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Atascadero, CA –The Empty Bowls fundraiser for El Camino Homeless Organization held on April 25 raised more than $40,000 for the organization. Now in its 4th year, 600 people attended the annual April event at Atascadero Bible Church.

Empty Bowls is an international project to fight hunger related problems throughout the world. ECHO will benefit from 100% of the proceeds to use towards its housing and meal programs. Many local potters make and donate ceramic soup bowls. For $25 each, guests choose a hand-crafted bowl and sample soups donated by 20 local restaurants and bakeries and served by local celebrities.  Guests take home their beautiful pottery bowl as a reminder of all the “empty bowls” in the world.

During the event, Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham (R-San Luis Obispo) announced that El Camino Homeless Organization (ECHO) of Atascadero has been named the Assembly District 35 Non-Profit of the Month for April.

“ECHO is providing a great service to some of our community’s most vulnerable residents,” said Assemblyman Cunningham. “Not only are they providing a place to stay for families experiencing homelessness, but they are also helping individuals resolve core issues for their homelessness, develop plans to get a home, update their résumés, and search for job openings.”


 “The Empty Bowls event is an annual opportunity for those of us who eat without worry to reach out to our neighbors for whom a meal may be a luxury,” says Wendy Lewis, President/CEO, “In 2018 ECHO served 52,934 meals and helped 112 people find secure housing facing hunger and homelessness in SLO County. We thank all those that participated in the event and supported us in our mission to end homelessness in our community.”

Restaurants & Bakeries

Catering by Chef Charlie

The Restaurant at Justin Vineyards

Dan's Grub Shack

Il Cortile

Guest House Grill

Atascadero Cafe

Streetside Ale House

McPhee's Grill

Pedro's Mexican Restaurant

Trumpet Vine Catering

Outlaws Bar & Grill

The Wellness Kitchen

Hofbrau Morro Bay

Dan Cook

Giovanni's Fish Market & Galley

Back Porch Bakery

Odyssey World Café

Brian's Bread

The Full Belly Deli

Ron Helgerson


Celebrity Servers

Steve Martin, Mayor, City of Paso Robles

Debbie Arnold, Supervisor, San Luis Obispo County

Jerel Haley, Police Chief, City of Atascadero

Vicky Janssen, Legislative Assistant, First District Supervisor John Peschong

Jeannie Malik, Marketing Manager, Greg Malik Real Estate Group

Diane McCluskey, Chief Human Resources Officer, Twin Cities Community Hospital

Mark Lisa, Chief Executive Officer,

Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center & Twin Cities Community Hospital

Jeff Buckingham, Chief Customer Officer, Digital West

Steve Gregory, Council Member, City of Paso Robles

Cara Crye, President/CEO, Farm Supply

Barbie Butz, Press/Community Volunteer            

JoJo Lopez, DJ, Dimes Media

Heather Newsom, Council Member, City of Atascadero

Rachelle Rickard, City Manager, City of Atascadero

Mike & Charlotte Bryne, Founders, ECHO

Adam Hill, Supervisor, San Luis Obispo County

Emily Reneau, President/CEO, Atascadero Chamber of Commerce

Michael Keleman, Chief Strategy Officer,

Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center & Twin Cities Community Hospital

Sheriff Ian Parkinson, SLO County

Davinia Palmer, Dimes Media



Brezden Pest Control

Doug & Kathy Howard

Atascadero 76

Central Coast Printing


Andros Engineering

Dimes Media

County of SLO

Justin Vineyards & Winery

The Tribune

Twin Cities Community Hospital

Pacific Premier Bank

SCI Construction

ABC Church

Gerber's Auto Services

Digital West


Twin Cities Surveying

BHE Renewables

Eric Gobler Civil Engineering


ECHO operates a safe and secure overnight 50 bed shelter to meet the immediate needs of families and individuals who have become homeless.  With a unique residency program, residents are provided case management services to assist them in securing a job and finding permanent and sustainable housing within three months of entering the shelter.  While enrolled in the program, residents learn life skills for employment, budgeting, healthier habits and more.  The goal and the result of this practical support is the empowerment of residents to move in a positive direction while assisting them in acquiring the skills and services they need to become self-sustaining, including stable housing.

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