendance.

They said each student between grades Kindergarten through 12th were able to pick out an age-appropriate backpack filled with school supplies for the upcoming year.

While HACSB provides housing and services to the community, 2nd Story Associates works to fill gaps to help local families succeed. 

Tools for School is part of the 2nd Story program aimed at encouraging academic success and high school graduation among low-income youth.

“Transitioning back to school following the prolonged interruption of in-person instruction has created many new challenges for our families and youth,” said Alice Villareal Redit, HACSB’s Resident Programs Supervisor. “Given the added importance of the coming school year, 2nd Story Associates is pleased to continue its efforts to support extremely low-income families and youth by providing resources that will help children learn and thrive with confidence. We are especially grateful to Union Bank for their ongoing commitment to our Tools for School event, particularly at this time when many students have experienced learning loss and other challenges.”

In addition, 40 students signed up to be vaccinated at the event. The on-site free COVID vaccines were provided and distributed by Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics.

A physician and Spanish-speaking interpreters were also in attendance to help answer questions and educate families on the vaccine.

The public was invited to make donations to support the Tools for School campaign, which helps fund educational materials and supplies such as upgraded computers for Housing Authority’s after-school centers. Donations can be made securely online at

Article Topic Follows: Education

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