Jacob and Joseph Mansbach are just under $12K away from fundraising goal

Staff Report

For the 10th consecutive year, the JOINJACOB triathlon team competed in the 2021 Santa Barbara Triathlon to raise funds for the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County. The team, composed of teen brothers Jacob and Joseph Mansbach, set a goal of providing 1 million meals within 10 years.

JOINJACOB is $11,771 away from raising a total of $125,000 for the Foodbank and providing one million meals to people experiencing food insecurity in Santa Barbara County. To support the fundraising effort, visit https://donate.foodbanksbc.org/campaign/join-jacob-2021/c351397.

The JOINJACOB triathlon team began competing in 2012 when then-8-year-old Jacob Mansbach participated in his first Santa Barbara Triathlon with the goal of raising money for the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County to help kids at risk of hunger.

Since then, Jacob and his younger brother Joseph (who took on his first triathlon at age 7) have completed the Santa Barbara and Carpinteria triathlons whenever given the opportunity (Santa Barbara’s 2018 event was canceled due to route damage from the Montecito debris flow, and both events were made virtual in 2020 because of COVID-19.)

Jacob, now 17 and a high school senior; and Joseph, a 15-year-old sophomore, have continued working to increase awareness and raise funds to ensure local kids have enough to eat.

“Food insecurity has staggering impacts. We tend to think of our foodbanks solving immediate near-term needs of hunger — and they do,” Jacob said. “When we start looking at the long-term adverse impacts of food insecurity on health, on education and on socio-economic success, it becomes exponentially clearer that every little bit helps.

“These are our neighbors, our friends, our community. What can we do to help one another?”

“Last year we saw so much support from the community, and we were able to raise money to get food right away to families impacted by the pandemic,” Joseph said. “And in 2021, the need for food is still just as great, as many families continue to struggle with the pandemic. We can help with giving them the food they need to stay healthy.”

The Mansbach brothers also founded and led the monthly Saturday Family Day volunteer program at the Foodbank warehouse (before COVID-19). In this program, kids from kindergarten to high school volunteered at the warehouse, where they crated fresh produce and dry goods, and learned about the role the Foodbank plays in the community.

The brothers said they look forward to welcoming student volunteers back once conditions are appropriate for large gatherings.

 JOINJACOB has had support from numerous sponsors, including Hazard’s Cyclesport, Village Properties, Sodexo, MindBody, Mission Wealth, and Coach John Herzog.

For more about the Foodbank, visit FoodbankSBC.org.