SAFE House

By on Nov 17, 2017 in Giving, People

Junior League is a woman-operated nonprofit organization that is committed to developing the potential of women, promoting volunteerism, and community improvement. Junior League of Santa Barbara (JLSB), founded in 1924, continues the tradition of leadership and service in the central coast.

Several Yardi team members are involved with LSB including Tori Fisher, Sustainer Melanie Calbow, and Kelly Johnson. Johnson has been with the organization for four years.

“I joined JLSB because I have always had a passion for volunteering and wanted to find more ways to become involved with the community,” says Johnson. “Through trainings, I have learned to excel in a variety of areas outside of my current job role and am learning to be a better leader.”

She adds, “While the international Junior League was first founded in 1901, I think it is more relevant today than ever before.  Our mission remains the same: promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers.”

“We work towards making lasting improvements in the community, just as women did in the early 1900s,” Johnson continues. “Too often we hear about all of the negatives in the world and we need people coming together to make changes for the better.”

The organization continues to be a positive force in the community. In 2016, JLSB raised more than $100,000 for local causes. Additionally, the Focus Area Committee at JLSB undertakes extensive research to select a Signature Project, the nonprofit’s most ambitious community service endeavor. One project can take several years.

JLSB took on the renovation of Eastside Library as a former Signature Project. Phase one gave the teen space a modern and appealing update. Phase two transformed the basement of the library to a bright, fun, and welcoming space for children under 12 years of age.

For the current Signature Project, Junior League has committed to opening a S.A.F.E. House in Santa Barbara, a shelter for young women who are victims of human trafficking.

Human trafficking has affected more than 21,225 people in California since 2007. This year alone, Human Trafficking Hotline reports 705 cases. More than 620 of those cases involved girls and women.

Unfortunately, there are few resources for survivors of human trafficking. With all of the shelters in the state of California combined, there are only 18 beds reserved for young women who have escaped sex trafficking. There are only about 100 beds reserved throughout the United States.

To address this tragedy, Junior League will construct the 6-bed S.A.F.E. House for women. A successful shelter in Ventura County, 4 Kids 2 Kids, will serve as a model for S.A.F.E House.

S.A.F.E House provides a new ray of hope for women who have overcome insurmountable odds. In addition to transitional housing, the S.A.F.E House offers trauma-informed therapy and personal development programs.

There is still more work to be done. JLSB needs to help of the community to make the S.A.F.E House a reality.

“Non-members can support Junior League by attending our Spring Gala on March 11 at Coral Casino, Four Seasons Biltmore or by donating directly to S.A.F.E House,” says Johnson.

To explore or support a Junior League in your area, visit

Learn more about the S.A.F.E House project by watching the video below.