Swipe Out Hunger at UCSB was started by Shannon Mirshokri and Alexandra Guthy in the winter of 2013 due to the increasing urgency to assist the homeless community in the Isla Vista and greater Santa Barbara areas. Gauchos are known to be very giving and passionate about giving back, and we are looking forward to growing our organization on campus. “Swipes” shows UCSB’s dedication to maintain a level of respect and generosity toward a community Gauchos are proud to call home. With a small effort and kind intentions, students will be able to positively impact their local community. Learn more about how you can get involved below!
How Swipes at UCSB Works
Through Swipes at UCSB, students are able to donate one unused meal swipe to those in need. Once a quarter, Swipes representatives and volunteers will table outside the dining commons for a week to collect signatures from students who want to donate. Two weeks after the Swipes drive, we will be creating sack lunches and delivering them to nearby shelters. Overall, by donating an unused meal swipe, that would otherwise go to waste at the end of the quarter, students are helping feed a neighbor who would otherwise go hungry.
Our winter quarter drive is under way! We will be tabling Monday thru Wednesday of every week until we reach our 1,000 swipe cap. Each student is allowed to donate one meal per week. Check our Facebook page for specific times and locations.
Our donations are going to different places this year, too. 75% of the swipes will become meal vouchers and given to UCSB gauchos in need. The other 25% of swipes will be converted to a monetary value and have already been used to purchase various foods and items for Casa Esperanza Homeless Center in Downtown SB.
If you would like to get involved at UCSB, either as a volunteer or for a leadership position, feel free to reach out to us by e-mailing the team directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Current Presidents: Niki Bina & Amani Alameddin
Shannon Mirshokri, President and Co-Founder
I’m Shannon, a junior at UCSB, a chocoholic, and a newfound lover of yoga. I started Swipes for the Homeless two years ago along with Ali Guthy. Community service has always been a huge part of my life, from making PB&J sandwiches in grade school to donate, to putting on service learning events in high school. After hearing about the Swipes program, I made it my mission to make it as successful as possible at our campus. I like how the program takes what would have been wasted and gives it to another SB citizen in need. Over the past two years, we have helped over 300 houseless individuals in Santa Barbara and 2,000 UCSB students. I’m so proud of our passionate, dedicated student body and cannot wait to see how the program will advance in the future!
Leila Hakim, Vice President
Hi, my name is Leila Hakim and I am a third-year Biopsychology major at UCSB, serving as the Vice President for Swipes. This is my second year serving as an officer for Swipes, and I am proud to see how much our team’s hard work and determination, as well as the support of fellow UCSB students, has helped the organization flourish from the ground up. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for Swipes!
Sukhdeep Kaur, Volunteer Director
Hey! My name is Sukhdeep Kaur, I am the Volunteer Director. I chose Swipes for the Houseless because I enjoy spending my time helping the Santa Barbara community and the students at UCSB.
William Leu, Program Chair
Will is a third-year student from Fremont, CA. He is currently studying Sociology and Communication with a minor in Applied Psychology. Will wanted to be a part of Swipes because it was as a way for him to give back to the surrounding communities of Isla Vista and Santa Barbara.
Jonathan Gruber, Marketing/Media Director
I am a 2nd year Economics and accounting major. I joined Swipes because thankfully, I have been privileged enough in my life to be able to afford food. After I head about Swipes, I researched its cause and decided that I wanted to give back to the community that has given me so much.
Niki Bina, Co-Community Outreach Coordinator
I’m a history major, so naturally I’m a book nerd. I love binge-watching Netflix and eating absurd amounts of cereal. As to my involvement with SWPES, I joined because I wanted make a difference in the community, both internally on UCSB campus, and externally to shelters. I look forward to helping SWIPES expand beyond the great accomplishments it has already achieved. We have already gotten off to a great start, so I’m excited to see what this year has in store for us!
Lea Hamilton, Co-Community Outreach Coordinator
Michelle Shpilskaya, Head of Tabling Committee
I am Head of the Tabling Committee. The reason I chose swipes was because this club actually gives back to the local community. Many people think Santa Barbara is where wealthy people retire, but in reality that is not the case. In addition to volunteering, I love playing basketball and spending as much time at the beach as possible.
Erica Oren, Volunteer
I am Erica Oren, a Junior at UC Santa Barbara in the Sociology major and Education minor. I am on the Tabling Committee of Swipes for the Houseless, and I joined because I have always been concerned with battling hunger. Our organization helps many members of our community, and we are all passionate people who care about making a difference.
Amani Alameddin, Volunteer
I am Amani Alameddin, a second year Econ/Accounting student and I am on tabling committee of Swipes this year. I joined because I love the idea of donating unused meals that students accumulate every week to those in need. People always want to help the houseless/those in need but don’t know how but this club allows us to do just that. I also love directly seeing how what we do makes a difference :)
Charllene Amin, Volunteer
Annie Toubi, Volunteer
Hi, my name is Annie Toubi. I am a fourth year sociology major with a minor in applied psychology. I am in the tabling committee and I joined swipes for the homeless because I want to make a difference in our community and help relieve the hunger among students.