SBCC Foundation creates fund for Ukrainian students and families

The+Ukrainian+flag+waves+in+the+wind+as+it+hangs+from+the+second+story+of+the+Physical+Science+building+in+support+of+Ukraine+at+City+College+on+Friday%2C+April+29+in+Santa+Barbara%2C+Calif.+The+SBCC+Foundation+recently+started+a+relief+fund+to+aid+Ukrainian+students+with+basic+needs+such+as+housing+and+tuition+payment.

August Lawrence

The Ukrainian flag waves in the wind as it hangs from the second story of the Physical Science building in support of Ukraine at City College on Friday, April 29 in Santa Barbara, Calif. The SBCC Foundation recently started a relief fund to aid Ukrainian students with basic needs such as housing and tuition payment.

Luke Fipps, Staff Writer

The SBCC Foundation has been crucial to the community of Santa Barbara, providing over $5 million every year to accommodate the critical needs of the college.

However, in recent months the outbreak of war internationally when Russia invaded Ukraine has left Ukrainian students at City College without financial support from their home country.

The foundation opened a Ukrainian Relief Fund for these students, providing assistance for enrollment, housing or anything else vital to supporting their academic journey that has been cut off as a result of the conflict. 

“We do have students from Ukraine at SBCC,” CEO of the SBCC Foundation Geoff Green said. “They have expressed their needs to us and we have happily assisted them.” 

Additionally, the foundation is offering support in extension to not only students but also to the Ukrainian families affected by the ongoing war overseas.

Green added that benefactors to the fund are various philanthropists in the Santa Barbara area, and that Winslow Maxwell funds are also available as emergency funds. The Winslow Maxwell funds have been beneficial in providing support during spontaneous emergencies such as the prolonged peak of COVID-19 in addition to the recent invasion of Ukraine. 

Directly assisting those in need has always been part of the foundation’s goal.

In the past, the foundation worked with the Santa Barbara Response Network to directly assist those who were affected by the Thomas Fire in 2017.

In 2016, it launched the SBCC Promise, providing all local high school graduates with two years of education at City College completely free of charge. As a result, more than 5,000 students and counting have taken part in the SBCC Promise program, according to the foundation’s website.

While the foundation provides significant financial support to the community, they also offer student support programs such as Running Start, SPARC and Transitions

“Moving forward we want to address the housing crisis in Santa Barbara, specifically the college’s lack of designated student housing,” Green said.